Story Mark Millar
Pencils / Breakdowns Adam Kubert
Inks / Finishes Danny Miki
Colors Dave Stewart
Letters Chris Eliopoulos
Cover Dated June 2003
Return of the King, Part Six of Seven
Mark Miller’s penultimate issue to his Ultimate X-Men run!
Here is the website to view the entire issue :
Hopefully this person is okay with me borrowing the images and the providing the links. I can’t tell but it appears they haven’t uploaded any new scans in forever so I may be the first person to visit the site in a while.
Miami. Jean doesn’t throw the nuclear power plant into the sun, like I thought was going to happen. Instead, she just dematerializes it. Which is a far more impressive use of her powers. She has scary level of molecular power, in that case. Xavier’s reaction is pretty dead on with how much potential she now has.
Scott and Logan are about to have their big throw down. I like how Wolverine tells the team to stand back and he deserves whatever punishment Cyclops is going to deal out. Which he really does, and the team knows that Wolverine is a dirt bag, so they probably want to see him get a beat down.
Wolverine does his thing and charges at Cyclops who in one panel, just optic blasts Wolverine to the ground and he is out.
Which really boils down how the two characters fight. Wolverine is a close range guy, so as long as you can keep him at a distance, he is essentially useless. Cyclops is a ranged guy and isn’t much of a threat up close. Unless you think about a full force blast from his visor, and how that must hurt. But if he can’t get his hand to his visor or to his palm trigger, then you stand a decent chance of fighting him.
Wolverine though, if he can stab you, that’s knives into your flesh and that has to hurt. I never want to be stabbed, as it seems not great.
Miami. Jean is trying to assure Xavier that she is in full control. Jean comments on how the Phoenix persona is no longer in her head, she is able to control her vast powers and no longer needs to imagine a cosmic god living in her head to try to wrap her mind around her powers.
Rogue gives everyone a heads up that the humans are making their way to them. Xavier tells everyone to huddle around Jean so that she can create a shield around them.
Everyone is keeping to code names so Jean is being called, Marvel Girl, which sounds super awkward.
Turns out the humans were getting close so that they can cheer for the X-Men. One would think with two of the greatest telepathic minds in the world, that they would have heard all of those thoughts and not have been scared at all.
The next day, the world has become Pro-X-Men. Which I like how Millar is responsible for creating the Ultimate X-Men and their original status quo and now that he is done with his run, he is setting up their status quo so that the next writer can do whatever they want to do with their run. That next writer is going to be Brian Michael Bendis, with his Blockbuster and New Mutants arcs. We will be reviewing Blockbuster parts four, five and six after this issue. As those are the ones I ordered from Mile High Comics for Father’s Day.
The X-Men are on all types of magazine covers. These must be special editions as that is an awfully quick turn around time for it to be the proper issues.
Xavier tells Barbara Walters that Wolverine is no longer off the team, in an interview. So awkward now the whole world now knows that Wolverine left Cyclops for dead so that he can get with Jean and that that plan actually worked. Seems a little intimate to let everyone know. Also, I know Wolverine joins the team soon after this so how do they just let that go?
Cyclops is a bigger person than me as whenever I wanted to give orders to the team and stupid Wolverine opened his mouth to either object or crack wise, I would be like “or what, Wolverine, you going to leave me for dead again so you can get back with Jean?” I would bring it up constantly as screw that guy.
President Bush, which I like how Millar doesn’t hide the fact who the President is. I know Bendis liked to keep the president in the shadows so that the comic isn’t immediately dated in four or eight years (though it is just by virtue of existing in the then present). Which I know when I first read the Clone Saga in trade form, and when Nixon gives a speech, that took me out of the story.
President George W. Bush and his cabinet, are having a meeting with Fury and Tony Stark regarding what to do now with the X-Men. Fury wants to incorporate the Xavier Institute under the Ultimates funding in the Federal budget. Bush realizes that mutants are being born every day so it probably is a smart idea to have a testing ground where they can be molded to the benefit of America.
I wonder if Bendis / Millar, at this point – as they are the architects of the Ultimate Universe, if they have the idea of revealing that the mutants are the product of an experiment that the American government came up with, as revealed in Ultimate Origin and is the basis of the Ultimate Comics X-Men initial storyline.
At the Xavier Institute.
Poor Nightcrawler, he is a new member of the team and Xavier’s first mission for him is to go around giving people drinks and food. No wonder he will go crazy eventually.
They are hinting at the Bobby / Kitty relationship. Glad Kurt didn’t give Bobby any liquor.
There is a big party at the Xavier School, students’ parents are in attendance (though like the proper Marvel universe, the parents will be forgotten about eventually).
Xavier meets with Rogue and her parents. She is joining the team as well.
Xavier meets with Mr. Braddock, who reveals the European Union are working on their own version of the Ultimates. Which is an awesome way for Millar to set up his epic Ultimates 2 series. We learn that Betsy’s consciousness is now in a body of an Asian young lady named, Kwannon. So now Psylocke matches her proper version. Which isn’t something that had to happen but as Colossus killed her during the Ultimate Proteus storyline, it makes sense to save her. Her death and Beast’s are the rare except to the Dead is Dead rule in the Ultimate Universe.
Colossus overhears that Betsy isn’t dead and goes over to apologize for killing her. Which is nice that in comics, one gets the opportunity to do such a thing.
Mr. Braddock does say his son, Brian, will be a member of this new team.
This transitions us to Colossus and Beast. Beast tells Colossus that his parents would never come to something like this has they are racist. Colossus is confused as he just saw his parents minutes ago.
There is an ad for the X-Men Legend of Wolverine DVD, that has some episodes from the 90s X-Men cartoon. The cool thing is that Claremont does the introductions for the episodes. Magneto’s first episode is also thrown in there.
Beast is treated by his parents who look younger. They have a three book deal, describing how they raised one of the famous X-Men. There is even talk of a movie being made, starring either Sean Penn or Tim Robbins. They continue to explain how they are no longer racist.
Which sets up the fun scene of Beast introducing them to his “girlfriend” Storm and they are not physically thrilled with that. Storm and Beast give each other thumbs up.
Outside, Colossus is united with his family. We see it from Jean’s point of view and she’s across the yard so we don’t get to make out anybody. The only blonde amongst them has short hair so I don’t believe that Ultimate Illyana is amongst them – if she even exists. I checked comicbookdb, UncannyXMen.net and Marvel Database – none make the call that Illyana is there. Those three sites are the trinity of comic book websites for me.
Thor and Jean are chatting. He tells her that Xavier doesn’t know everything and to beware that the Phoenix may be just playing her.
I forgot to mention that Cyclops is not at the party as his parents are dead and that Tony Stark was hitting on Storm, who he confirms is 18 (but just barely).
Issue ends with Fury and Xavier talking after the party is over. Both are happy that the Xavier School is a training ground for future members of the Ultimates. There is some hints that this entire Magneto situation worked out for the best for both of them. Fury got the X-Men and Xavier got access to America’s military.
Fury leaves to do business and Xavier is going to feed his cat, Mystique, some dinner.