CCI: The Ultimate Universe Must DIe!

CBR's live coverage of Comic-Con International in San Diego continues with Saturday evening's Marvel Ultimate Universe panel. Refresh your browser regularly between 6-7 PST for the latest updates.

Joe Quesada moderates a panel that includes Jim McCann, Jeph Loeb, Joe Pokaski, Aron Coleite, and Dan Buckley.

"We're going to be discussing basically the end of the Ultimate Universe," Quesada opened. He then showed the trailer for "The Stand," which Quesada admitted was off topic out thought was well worth showing. "The Stand" and "Dark Tower 3" will be available at midnight openings on September 10.

"Before you can end something you have to know how it began," McCann said of "Ultimate Origins." He also praised Brian Michael Bendis and Stuart Immonen's "Ultimate Spider-Man."

"At the end of 'Ultimate Power," Zarda, the Princess of Power came over into the Ultimate Universe," Loeb said, "and people have been wondering where she's been. She's been with a big naked Hulk." The slide showed just this, though less sexy than what Loeb seemed to be describing. "Ultimate Hulk" Annual, featuring this cover, will feature art by Ed McGuinness and Marko Djurdjevic.

McCann then showed previously-unseen art from "Ultimatum," and followed up with an announcement that Mark Millar would be returning to the Ultimate universe.

Loeb announced that Joe Pokaski would be writing the final issues of "Ultimate Fantastic Four." He said Coleite's "Ultimate X-Men" would tie in to "Ultimatum," but did not indicate that this series was ending.

Frank Cho has signed an exclusive contract with Marvel and will be working in the Ultimate universe. "I know there will be some form of 'Ultimates' coming out after 'Ultimatum,' and Frank and I will be working on it," Loeb said. "And just to watch Brian Michael Bendis's head explode, we're thinking of calling it 'New Ultimates' or 'Mighty Ultimates.'"

Quesada then opened the floor to questions, and McCann presented limited-edition Stark Industries flash drives that would go to fans who ask the best questions.

An early contender for the flash drive ruined his chances by attempting to pitch an "Ultimate Ghost Rider" concept. "We are looking at an Ultimate Ghost Rider," Loeb admitted, though nothing has been finalized.

Quesada ducked under the podium when a woman asked about the conclusion for "Ultimate Wolverine/Hulk." Loeb handed the woman the prized flash drive, as writer Damen Lindeloff then joined the panel and apologized for the lateness. "I will be sitting in the hall eating shit right after the panel." He then handed Quesada the script for issue six.

Asked about villain deaths in "Ultimate Spider-Man," Buckley said that, "They're all going to stay alive. I'm ruining Brian's stories and I'm going to make sure they stay alive."

Will we see Ultimate Deadpool again? Loeb said yes, in "Ultimate X-Men," which seemed to surprise Coleite. "Just vamp," Loeb prompted. "Oh yeah, Ultimate Deadpool, right now!" Coleite said.

"There are big plans for Carol Danvers," Loeb said, though he would not confirm whether she would become Ultimate Ms. Marvel.

Cho will be doing the Red Hulk half of "Hulk" #7-9, while Art Adams would illustrate the Green Hulk half, Loeb said in response to praise of that title.

A fan asked to read Lindelof's "Ultimate Hulk/Wolverine" script, which Quesada declined. McCann told the Editor-in-Chief to read the title of the script. "The title is 'Issue 6: the One that Took Two Years to Bleepin' Write," Quesada read. "We're gonna print that!" McCann added.

Fans got testy when one man asked about future Marvel DVDs, after it had already been established these panelists wouldn't know. One fan shouted him down, and the panel then mocked the rude attendee. "Reginald Hudlin announced that there will be a 'Black Panther' animated series on BET," Hudlin said. "That will be violent, so we're not that soft," addressing the original questioner's accusation that Marvel's DVDs were a bit fluffy.

The last flash drive went to a fan who mentioned that the "Ultimates" helped him get his mom to read comics. "Mention your mom, win a prize," McCann laughed. His question was about a connection between the Ultimate Scarlet Witch and the regular 616 version. Loeb said there was no relation. "Ultimatum is not an Ultimate version of any Marvel story you've seen before," McCann added.

Coleite said he will write "Ultimate X-Men" up to issue #100.

"The 'Ultimate Spider-Man' Annual pushes a line that--it's very controversial," McCann said in response to a question about whether there was ever an Ultimate pitch that was too risky to publish.

Buckley gave an unequivocal "no" on the possibility of "Ultimate Spider-Man's" cancellation.

"Banshee, most people know it as a drug, but we'll see it as something different in 'Ultimate X-Men' #97," Coleite said about the possibility of an Ultimate Banshee character. In the current arc, Banshee is a performance-enhancing drug.

Lightning round:

Ultimate She-Hulk? "Maybe. You're going to see something soon that will make you very happy," Loeb said.

Marvel Apes in Ultimate U? "If you love Marvel Apes, there will be Marvel Apes vs. Marvel Zombies," Buckley said.

Jessica Jones? "Brian [MB] is watching this now through live blog, so everybody who's liveblogging this say Jessica Jones is now Ultimate Beyonder, and watch his head explode via text message" McCann said.

Now discuss this story on CBR's Ultimate Universe forum.

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