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Ultimate Avengers 2 #2

Ultimate Avengers 2 issue 2 finds Nick Fury's ragtag team on the cusp of their first assignment. But before they're complete, there is one more person needed to round out the team: The Hulk… the first Hulk.

In South America, Leonard Williams A.K.A Tyrone Cash wakes up early after enjoying an action packed night with some of his lady friends. He starts the morning off by taking a stroll on the beach outside of his mansion. Soon he finds himself going down memory lane to the time he first met Bruce Banner, the man who would forever change his life.

Sixteen years ago in Cambridge England, Leonard Williams and Bruce Banner share a heart to heart moment. Bruce tells Leonard that he wants to join his team which leads to each man opening up and sharing their insecurities they have about their bodies. Leonard, being disabled, needs crutches to walk. While Bruce, doesn't feel right in his own skin. Bruce shares with Leonard that he has the recipe for the perfect human specimen because his country isn't interested in super soldiers anymore.                                                                 https://www.entertainmentfuse.com/images/124_ultimate_comics_avengers_2_2_02.jpg

Back to present day on the beach, Leonard is met by Colonel Rhodes a.k.a. War Machine. Rhodes reminds Leonard about his wife Jamie and daughter Kate and how they are having trouble getting by without him. He adds the fact that Leonard can’t escape his past by pretending to be Tyrone Cash the gang lord, when he's just the genius that taught Bruce Banner everything he knows.

The two persist to engage in a less than gentlemanly bouts of fisticuffs were the two critique each other on the choices they have made with their powers. The bout reaches a disrespect climax as Leonard “Hulks Out” and leaps into the sky to grapple a single engine Cessna into War Machine's chest killing the pilot instantly as he is launched through the windshield. Leonard persists to spit on War Machine while beating him with the dead pilot's amputated leg. Eventually War Machine gets the one sided beating to stop by blackmailing Leonard. If he doesn’t join the Avengers he’s going to tell his family that he’s alive.

Now with a team together, Fury tells his Avengers the first thing they need to do is take care of a little something that the White House wants them to handle...The Ghost Rider.

The Ghost Rider? Really? Ghost Rider!?! It's hard to tell if Mark Millar (American Jesus, Nemesis) really cares what's going on with this book. The first Hulk? I understand it's an Ultimate book but a Hulk that doesn't abide by any of the Hulks lore or rules but was created the same way is lazy. Just having Leonard walk around in Hulk mode until he needs to “Hulk Out” comes off like convenient story telling. The dialog between Bruce and Leonard in the flashback is silly. Bruce is ashamed of his body? What? Is he a sixteen year old girl? Plus on the beach, Rhodes tells Leonard his family misses him. Leonard doesn't even flinch. But when Rhodes says he's a geek and not a gangster and adds the act of touching his shoulder, he “Hulks Out” on him so hard that he beats War Machine's entire suit in. Hey this first Hulk guy seems stable; let’s get him on the team! More examples of Millar's writing as of late. It feels like he just wants the book to come across like a billion dollar summer action movie.

The core of the book, the fight between War Machine and Leonard is lack luster. Leinil Francis Yu (Ultimate Wolverine and Hulk, Fantastic Four) seems to be struggling with the content. Nothing feels fluid and the action is just compromised of stale poses. After the massive beating the War Machine suit takes a few panels later it's like nothing ever happened. His suit just received two different modes of vehicle transportation spiked on his chest! Let’s see the aftermath… none! Despite all ludicrous action Millar brews up per issue the art never complements it.

On the plus side this over the top romp is only two issues into its run of six. Which is still plenty of time to make things ultimate?

Story – 1.5

Plot – 1.0

Art – 4.3

Overall – 2.2



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