Marvel Action Hour: Iron Man #3
Marvel (January, 1995)“Ultimo” (freely adapting the episode “Rejoice! I Am Ultimo, Thy Deliverer” STORY: Ron Friedman TELEPLAY: Ted Pederson & Francis Moss “ADAPTATION”: Eric Fein PENCILER: Dario Carrasco INKER: Andrew Pepoy COLORIST: Sam Parsons LETTERER: Dave Sharpe EDITOR: Tom Daning GROUP EDITOR: Nel Yomtov
After last issue, MODOK and Justin Hammer crashland in the Mojave Desert, where Force Works have been on a mission checking tremors. The two are witness to the awakening of a giant robot declaring “I am Ultimo, thy destroyer!” who then starts destroying. Tony’s party celebrating his being cleared of Hammer’s attempt to frame him (which it appears was not cleared with Mandarin, another change from the episode) is interrupted as the entire team goes to investigate Ultimo. While the robot gains the upper hand, Iron Man’s scanners show how to defeat Ultimo and has Century create a special arrowhead for Hawkeye to use as Iron Man and War Machine open a hole in Ultimo’s chest, destroying the robot from the inside.
What they got right: In the episode Ultimo awakes and starts smashing everything, and THEN Mandarin and MODOK take control of Ultimo. Here the robot itself is bad enough, which is right. Mandarin’s “Legion Of Doom” style team doesn’t have to be a threat in every story.
What they got wrong: So why are they in the story at all? They stay back and watch everything and do nothing. And here’s a rarity, where I think the show did something better. In the show Ultimo’s constant line is, as the episode title says, “Rejoice! I am Ultimo, thy deliverer”, which is a lot creepier I think. It might have been due to what you can get away with in a kids show (although “destroyer” would be allowed even on Saturday mornings, much less syndication) but I think that worked better. Also, 90s art.
Recommendation: A better story than the show…again. Choose this over season one, but you should really check out season 2.