Western Animation / Ultimate Avengers

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Released in 2006, Marvel began its own series of animated feature films with Ultimate Avengers. Based mainly on the Ultimate universe of Marvel comics, the first film was based around the formation of one of its most iconic teams.

A sequel was later made, involving the Black Panther.

For the comic book now known as Ultimate Comics: Avengers (or Ultimate Avengers for short), see The Ultimates.


The films contain examples of:

  • Adaptational Heroism: In The Ultimates, Black Widow is not only a traitor, but kind of an asshole even when she's supposed to be posing as a hero. In the movies, she's not only not a traitor, but is in general much nicer to those around her.
  • Adaptational Modesty: The Hulk still has Magic Pants. In Ultimate Marvel, he did not.
  • Adaptation Personality Change: Almost everyone is made much more like their mainstream counterpart, as opposed to their Ultimate version, since those guys are a bunch of assholes.
    • Captain America is essentially his mainstream version, The Cape who believes in America's ideals and is a kind old soldier. His Ultimate version is sexist, homophobic, jingoistic, and racist (he is from the 1940s, after all).
    • Iron Man only slightly exhibits signs that he's an alcoholic, drinking one glass when he is fired from the team. Other than that, he's pretty much his mainstream counterpart, aside from the part about still supplying weapons. Ultimate Iron Man is so much of an alcoholic that for a few years, you literally could not see him out of armour and not drinking. Even his robotic duplicate in Ultimates 3 talked about drinking, basically making him the Ultimates equivalent of Bender Bending Rodriguez.
    • Hank Pym goes from workaholic scientist who pretty much spent all his free time horrifically abusing his wife to a slightly aggressive man who is protective of his wife.
    • Ultimate Black Widow was a traitor on the team and a Manipulative Bitch. Here, Natasha is a straight up hero, who's as kind as her mainstream counterpart.
    • Nick Fury has always been an anti-hero, but his Ultimate version was an outright Jerkass Manipulative Bastard, and even Designated Hero, if that. Here, his goals are entirely heroic, and he just wants to save the world.
    • Although still a rampaging monster, the Hulk is drastically tuned down from his Ultimate incarnation, which is literally a psychopathic manifestation of Bruce Banner's Id without any restraints period — Ultimate Hulk is a cannibal, and that's just for starters.
  • The Adjectival Superhero: Albeit in this case, it's because they just decided to call the movie Ultimate Avengers rather than The Ultimates.
  • Armor Is Useless: Made somewhat ridiculous in the end fight against the Hulk in the first film, as Iron Man appears to be the most useless member of the team when fighting him, despite the fact that his armor would seem like one of the only things actually useful against Hulk. Even more ridiculous when you consider how many direct hits Captain America takes (although Ultimate Cap is explicitly superhuman, maybe this Cap is too). Then again, Iron Man's suit was more or less fully functional after his brief beatdown, and after about 30 seconds he's back in the fight; it's implied Tony Stark himself was stunned, rather than the suit.
  • Asshole Victim: Dr. Oiler. Took advantage of an imprisoned Banner and tried to kill him to save his own neck. Didn't end well for him.
  • Badass Normal: Black Widow and Nick Fury. Betty has shades of this as well.
  • Berserk Button: Do not attempt to harm T'Challa in any way when his father's around.
  • Bittersweet Ending: in the second movie. The Chitauri are finally routed, the day is saved, and Steve can finally move on with his life. But Hank Pym, along with undoubtedly thousands of others, lost his life to the monsters. In addition, most of the world's cities are now heavily damaged and Bruce Banner is stuck on the run, unable to be with his love, Betty, and ready to turn into the Hulk again at any time.
  • Boisterous Bruiser: Thor, in the first movie.
  • Comforting the Widow: Like in this comics, this happens to Steve's girlfriend Gail by his best friend Bucky when it was assumed he died during the war. Brought together by mutual grief, their relationship eventually turned into love and they were married before Steve returned, causing much embarrassment when Steve returned to the point Gail couldn't bear to see him out of shame. However, Steve was simply happy both were cared for and did not mind the relationship, only saddened that all his friends and chance for a relationship had long since passed
  • Composite Character:
    • About all of the characters sans Bruce Banner and Black Widow are pretty much the classic versions with more or less the Ultimate appearances, though even Captain America, Iron Man, and Thor, design design-wise, blends aspects of their classics selves with the Ultimate versions. Bruce Banner on the other hand is a more toned-down version of his Ultimate self that combined the origins of his mainstream self with the Super Soldier Experiments of the Ultimate Verse, Black Widow is completely based on the classic incarnation.
    • Black Panther is seen turning into a humanoid cat, recalling the character Coal Tiger. However, as the movie was made before Ultimates 3, there's no Ultimate!Black Panther to draw from.
    • Kleiser becomes a Composite Character with someone else - Ulysses Klaw, since he is responsible for T'Chaka's death.
  • Defcon Five: Fury raises to DEFCON Five when a Chitauri attack is imminent.
  • Dying Moment of Awesome: T'Chaka taking down Kleiser. Especially how it happens:
    Kleiser: (approaching T'Challa) Here ends the Wakandan royal family, all over the jungle floor!
    T'Chaka: YOU WILL NOT HURT MY SON! (Goes panther mode and attacks Kleiser, knocking him over a cliff)
  • Hands Go Down:
    Bruce Banner: Any questions? *students' hands go up* Any questions not about the Hulk?
  • Heroes Want Redheads: Tony Stark tries this on Black Widow, but she's not really into him (the fact that they were introduced by her seducing him to be interrogated by Fury probably doesn't help the fact they most likely invoked this trope). Later, she becomes romantically involved with Captain America after bonding due to mutual experiences as soldiers.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Giant Man. Iron Man later seems like he's going to follow suit, but Thor revives him.
  • Hot Scientist: Betty Ross.
  • Imperial Stormtrooper Marksmanship Academy: The Chitauri are usually incredibly lousy at hitting a main character. In some cases the character in question is even basically standing still and the shots just keep missing, unless it's one of the particularly resistant Avengers.
  • Improbable Aiming Skills: In quite a few scenes, Black Widow is only seen firing a few rounds at her opponents, which then seem to have multiplied by the dozens in the reactionary shots of them getting hit. And she doesn't miss either.
  • Jerkass:
    • Giant Man, though he's just merely arrogant and and insecure, unlike his outright abusive incarnation in The Ultimates, whom he's visually based on.
    • The scientist who keeps torturing Bruce for his rash decision to become the Hulk.
    • Nick Fury became this after the Avengers screwed up, and at Captain America for not ordering them.
    • The Wakandan Council for their unflinching belief in their not needing assistance.
  • Like Cannot Cut Like: Inverted. It's explicitly stated (and subsequently demonstrated) that the ONLY thing that can cut Vibranium is more Vibranium.
  • Made of Iron: In the first film, Captain America gets punched about by The Hulk, a lot. He is still conscious at the end of the fight and suffers little in the way of any real injuries. In the second film, he's shown jumping from tall buildings and landing without a scratch as well as withstanding gun fire while still being able to fight without too much slowing him down.
  • My Country, Right or Wrong: Subverted with Black Panther. He wants them to be away from their isolationist stance. But his people, especially the elders, were not happy with their king's decision, especially when he brought the Avengers along. They had him de-throned, but the elders were proven wrong and Black Panther re-took the throne, and the Avengers defeated the aliens.
  • My God, What Have I Done?: Bruce Banner. He thought he could control the Hulk, but he was wrong.
  • Nigh Invulnerable: Herr Kleiser, through a combination of a powerful Healing Factor and just being plain Made of Iron, is able to shrug off attacks that would kill any other character ten times over. Such feats include (going by chronological order in-story and including the flashbacks): getting almost the entire upper half of his head sliced off by a metal shield, being right underneath a bunch of explosives that destroy the train car he's on and collapsing the tunnel it goes through, getting a metal shield lodged in the chest, falling off a soaring nuclear missile and getting caught in the exhaust, falling off a cliff, getting all his limbs sliced off before being torn in half at the torso, and finally being Buried Alive in a vat of liquid vibranium that hardens around him. And it's implied even that didn't kill him and just made him a Sealed Evil in a Can. Not for nothing Nick Fury calls him the Chitauri Super Soldier.
  • Nightmare Face: After Kleiser is ripped apart by Black Panther in 2 is face is (thankfully briefly) like that of some kind of nightmarish zombie.
  • No Plans, No Prototype, No Backup: Partially averted with Captain America. While they did have the formula on file, inept record keepers didn't properly document it.
  • One-Winged Angel: Herr Kleiser's final form, which he assumes in the latter act of 2, resembles some Eldritch Abomination.
  • Pietà Plagiarism: This is the pose in which Iron Man carries the nearly dead Hank Pym near the end of 2.
  • Pragmatic Adaptation: Given that pretty much all the heroes in the Ultimates comic book were subject to Adaptational Jerkass, they're considerably Lighter and Softer here. Mark Millar's controversial, less heroic re-imaginations of the characters were replaced with more traditional ones. Hank Pym is still the group Jerk Ass, but that was a step up from the unstable wife beater he was in the comic. Hulk's no longer a psychotic cannibalistic monster. Janet is no longer a flirtatious domestic abuse victim too afraid to leave Hank, Thor and Captain America's political views are far less extreme (in fact, they barely come up at all except for Thor's rampant involvement in environmental protests as a "hippy"). In a nutshell, it takes the contemporary setting and origins from the Ultimates, but uses the character personalities of 616.
  • Promoted to Love Interest: Black Widow and Captain America become a couple in this continuity.
  • Reality Ensues: No, Hank, just because you can grow bigger than everyone else doesn't automatically give you a significant advantage over The Hulk. Your knee and throat, evidently, learn this the hard way.
  • Redemption Equals Death: Hank Pym's death seems to play with this trope. He didn't really do anything evil beforehand, but he had been a major Jerk Ass, especially to Janet. And it seems his sacrifice was in part to show her that he could be the man she wanted him to be.
  • Rock Beats Laser: In the second one, Iron Man's missile launcher is destroyed by a Wakanda warrior's spear and his armor is wrecked by a swinging log. For the record, Wakandan warriors wield vibranium weapons - and vibranium beats non-vibranium every time.
    Iron Man: Well that's embarrassing.
  • Shell-Shocked Veteran: Captain America shows signs of it.
  • Shooting Superman/I Will Fight Some More Forever: The alien warships are armoured with vibranium, which can only be damaged with vibranium weapons (or nuclear bombs, which the heroes don't have). Regardless, SHIELD's navy and air force are perfectly content with wasting all of their ammunition on the aliens, even getting frustrated when their weapons continue to fail.
  • Takes One to Kill One: a technological example — vibranium armor can only be penetrated by vibranium weapons.
  • Team Title


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