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  1. #1
    Spa-tu-la killerbass's Avatar
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    Default Ultimate Fantastic Four #38 (Spoilers)

    Um, it's over -- Mike Carey's first UFF arc is finished.

    I'll leave the summary for someone else with more patience.

    My criticisms:

    1. There were too many new characters unleashed all at once.
    2. The plot, for an Ultimate comic, was way too complex. Come on, I wouldn't even begin to try and read this to my son. I'm not even sure I got all of the plot...
    3. Very little character development -- stuff happened, people reacted, bad guys were subdued for now, and Reed has additional alien intellect -- but other than that, everything seems status quo.

    What I liked:
    1. The art was decent -- once I uset to the differences between Land and Ferry.
    2. A couple of cool moments here and there -- Reed getting kissed, Thing losing a part of his rocky hide, and Sue's reaction to the aforementioned kiss.

    Anybody else think that maybe the 616 writer (McDuffie) and the Ultimate writer (Carey) need to be flip flopped. I think McDuffie would do a great UFF, and the old time FF fans would appreciate Carey. Thoughts?

    I am hanging on -- especially for Mark Brooks.

    1.5 stars out of 5.

    Just my two cents,
    Tom
    My Favorites: Daredevil, Hawkeye, Superior Spider-Man, Ultimate Spider-Man

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  2. #2
    Assimilation or Death Omega Alpha's Avatar
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    I think it was very good. Yeah, the plot is complex, and will probably work better in TPB, but it was still an excellent read, Ferry's art was very good, and it had several good moments.
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  3. #3
    Bitch please. MaxofSteel's Avatar
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    I've liked the arc very much so far, and I'm excited about picking this last one up.

    ...Any spoilers would be appreciated though.:p

  4. #4
    devoid of tact gorthon616's Avatar
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    As to the general critiques of the comic I'll just copy what I have written in a different thread.

    Carey has a certain style which may not be for everyone. He is big on epic stories with a minimalistic view on characterization. When you "drawn out," other people see epic. The difference is the viewpoint which dictates the pacing. Typical form is more like a first person shooter. The character drives the motions and the action. Whereas this takes more of a third person perspective. You see the expanse of the story with the character merely moving within it. The first seeks to engage the reader in a view, whereas the latter wants the reader to disengage from any particular view and read the story as a more submersive experience.

    As far as the characterization goes, its also part of the style. No, there is no long expansive dialogue or text showing the "character" of the characters. However each character is given a well-defined voice. Certainly I am not getting into their head, but you do get a feel for them. I do not "know" the characters, nor do I really "care" about them in the sense that it makes a difference to me what happens to the seed unit in the long run. But the feel that they have is enough to give intrigue to the story, to see how they will interact with the story and the story will interact with them. Again story driven, rather than character driven.
    As far as the actual issue goes, honestly I have to say it was something of a let down. The switch from Thanos/Glassgallow and the rest of those forces to Ronan seemed largely contrived. True, we had known that Ronan was a part of Thanos' forces and his son, but he had not been developed either individually or as an aspect of being within Thanos' group. So it really seemed more like a random encounter than being part of the plot.

    The actual fight up until Tesseract losing and the subsequent power-team-up and then the Thing yanking the universal weapon from his hand was pretty solid as well. However, the Tesseracts loss seemed very anti-climatic (which can work at times, but in this case doesn't seem to work at all), combing their powers to blast Ronan seemed hackneyed, and the Thing just yanking the weapon from his hand... well just felt like a very weird note to end the battle on.

    The touch with Thanos overlooking Reed considering how to build the cosmic cube was intriguing.

    Overall, I still really enjoy the series and my only criticism (though other criticisms may stem from this single criticism) was my only apprehension that I had as the series was previewed and released. Why was Ronan in this comic book? He didn't have anything to do with the series until the last few pages of the second to the last issue, and then suddenly he is spotlighting the ending battle? It seemed really outside the context of the story and just didn't mesh well with everything else.

    Plus, Ronan looked fairly lame and so did his American Gladiator stick... I mean Universal Weapon....

    I hope somewhere down the line Carey reveals more on why Ronan was included in the story the way he was.... perhaps the fact that he is human looking (notably the only alien on Thanos' side that looks humanoid) means that maybe there is some connection with him to Earth? He is (seemingly) still on the planet (maybe? I forget if the Seed Unit took him back or not).

    I have this grudging fear, however, with the degree of Kirby New Gods flavored references that Carey placed into the story, Ronan was a contrived plot device to place the story more solidly as a reflection of Marvel property.

  5. #5
    Prepare for war wingsofdamnation's Avatar
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    i enjoyed the arc but i think that it was stretched too thin over the six issues. definitly could've been condenced. i really like the art and i like the writing but think this could've been a 3-4 issue arc.

  6. #6
    Hello, hardware hotness! garin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by killerbass
    2. The plot, for an Ultimate comic, was way too complex. Come on, I wouldn't even begin to try and read this to my son. I'm not even sure I got all of the plot...
    Huh? Where did you get the idea that the Ultimate line was intended to be simplistic, or for younger readers? The Ultimates isn't more kid-friendly than the Avengers.

    Quote Originally Posted by gorthon616 View Post
    As far as the actual issue goes, honestly I have to say it was something of a let down. The switch from Thanos/Glassgallow and the rest of those forces to Ronan seemed largely contrived. True, we had known that Ronan was a part of Thanos' forces and his son, but he had not been developed either individually or as an aspect of being within Thanos' group. So it really seemed more like a random encounter than being part of the plot.

    The actual fight up until Tesseract losing and the subsequent power-team-up and then the Thing yanking the universal weapon from his hand was pretty solid as well. However, the Tesseracts loss seemed very anti-climatic (which can work at times, but in this case doesn't seem to work at all), combing their powers to blast Ronan seemed hackneyed, and the Thing just yanking the weapon from his hand... well just felt like a very weird note to end the battle on.
    I completely agree with your criticisms here. Overall I still really enjoyed the arc, but I wish it could have ended on a stronger note.

  7. #7
    Cat smells like fish StoneGold's Avatar
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    I think the problem is Mike Carey writes aliens as really alien. And that doesn't compute that well, because most people like aliens to be basically human, but with weird shaped heads.
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  8. #8
    Junior Member BadAssMofo's Avatar
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    I liked this storyline very much. The artwork was great too. On the page where they say they have reinforcements I think I spot Ultimate Impossible Man, and Firelord. Can you guys spot anyone else??

    I love the fact that Thanos is sitting in Reeds brain just waiting. Great story!!

    Oh yeah. Ronan the accuser is a badass!!

  9. #9

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    Excellent conclusion and superb art! I also want to know more about the Seed Unit "reinforcements".

    Best Marvel creative duos of all time:

    Stan Lee + Jack Kirby (Fantastic Four)

    Chris Claremont + John Byrne (Uncanny X-Men)

    Chris Claremont + Michael Golden (Avengers Annual #10)

    Kurt Busiek + George Perez (Avengers)

    and coming soon ...

    Mike Carey + Pasqual Ferry (Ultimate Fantastic Four)

  10. #10
    The power of the rainbow. jade_nova's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by garin View Post
    Huh? Where did you get the idea that the Ultimate line was intended to be simplistic, or for younger readers? The Ultimates isn't more kid-friendly than the Avengers.
    I think he got the idea about the Ultimate being simple and for young readers from articles when the line first started.
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  11. #11
    Spa-tu-la killerbass's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by garin View Post
    Huh? Where did you get the idea that the Ultimate line was intended to be simplistic, or for younger readers? The Ultimates isn't more kid-friendly than the Avengers.
    Well, to start they are rated for all ages -- although I don't have the book in front of me...

    Then there was this interview with Bill Jemas from way back when, where he said,

    "Marvel believes that the Ultimate Spider-Man and X-Men lines are the answer. Core comic fans will love these books. The characters are pure and true to themselves. The stories are strong, complete, compelling, and produced by our best artists and writers. But, any new reader can pick up any one of these books and start reading. Essentially, the Ultimates swap out the traditional back-story and replace it with a rich, self-contained, Year-2000 context."

    But whatever... I still think this storyline would have been a better 616 story, but what do I know -- I'm just a cranky old guy...

    --Tom
    My Favorites: Daredevil, Hawkeye, Superior Spider-Man, Ultimate Spider-Man

    Almost Done Collecting ASM: Want issues 1, 3, 4, 8, 11, and 18 - Ann. 1 & 2

  12. #12
    New Member Jim Yost's Avatar
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    I respect what Carey's doing, and I'll more than likely buy the trades from here on out...

    But I'm done with the monthly now. Honestly, I just look forward to Bendis' versions of the UFF in Ultimate Spidey more than their appearances in their own book.

    Again, not a slam against Carey. I think he's really got some great ideas, and as a collection they probably read like the best sci-fi... it just doesn't get me all charged up.

  13. #13
    Spa-tu-la killerbass's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Yost View Post
    Honestly, I just look forward to Bendis' versions of the UFF in Ultimate Spidey more than their appearances in their own book.

    Again, not a slam against Carey. I think he's really got some great ideas, and as a collection they probably read like the best sci-fi... it just doesn't get me all charged up.
    Yeah, what he said! I really think he just needs to spend a little bit more time on characterization.

    Maybe if we put Bendis and Carey in a blender -- ew -- but that might be messy...

    --Tom
    My Favorites: Daredevil, Hawkeye, Superior Spider-Man, Ultimate Spider-Man

    Almost Done Collecting ASM: Want issues 1, 3, 4, 8, 11, and 18 - Ann. 1 & 2

  14. #14
    Hello, hardware hotness! garin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by killerbass View Post
    Well, to start they are rated for all ages -- although I don't have the book in front of me...

    Then there was this interview with Bill Jemas from way back when, where he said,

    "Marvel believes that the Ultimate Spider-Man and X-Men lines are the answer. Core comic fans will love these books. The characters are pure and true to themselves. The stories are strong, complete, compelling, and produced by our best artists and writers. But, any new reader can pick up any one of these books and start reading. Essentially, the Ultimates swap out the traditional back-story and replace it with a rich, self-contained, Year-2000 context."
    He says new readers, not younger readers. My impression of the Ultimate line, and that quote confirms it, is a re-imagining of the universe in a modern context that's not mired in thirty years of continuity. It has nothing whatsoever to do with simple stories, and it's definitely not supposed to be Marvel Adventures.

  15. #15
    Spa-tu-la killerbass's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by garin View Post
    He says new readers, not younger readers. My impression of the Ultimate line, and that quote confirms it, is a re-imagining of the universe in a modern context that's not mired in thirty years of continuity. It has nothing whatsoever to do with simple stories, and it's definitely not supposed to be Marvel Adventures.
    I agree to disagree with you.

    --Tom
    Last edited by killerbass; 02-01-2007 at 01:56 PM. Reason: Spelling...
    My Favorites: Daredevil, Hawkeye, Superior Spider-Man, Ultimate Spider-Man

    Almost Done Collecting ASM: Want issues 1, 3, 4, 8, 11, and 18 - Ann. 1 & 2

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