Tag Archives: Solution

Rune 0 sendaway


They sure did love their coupons in the Ultraverse. One of the cooler sendaway deals was for Rune 0 (a copy of Solution 0 exclusive to this deal was also thrown in).

You needed 11 coupons (click on the pages below to read the instructions) although you could photocopy the coupons and there was a “wild coupon” in Ultra Monthly No. 4.


I also have a poster that might have come with this. I have to confess I did not send in any coupons; I picked up my copies on eBay a couple of years ago. They’re usually fairly cheap. You can check eBay just about any time and there will be 10 or so copies of Rune 0 along with six or seven copies of Solution 0 (I guess Rune was the bigger name).

UV Creators: James Hudnall

James Hudnall was the writer for two of the cornerstone titles of the original Ultraverse, Hardcase and The Solution. He’s still writing comics today along with political blogging and a number of other endeavors; you can keep up with him on his web site.

He took some time this week to answer a few questions about his time working on the Ultraverse.

How did you come to work on the Ultraverse?

I was between projects, looking for work and I heard at a convention from some friends that Malibu was looking to start something and they needed creators with some name cache, so I talked to Tom Mason and Chris Ulm at the con, then Dave Olbrich and agreed to talk to them some more at their office. It snowballed from there. They were flush with money from Image which started out with them, and they wanted to create a new universe with established comics creators that could be a new DC/Marvel if things worked out. The industry was still doing really well at that point.

Unfortunately, everyone else had the same idea. There were tons of these new companies from Valiant, Milestone, Defiant, etc. Not to mention Image, which was the hottest new company. Competition was fierce.

What is your best memory from working on the Ultraverse?

The friendships made and the fun times at the conferences we had. They were great times. Also being able to produce regular comics and get paid well. That’s always enjoyable. I miss those days.

Did you keep a favorite souvenir or collectible from your time working on those books?

I kept as much as I could. I still have boxes of some of my books in storage. My favorite are the NME and Hardcase toy figurines which I have somewhere.

How do you feel about Hardcase being basically erased from the Ultraverse in the Black September storyline?

Fine. Better that than they ruin him more than they had. Nothing that happened when the original creators left is real. Just consider that stuff bogus because it was. Marvel wanted to put in “hot” creators who frankly had no interest in doing anything good. It showed.

What are you up to these days?

I have comics projects I want to do and have artists but it’s a very tough time to do books. Waiting to see if I can get financing to do them myself. I am also a web developer.

Any chance we’ll see books like Hardcase or the Solution in print again?

It’s not up to me. I would love to revisit them with what I know now, and make them work a lot better. But I seriously doubt that will happen. Marvel seems extremely disinterested in the Ultraverse. There are legal obligations they have to follow if they use them which means paying us founders some royalties. They seem to be dead opposed to that. Sorry.

Solution 5 variant

As far as I know, this was the only variant cover for the Solution. Of these two, the one on the right is far tougher to find. I’ve only come across a couple although that doesn’t mean that there isn’t a big box of these stuck in someone’s garage.


The one on the left is everywhere. If you’re going to buy it you’re better off waiting for a complete run of Solution books; these are often just a few bucks on eBay. The one on the right will require some digging. I bought mine for a couple of bucks from Joe Koch’s web site, but I’m not sure if he has any more.

Ultra 5000s

“Ultra 5000” sounds like an exclusive item. And back in the mid-1990s, a print run like that sounded pretty small. These were used as retailer incentives and rewards for fans. There is nothing special to distinguish them beyond the extra foil on the cover. And although a couple can be hard to find (Break-Thru, Ultraverse Origins gatefold and Ultraverse Premiere seem to be less common than the rest) there are usually a bunch of these on eBay or at shops like Mile High or MyComicShop.com. I spend a buck or two on them when I feel like it.

There are 21 of them. With 5,000 of each, that makes 105,000 in all. Doesn’t really sound that exclusive any more.

Edit: I added the Firearm 1 Ultra 5000 to this list on Oct. 5, 2011, since one was spotted on eBay last month. First one I’ve seen. If I ever get one for myself I will add the scan, but you can read about it here.




There were two versions of Ultraverse Origins and each got the Ultra 5,000 treatment. The one on the right is the only newsstand version.






Ultraverse Premiere 1 is the flip book on the other side of Rune 3. There is no foil on the Rune side of the book.



If you’re collecting these, just be patient. One year’s worth of scanning eBay and you will see 90 percent of them at a good price. You could also try the Dead Universes section over at Valiantfans.com. Some of those fellows might swing a trade.

Here’s the Ultra 5,000 checklist:

BreakThru 1
Exiles 1
Firearm 1
Freex 1
Hardcase 1
Mantra 1
Nightman 1
Prime 1
Protoype 1
Rune 1
Sludge 1
Solitaire 1
Solution 1
Strangers 1
Ultraforce 1
Ultraverse Origins 1 regular cover
Ultraverse Origins 1 gatefold cover
Ultraverse Premiere 0
Ultraverse Premiere 1 (on flipside of Rune 3)
Warstrike 1
Wrath 1