“The Punisher gets busy.” No matter the universe, the Punisher is the baddest vigilante around. Serving up his lethal brand of justice, he cuts a bloody swat through mobs, gangs, and hoodlums. He has caught the eye of the authorities, and with the help of S.H.E.I.L.D. and ultimate Captain America is brought to justice. Intercepting him while incarcerated is Nick Fury, who along with the Black Widow, has come to recruit him for their black ops squad, labeled “The Avengers”. He is outfitted with a special suit that enhances his strength, speed, stamina, and durability, and made the squads first member. Next up for Nick and his black ops squad; Tyrone Cash, or as he is known as; The Black Hulk. Mark Millar (Civil War, Marvel Knights: Spiderman) and Leinil Frances Yu (Fallen Son: The Death of Captain America, Secret Invasion) turn in an exciting story of greed and revenge in the ultimate universe.
Background- Welcome to the Ultimate Universe! This universe shares some of the same characters as the main Marvel Universe, albeit sometimes not as we are used to seeing them. The biggest example of this is found with Nick Fury. In the main universe, we know of Nick Fury, the WWII veteran and ex-director of S.H.E.I.L.D., in the ultimate universe he is a Desert Storm veteran and recipient of the Super Soldier formula, most importantly, is BLACK! Other stories have additional layers added to them, but do not stray too far off center.
Art– The art is very nicely done. The expressions made by the characters are very real, and the colors set the appropriate tone for the story. Each page is gallery worthy.
Characterizations- The whole idea of the ultimate universe was to modernize the characters of the regular marvel universe into ones that are more recognizable to the current readers. To that end, the characters got revamps that in some cases strayed away from the original just a bit, and in other cases turned the characters upside down. The case of Carol Danvers is a nice example. The current Captain Marvel in the regular universe is a career military woman in the ultimate universe. This brings us to the beloved Nick Fury. The ultimate universe version of Nick Fury was so enigmatic that he became the one that was used in the cartoons and animated films. So popular was the ultimate Nick Fury that the main marvel universe had to come up with their own black version! (check out the story of Marcus Johnson in the Black Superheroes)
For anyone looking to get started with stories from the Ultimate Universe this is a good jumping on point. No baggage, no unresolved plots. 4/5
Review submitted by Black Heroes member Marcus .H. Roberts