One thing sorely lacking from Marvel’s Ultimate line is the sense of a inclusive universe. Sure, Kitty Pryde is Spider-Man’s new girlfriend, and the Ultimates guest-starred in the last arc of Ultimate X-Men. But outside of those minor instances, every title seems to exist in it’s own vacuum. Shouldn’t the Ultimates be showing up just about any time a super-villain attacks on American soil, even if it’s one of Spider-Man’s enemies? Shouldn’t the Fantastic Four get a little help from Spider-Man every now and again? Hell, shouldn’t somebody acknowledge that the Fantastic Four even exist?
Marvel’s only tried a few times to crossover the titles. Ultimate Six was a Spider-Man mini-series disquised as a Spider-Man/Ultimates event. Ultimate War was an X-Men mini-series disguised as an X-Men/Ultimates event. Both fell sort of flat. The Ultimate X4 2-parter going on right now is anything but epic. And don’t get me started on the horrid Wolverine/Spider-Man arc in Ultimate X-Men.
The Ultimate Galactus trilogy seems to be Marvel’s big attempt at a Secret Wars-type mega-crossover for the Ultimate universe. But why should I think the Ultimate Galactus trilogy will be any different than the previous crossovers? The first two minis were hurt by massive delays. Half of the Ultimate Vision prequels were published in a title I don’t read. And it appears as though the story takes place before Ultimates 2, so you know nothing too terrible is going to happen.
Let’s face it, the Ultimate Universe has become a bit stagnant lately. The line has long since surpassed it’s freshness date. It needs a good solid kick in the pants to be exciting again. And no, Bryan Singer isn’t going to do it.