Update, 3/2: Nova rounds out the Ultimate Spider-Man main cast, as revealed Friday on Marvel.com. It'll be an all-new character under the helmet, and not the familiar Richard Rider version of the character.

"When the decision in publishing was for Rich Rider to sacrifice himself [at the climax of The Thanos Imperative] we wanted to respect that," Marvel TV head Jeph Loeb told Marvel.com. "We all know that there are other members of the Nova Corp and this is the story of one such member — Sam Alexander."

Loeb described Sam Alexander as a character with "full-blown attitude," suggesting that he is the "brash and boastful" team member Marvel chief creative officer Joe Quesada spoke of on Tuesday.

"He has very different voice than the rest of the cast," Loeb said to Marvel.com. "He doesn’t quite know the limitations of his powers, so while there’s an irreverence that’s great fun, he’s also got a lot to learn."

Whether or not there's any connection between Sam Alexander and the unidentified Nova Corps member seen in the Loeb-written story in November's Point One anthology is unknown at this point, but since Ultimate Spider-Man's White Tiger debuted in Avengers Academy months before the TV series premiered, there is at least historical precedence.

The Ultimate Spider-Man animated series is scheduled to debut April 1 on Disney XD.


Second update, 3/1: The third supporting cast member of the new Ultimate Spider-Man animated series has been revealed, and it's Luke Cage, also known as Power Man. 

Ultimate Spider-Man comic book writer Brian Michael Bendis also serves as a consulting producer on the show and has written Luke Cage extensively in the past, but says that the character was a part of the show before he was.

"It is fun to write him as a teenager, and I do sort of write him with the knowledge of the man he’s going to become," Bendis said on Marvel.com. "This is the Luke that will eventually become Luke Cage."

According to the article, the classic Luke Cage/Iron Fist dynamic will be in tact on the series, even with younger versions of the characters.

"If there’s anything not broken in comics, it’s the dynamic between Iron Fist and Power Man," Bendis said. "They’re fantastic together. And that dynamic only gets more interesting with the connection of the other three teammates. No matter what happens on the team, these two are good."

One more Ultimate Spider-Man cast member is scheduled to be revealed on Friday.


Update, 3/1: The latest of Spider-Man's "Ultimate Friends" to be revealed is a female version of White Tiger, the same as the one recently introduced in the Avengers Academy comic book series.

Ava Ayala will be part of the main cast of the Ultimate Spider-Man animated series, joining Spidey, Iron Fist and two other yet-to-be-named characters. "We wanted a young female voice on the team and while she is new, White Tiger proved to be the perfect choice," said show creative consultant Paul Dini in a Marvel.com article. "She's tough and smart, and her cat-like reflexes allow her to match Spider-Man leap for leap in agility."

Based on the description of White Tiger in the Marvel.com piece — Dini says "it's important to her that she excels at everything she does, as she plans on leaving the team someday as a full super heroine in her own right" — it looks like she's the "conscientious and an overachiever" character that Marvel chief creative officer Joe Quesada hinted at in a Q&A on Tuesday.

In the comics, Ava Ayala is the sister of original White Tiger, Hector Ayala, and though the Marvel.com article doesn't specifically mention that character, Dini calls Ava "a legacy heroine and the newest in a family of heroes to use the White Tiger name."

The two remaining members of the Ultimate Spider-Man team will be revealed later this week, and, if earlier online reports are accurate, will be Power Man and Nova.


Original story: Ultimate Spider-Man is debuting on Disney XD on April 1, but Peter Parker won't be facing his adventures alone.

As revealed in a Q&A with Marvel chief creative officer Joe Quesada published Tuesday on Marvel.com, Spider-Man will be joined by a team of four S.H.I.E.L.D.-affiliated "likeminded heroes" on the show. Later in the day, the first was revealed: Iron Fist.

"The Ultimate Spider-Man version Iron Fist is definitely a Danny, and not a Daniel, Rand," said Ultimate Spider-Man supervising producer (and veteran comic book artist) Duncan Rouleau in a Marvel.com article. "Danny embraces a go-with-the-flow attitude. Stepping out from the confines of K'un L'un into the madhouse of New York, Danny tends to look at everything with a wide-eyed sense of the new that offers a unique perspective vs. his more jaded fellow trainees."

Another supervising producer, Cort Lane, stated in the piece that the show's depiction of Iron Fist is influenced by the 2006-2009 Immortal Iron Fist series, specifically the run co-written by Ed Brubaker and Matt Fraction.

As far as the other members of the team, Quesada gave these hints: "One has a youthfulness but internal maturity beyond his years; another is conscientious and an overachiever; the third has a tremendous earnestness and sense of responsibility; and the last is brash and boastful," with Iron Fist presumably the "youthfulness but internal maturity." Online reports have stated the four characters to be Iron Fist, Power Man, White Tiger and Nova.

Iron Fist has been seen in preview clips from the series as early as Comic-Con in San Diego last July. The voice actor for Ultimate Spider-Man's Iron Fist is yet to be revealed.

Check back at this space as more characters are revealed throughout the week.

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