Ultimate FF #1
By Joshua Hale Fiakov, Mario Guevara & Tom Grummett
It has certainly been a while since the Ultimate Fantastic Four have had their own book, if you can even call this a Fantastic Four book. It’s more like Sue Storm and some other dudes.
This new team of Sue, Iron Man, Falcon, and Machine Man is certainly an interesting idea. The Ultimate universe has been a convoluted mess for years and Cataclysm was a perfect time to shake things up and go in a different direction. The best part of this issue is the feeling of a fresh start. Fiakov quickly establishes that this is going to be a very unique series.
Speaking of unique, it’s awesome to see Sue Storm as the “brains” of the operation, even though she’s on a team with other highly intelligent people. Not only that, she appears to be the voice of reason. Sue Storm is a fascinating character to explore because far too often, she’s been pushed to the background.
Despite so many positives, this issue is plagued with problems. Except for Sue, every character comes off as either very dull or extremely annoying. Even Tony Stark is missing his usual charm and finesse. Another setback is the crisis presented to the heroes. There’s no sense of urgency to suck the reader in. Perhaps this is just a typical first issue that’s meant to set things up, but there is literally no catch to the story. That must change if Marvel expects us to hang on to this title.
The art by Guevara and Grummet is not pretty. The action scenes are an eyesore and the reader can barely tell what’s going on. The depiction of our heroes is the worst, though. The costumes are ridiculous. There are numerous panels where certain body parts are out of proportion and/or positioned unnaturally. If this is how the art is going to look for the foreseeable future, it’s going to be a bumpy road ahead.
Ultimate FF is rough around the edges, but still has a lot going for it. It’s an exciting team and it will be fun to see where this goes. With so many great comics on the market, it’s hard to recommend this title. It has the potential to get there, though.