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The Ultimates Vol. 2: Homeland Security Paperback – April 5, 2006

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Following their nihilistic run on The Authority, Millar and Hitch turn their attention to reinventing the Avengers, the Mightiest Heroes of Marvel's Earth, into a more contemporary, less optimistic team. As is the current superhero fashion, actions have consequences, and super powers don't confer super ethics. The Hulk is now a lustful mass murderer; Giant-Man, a wife-beater; and Thor, a deranged left-wing hippie. Under the leadership of government tough guy Nick Fury, this ultimate team takes on an alien invasion that goes back three centuries and even caused WWII. Since the aliens can take human form, this conveniently allows the Ultimates to use their powers to beat their foes into piles of pulp. However, the real adversaries are their own personal problems and the enervating power of moral ambiguity. Hitch is one of the top artists in comics and masterfully creates scenes of both wholesale destruction and dramatic confrontation that call for good-looking heroes to flex their muscles. He also excels at the pacing between the two modes. Millar's story plunges onward, but the characterization is curiously flat, even with the quirks and frailties he's given the cast. In the end, this new world of unyielding heroes is just as two-dimensional as the corny do-gooders of yore that they're replacing. Every era needs its own stereotypes, however, and these certainly fit the bill.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


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Product Details

  • Series: Ultimates (Marvel Paperback) (Book 2)
  • Paperback: 200 pages
  • Publisher: Marvel (April 5, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 078511078X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0785110781
  • Product Dimensions: 6.8 x 0.5 x 10.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (27 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #361,930 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

18 of 19 people found the following review helpful By N. Durham HALL OF FAMEVINE VOICE on May 29, 2004
Format: Paperback
Note: this review refers to the recently released Ultimates TPB entitled Homeland Security. After managing to take down the Hulk, the government sponsored superhero team called the Ultimates have run into some problems. A shape changing alien race, which are responsible for some of humanity's worst moments (Captain America fought them in World War II) are once again rearing their ugly heads with a plan to wipe out the human race. Sad part is, the Ultimates are in shambles with Janet Pym AKA Wasp severely injured by her husband Hank AKA Giant Man, who himself goes on the run with Captain America in pursuit to teach him how to properly treat a lady. New members Hawkeye, Black Widow, Scarlet Witch, and Quicksilver are introduced as well as the team unites to defend the planet. The issues contained in Homeland Security is where the Ultimates really shines, improving on the first few issues by far. Mark Millar has cleverly crafted a modern day version of the Avengers while staying true to their original roots, while Bryan Hitch's artwork is better than ever. All this leads up to the upcoming (hopefully, many single issues of the series were loaded with shipping delays and would not reach shelves for months at a time) Ultimates Vol. 2 monthly series which Millar has hinted at will change everything you think about this modern day Avengers team. All in all, out of all of Marvel's Ultimate line (the new Ultimate Fantastic Four is impressive as well), the Ultimates is something really special.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Andrew on February 25, 2006
Format: Paperback
The first volume of The Ultimates, while a little slow, ended great. The battle between the Hulk and the rest of the team was amazing, and the fight between Hank and Janet Pym was not only great, but completely unexpected. Picking up right where the last volume left off, Janet is being rushed to the hospital, Hank flees to Chicago, and Captain America reads a speech at a vigil for the people who died due to the actions of Bruce Banner/the Hulk. Things are somewhat strained on the team, but now that they've had a real fight, they are prepared for their next battle. We also learn that there is a black ops team that works in tandem with the Ultimates, who are expressly for public viewing. This team consists of Black Widow/Natasha Romanova, Hawkeye/Clint Barton, the Scarlet Witch/Wanda Maximoff, and Quicksilver/Pietro Maximoff (both of whom are children of mutant terrorist Magneto).

The main plot of Homeland Security deals with an alien threat. A hostile race of aliens, known as the chitauri (who are a reference to the skrull from the 616 universe) have been attempting a silent invasion since before WWII, and they nearly succeeded when they allied themselves with the Nazis. Captain America was able to hold them off before he was frozen, but they have returned to finish the job.

In addition to the main storyline of the chitauri invasion, the fallout of the Pym's argument is addressed very well. The humanity of the characters is definitely here, and is done very well. Hank and Janet Pym have a very real relationship, and Captain America, who is still getting over the fact that it's no longer 1945, has a troubled reaction to their troubles.

Bruce Banner's arc is also very well done.
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19 of 23 people found the following review helpful By Mark H. Sherwin on February 20, 2005
Format: Paperback
The last 2 reviews seem pretty clueless. The Ultimates is basically the Avengers of the 60's, updated to today. Capt America is not just some apple-pie, gosh shucks sort. He is what he should be; the ULTIMATE SOLDIER, someone you can send in, an get the job done, someone others will follow, and can lead their people to victory. Giant man is not just the classic smart scientist that invests something, is someone with some real issues, some of which are pretty ugly. The Hulk is what the ID would be unbound and freed from a person repressed all their life. Not just a big green muscle guy who wants to sit around an play with kittens and puppies, but the darn military will not let him be. No, this Hulk is really something out of the dark parts of the human mind, something no one wants to meet. I could go on an do each character, but why spoil all the fun.

Those that say Lee an Arad reject this, Lee, I am sorry to say, is out of touch. An Arad it seems only cares about comics he can spin into big movies. Look at how his being upset about the FURY series pretty much trashed the MAX line. As I said in the title, this is not a comic for the kids, or those that are only happy with comics like they were in the 60s through 70s.

If I may, I would strongly suggest getting Vol 1 and reading it first, to really enjoy this book. Many themes from the earlier edition come to fruition here, and it would be a real

shame to not fully understand what is going on.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Red on June 1, 2006
Format: Paperback
This volume of Ultimates 2 took me to town! Well, not literally. But it brought some closure to the Pym storyline that ended the last volume on a depressing note. Also, any doubts that I had about Captain America being sort of Boy Scout-ish was ended with this volume. Cap has some great one-liners, and backs them up serious tactful manipulation. Just goes to show that Cap's brawn comes with brains too, which I liked. This volume also introduced Hawkeye, Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver. Hawkeye had a somewhat decent characterization going on, but not alot was done with the two mutants which I was a little dissapointed by.

Essentially, this story kept me hooked from begining to end with great art, great themes, and great writing. Sure, the alien bit's a little cheesy (even the characters claim this), but it was pulled off in such a way to make it believeable. If you're into Ultimate Marvel, I'd definently reccomend this to add to your colelction.

*WARNING* This comic book is not for kids. And that's the way I like it.
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