Ultraverse

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The Ultraverse was the name given to a comic book imprint published by the American company Malibu Comics. The Ultraverse was a shared universe in which a variety of characters — known within the comics as "Ultras" — acquired super-human abilities.

History[edit]

The Ultraverse line was launched by Malibu Comics during the "comics boom" of the early 1990s. Following the success of Image Comics and Valiant Comics (a model the Ultraverse line aimed to imitate), a number of new superhero comic lines were launched, including Milestone from DC and Comics Greatest World from Dark Horse.

Following the Valiant Comics formula closely, Ultraverse emphasized tight continuity between the various series in their line; Malibu made extensive use of crossovers, in which a story that began in one series would be continued in the next-shipping issue of another series. Various promotions for special editions or limited-print stories also encouraged readers to sample issues of the entire line. Some fans complained of the effort and cost of buying the issues necessary to keep track of it all. Regardless, the Ultraverse line came to dominate Malibu's catalog.

As American comics sales declined in the mid-1990s, Malibu canceled lower-selling series. The company was purchased by Marvel Comics in 1994. Reportedly[citation needed] Marvel made the purchase to acquire Malibu's then-groundbreaking in-house coloring studio. Marvel canceled the entire Ultraverse line, but (during the controversial Black September event) re-launched a handful of the more popular titles as well as a number of crossovers with Marvel characters. The initial move was foreseen with popular franchises and characters from the Avengers guest-starring in their books. The "volume 2" series each started with "#" (infinity) issues and were canceled a short time later. Within the Marvel Comics multiverse, the Malibu Universe is designated as Earth-93060[volume & issue needed].

Several characters from the series Ultraforce were featured in a short-lived animated series by the same name.

Titles[edit]

Malibu's Ultraverse titles included:

Black September[edit]

When Malibu was bought out by Marvel Comics, the entire Ultraverse line was cancelled and restarted, with only a few of the more popular series being rebooted and relaunched, sometimes in radically altered form. The history and continuity of the Ultraverse was retconned in numerous ways, and a number of characters simply ceased to exist (or in the new continuity, to have ever existed). This now-modified Ultraverse lasted less than a year and a half before being cancelled once again.

The event connects issues that were part of the countdown to Black September — Ultraforce #8-10, Ultraforce/Avengers Prelude, Avengers/Ultraforce, Ultraforce/Avengers — after which all the surviving Ultraverse titles restarted with a special "∞"-numbered issue.

Revival[edit]

In June 2005, when asked by Newsarama whether Marvel had any plans to revive the Ultraverse, Marvel editor-in-chief Joe Quesada replied that:

Characters[edit]

Crossovers with Marvel Comics[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]