In 2000, Marvel Comics launched the Ultimate line, a more modern take on their decades-old characters that sought to revitalize the company. And for a time, it did: most of the Marvel Cinematic Universe pulls as much, if not more from the Ultimate line than anywhere else in the company's history, down to Samuel L. Jackson having been drawn into the Avengers books, then showing up on screen IRL.
And now, based on a teaser from the publisher, it looks like things are about to come to an end.
Though characters like Miles Morales - a new, mixed race Spider-Man - have made headlines, the books themselves haven't been selling as well as their regular universe counterparts in recent years, and rumors that Marvel would cancel the line have abounded.
And in 2015, the publisher is launching "Secret Wars," a reboot of the classic 1984 series that looks to bring multiple alternate universes together in one giant battle royale. Given the inclusion of Morales in the "Secret Wars" promo art, it looks like the Ultimate Universe will be part of that battle - so will it not make it out the other end alive?
If we were to do a super nerdy deep dive, we'd point out that the design of this Ultimate Universe teaser mirrors the look of an "incursion," a plot point that's been running through the current "Avengers" comics which finds alternate Earths encroaching on each other, with only one surviving the encounter. So there's also that.
Whether this is, in fact, the end of the Ultimate Universe, or a new beginning, we'll have to wait and see. Stay tuned for more from MTV News on this as it breaks.