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  1. #1
    Incredible Member
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    Default Why do people hate Ultimate Marvel?

    I’ve seen a lot of people hate on the Ultimate Marvel imprint that lasted from 2000 to 2011 saying that it was overly edgy and has aged horribly but I just don’t see it. I recently got comiXology and say the Ultimates vol 1 was free and read it and I absolutely loved it. This really got me into the other Ultimate titles and have loved all of them so far. I’m currently working my way through Ultimates 2 and am loving it so far. I just don’t get the hate for it. I’ve heard bad things about Ultimates 3 and Ultimatum but I see people specifically target Mark Millar’s titles. I know Millar isn’t the most popular guy and I’m not usually a fan of his but I’ve enjoyed a lot of his marvel work including Civil War and Ultimate X-Men.

    I see people say the Ultimate versions of the characters are just assholes of beloved heroes but I disagree. Sure they have flaws some more than others but I wouldn’t call them assholes by a long shot. On top of that people have a tendency to take parts out of context without looking at the entire story or even just the context. The biggest offender is the “You think this letter stands for France?” Yes it was a stupid and cheesy thing to say but Cap admit that later on. I guess you could criticize Millar for writing something stupid to backtrack later on but it isn’t like these things go unnoticed in the story. And because of one line that Cap admit later on people say he was a bigot and conservative. It’s like they boil these characters to the most negative traits and say that is all their characters were

    So I just don’t get the hate for the Ultimate Marvel line. Am I upset it ended? Eh a little but I guess you could say it ran its course not to mention it was never built to last forever unlike the regular marvel universe. Part of the appeal was it was more grounded and death was mostly permanent which wouldn’t work with serialized titles that go on forever. In many ways I think it is what DC should’ve done for the New 52 just create a separate rebooted universe, leave the main universe and then eventually merge the more popular elements to the main universe. It was honestly a brilliant idea by marvel to bring in new readers and basically saved the company from bankruptcy

  2. #2
    Ultimate Member Lee Stone's Avatar
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    I liked the Ultimates.
    During the first run it was something akin to Joe Jusko doing the Marvel Masterpieces cards. It raised the bar so high that anybody just doing regular quality stuff was going to pale in comparison.
    And eventually, the Ultimate books did start looking just like other Marvel comics.

    I think one of the problems with a line like Ultimates is that everyone enjoys it at the start, when the universe is still new and unexplored. But once it gets past a certain point, it becomes just an alternate Marvel, with the same levels of complexity and barriers to entry.

    It's very hard to not go too far with building the universe if you want the books to succeed. If you don't expand at least a little bit, people will think the imprint is doomed (Strange Tales, for example).
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  3. #3
    see beauty in all things. charliehustle415's Avatar
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    People hate parts of the Ultimate Universe.

    Ultimate Spidey is probably one of the best Spidey books ever written, not only did it revamp and update Peter but it introduced Miles to the world.

    People really hate what Loeb did with the universe and Millar's stereo typical writing style (but I liked the his Ultimates & X-Men).

    Once the big guns left the only title that was consistently good was Ultimate Spider-Man because Bendis was the only writer on the book which is quite historic.

    There were some stand out runs after Loeb, Hickman's New Ultimates were pretty good which allowed him to go on to write the 616 Avengers book.

  4. #4
    Astonishing Member Riv86672's Avatar
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    Like they said above, I like PARTS of Ultimate Marvel/liked it at the beginning.

    Ultimate Spider-man was a great re-imagining, I just have to stop reading the series at a certain point and it’s gold.

    Ultimates was another re-imagining I enjoyed. A twisted version of some of my favorite heroes that I was really entertained by, and really glad wasn’t 616 canon! Again, just need to stop reading before the inevitable over milking of the cow.

    Both Ultimate Spidey and Ultimates gave us things that made their way onto the big screen, which says a lot about the impact the books had at one point.

  5. #5
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    I really adored Ultimate line-up, sometimes I liked it even more than main universe. But then Ultimatum happened. So... I guess you see what I mean

  6. #6
    IRON MAN Tony Stark's Avatar
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    As others have said people hate some parts of the UU. Personally I adored the UU. I was beyond happy to have another Tony to read. I miss it and hope they bring it back. Ultimate Tony was a force of nature and I love that Warren Ellis got to write him a few times.
    " This is why you're the head of S.H.I.E.L.D, Stark. Because you're stronger than anyone. It's not the armor....and you know it. Your here because impossible things happen, and when they do, They call on you to deal with them. You see the angles, Tony. You always have. You see the possible solutions to things that shouldn't be happening." CAROL DANVERS

  7. #7
    Astonishing Member pageturner's Avatar
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    I am completely neutral. Although I never dove deep.

  8. #8
    iMan 42s
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    To chime in here, a lot of hate towards Ultimate can be seen in part that it doesn't really age well. Older Ultimate material is very much early 2000's and post-9/11 if you can understand that. In an effort to be modern it ironically is just as dated in many respects.

    A lot of Ultimate material isn't very good.
    Ultimate Spider-man is great and I absolutely recommend it to people despite how I feel about Bendis at times since it and the resulting Miles Morales truly are standouts among it. But Ultimate power, Ultimatum, later Ultimates, just bleh. Don't get me wrong a lot is good about Ultimate but given the age of the line and that you might have to do some homework so you're not walking away with a book about how Quicksilver is fucking his own sister, having to do homework is not a good thing. With how young it was by the time it croaked having more bad then good even if the good is fantastic isn't all that great.

    A lot of the character designs (the various Ultimate Iron men are cool) and concepts are great though much of the writing just couldn't make it work. Particularly when it comes to characterization where everything being modern and realistic is just characters being dicks to each other for no reason. Also it had some obsession with cannibals that to this day I'm still not 100% about. Like it's not even good writing either, a bunch of villains are cannibals or in one case force people to eat each other. In hind-sight it's just a big WTF.
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  9. #9
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    Simple. There were moments, runs, and events which soured everyone's image of Ultimate Marvel. Time also hasn't been the kindest to them either.

  10. #10
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    As others have mentioned, the early Ultimate titles really do read like modern war time comics. They haven’t aged very well.

    That being said, the early Ultimates stuff was brilliant (outside of rapist,cannibal Hulk). Ultimate Spider-man and Ultimate X-men were very good. The Ultimates started off very strong particularly in the shadow of 9/11. After Ultimates 3 and some strange creative decisions in Ultimate X-men, the line nosedived. Then came Ultimatum, the single biggest creative misstep in the last 20 years and that was it for the Ultimate line.

    Hickman tried to revive the Ultimates with a hard sci-if edge but the damage had been done.

    That being said, Ultimate Spider-man is one of single best modern superhero runs. Straight from Parker into Miles, it’s all been great.
    "Obviously not all conservatives are racists/bigots but all racists/bigots claim to be conservative"- Unknown

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  11. #11
    Fantastic Member Grapeweasel's Avatar
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    I've never shared the high esteem that Ultimate Spider-Man is held in. Bendis took 40 years of sweat and blood, cherry-picked the parts he liked, and acted like he created something. The Marvel Adventures Spider-Man did the same thing at the same time with twice the fun and none of the pretension.

  12. #12
    eXpat Odd Rödney's Avatar
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    I liked The Ultimates until Loeb got his hands on the book, I liked Ultimate X-Men until Kirkman's run and I liked Ultimate Spider-Man until it was revealed that Peter didn't die and was immortal or whatever. Those moments made me jump off. I do enjoy reading the stuff before those moments, I even enjoy re-reading them and it doesn't bother me that their dated now because I personally have a lot of nostalgia for the post 9/11 America as it was an important, formative time for me.
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  13. #13
    Extraordinary Member Revolutionary_Jack's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dboi2001 View Post
    I’ve seen a lot of people hate on the Ultimate Marvel imprint that lasted from 2000 to 2011 saying that it was overly edgy and has aged horribly but I just don’t see it.
    The normalization of incest, the glorification of sexual harassment, the cannibalism.

    You don't see that, my dude? There is absolutely no way Ultimate Marvel would be published the same way today.

    Your argument makes it seem like Ultimate Marvel was some kind of harmless work that was misunderstood and so on. Well it wasn't. Ultimate Marvel was a popular successful mainstream work in that time and it reflected the aesthetics and "stuff considered cool" elements of its time (2000-2008) and then the moment passed, the culture changed and fans moved on, and Ultimate Marvel proved to have no timeless qualities.

    I know Millar isn’t the most popular guy and I’m not usually a fan of his but I’ve enjoyed a lot of his marvel work including Civil War and Ultimate X-Men.
    The single best thing he ever wrote for Marvel is MARVEL KNIGHTS:SPIDER-MAN but unfortunately that didn't get him notice, attention, and fame. It's a shame for a talented writer that his most influential work is his worst stuff.

    As for Ultimate Marvel as a whole

    Ultimate Spider-Man = Good.
    Ultimate X-Men = Bad.
    Ultimates = Terrrible, until Hickman came along.
    Ultimate Fantastic Four = Boring.

    Aside from Bryan Hitch's artwork, nothing in Ultimates Vol.1 is good. In most respects it's not very different from Jeph Loeb's run later on, or Ultimatum even.

  14. #14
    Better than YOU! Alan2099's Avatar
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    I see people say the Ultimate versions of the characters are just assholes of beloved heroes but I disagree.
    I wouldn't disagree with that.

    Among other problems the Ultimate comics had was popularizing decompressed stories leading to every issue having to be part of some kind of larger story or event.
    While there were also some decent reinventions of modernization of certain characters, just as often they'd take a character and just wreck it. Deadpool, goat legged Dr. Doom, crazy homeless looking guy Mr. Sinister, Green Goblin as the Hulk who can fly, Cable just being future Wolverine, the list goes on and on.

    Ultimate comics also seemed to have a thing against secret identities and felt the need to make all the costumes "realistic" removing a lot of charm and style many of the characters had.

  15. #15
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    Well sure I hate parts of 616 that’s inevitable. But I just see a lot of hate for the ultimate universe. Like I really don’t see how the Ultimates were assholes which is the biggest criticism of the book

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