YMMV / Ultimate Marvel


  • Animation Age Ghetto: This is a series of comic book that profoundly reformulates the super hero genre, adds all kinds of R-rated stuff into the mix, and takes several creative risks. This is greatly resented by the part of the fandom that expects superheroes to be upbeat, for all public, and living in a perpetual sameness.
  • Bizarro Episode
    • Spider-Man and Wolverine have a "Freaky Friday" Flip, and they both go through several bizarre things. Even Bendis himself appears at the start of the episode, accepting how bizarre it was, and that he could not milk more than two episodes from that idea.
    • In one of the last issues of Ultimate FF we learn about an alternate universe, which seems to be basically the same than the Ultimate one, except that the local characters are Anthropomorphic Animal Adaptations. It's as bizarre as it sounds and then some.
  • Broken Base: Ultimate Marvel divided fans a lot. Detractors resented that the Ultimate version of most characters had little to do with the classic characters they were familiar with. Others loved the Ultimate universe for that very same reason, as it allowed to narrate new stories and the classic characters were still being published anyway.
  • Author's Saving Throw: Dr. Doom, Victor Von Doom, was renamed as "Victor Van Damme" in the ultimate universe. In his last adventure in Ultimate Fantastic Four, he was stranded in the zombieverse. Loeb seems to have skipped that part: he named him "Dr. Doom", gave no explanation about his presence, and even did away with his goat legs. And then he was killed at the end of Ultimatum. This was all fixed in Ultimate FF, with the return of Van Damme, and the clarification that the guy used by Loeb was actually Mary Storm posing as him.
  • Crowning Moment of Funny:
    • Ultimate Extinction, being written by Warren Ellis, has several, like Iron Man's pathetic attempts to flirt with Susan.
    • Thor demanding a keg of beer off Carol Danvers
    Danvers: Certainly sir. And how far up your ass do you want it shoved?
    Thor: Well, I was thinking of a keg, so…
  • Darkness-Induced Audience Apathy: Not so much at first, but later series such as Ultimatum caused this reaction. Additionally, the fact that many of the characters became jerkasses via adaptation put quite a few people off. Killing off Peter Parker, the only nice super-hero this universe had, was the last straw for a number of readers. Though even the early stuff can feature this, between Ultimate X-Men's second arc featuring the X-Men captured to be part of Weapon X, including Jean Grey being forced to kill a scientist to save Cyclops, Wraith threatening to dismember Storm if Beast doesn't rescue Nick Fury unharmed, and Nightcrawler and Rogue being forced to do horrible things; The Ultimates turning the Avengers into a bunch of glory hogs jackasses from day one; and Ultimate Spider-Man's fourth arc ending with Nick Fury telling Peter that he's going to become property of S.H.I.E.L.D. once he turns 18.
  • Draco in Leather Pants: Cinema Blend described Ultimate Tony Stark as an "alcoholic, arrogant, and slightly detestable version of Tony Stark who you still couldn’t help but be charmed by and root for."
  • Ensemble Darkhorse:
    • Ultimate Nick Fury, so much that he is currently better known than the caucasian mainstream version; he was even used for the movie adaptations.
    • The Ultimate Jessica Drew became a pretty big one.
    • Pyro, probably due to his interesting design.
  • Fanon Discontinuity: Many fans like to pretend that Ultimates 3 and Ultimatum never happened.
  • Harsher in Hindsight: When Magneto returned, Nick Fury started setting up defenses in the White House. "The White House is gonna be a virtual fortress by the time I'm finished with it. Absolutely secure against both post-human and nuclear attack". And it did work... until the Maker blown up all of Washington DC.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: When the Ultimate Universe was first started there were some rumblings and rumors amongst fans that Marvel was going to use it to reboot/replace the mainstream universe. Years later this ended up basically happening over at DC. Even more amusing is that this actually is happening to some extent via Secret Wars (2015), where the setting is merging with the original Marvel line (and a few others) to create a new universe.
  • Magnificent Bastard:
    • Nick Fury.
    • Loki, of course.
  • Moral Event Horizon: Nick Fury helping to organize the destruction of an entire alternate world, evidently just to make a point to Reed Richards.
  • Narm:
    • Ultimate Power, being drawn entirely by Greg Land, has a lot of his... "unique artistic touches" present throughout.
    • Reed Richard's Face–Heel Turn in "Ultimate Enemy", and his explanation for his motives in particular at the end of the trilogy, comes across less as a emotionally fragile genius having a breakdown as much as him throwing a tantrum.
  • Seasonal Rot: The Jeph Loeb era (from Ultimate Power until the end of Ultimate X) in general and Ultimates Volume 3 and Ultimatum in particular, and the start of the rot period, and most definitely the height of it. It's easy to see why Marvel relaunched the line as Ultimate Comics afterwards. Ultimate Spider-Man is usually exempt from this, though, and hasn't ever really had been hit with the trope, with the worst of it being volume 3's Broken Base regarding Miles Morales.
  • Seinfeld Is Unfunny:
    • After the line's huge success in its early days, Marvel started incorporating some of its stylistic trademarks (e.g the more cinematic pacing and storytelling) into its main universe (under the pens of Mark Millar and Brian Michael Bendis to boot), thus leaving the Ultimate Universe without a distinct voice. This is one of the main reasons that led to Ultimate Marvel's sales decline in the mid-late 00's (the other being the inevitably accumulating continuity leaving the Ultimate line without any of its initial selling points).
    • The other point is that its modernization and updating of the 616 continuity to contemporary America fit the aesthetic of the time ('90s Anti-Hero) hence we have a Wolverine who straight up frags Cyclopsnote , an ultra-violent Magneto, a cannibalistic Hulk, a lecherous Professor X, a Nick Fury who runs SHIELD as his personal kingdom rather than a man serving the government, and a wife-beating Hank Pym but left it no room to evolve to the sensibilities of the generation that came after that, who found the violence, bloodshed and general sociopathy off-putting. As such, it became an Unintentional Period Piece while the 616 Marvel Continuity remained solvent. It's also been noted that very little of the Ultimate reimagining went further than surface changes of adding more violence and sex, noting it didn't truly modernize the characters to the new American landscape and that by the time Brian Michael Bendis resolved to try and do that, and add more realism, it was Post-Ultimatum and too late. The most lasting impact of the Ultimate comics line in the 616 came only in this later period (The Maker, Miles Morales, Jimmy Hudson), while surface changes (i.e. the Samuel Jackson Nick Fury, the Chitauri) went into the Marvel Cinematic Universe with largely 616 character alignments in place.
    • Also the excessive Canon Welding and Meta Origin of tying the different universe into the Super Serum and Genetic Engineering Is the New Nuke worked for a more grounded Doing In the Wizard approach typical of the time it was first conceptualized, but Popularity Polynomial swung the other way in time and today the simplified origin of the Ultimate Universe ends up making the world and the characters feel smaller and not really allow room for individual character arcs, stories and motivations since stories and characters as different as Spider-Man, Ultimates, Hulk and the X-Men ended up being part of the same genre. The Marvel Cinematic Universe used the Infinity Stones as a Meta Origin instead, and it better balanced out the stories and genres, and likewise allowed room for the truly cosmic and fantastic characters to co-exist with grounded realistic stories.
  • They Changed It, Now It Sucks: Some fans had this reaction after the Nothing Is the Same Anymore situation of Ultimatum. Especially concerning Spider-Man's death.
  • The Scrappy:
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Character: Captain Marh-Vell. An alien stuck on Earth due to defecting to save them from Galactus, snarky, intelligent but still a good guy (especially compared to most of the Ultimates). Not to mention, awesome costume. He barely ever appeared, save in crowd-shots, before being brought back to die.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Plot:
    • Carol Danvers as head of S.H.I.E.L.D., given she was an air-force officer not used to running an intelligence agency, but she's far less morally compromised than Nick Fury. And then the writers proceeded to do absolutely nothing with that idea, and she was eventually booted out in favour of having Fury back in charge. She also never became Ms Marvel.
    • After Ultimate Power, Zarda of Supreme Power travels over to the Ultimate universe to "keep an eye" on the Ultimates. She proceeds to do nothing of any real value, before leaving again at the end of New Ultimates. Making this all the more baffling was that Jeph Loeb was the one who brought her there and then wrote her out again.
  • Unexpected Character
    • At every issue of Ultimate FF. But the last one takes the cake: Miles Morhames? The Ultimate Spider-Ham?
    • In the later third of Ultimate Power, a mishap causes the original Squadron Supreme to show up.
    • Who would have expected the fight between Wolverine and Hulk to be interrupted by Ultimate She-Hulk?
    • The Ultimate Galactus Trilogy featured Ultimate Misty Knight, a character who had not been used by Marvel since the 1970s. After it she was broght back in the mainstream Marvel universe as well.
  • Win Back the Crowd
    • Back in the turn of the century, things were not going well for Marvel. Readers from the old glory days had grown up and found the superhero genre too "cartoony" for their adult tastes, young audiences were interested in completely different stuff, and there were no films to bring in new readers. The huge success of Ultimate Marvel improved things for Marvel considerably.
    • After the widely-hated Ultimates Volume 3 and Ultimatum, the new line of Ultimate Comics were clearly trying to do this. It's debatable how successful this was, but it's generally agreed that the books got better once Jeph Loeb was nowhere near them.

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