2013, “The Year of Marvel” continues in earnest this week. And, like last week when I recommended the first issue of the Thanos Rising mini-series, everything kind of runs through Earth’s Mightiest Heroes, the Avengers.
Not only are the various Avengers titles currently setting the stage for a cosmic event to be published later this summer, but the cast of characters is also front and centre in Marvel Comics’ present-day tent-pole series, Age of Ultron. Of course, all tent-pole comics have spin-offs and tie-ins inherent in their publishing schedule, and Age of Ultron is no different. So that’s what we get today: an interesting one-off, tie-in, succinctly called Ultron.
But it’s not about the big robot bad a title like that might suggest. No. It’s about the big robot bad’s cyborg son!
Written by: Kathryn Immonen
Illustrated by: Amilcar Pinna
Published by: Marvel Comics
Look, if you haven’t been reading Age of Ultron, you might want to pick it up. The fifth issue of the ten-issue series is also out today. To be honest, the story has been enjoyable but polarizing to hard-core fans thus far. We’ve discussed it in a recent Biff Bam Popcast! here and Glenn Walker has been publishing regular columns after each issue. In my opinion, his columns are must reading. Glenn’s got a gift when it comes to Marvel Universe knowledge and he shares those powers with readers in each and every instalment. You can read his most recent Age of Ultron observations here.
Ultron, meanwhile, is a whole different animal.
The one-off comic book stars the teenage Victor Mancha, Ultron’s cyborg son, created by writer Brian K, Vaughan and artist Adrian Alphona in 2005, within the pages of the well-regarded Runaways series. So, if Ultron, in the Age of Ultron series, takes over the world and kills almost all of its heroes, what’s it like to be that despot’s teenage son? Ultron #1 tells us.
Marvel Comics is being guided by a bunch of clever storytellers these days. Not only is Ultron a tie-in to the current tent-pole series, it stars a character from a demographic that comic books are continually trying to stoke – the teen. Victor Mancha gets a bit of the spotlight here and I wouldn’t be at all surprised to see him keep it in a new, ongoing Avengers title released later this year called: Avengers A.I.
If you really want to get into long-form storytelling over various media (something Marvel does extremely well with their slate of big budget popcorn movies) mixed with comic book conspiracy theory, watch the characters of Hank Pym (Ant-Man) and Ultron weave their way into future Hollywood films! Comic begets film! Film begets toys. And video games. And Happy Meal souvenirs.
Who knows? Ultron #1 may be where it all starts!
So make the run to your local comic book shop today and pick up Ultron #1. At the very least, you’ll find out what it’s like to be the teen cyborg son of the world’s greatest artificial intelligence villain. You know, a cool emo superhero adventure!
Every Wednesday, JP makes the after-work run to his local downtown comic book shop. Comics arrive on Wednesdays you see and JP, fearful that the latest issue will sell out, rushes out to purchase his copy. This regular, weekly column will highlight a particularly interesting release, written in short order, of course, because JP has to get his – before someone else does!