Base of Operations
The Ultimates #1
The Hulk's true identity was concealed from the public, and the Ultimates became beloved national heroes. The group soon expanded intelligence veterans Hawkeye and Black Widow and mutant ex-terrorists Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch were promoted from the black ops division to the core team. Meanwhile, Hank Pym nearly killed his wife during a violent domestic dispute and was himself beaten into a traction by Captain America, who later becan dating the Wasp. Pym's former assistant Dr. Eamonn Brankin became the new scientific head of the program. Despite losing Giant-Man, the Ultimates saved the world from a Chitauri plot with the unwitting aid of the Hulk and became bigger icons than ever. They went on to apprenhend Kraven, Electro, Luther Manning, the X-Men, and Norman Osborn's "Six". Later allied with the European Super-Solider Initiative, the Ultimates became more controversial as they began operating in foreign territory, notably the Middle East. Thor quit, and a traitor within the group outed Branner as the Hulk. Seemingly executed for the Hulk'crimes, Banner secretly survived with the aid of Hank Pym, who was soon fired form the Ultimates altogether. Meanwhile, apparently exposed as a madman, Thor was brutally arrested by the team. The global community grew wary as the Ultimates developed many more superagents as their reserves, and anti-Ultimates sentiment accelerated when the team stripped a small "rogue" Middle Eastern nation of its nuclear capability. The traitor within the Ultimates responded by murdering Hawkeye's family, framed Captain America for the crime, and helping a foreign super-army invade America. Assisted by Hank Pym, this foreign force destroyed the Triskelion and occupied major American cities, slaughtering the reserves and capturing the remaining Ultimates in the process.The Ultimates managed to defeat the Liberators, with the help of Thor and Odin. But after the battle, the members decided that they no longer wanted to be used for government services, after seeing what an impact they had on the residents of the countries they attacked. They decided to operate independently, financed by Tony Stark, without any help from S.H.I.E.L.D.