Me and You and ‘Bu

What brought me to this sweet thing we called the Ultraverse?

Mantra #4 cover by Terry Dodson & Al Vey

Mantra #4 cover
by Terry Dodson & Al Vey

My then-girlfriend, Monica.

It was the fall of 1994. We were in both in college in Austin. After a brief two year break-up with comics, I decided to start reading them again.

Only too much was happening. There was a new Green Lantern because the old one went crazy. Bruce Wayne wasn’t Batman but was again. And wasn’t Superman dead? And who the hell are all these X-Men?

I was looking over the Marvel and DC Comics at my local comic store when I heard Monica ask if I’d ever read this book called “Mantra.”

What the hell was Mantra?

She handed me Mantra issue 4.

I stared at the cover. While not dynamic or inventive, there was something intriguing about this jaundiced cyborg cuddling up next to a beautiful masked woman spilling out of her armor. And that color! Who did color like that?

Monica told me she thought we should buy it – and by “we” that meant me.

So I did. And I read it and learned about a single mother named Mantra caught up in an centuries old battle with the evil Boneyard  — only Mantra possessed the body of a goddess inhabited by mind and soul of a man!

Crazy stuff. I was sold.

The next day I returned to the store and picked up issues two and three. And then something called Firearm caught my eye. Then there were these books called Prime and Hardcase.

It was new. It was young. It was dynamic.

It was the Ultraverse. And comics won me back again.

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