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Man Vs Machine. Father Vs Son. (Rage of Ultron Review)


Writer: Rick Remender

Artist: Jerome Opeña, Pepe Larraz

Inker: Mark Morales

Color Artist: Dean White, Rachelle Rosenburg, Dono Sanchez Almara

Letters: VC’s Clayton Cowles

Publisher: Marvel

Some sentient murder robot children just want their parent’s love. Releasing a couple of months just before the character’s cinematic debut, Remender gives comic readers a chance to catch up with Marvel’s homicidal A.I. just before Spader brings the robot to life on the big screen. Rage of Ultron sees the return of Hank Pym’s most dangerous creation come back to get revenge on the Avengers who defeated him years ago. Spoilers Ahead.

After Ultron’s old man gave him the time out to end all time outs by blasting him into space, you would think the robot would have learned his lesson. Turns out he didn’t. Must get that stubbornness from his dad. I really enjoyed Remender taking a few pages in the beginning to give new readers a small background on Ultron, as well as how much of a threat he was that they had to launch him into space in a specially built ship.

With a significant amount of time passed, the Avengers (all but one Hank Pym) consider Ultron a problem of the past. Things change when Thanos’ good brother, Starfox, finds that Ultron has landed on his world’s doorstep and is now becoming one with the planet and inhabitants. They grow up so fast. Now Starfox must call upon the aid of this new team of Avengers (with one of the coolest rosters), to save his world and theirs.

Finishing this read, it’s wild to think that this story didn’t go on as a six-issue event at the least. Despite it being a fairly short read, Remender crafter a fast-paced, high stakes story that had a lot to offer. The biggest standout to this read was obviously the focus on Hank Pym as well as his relationship to his son Ultron, along with his peers’ perceptions of him. Aside from hearing about the shocking canon of Hank’s character and his awful treatment to then-wife Janet (Wasp), my only other view of the character has been through the movie Ant-Man. Hank hadn’t really shown up anywhere in the comics or events I was reading.

Rage of Ultron was a crazy interesting exploration of Hank’s frame of mind. If Ultron isn’t the one pointing it out Hank, very self-aware, calls himself out for his past insecurities and the mistakes he has made for it. Despite his awareness of his flaws, you saw this character still struggle with them through this story whether that be emotionally detaching himself to moments of morality the Avengers strive to be above in killing, or continuing to be suspicious of how others see him among the team. Remender’s story here shined an incredible light on the complexities of one of Marvel’s oldest heroes (as well as a founding Avenger) and as Janet states towards the end, is someone who strove to be a hero for others despite this.

Complimenting this awesome story, the art Opeña, Larraz and Morales deliver some of the highest quality art I have seen from a Marvel event that tends to get a little extra love from talented artists. This one, however, stands above the rest from what I have read with its incredible detail and sharpness of features on the characters and environments. The art is further elevated with amazing colors given to each panel. This event is pretty dark with a whole planet being turned into machines, yet Rosenburg, White, and Almara provide a wide variety of colors. There isn’t a panel on here that obscures the characters or world we are reading, instead, every moment stands out while not losing the catastrophic tone that Ultron brings.

If Remender’s prime directive was to assimilate me into one of his coolest stories, then consider me uploaded to the mainframe. A fast-paced read full of action against a threat that establishes themselves as one of the Avengers’ biggest challenges, as well as some serious breakdown and analyzation of the Avenger responsible. A must for those that are interested in the Ultron character or those looking for a quick and entertaining Avengers story.

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