Comic Book Review: Ultimate Power #3

The Revolution is really digging Ultimate Power. This mini-series has an exciting summer blockbuster movie feel to it. Bendis is delivering an action filled story and Land and Ryan are cranking out some incredible artwork. There is no doubt in my mind that I am going to totally Ultimate Power #3. Let’s go ahead and hit this review.

Creative Team
Writer: Brian Michael Bendis
Penciler: Greg Land
Inker: Matt Ryan

Art Rating: 9 Night Girls out of 10
Story Rating: 7 Night Girls out of 10
Overall Rating: 8 Night Girls out of 10

Synopsis: We begin with the President being awoken out of bed and rushed to his “safehouse.” We then see odd alien fleshy/plant-like blobby creatures overtaking all of downtown Washington D.C. Hyperion and Power Princess are on the scene trying to save people from these strange blobs.

Meanwhile the President is being briefed by Mr. Steadman. Steadman informs the President that these blobs are all across the planet; however the greatest concentration of them is the east coast of America. The organisms are changing the oxygen content and barometric pressure. That this is a high level threat to the entire Earth.

Steadman then informs the President that just before the organisms appeared, that there was a surge that appeared in New York City. Steadman then radios Hyperion and tells him to get to New York immediately. Hyperion arrives in New York and locates the source of the surge. Hyperion dives into the center of one of the organisms and pulls out Reed’s small orb probe.

We cut to a government lab where Nighthawk is examining the probe. Suddenly, the probe turns on and a holographic image of Reed Richards appears. Reed introduces himself and says that he is from another dimension. The Squadron Supreme are stunned that a child tried an inter-dimensional scientific experiment and by doing so nearly destroyed their world. Hyperion says that if the probe is broadcasting then they can follow the broadcast trail right back to the dimension where it’s broadcasting from.

We cut to the present with Squadron Supreme at an uneasy ceasefire with the Ultimates, X-Men and Fantastic Four. Hyperion tells Reed that he has to come with them to fix the mess he has caused and then stand trial for his crimes against humanity. Reed agrees and says he will go with the Squadron Supreme.

Sue puts up an invisible barrier between the Squadron Supreme and Reed. Sue tells Reed to get behind her. Reed tells Sue to drop the shield. That the Squadron Supreme are right and that he has to go. Sue yells for Reed to get behind her. Hyperion starting pounding away at Sue’s invisible barrier causing her to collapse to the ground.

Our heroes get ready to brawl with the Squadron Supreme, but Nick Fury orders them to stand down. Reed yells for everyone to stop. Reed says that he did this in order to find a way to cure the Thing. That he didn’t mean for any of this to happen. That he wasn’t trying to hurt anybody. He was just trying to uphold his promise to the Thing. Reed tells Fury that he was right and apologizes for not listening to him. Reed and the Squadron Supreme then teleport back to their dimension.

Sue totally snaps. Sue gets in Nick Fury’s face and yells at him for doing nothing. Nick responds that he wasn’t going to have a massive super power battle in the middle of New York City. However, he is ready to put together a rescue team and go to their dimension, help fix their world and then bring Reed back. Captain America asks Nick what his plan is. Nick responds that he is working on it. End of issue.

The Good: Ultimate Power #3 was another good read. Bendis did a nice job giving us much more detail on what happened to the Squadron Supreme’s world. I thought the beginning was dramatic and was very large in scope. Bendis really got the reader to feel the chaos and destruction on a global scale. Bendis’ explanation for how Reed’s probe caused such damage was well thought out and presented to the reader.

The best part about the Squadron Supreme’s reaction to Reed’s message was his age. They all are stunned that this boy who looks to be no more than 14 managed to create and send an inter-dimensional probe that caused such global destruction. The sheer randomness and innocent nature of the probe and Reed is the exact opposite of what your typical hero encounters. Usually, the cause behind such destruction is an alien invasion or the work of some evil genius. The fact that it is an innocent boy with the best of intentions was an excellent twist.

Reed’s reaction to the Squadron Supreme demanding him to come with them and fix the problem and then stand trial for his actions was perfect. Reed is such the hard luck genius. Everything he does just seems to have some nightmarish result. Reed has nothing but the best intentions in everything he does. It is by some bizarre twist of fate that Reed seems doomed to only hurt rather than help despite his genuine desire to do good.

I loved Sue’s reaction to Reed agreeing to go with the Squadron Supreme. Sue putting up a shield around Reed and demanding that he get behind her was awesome. Bendis delivered one of the coolest versions of Sue that I have ever read. I liked her fire and willingness to do whatever she has to in order to protect her man. I love Sue and Reed as a couple and Bendis does a great job capturing the love that Sue has for Reed.

And Nick Fury is as cool as the other side of the pillow. Nick’s response to Sue getting in his face was sweet. Even when Nick truly isn’t in control and he flying by the seat of his pants, he always exudes complete confidence. This is why Nick Fury is a total stud.

Ryan and Land’s artwork was just as beautiful as ever. The opening scenes were jaw dropping nice. Ryan and Land truly captured the massive scope of the chaos and destruction and presented it with some powerful splash shots of the damage. Their art in this scene really helped to give Ultimate Power #3 that big blockbuster movie feel to it.

Ryan and Land also packed plenty of emotion into their art that really helped bolster Bendis’ solid story. Ryan and Land made the reader truly feel Reed’s sorrow and how defeated he felt. His facial expressions and body language were spot on.

The Bad: Even though I certainly enjoyed Ultimate Power #3, I thought that the pacing was a bit too slow. It felt like Bendis lost a little of his focus on this storyline. Yeah, we got what happened in the Squadron Supreme’s dimension fleshed out a bit, but we already knew that Reed’s probe destroyed their world. Other than getting some more detail on how exactly the probe destroyed their world; nothing else happened. It was largely an uneventful issue with very little happening to progress the story.

Overall: Ultimate Power #3 was an enjoyable read. It did feel like Bendis paused and caught his breath with this issue. Hopefully, Bendis will get the story back in gear and get things rolling again with the next issue. All in all, this is still a good mini-series.