I was originally going to review Ultimate FF‘s first issue, but things got in the way. However, now is the perfect time to start reviewing it after it has just been cancelled. Yep, #6 is the final issue of the series after very poor sales (the second issue being around #140 in top selling comics). Let’s dive in and see what this series has to offer as it approaches its quick demise. Is it good?
Ultimate FF #3 (Marvel Comics)
So with a recent incursion in the Ultimate universe, a rich group of assholes has been dumping chemical waste into a dimension to dispose of it. However, it’s pissed off the native Atlanteans and their leader Namora (clever) and they attacked the rich people’s underwater base. This brought the new Futures Foundation to the base to check out things, and now they all find themselves fighting these other dimensional Atlantean beings.
Inking and consistent coloring is for chumps.
Having read all of the previous issues and now this one, I can definitely see why people would not be buying this book in droves. It’s honestly not that good and full of problems. The story itself, the concept and premise of it are perfectly fine in and of themselves, and there are some decent lines here and there. It’s just that everything else is pretty bad. The storytelling is very questionable with poor transitions, awkward dialogue, the pacing either going too fast or too slow, and it feels like a mess in areas to where you have to reread sections just to fully understand what exactly the characters were talking about or what is happening.
That’s not all either. The characters are properly portrayed and feel accurate to who they are, but motivations and issues they encounter don’t seem to match up with them. Also, conservations seem to contradict what was said earlier at points (the part with Sue in the opening does not match up with how the last issue ended at all) and people just randomly trust each other at points. For instance, Namora has the team cornered at one point and Sue tells her that Namor is off to poison their dimension. Namora instantly believes her and walks away. Why would she trust her? The comic also sets up these false dilemmas and moral choices that the characters have to encounter that question their morality and if they are truly heroes. Honestly, they are pretty lackluster and are not as profound as the comic likes to make them out to be. It’s so poorly thought out.
Dear god! What the hell is up with Tony Stark’s face?!
But what probably hurts this book the most and probably really contributes to why no one bought this series is the artwork. It’s so amateurish, scratchy, flat, and ugly looking that really makes the book visually unappealing. While the last two issues were bad and messy at points (the last issue had four inkers and it did not look good at all), this one takes the cake. There is no inker on the book and it makes the whole thing feel unfinished with how unrefined and messy it looks. For instance, a double page spread looks incomplete because of a lack of inking and the fact that only the main characters are colored at all. It’s probably a stylistic choice, but it doesn’t help.
It gets worse. What does it say about a comic’s artwork when the best thing about it is its Greg Land-drawn cover? The character models change shape and size on whims, the eyes are never leveled on a person (making it look like one eye is raised higher than the other), and the coloring is drab and seems to change in tone and lightness half way through the book. Not to mention the boring layouts and awful costumes (also, why does Phil Couson look like Daredevil?), but those are only the cherries on the top of all of this. Just completely awful looking and it really does take you out of the book at points.
What the hell is up with his legs?
Is It Good?
Ultimate FF #3 is a disaster. The premise and the character portrayal is fine, but everything else is a nightmare. The storytelling is horrendous and poorly done, characters act like idiots or are not consistent, moral quandaries are tacked on and lazy, and the artwork absolutely kills whatever is left over. This book is getting cancelled soon and that’s good. There’s potential with this sort of team and maybe with more refined writing and artwork, it could be something more. As it stands, there’s not more, just less.