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TALES FROM THE LONGBOX!

"Ultimates 3: Ultimately Crappy"
02/27/09
by: Protoclown

After a much needed hiatus, I have returned to warn you about comics that you should not under any circumstances read, even if a disheveled future version of you frantically approaches you, puts it in your hands and says "You MUST read this! The answers are in here!" before fading into oblivion. I knew that after my time away, and given that my last column was about the much maligned "All Star Batman and Robin", I had to come back with something amazingly, colossally bad to make up for my long absence. After considering my options for a while, there was one choice that seemed obvious. Despite the fact that Max Burbank did a fine job of trashing the hell out of Ultimates 3 in his Weekly reviews here, here, here, and here, I felt that this series was so insanely, dangerously bad that it deserved a more in-depth lambasting that only a full-length column can provide. I deliberately avoided rereading Max's reviews, because I didn't want them to influence my writing, so if any of my jokes or clever talking points are similar to his, the only explanation I can provide is that great minds think alikehe's a time traveling thief with no moral center.

Those of you who enjoyed Mark Millar and Bryan Hitch's first two Ultimates series will find the treatment of the franchise here to be most offensive, as Jeph Loeb takes the quality book they worked on out behind the barn, shoots it in the face, and then dresses the corpse all purdy-like, hoists it up with puppet strings and makes it dance a twitchy, awkward dance for money, all while its entrails slowly leak out of its slowly tearing orifices, landing with a sickening plop onto the dancefloor. Joe Madureira's cartoony art is certainly pretty to look at, but an ill-suited follow-up to the realistic, detailed style of Bryan Hitch. But since the dialog in this once-respected series now sounds like it was conceived by a twelve-year-old on a sugar high, having the art match the ludicrous cartoon this book has become seems rather appropriate.

I understand that Jeph Loeb's writing has gone straight into the shitter since his teenage son died of cancer, and I really feel for the guy's tragedy. So he's got a pretty solid excuse for sucking hard right now. So I don't blame him, and I hope he eventually recovers his old ability to spin a fun yarn. What is inexcusable is that the editors at Marvel thought that this pile of shit was acceptable to publish. If Loeb isn't up to the task of doing a high profile book right now, then they shouldn't have him working on one. Give him a Rocket Raccoon mini-series instead. It's as simple as that. I haven't kept up with the Ultimate line of books in a while, but I've heard talk that Marvel is killing the line. If books like this are indicative of its quality lately, I can see why.


If nothing else, I suppose we can be thankful that Captain America doesn't have immense Rob Liefeld tits on the covers.

The story begins with the Ultimates having a team meeting, where they see a news broadcast featuring a leaked sex tape of Tony Stark (Iron Man) having sex with the Black Widow (Natasha Romanov), who betrayed the team at the end of Ultimates 2. Naturally, Tony isn't happy to relive the painful memories (and boners) this dredges up, so he does what he does best--gets completely shitfaced and just tries to ignore the problem.


"Why Tony, I never knew you had a Prince Albert piercing! 'Iron Man' indeed!"

Tony doesn't want to talk about it, but new team-leader Wasp (Janet Pym) recognizes that the fact that somebody hacked into their system and recorded that footage represents a serious security concern. While she's bringing up these fine points, the wall suddenly explodes as Venom punches a previously absent Thor into the room. He's asking where "she" is and threatening to kill them all if they don't answer his unhelpfully vague questions.


"Hey, you're a Spider-Man villain! There hasn't been any kind of crossover authorized here!"

Hawkeye (Clint Barton) immediately rushes Venom, guns blazing, while Wasp yells for him to wait for backup (Why? The whole team is right there). He fires a crossbow bolt at Venom, which only further enrages him. Hawkeye has a death wish since his family was brutally killed back in Ultimates 2, which is something that the writer reminds us of at every available opportunity. Venom is about to put a serious beatdown on Hawkeye when mysterious and silent new team member Black Panther shows up to save the day, being so badass that he can simply punch the air in the vicinity of Venom and it's just as effective as if he actually made contact with his face!


"Dammit, Panther, he's behind you! Quit shadowboxing and help us out!"

Venom gets tired of being pummeled by the Panther, so he picks him up and throws him off into the distance, over the line of buildings so no one can see where he landed. Just when he's turning his attention back to Hawkeye, another new and unexplained team member, Valkyrie, leaps off her Pegasus and cleaves him nearly in half with her sword.


This is one woman Venom will not be hearing the lamentations of.

Being a symbiote who regularly changes his size and shape and regenerates, this hardly slows him down and he quickly turns the tables on her. Just as he's about to impale her with her own sword, Thor shows back up, offended that Venom would attack his hot nineteen-year-old piece of ass, and brings the lightning down upon him. Which melts him into a puddle of goo, causing Valkyrie to exclaim "awesome" as she looks on.


You just don't mess with Thor's steady supply of hot poontang. Verily.

As Venom melts around them, Thor and Valkyrie start making out on the rain-soaked battlefield. No seriously, they do. There's even a picture if you don't believe me. She even says "Yummm".


"Oh, pound me with your hammer, Thor!"

Hawkeye meanwhile walks up and starts shooting the pile of goo, just in case it starts to reform, but Wasp tells him to stand down, calling him by his real name Clint while doing so. This causes him to flip out and point a gun directly at his leader's face, which amazingly does not immediately result in a) a beatdown and b) his dismissal from the team. But hey, the Ultimates leadership is pretty accepting of gross acts of insubordination that involve directly threatening the life of a commanding officer. They're "hip", you know?


Wasp debates telling Hawkeye that he's fired, but decides that choice of words is probably not best at this time.

The next day, creepy incestuous couple Quicksilver and the Scarlet Witch are walking through Avengers Mansion when Captain America stops them and asks Wanda if she could wear a less revealing costume. Apparently Cap's 1940s sensibilities find her scanty costume to be a bit too scandalous. Pietro rudely tells Cap to mind his own business, and just as they're leaving Cap grabs Wanda's arm and asks her to be reasonable. Pietro doesn't like someone else touching his sister and threatens Cap's life should he ever touch her again.


"You don't be talkin' to my girls 'less you be willing to pay up front. You dig, fool?"

Pietro and Wanda leave the mansion in a huff, and Wasp approaches Cap and tells him that she realizes that he has trouble understanding some of the things that go on in the "modern world". He remarks that the jealousy in Pietro seems a bit strange, and Wasp tells him that they love each other. "Of course they do, they're brother and sister!" he replies. "No no, Steve--they lurrrrve each other," she explains, which is met with a quizzical look. "Oh for gods--Steve, they're fucking!" she snaps, causing Captain America's head to explode.


After his teammates explained the birds and the bees, Captain America was never quite the same.

Janet Pym then heads to see her estranged, under-house-arrest-after-the-events-of-Ultimates 2 husband Hank down in his laboratory. She calls out to him as he looks into a microscope, but he doesn't respond. Thinking he must really be into his work, she reaches out to tap him on the shoulder, and that's when she discovers that Hank had himself a date with a big ol' bottle of pills.


"Hank, you selfish ass! You didn't leave enough for me!"

Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch are enjoying themselves a nice walk in the snow, which she basically suffers through wearing little more than a bikini, when all of a sudden they hear a gunshot. Quicksilver spots the bullet heading towards his sister and uses his superspeed to intercept it.


None may touch Pietro's sister except for him. That goes for bullets too!

Pietro leaps to catch the bullet and believes he has succeeded, until he looks down and notices the giant, gaping hole in his hand. Looking over at his sister he notices that she is bleeding, and that's when she collapses in his arms.


"Well, this will certainly make masturbation interesting..."

A doctor happened to witness the shooting and rushes over to offer his help, but Pietro can barely get past his freaky hang up about anyone else laying their hands on his sister. He finally relents and allows the doctor to perform CPR, but it's all too late--Wanda dies in her brother's arms.


"But...but...you had a body armor bikini...how could the bullet have gotten through??"

The second issue starts with Spider-Man swinging his way through Central Park, when suddenly he gets shot by a crazy, gun-toting Hawkeye, who despite his name, apparently fires at least six times (read the "blams") and only manages to hit Spidey once. He's decided that he needs to learn more about why Venom attacked the mansion, and given that he's part of Spider-Man's rogue's gallery, young Mr. Parker seems the perfect person to ask. Sure, Hawkeye could have been reasonable and just walked up and asked Spider-Man what he knows about Venom, but these heroes actually have a contractual obligation to "misunderstand" one another every so often so they can pad the content of an issue with a fight scene that otherwise would not be there.


Amazingly, that dart has hit Spider-Man from a totally different angle than the one
Hawkeye was firing from. Has he been learning tricks from Black Panther?

The two of them tussle for a while, but finally Spider-Man wraps Hawkeye to a tree with his webbing and explains that he just wants to be left alone.


"Okay, so Hawkeye, I know this is going to sound a little weird,
but I am compelled to lay my eggs in your belly."

As Spider-Man dangles in front of Hawkeye explaining all this, Hawkeye cockily starts counting backward from three, and when he gets to one, the drugs in the dart take effect and Spidey collapses to the ground. This means that during the entire battle Hawkeye was keeping count in the back of his mind, all while trading witty banter back and forth. You know, I'm gonna go ahead and call bullshit on this one.


"Alright, bug, you've got three seconds to tell me where I can find an awesome pair of
footie pajamas like that, or I start blowing off kneecaps."

Hawkeye tells the paralyzed Spider-Man that if he had anything to do with the Venom attack, he's going to make sure he never gets up again. Just then, Captain America shows up and knocks Hawkeye's gun out of his hand with his shield, preventing him from visiting whatever perversions he had planned upon Spider-Man. He tells Hawkeye that he's needed back at the base ASAP, and then the two of them run off leaving the paralyzed Spider-Man laying in the snow. How heroic!


"Alright gang, I brought my shield. LET'S. GO. SLEDDING."

We then cut back to Avengers Mansion, where Pietro is grieving over his sister, and explaining that the bullet that killed her was specifically keyed to her DNA, meaning that it was designed especially to kill only the Scarlet Witch. Somehow he just knows this (he turns out to be right)--maybe just because of the special way that the bullet tore through his hand. It's never explained how he just knows, and we the reader know better than to bother asking. Meanwhile we see Iron Man getting drunk (natch), and Thor and Valkyrie lie in bed together. I've made sure the image I captured below is big enough to read the atrocious dialog. Valkyrie asks Thor why he's talking with "thous" and "thees" (he still uses them more rarely than Jeph Loeb seems to think he does) when he never spoke that way before. Thor of course gives some ridiculous explanation, and then Valkyrie says "I thinketh it cuteth". That line actually spilled out of Jeph Loeb's brain, onto a computer screen, onto a printed copy, through a letterer, multiple editors and proofreaders and it somehow ended up on the final printed page, and now, like a plague, I am sharing it with all of you. Fucking amazing.


Fun Fact: Whenever writers and artists aren't looking in, Thor actually likes to be the little spoon.

Just then there's a security breach in the mansion as members of Magneto's Brotherhood of Mutants (Mystique, Sabretooth, Blob, Lorelei, and Madrox) crash the party.


These guys look more like the entertainment for a child's birthday party than a terrorist group.

The Brotherhood each use their specific abilities to hit the Ultimates where it hurts. Mystique shows up at Tony Stark's (he is apparently too drunk to have heard the security alarm) window in the form of the deceased Natasha Romanov, and of course Tony is totally freaked out by this ghostly visitation (who he hopes can become tangible enough to have sex with). Wasp shows up and zaps Mystique into unconsciousness, explaining that the Mansion has been invaded.


"Say Tony baby, how do you like my moon bonnet?"

Meanwhile Lorelei uses her seductive powers to mind control Thor into attacking Valkyrie. As a result of this, the painfully stupid Valkyrie apparently believes that Thor has been having an affair with her. They fight for a while, which Valkyrie says is "totally uncool", before she finally catches on that she needs to take down Lorelei to stop Thor.


"Go ahead, kill her, Thor, and there's a new life as a paper towel mascot just waiting for you."

Blob's plan of attack involves the refrigerator. Yes, that's right. He seems to feel that by removing their leftovers from the equation, they won't have the strength left to keep on fighting once their bodies run out of energy. Wasp shows up and starts zapping him, to which he responds by threatening to eat her. And that's when Iron Man arrives on scene, launching out of the floor and hurling him through the ceiling and out of the building.


"Gah! Why do you shoot Blob with mustard?! The one food he does not like!"

Elsewhere Sabretooth and Captain America go at it, with Sabretooth yelling out badass battle cries like "Suck it!", and Cap getting offended by his use of improper language and noting that if there were a lady present, he would was his mouth out with soap and make it so he'd never utter a word again.


"I don't quite understand what you mean by 'suck it', young man,
but I'm pretty sure I don't like it!"

While the battle rages on, Pietro is in the science lab with his dead sister's body, presumably because he believed someone was going to come for it (let's just go with that one rather than some of the more disturbing ideas we could come up with). And sure enough, his father Magneto appears to collect the body, trying to convince Quicksilver to come as well, because "now is the time to be with family".


"Here she is, father. In mint condition! Except for, you know, the bullet hole."

After their conversation concludes, all the Brotherhood mutants teleport away in the middle of the fight, leaving the Ultimates confused as they take stock of their surroundings. And that's when who else but Wolver-fucker-ine (of course) shows up at the doorstep to announce that they have a much bigger problem than they initially realized. Throwing Wolverine into the story at this point (or at any point) is a huge mistake, because it violates a major Marvel rule: anytime characters travel to the Savage Land for any reason, they will encounter Wolverine there. He is preferred to be in a feral, naked state, and will initially attack the heroes due to some uncontrollable battle rage or misunderstanding. By having him show up before the Savage Land sequence, Loeb has majorly goofed.


"Hey guys, can I join your team? I'm not on nearly enough teams.
I'm a lone wolf, and yet I like teams. Weird, huh?"

Wolverine tells the Ultimates that it was Pietro who called his father, but they have a hard time believing it. Hawkeye tries to damage Wolvie's credibility by asking "Didn't you used to be in the Brotherhood?" to which Wolvie snaps back "Didn't you used to have a wife and kids?" Which doesn't really make any kind of sense as a response at all. Hawkeye snaps at this, calls him a "mutie" and starts shooting. Note that in the image below Hawkeye's left eye lens is shattering for no reason whatsoever. Perhaps he is simply glaring daggers at Wolverine that hard.


I love how Cap looks in this picture. Like some angry, disapproving, fatherly turtle.

Wolverine puts the claws right to Hawkeye's face and Mr. Deathwish practically begs him to end his sorry life, but Wasp and Captain America break things up. Wasp asks him what's the matter with him lately and he tells her to "fuck off". So Cap tells him to watch his language, causing him to retort with a witty "fuck you". So Cap sends him to bed without his supper.


"I don't even want to look, but please tell me that's not an erect penis pressing into my leg."

Wolverine then tells his tale of how he met Wanda and Pietro's mother, back when he was searching for the mythical land of Wundagore, where he was planning to catch some smurfs or something. He collapsed in the cold and this totally hot woman took him back to her cabin, warmed him up, and nursed him back to health. With "the sex". Yeah, who hasn't that happened to anyway? I went snowboarding this one time and the same thing happened to me, except it was two hot women who nursed me back to health.


"You know, if you'd rather make love outside of the fire, I'm okay with that."

Of course, what Wolverine doesn't know is that this woman, Magda, just happens to be Magneto's main squeeze. He comes home from work killing humans one day and finds a hairy, clawed stranger boning his woman. So he does what anyone would do in that situation: use his powers of magnetism to hurl a cauldron at Logan, evicting him from the cabin and tossing him into the snow far below. And then letting him simply walk away (albeit naked).


"Alright!! Kool Aid! Aw man, you're not the guy!"

THERE'S STILL MORE ULTIMADNESS TO SEE!
CLICK HERE TO CONTINUE TO PAGE TWO!

 

Reader Comments

Last of the Time Lords
Feb 27th, 2009, 08:15 AM
"Wolver-fucker-ine". I'm totally going to start calling him that.

And does anyone else think that if mutants really existed, the term "mutie" would be WAY too silly sounding to ever be offensive, no matter how hatefully some redneck shouts it?

Here's hoping Loeb recovers from his tragedy and finds his muse again. He's done some excellent work in the past (Long Halloween rocks), and I'd hate to lose a writer of that caliber.
Member
Feb 27th, 2009, 09:28 AM
Between this and the new Hulk series I can't help but wonder why Jeff Loeb is trying to get fired from Marvel.
hanging out
Feb 27th, 2009, 11:23 AM
that Cap/Black panther thing is weird. I didn't read this series obviously, just your article, but in a team that small they never noticed they weren't in the same room a the same time? Its that old sitcom gag. "You're looking for Black panther? I saw him down the hall. Let me go get him for you." (Captain America exits, changes clothes, reenters as Black Panther.)
Plus it appears he changed clothes in the middle of the savage land fight. of course if was doing that old sitcom in and out of rooms he must have got pretty good at the quick change.
Member
Feb 27th, 2009, 11:31 AM
Also, no one's ever explained how Doom got back from the Marvel Zombiverse.
What Video Games?
Feb 27th, 2009, 11:43 AM
Sooooo this is what I've been missing out on reading Marvel comics? My head hurts.
The Ugly Puckling
Feb 27th, 2009, 12:25 PM
Don't lump the Ultimate universe in with genuine Marvel comics. Everything in it has been utterly stupid fad obeying crap. Steve Rogers is a mentally handicapped facist, The Incredible Hulk is a cannibal, so on an so forth. It isn't "edgy" "new" or even slightly entertaining, it is the exact kind of sputum that Image comics spent the entire 90's spitting out at an alarming rate, and that even at the worst of the Clone Saga, Marvel comics stayed superior to.


Mark Miller is an overrated hack that hates comic books, Loeb is an overworked creatively exhausted but talented man, and neither one of them should ever work again for DC or Marvel comics.


EDIT - I forgot to mention, I like the art style though, it's a bit peculiar for a superhero comic book but the artist would work well teamed up with a more mystically oriented book.
Ba dum dum dum dum
Feb 27th, 2009, 12:39 PM
In the next comic, we'll get to see DOOM fail, with Magneto now watching him on a secret camera from an undisclosed location, commenting on how things are fitting into his plans, when from behind that we'll see that DOOM is really watching Magneto watch himself and how that's falling into his plans.

Then DOOM will pull off his mask to reveal that he's a robot underneath, which will whirr and open to reveal that it's really Captain America, who will comment that 'He's the best at what he does' and wink at the reader so that we can be foreshadowed that it's really Wolverine.

And in the end it will all turn out as a plan set up by Ant-man while he was stuck in house arrest to create conflicts and danger so that his wife would get beaten up when he wasn't around to make sure she got the slapping around she needed.
The Magnificent Bastard
Feb 27th, 2009, 12:40 PM
OMG this is a clusterfuck! (and I don't use the term "clusterfuck" very often)

I am sooo glad I never bothered with the "Ultimate" universe

This plays out more like a bad parody then an actual story.
The Moxie Nerve Food Tonic
Feb 27th, 2009, 02:01 PM
First of all, damn fine aticle, proto. I thoroughly enjoyed it.

Reading your synopsis/interpretation put a fine point on what irritated me most about this book.

I disagree strongly with a previous poster, and think Milar did truly excellent work on his run. His ultimates were fully written charcaters with complictaed, adult motivations and emotions. His Iron man wasn't just a central casting drunk, he was a genius with a terminal condition who was drinking. A hedonist most of the time carefully putting certain aspects of his character up front and daring people to guess what he cared about and how much. It was the only, only, only time I've evr seen iron man written well.

I could go on about how Milar handled other characters, but I won't. My main point is that he wrote them well. Loeb gave everybody, villians and heroes, a cliched pose of grim determination, and then layered on a single trait for each onwe with a clumsy brush. Hawkeye is deathwish guy. Wasp is Now I'm In harge Girl. Cap is I Have a secret plan guy. Thor is angry sex guy. Valkery is hot teenager. Its all so infantile, like a middleschool class role playing and seeing who they cabn shock by how much they know about sex and drugs and other things they've seen in movies.
Member
Feb 27th, 2009, 03:53 PM
I'm sure nobody is going to miss the Ultimates when Ultimatum kills 'em off (esp. after this debacle) but I wish they had the common sense to leave Ultimate Spider-man out of it. I't the only Ultimate comic book that's readable!
skank pronger
Feb 27th, 2009, 05:08 PM
Great review, Proto. Nobody takes the piss out of things like you. Which reminds me...there's still the matter of ten things you like and hate about Episode 3.
Forum Virgin
Feb 27th, 2009, 06:49 PM
Alcibiades
You know, its sad just how right you probably are.
Forgets Passwords Easily
Feb 27th, 2009, 08:55 PM
So then was there even a real Black panther? And if so, where the hell was he?
Member
Feb 28th, 2009, 12:45 AM
Anyone else do a double take during Yellowjacket's monologue about how humans think of the machines as "Toasters, alarm clocks, and vibrators" or was that just me?
The Ugly Puckling
Feb 28th, 2009, 12:52 AM
I don't think a vibrator is a machine.

My wife says hers could replace me anytime, so they're more of a man then me.
Fanboy
Feb 28th, 2009, 02:13 AM
Another fine roasting; I love the Longboxes. Such a waste of some amazing art here. The Ultimates started out so strong, but that impetus was lost for reasons explained above by Messrs Protoclown and Burbank. Vol 3 was definitely a title too far. Ruining the awesome potential of "Heroes" was one thing, but did he have to do this as well?

Masochist/True Believer that I am, I still collected it of course, and also happen to getting 'Ultimatium' as well. Let me assure you, in only two issues it has produced crap of a magnitude unseen in comic book history - the greatest highlight being the systematic slaughter of most of the Ultimate characters, like when...

...now here's a SPOILER truly worthy of the word...

Ultimate Blob is discovered eating Ultimate Wasp alive. Janet was probably better off with the exploding-Skrulls-thing in SI, eh? It kind of symbolises the X-TREME!!! mindlessness of the 'Ultimates' style in it's ugliest form.

Oh yeah, and:
http://www.4thletter.net/2007/12/ult...-week-day-one/
"Shove your moose in my squirrel, comrade! YUMSKI!"
JTN JTN is offline
Moongaze Climber
Feb 28th, 2009, 02:47 AM
I don't know why Jeph Loeb has the desire to fit as many outside characters in his stories as he can. In this story alone we have a good Half of the Cast of X-Men, the two most popular characters in the Spider-Man franchise, and of course, Wolverine. I can only guess he wanted to get Howard the Duck, Daredevil, the Punisher, and Batman in there too for good measure, but Marvel Editorial was like, "Woah, Jeph! You're already kind of pushing the envelope with 'I thinketh it cuteth'."

The next time someone asks me what "Gratuitous" means I'm gonna hand them this book. I know the previous chapters of the Ultimates upped the sex factor and adult material per issue, but under Loeb it went from "adult" to "disturbing" and then went straight across the sleaze spectrum to "What the hell? Did Wasp just talk about incest like it was normal?"

ARggggh this book. Ultimates and Ultimate Spider-Man were really the only things worth reading in the Ultimate universe, and now the same isn't really true for either anymore.
OH GOD
Feb 28th, 2009, 04:17 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Purple Man View Post
whoa, two achewood references, nice
Member
Feb 28th, 2009, 04:42 AM
I've got to disagree with Mr. Burbank on this one. The ultimate universe was always fairly crappy. Yes the characters emotional issues were more fleshed out than usual, but the problem is those emotional issue were so blatent and obvious. Good writing doesn't help something in "daytime soap opera" format because it's still a frikkin daytime soap opera!

I have a big problem with all of these offshoot variants of main marvel characters cmpletely on principal. I can certainly understand the appeal of "what if" stories like the marvel zombies but what exactly is the point of constantly re-hashing characters into something they are not? Generally they "re-imagine" a character in a comic book in order to have a new character with a ready-made backstory, but in the case of ultimates all the backstory of the REAL marvel heroes is thrown out the window, but makes the whole idea of ultimate books nothing more than a cheap marketing ploy. It's kind of like these movie adaptations of video games and comics that have NOTHING to do with the source material other than in the vaguest of sense. (See the legand of chun-li). The only viable reason to do something like that is to use a brand name to trick faithful fans into watching it.

One wouldn't have to do that if the end product was actually good. This goes with comics as well. If you aren't satisfied with a marvel character's personality/backstory/ect why not, instead of raping a timeless favorite into your own warped image maybe (GASP!) create a NEW character that would be more suited to be in the stories you wish to write about.

It would be nice if the ultimates died a quick death and somehow the real marvel universe would magically not suck again, but at this rate I'll be stuck reading books that aren't integral to the marvel unvierse for the rest of my life as I can never keep up with what reality-altering plot device the hack writer of the week has come up with to ruin my enjoyment of comic books!
Pickleman's Uncle
Feb 28th, 2009, 03:22 PM
I just want to know: who is their colorist, how many hours does he work every day and how much are they paying him?
SPOOOOOOOON!!!
Feb 28th, 2009, 09:15 PM
Jesus Christ, what the fuck is happening with the comic industry? I know comics have never been considered great literature, but seriously, what the fuck? I tried reading the first issue of Ultimates 3 the other day and almost threw up on the damn thing (and I'm truely not exaggerating). Great article, though, Proto. Tales from the Longbox is what made me love this site. You really have a gift for making torturous experiences more enjoyable (and I mean the comics are torturous, not your writing). Are you and Max ever going to do another crossover-type column together? Please consider it.
Crazed Techno-Biologist
Mar 1st, 2009, 02:59 AM
Rufus,

this is why those foreign comics have managed to infiltrate our culture.
For now, american comic book artists everywhere bow their heads in shame.
It feels just like the auto industry.
Member
Mar 1st, 2009, 11:40 PM
"(See the legand of chun-li)"

No I will not.
pickled
Mar 2nd, 2009, 12:17 AM
That was horrible.
Member
Mar 2nd, 2009, 12:18 AM
My main issue here is with that one about halfway down the second page, the one with Cap-bot sparking lightning out of his face and Ant-Man flying out of his mouth. Look at that word balloon. When your text is 80 times the size of the word balloon, just forget the balloon, honestly.

Also, I never thought I'd say this, but Captain America looks weird without his little wings on top of his head.
The Magnificent Bastard
Mar 2nd, 2009, 01:51 AM
Legend of Chun Li couldn't be any worse than the previous attempt at a live-action Street Fighter movie.
Forum Virgin
Mar 2nd, 2009, 01:08 PM
Oh yes, the Chun-li movie is orders of magnitude worse that the cheesy 90s version. It is literally one of the worst movies I have ever seen, period. It actually got into a fight with House of the Dead for worst movie, but since HotD was at least rated R, Chun-Li is now the worst movie ever made. Oh, and "cake or death" reference was pure win.
The Goddamned Batman
Mar 2nd, 2009, 06:16 PM
Like Max, I also immensely enjoyed the first two Ultimates series and normally find Mark Millar's work to be quite likeable. It's usually clear when editorial is dropping mandates on him (Civil War) and when they are not (The Authority, censorship issues aside). I'd say the Ultimates 1 and 2 are the best stuff to come out of the whole Ultimate line by far. Everything else went downhill way before Ultimates did (at least chronologically, not by number of issues).

Alcibiades: I love your interpretation of how things will go and wish that you could write it. Because I'm sure that would be a lot funnier and more enjoyable than when we eventually read the exact same thing but it's all done in earnest.

HeroliciousDeBlanc:
Apparently no, there never was a real Ultimate Black Panther.

Purple Man: I will probably break down and read Ultimatum after it's all concluded simply because it will almost certainly make for a funny Longbox column. But I won't spend a dime on it, no sir. Thanks for sharing the crappiness with us so far though...

Rufus the Perturbed: I would love to do another Crossover column with Max, but it has to be a topic that really lends itself well to that kind of thing. If you have any suggestions, feel free to throw them out!

And sometimes I fear that my Longbox columns only serve to convince people that there aren't ANY good comics out there. This is not true. The best Marvel comics right now though are the ones that stay as far away from the big universe "events" as much as they can. Immortal Iron Fist, Captain America, and Daredevil are easily the three best books Marvel is publishing at the moment, and they only touch the "universe" in the most tangential way. If you want to check out an honestly GOOD Marvel book right now, any of those are worth a look.
The Magnificent Bastard
Mar 2nd, 2009, 07:21 PM
I think a column about all these big crossover events, past and present. Or a column about Superhero death and resurrection would be great topics worthy of another team-up of that magnitude.

In fact one about the big events could involve the whole I-Mockery crew. As if the entire I-Mockery universe is affected by all these ridiculous "big event" stories.
The Ugly Puckling
Mar 2nd, 2009, 09:00 PM
You could make spin-off Hey Dork! into a new column about good comic books, and still do the whole synopsis thing with the panels and commentary, but maintain the dignity of the series and counteract any unlikely but potential negative side effects of the Long Box.
The Goddamned Batman
Mar 2nd, 2009, 09:38 PM
Tetsu, I'm actually glad you mentioned that, because back when Captain America died all four of the writers were talking about doing a combined Comic Book Deaths piece, but it never did end up happening. Max and I might be able to pick up the pieces of that idea and run somewhere with it.

Graystreet, "Hey Dork!" is Max's column, and what he does or doesn't do with it is completely up to him. I hope he has more articles in his bag of tricks though, because I fucking love those columns.
The Ugly Puckling
Mar 2nd, 2009, 10:06 PM
This is why I should always listen to my instinct to check my facts, I was positive that Hey Dork! was written by you and Max taking turns until Long Box spun off into what it is now, I apologize for my confusion.
Sex Panther
Mar 2nd, 2009, 10:56 PM
That dialogue couldn't be any greater.
drifting in the void
Mar 3rd, 2009, 06:23 AM
I donīt read comics but I know that this one is pretty shitty. Nonetheless itīs hillarious somehow... They could all just stand around in a pink room and yell "YA-YA! YAAAA!" at each other while blasting the shit out of an undead elephant. Would basically be the same.
Fanboy
Mar 4th, 2009, 03:43 AM
I'm biased as hell, of course, but I would add a few other Marvel titles to the ones Proto mentioned. Captain Britain & MI13 has been going strong for a while, although the recent appearance of a craptacular Dracula and Dr "I'm EVERYWHERE these days" Doom does not bode well. But it's got Spitfire and Blade totally making out!1!!1!.

Also, Thunderbolts. It is a big part of Dark Reign, but I feel it's a shitload of fun. The new lineup is great (Yelena Belova, Headsman, Paladin, Ghost and Ant-Man III); it may yet turn crappy on me, but the setup is classic.

Lastly, The Twelve is one of the finest comics I've read in years. NOW IF THEY WOULD ONLY PUT OUT #9 IT'S BEEN THREE MONTHS ALREADY MR STRACZYNSKI PLEASE STOP TORTURING ME.
Crazy dog woman
Mar 5th, 2009, 11:00 AM
I have only one thing more to add... Hasn't brother/sister-incest become a pretty tedious ingredient in pop-culture? Perhaps it was "rad" when Jerry Cornelius was first published... but that was a while ago.
The Ugly Puckling
Mar 5th, 2009, 11:55 AM
There's like six other incestuous twin couplets in the Ultimate universe, so apparently, it's new and exciting to someone.
Member
Mar 7th, 2009, 12:59 PM
I heard tell that rumor had it that the Ultimates Universe was so popular at one time, it might have supplanted the regular Marvel Universe as the main continuity. Guess those days are over.
Forum Virgin
Mar 9th, 2009, 12:15 AM
Actually, there <b>is</b> an Ultimate Black Panther. He appeared in the Ultimate Captain America annual. Basically, he's T'Challa from Ultimate Wakanda. He got his ass handed to him by a real panther, and the king sent him off to Weapon X because they could save his life. Along the way, for some reason, T'Challa got jacked up with some super-powers pretty much like Wolverine. Healing factor, added strength, some adamantium claws . . . the whole deal. For whatever reason. But Weapon X never fixed his vocal chords. Fury, for whatever reason, decided to keep Panther after raiding a Weapon X place. Keep . . . as his property. So once Fury gets stuck in the Squadron Supreme universe or something, Cap takes Panther's place by dressing up as him and getting Tony to build him fake gear - that's why Tony knew to bring Cap's shield and costume for the 'Panther.'
The Ugly Puckling
Mar 9th, 2009, 09:38 AM
Nick Fury's a homosexual pedophile racist, and Captain America likes to dress up as little boys?

I done told everyone to avoid the Ultimate universe.
Forum Virgin
Mar 18th, 2009, 05:59 AM
It's become pretty commonplace to mock Loeb, and I can understand that impulse given the poorness of his work over the past couple of years (and its sheer what-the-hell factor), but I think this article sums it up well: you can't fault a creative person for wanting to write his way through a difficult time, but you can fault Marvel for putting him on a key title.

That's not to say that the Ultimates was any good before him, though. It's just old Avengers stories with a higher content rating. The usual, cynical Millar idiocy.

The article's hilarious, because it really is a misguided and just plain lousy book, but here's something that stands out to me: Loeb is writing a huge crossover about someone destroying a world because he lost his children. That's kind of heartbreaking to me, honestly. It reminds me of that Superman: For All Seasons backup Loeb did for Superman/Batman #26 (which really is a sweet little story), but with an Ed Wood poignancy.

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