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Age of Ultron #6: Review

Apr 2013
Brian Michael Bendis, Carlos Pacheco

Story Name:

(no title given)

Review & Comments

4.5 stars

Age of Ultron #6 Review by (April 22, 2013)
In fiction there are 3 different results of going back to change the past:- 1) You do something which actually happened in the past anyway, changing nothing. Or 2) you change the 'actual' present. Or 3) you create a new alternate timeline. Future previews suggest we have a type 3 scenario. Logan and Sue will return to an alternate present in which there was no Ultron attack and so of course that timeline's duo are still there because they never went back in time. The cover of #9 tells me that the alternate Wolverine kills the returnee. My prediction is that the alternate Wolverine goes back in time to kill this issue's Wolverine before he kills Pym. And then Ultron is later defeated some other way. But significantly I predict that our Wolverine doesn't get killed until *after* he's met the Brood in W&XM#27AU. Thus the timeline that results with Ultron *and* evolved Brood is a type 1 situation. Ie it's the reality 'our' Wolverine came from! Wolvie went back and changed the Brood - something that already 'happened' in his timeline. But then was stopped from killing Pym - something that would have changed the situation to type 3, and created the timeline in the next issue.

There's just 1 tie-in this week:- Wolverine & X-Men #27AU tells how Logan and Sue have to stop at a small SHIELD base to get a replacement energy cell for the flying car. They sneak in, and Logan will look for the e-cell why Sue tries to find out where exactly Hank Pym will be. She warns Wolvie not to cause unnecessary changes to the timeline. Sue finds that SHIELD has all the heroes under surveillance. Panels from the original issues confirm this is concurrent with Av#41, and FF(1961)#65. Meanwhile Wolverine can't stop himself from freeing a captive alien creature. But it then attacks him and he kills it. He then discovers that it is a soft-skinned version of the Brood, and its also-captive Queen adapts to produce the more toothy and armour-plated version we know and love. And Logan realises he's just created one of the X-Men's worst enemies!

The art team was split between the past and future plotlines. Carlos Pacheco, Roger Martinez and Jose Villarubia handled the past, Brandon Peterson and Paul Mounts did the future scenes. Dr Doom's platform has in other comics been able to move people in space as well as time. In it's 1st appearance in Fantastic Four (1961) #5 it transported the FF from Doom's American castle back in time to a Caribbean pirate island. And in Avengers (1963) #56 it took the Avengers from the castle to the WWII island where Bucky 'died'. Nick Fury said last issue that he built the Savage Land base after Secret Invasion. Obviously he just can't stop spreading disinformation (lies). The future Savage Land isn't devastated like the present one is in this series. Maybe Ultron ignored it after his initial foray, and the lush vegetation grew back. Henry Pym studying Dragon Man places the past events during Av(1963)#41. Pym is in his Goliath identity then, since his return to active duty in Av(1963)#28. Wolverine's 1st appearance wouldn't be until 7 years later. And no later Logan flashbacks involve Pym, or even any other Avengers except for meeting Captain America in WWII, and coming to the attention of Tony Stark in the early history of SHIELD in the 1994 Fury 1-shot. So Pym has *no* idea who Logan is.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Age of Ultron #6 Synopsis by Rob Johnson
Last issue Nick Fury led a band of heroes through Dr Doom's time platform to the future to stop Ultron's takeover of the world of the present. But among those left behind, Wolverine was determined to use the time machine in a different way, to go back in time to stop Henry Pym from inventing Ultron in the 1st place. This issue follows both plotlines.

Fury had Doom's time machine in his secret base in the Savage Land, so Wolverine winds up in the Savage Land in the past. But he's not alone. Invisible Woman has slipped out of the future-bound team to join him. She'd figured he'd try something like this, and she's here to be his conscience.

They both know he intends (or at least is perfectly willing) to kill Pym to stop Ultron. Wolvie asks Susan if she'd kill to save her children, because he's willing to kill to save billions of people in the ravaged world they've left. (Sue already left her kids in space and saw the rest of the Fantastic Four killed by Utron drones in Fantastic Four #5AU.)

Before she can fully answer, Sue has to hide them in her invisibility shield as a much earlier version of Nick Fury arrives at his base in a flying car. While he's in the base our duo 'borrow' the vehicle and head for New York and Henry Pym.

'Meanwhile' the future squad find themselves in the future Savage Land, minus Invisible Woman. Fury sends Quicksilver ahead to scout out New York. Storm will use her wind power to carry the rest of them there more slowly. He tells Quake to be ready to destroy any Ultron robots that meet them. And Red Hulk smash any she misses. Then he devolves tactical command to Captain America. (The other 2 in this team are Iron Man (in old armour that Ultron can't infiltrate) and Black Widow. Widow and Fury have big guns.)

Wolvie and Susie arrive in old New York where Hank Pym is studying the comatose Dragon Man android. He accepts that Dragon Man is a wonderful creation, but its artificial intelligence is stuck at child-level. He dreams of designing the first AI that could learn to be better than human.

Pym has a rosy view of such an AI. He believes that machine intelligence would help the human race to make a better world. He also looks forward to the 'singularity', where men and machines will merge to produce a better species. (Apparently, despite inventing Iron Man's metal armour, Tony Stark didn't think the singularity would be such a good thing. But then maybe he valued his playboy pleasures too much.)

Henry also has a more selfish motive. Like Stark and the secrets of Iron Man's armour, he won't make his size-changing Pym particles public because they would be too dangerous in the wrong hands. But such is his faith in the benevolence of AI's that he has no qualms about making loads of money from it.

Wolverine enters the lab just as Pym gets the idea that would result in Ultron. Henry doesn't know who Wolvie is, and Logan doesn't properly explain what Pym will do that causes the problem. He just says that he's from the future, whose destruction Pym is responsible for. And he can't trust Pym not to mess up. So he's got to kill him. So of course Hank changes to Goliath to stop him.

As the future team head towards New York (rejoined by Quicksilver), they see that the whole Eastern Seaboard has been transmuted into a lifeless robot metropolis. Suddenly they are surrounded by attacking Ultron heads. Quake does her thing, but there are too many, and soon everyone's in on the act. But it's not enough, and the overwhelmed heroes start to fall, including Cap getting his head blown off.

Back in the deep past, even Goliath's strength is no match for Wolverine's adamantium skeleton and claws. Logan has the wounded giant at his mercy. Before the final blow he tells Pym that he did a lot of good in the future world too, but he still must die. But Invisible Woman's force field stays his hand.

Hank of course recognises Susan, and begs her to help. Even as Logan reminds her of what she has lost, and what the world has lost. Pym still can't understand what's happening, but he sees Sue's face fall. And she turns away as Wolverine slashes his throat.

Then the duo prepare to return to the future. Which can't be worse than the one they left!

Carlos Pacheco
Brandon Peterson
Paul Mounts
Brandon Peterson (Cover Penciler)
Brandon Peterson (Cover Inker)
Paul Mounts (Cover Colorist)
Letterer: Cory Petit.
Editor: Lauren Sankovitch.


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Black Widow
Black Widow

(Natasha Romanoff)
Captain America
Captain America

(Steve Rogers)
Invisible Woman
Invisible Woman

(Sue Storm)
Iron Man
Iron Man

(Tony Stark)

(Pietro Maximoff)
Red Hulk
Red Hulk

(Thunderbolt Ross)

(Ororo Munroe)

(James Howlett)

Plus: Goliath (Hank Pym), Quake (Daisy Johnson).

> Age of Ultron: Book info and issue index

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