Tag Archives: Galactus

Ultimate Secret

Ultimate Secret continues the Ultimate Galactus trilogy in much the same fashion as the opening volume. That is, it tells a reasonably good story whose main flaw is feeling entirely too short. I mean, most of the Ultimate books have felt like discrete storylines in the lives of our heroes. The Galactus books, on the other hand, have felt very much like part of an (extremely incomplete) ongoing story. It is not particularly a flaw, except that it makes it hard to feel much excitement for the review; it’s as though I’m reviewing thirds of a book, instead of three books.

Another way it matches the first volume is that it uses the Galactus story to talk about other characters entirely that had not yet been drafted into the Ultimate universe.[1] In this case, the fight is against the alien Kree who are sabotaging mankind’s space program, in the hopes that when Gah Lak Tus arrives, the planet will have no survivors. The story was decent, it just wasn’t what I was looking for. Again. I’m really relieved this is only a trilogy, as I’m not sure I could take much more pushing back the payoff.

Except for the lack of character continuity, what this has most reminded me of is the old G.I. Joe event weeks when they’d present a five-part series in which Cobra and G.I. Joe were crossing the world in search of parts for a doomsday machine, and inevitably Cobra would manage to get all the parts, fire up the machine, and then lose anyway. The continuity meant that each episode had a series payoff feel, unlike these books, but there’s still definitely a race across the world in search of clues feel. (Does anyone but me remember those episodes fondly? I mean, clearly there’s a movie studio that hopes so.)

[1] Captain Marvel? Really?

Ultimate Nightmare

With my first foray into an Ultimate universe crossover series, I find myself wishing for the first time that I was reading these approximately as they come out instead of all jumbled together and out of order. One of the first thing I noticed about the Ultimate Galactus trilogy (or at least about its first volume) is that several of the characters have evolved well past who they were when these books were written. Specifically, both Wolverine and Nick Fury’s reactions to the X-Men seemed entirely uncharacteristic with my current expectations. But, on the bright side, I continue to make good progress and will eventually catch up.

The aptly named Ultimate Nightmare chronicles an unexpected worldwide multi-spectrum signal being broadcast from Tunguska, site of a century-old meteor strike that has been science fiction fodder ever since. Among the reactants to the images of an alien culture being destroyed while a mysterious voice repeats certain doom over and over are select members of the X-Men and of the Ultimates[1]. For the most part, the meat of the story purportedly being told lies in the future. This book was largely an excuse to visualize several bit character villains from Marvel’s past, in the guise of decades of Soviet experimentation. Luckily, as in the case of footnote 1, the book was more than entertaining enough to support being a mere prelude to the Galactus story I have been implicitly promised.

[1] Including a character named Sam Wilson with whom I am wholly unfamiliar; pleasingly, he was interesting to read about.