Towards the end of 2019, Marvel Comics announced a partnership with Tsuburaya to publish new Ultraman comics for U.S. audiences. Now, at today’s “Next Big Thing” panel at C2E2, Marvel editor-in-chief C.B. Cebulski revealed new details about the publisher’s plans for Ultraman, including the creative team who will be working on the character. The Rise of Ultraman will be Marvel’s first series starring the iconic Japanese character. It will be written by Kyle Higgins and Mat Groom, and illustrated by Francesco Manna. The series will focus on the first generation of Ultraman.
In a statement, Higgins and Groom discussed their history with Ultraman, and their excitement at working with the classic character:
“A few years ago, thanks to my time on Power Rangers, I was able to discover and learn more about Tokusatsu. With its wildly different conventions and inspirations, Tokusatsu — and Ultraman in particular — has been a huge source of joy for me,” said Higgins. “It’s a genre so ripe with possibilities, even down to what we conceive of in the structure of super hero storytelling. It’s both an honor and a privilege to bring Ultraman to Marvel.”
“Monsters in fiction have been embodying all that is dark and scary in our world for as long as we’ve been telling stories. But I don’t think anybody understood the immense scale of our most pressing problems quite like Eiji Tsuburaya,” shared Groom. “He imagined the darkness looming overhead as tall as skyscrapers— alien and unknowable and ANGRY. But he also imagined us being able to stand up to those monsters, by rising above our worst impulses and embracing a nobler way of being. He imagined ULTRAMAN. What does that mean in this complex, contradictory world of lies? We’re going to find out…”
No plot details have yet been revealed about The Rise of Ultraman, but with that title and its focus on the original iteration of the character it seems likely that the series will feature an origin story for the character and his lineage. The two preview images released along with the statement did not include artist credits, but from the signature the artist appears to be Ed McGuinness, though I’m unsure of the colorist.
The Rise of Ultraman is set to debut later in 2020.