There's nothing more satisfying than a great story about people banding together to fight those who oppress them, and that's exactly what we have here. Kitty Pryde, Nick Fury, and Jimmy Hudson lead their teams of mutants to finally gain what they so rightfully deserve in this divided new country, freedom.
The mutants are split into teams here. Jimmy Hudson leads the "Blue team," and we get to meet the Ultimate version of Shola Inkose, a telekinetic. There is a fantastic scene here of Shola using his powers on a group of humvees and he shows he is not a mutant you want to mess with. Bobby Drake leads the "Gold team" and we get our first glimpse at the Ultimate version of Armor. Again, we are treated to a fantastic introduction to this character and a showcase of her powers in this universe.
There's a big turning point in this issue when the mutants realize they do not have the upper-hand. It's a pretty big "holy crap" moment here. This leads to an amazing last page. Aside from the fact it's another "oh crap" moment for the team, Carlo Barberi's art here is breathtaking. I love the perspective here.
Carlo is consistently fantastic throughout this issue. I love his style and how he sets up each page. He keeps it fresh and gives the reader something new and dynamic each panel, page, and issue. In addition, he has a fantastic color artist working on his pencils, Marte Garcia. His colors really make the art on the page pop without being over-the top.
I really like how this story fits into the United We Stand storyline. While ULTIMATES focuses more on Cap and rebuilding the country, X-MEN focuses on just the mutants and their survival. This gives us a bigger and better scope in the world and how the events actually affect the people in the Ultimate universe. I like the fact there's little to no cross-over in this event, as of yet.
Nick Fury didn't really look like Nick Fury to me, in this issue. He didn't look as much like Samuel Jackson as he did in previous incarnations. It's a good thing and a bad thing, I guess. For one, I wasn't reading his dialogue in Sam Jackson's voice, so I didn't feel like the character was yelling at me, for once.
ULTIMATE COMICS X-MEN is epic. This was a fantastic issue and a delightful read. I love how this story line is developing. In issue 17, we get to meet some great 616 characters in this Ultimate universe, and things start to look up for the team, at least for a few moments. Brian Woods writing is fantastic, and he has the perfect creative team backing him.
The only thing that slightly bugged me about this issue was that Nick Fury didn't look too much like the Nick Fury of the past; however, because of this, I wasn't reading his dialogue in Sam Jackson's voice, which was a nice change up.
Overall, I love this issue and I highly recommend it.