The All-New Marvel: ‘Fantastic Four’

The All-New Marvel provides an overview of the new series coming from Marvel Comics’ All-New Marvel NOW! banner and the impact they have on the classic and new characters we love (and those we love to hate). With each installment of The All-New Marvel, we see what our favorite characters are up to and where they are headed in the future.


Perhaps one of the best-known groups in the world, this band of four fantastic heroes protects New York City, the world, and our dimension from threats the likes of which not even they understand. At the expense of their own privacy, the Richards/Storm clan has allowed themselves to be the focus of praise and scorn for most of their professional lives, allowing the world to see just who they are at their best and worst moments. Even though they have the best of intentions, there are times their work has spilled out into the streets of NYC, creating panic and confusion for the masses, but they continue to strive to be the guardians of Earth. They’re not just a team or a family, they’re the Fantastic Four.

MINOR SPOILERS BELOW

Covering Issues #1-7

The Fantastic Four is a group I came late to enjoying, and even then there are only certain aspects of the characters that I enjoy. Throughout their time, there are constant themes—trying to cure Ben Grimm of his condition, Johnny Storm having relationship issues, Reed Richards paying too much attention to his work instead of his relationship with his family and friends—and while some of the way these themes are portrayed have changed over time, there are still quite a few variables that are exactly the same. It doesn’t make for good storytelling to keep the same situation constant without growth; it creates stagnation and loses my interest.

The one thing that has changed, however, is the relationship that the FF has with the world, be it fellow superheroes or the governments of the planet. For a long time, the team was not held accountable for their actions, but, relatively recently, they’ve become the subject of proving that even the most popular of heroes has to be responsible for their decisions regardless of the outcome. By reasons unknown, extra-dimensional powers forced their way through the Baxter Building’s boundaries and spread out into NYC, terrorizing the population, and while the FF—and others—stopped the spread of the menace, they are still responsible for letting it come about.

A bit of a downside to the storyline thus far is how the government has taken away the children of the Future Foundation, including the Richards’ own son and daughter. I understand that they did it out of concern for the safety and well-being of the children, but it was still a heartbreaking thing to read. Sue’s reaction was completely understandable, and it really went a long way to show that she is not someone to be messed with; many people think that she is not a powerhouse character, but trust me when I say that no one should take on Sue unless they’re in desperate need of having their rear kicked.

I’m also not too keen on the costume redesign yet again; this team has had more redesigns than the X-Men, with light blue, dark blue, black, white, and now red. I’m not sure what’s going to happen in the future of the title—especially with the bomb dropped in Issue # 7’s ending—but I can say that it had better be spectacular to keep me interested, because I’m fast losing any real desire to pick this up when it comes out. Wow me, James Robinson; I want to keep this on my pull list.

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