Doom exposed. A line is blurred. But Marvel’s first family proves that even the impossible is nothing when you’ve got your family.
It took until this issue for me to really appreciate this arc of Fantastic Four‘s relaunch. That’s not to say it was a slow burn. Not at all. The ideas have been big, and the pace has been lightspeed. But this is certainly an issue where everything just clicks perfectly.
The concept of family, any fan and good writer should know, is what drives these characters. In this issue Slott and the art team capture that so sublimely that you’d have to be a Doom-bot not to enjoy every ounce of it.
It’s an adventure on the scale of a Grant Morrison JLA epic that shines more so on the human moments but is no less Fantastic for any of it.
Every character gets a character moment. Every big scene feels like a blockbuster. The laughs and the banter, the wit, it’s there. The sci-fi too, without being too brain scrambling.
The last issue was just off the mark for me, but this issue reined it in so perfectly that I have to go back and read the entire arc again because I have the feeling that I was at fault.
The eclectic gathering of artists (albeit big name ones) didn’t work for me last issue but here they achieve everything a stellar art team should. I’d still rather see any one of Aaron Kuder, Stefano Caselli, or Paco Medina draw an arc in its entirety, but it comes across far more congruent and seamless than issue #8.
Kuder’s interpretation of the FF is why his name on this book appeals so much. His layouts are super creative too. Stefano Caselli’s art continues to evolve itself and here reminded me a little of some great work that Alan Davies has done on these fantastic folks.
The color work by Erick Arciniega and the letters by Joe Caramagna really bring prestige and boundless energy into this book. It visually feels like it’s the world’s greatest comic magazine.
There’s nothing wrong with a creative team whose intention for a book is to write a love letter to beloved and iconic figures. Sometimes tipping your hat to the familiar freshens things up and reminds readers why characters like the FF have endured for so long.
When a book like this gives you Reed, Sue, Ben, and Johnny at their best, Doom at his worst, Galactus, Valeria, Franklin, Alicia, Wyatt Wingfoot, and even Aunt Petunia there’s not much more you could ask for.
(Well… Namor, Silver Surfer, and the Mole Man would really be the icing.)
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