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Hey fellow superhero comic book geeks and Ultraverse fans! Welcome back to my continuing retrospective of the Ultraverse through the Prototype series of comic books published by Malibu Comics. Last time around, Jimmy Ruiz (Prototype) was not prominent as the comic book focused more on Ranger (the previous Prototype piloy Bob Campbell actually) who took on a group of terrorists with some help.
As such, we can see what happens next with this look back at Prototype #11, published in 1994 by Malibu Comics with a story by Tom Mason and Len Strazewski and art by Roger Robinson.
The story begins with Glare, an old nemesis of Prototype. As it turns out, he was revived by some scientists in a high-tech facility of the sinister group Aladdin. The green-skinned Glare breaks free from the restraints and starts causing some damage. He is driven by revenge against Stanley Leland, Ultratech and Ranger (Bob Campbell).
Meanwhile on the street of New York, Jimmy Ruiz (Prototype) and Bob Campbell are together. Jimmy, who is not even using the powered suit of armor, released a lot of energy while floating off the surface causing a major public disturbance. Afterwards, Bob decides to help his Prototype successor…
Let me start by confirming that the storytelling is very good. In fact, the high quality of writing was maintained and judging from the presentation of having Jimmy Ruiz and Bob Campbell together in a full issue (note: they got together only in the late stages of issue #10), it seems that Tom Mason and Len Strazewski had things planned out in an organized fashion. The result is having the two Prototype pilots not only together but getting involved (in a pretty believable way) in response to a rising danger. To make things clearer, this is NOT the anticipated superheroes-set-aside-their-differences-to-work-together-to-solve-the-problem type of story.
Bob Campbell still got plenty of the spotlight as Ranger and his battle with Glare is a lot of fun to read. Jimmy Ruiz meanwhile is developed even further. I also like the scenes that emphasized the difference between being an ultra and a tool of Ultratech which affects Jimmy.
Prototype #11 is another enjoyable and compelling Ultraverse comic book to read. Its own story is indeed special and worthy of being an Ultraverse 1st birthday issue (as marked on the cover). Clearly this comic book marked a bold new direction of storytelling just as the two Prototype pilots are finally together.
If you are seriously planning to buy an existing hard copy of Prototype #11 (1994), be aware that as of this writing, MileHighComics.com shows that the near-mint copy of the comic book costs $8.
Overall, Prototype #11 (1994) is highly recommended!
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