This is the final story arc written by Mark Millar (Brian Michael Bendis of Ultimate Spiderman is taking over for the next volume). Millar starts by providing some further back story to the Xavier/Magneto friendship and subsequent falling out. We gain some insight into the evolution of Magnetos’s goal for mutants, and the development of Xavier’s reaction to that. That, however, is just the prologue to this volume which returns to the Ultimates vs. X-Men plot line of the previous volume. After the conclusion of the “Ultimate War” Professor X places the X-Men under government supervision and they work together (more or less) to try and stop Magneto who is threatening to explode a nuclear device in Florida. We also get some closure on the Wolverine/Cyclops in the Savage Land plot line, with a genuinely surprising twist that left me shocked (but I won’t tell you about because you deserve the chance to be shocked too). I did feel like the wrap up of that subplot was a little neat at the end of the volume, but perhaps we will come back to it in later issues. Overall I was not as impressed with this volume as I have been with earlier Ultimate X-men books. I’m not entirely sure why either, because it did have interesting plot twists, and Millar’s usual high caliber of writing, but I was not as involved in the plot as usual. Still worth reading, and I’m looking forward to the next series which is written by Brian Michael Bendis and looks to be highly Wolverine centric (and crossed-over with Ultimate Spiderman).
Ultimate X-Men, vol. 6: Return of the King
by Mark Millar
Art by Adam Kubert and David Finch
Marvel Comics 2003