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Marvel Database

Fantastic Four Vol 6 1 Human Torch Variant Textless.jpg
Johnny Storm
You want us to use the Pogo Plane?
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Benjamin Grimm (Earth-616).jpg
Ben Grimm
Heck, no. I just git my kicks outta openin' 'n shuttin' cockpit doors. Now git in 'n give yer jaws a rest.
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Appearing in "The Monstrous Mystery of the Nega-Man!"

Featured Characters:

Supporting Characters:


Other Characters:




Synopsis for "The Monstrous Mystery of the Nega-Man!"

As the Fantastic Four watch Richard Janus enter the Negative Zone, Reed recounts how they previously encountered Janus. When Ben and Johnny fail to remember this, Reed begins to tell the tale of their encounter with the Nega-Man...

A short time ago a strange craft landed in New York City, and from it emerged the Nega-Man, who used his powerful Nega-Force blaster to keep the authorities at bay as he broke into a bank with the intention of robbing it. However, the Nega-Man made the unfortunate mistake of attacking the very bank that the Thing and Human Torch were currently doing business. Attacking the two heroes in the safety deposit room, the Nega-Man is able to match the two heroes thanks to his Nega-Powers enhancing his strength and allowing him to harness electricity to incapacitate his two attackers.

Blacking out, Johnny awakens in the Baxter Building where he and Ben compare notes with Reed about their encounter. Suddenly, they receive a video-call from Richard Janus, whom Johnny recognizes as the Nega-Man. Janus is calling Reed for help, and Richards explains to his teammates that Richard is a former classmate of his. Suddenly, Janus cries out for help as some unseen attacker enters the room. Before they can see who it is, the view screen suddenly explodes. Sue enters the room to see what is wrong, and Reed tells her that they are going to pay a visit to Richard in Midvale. Before leaving he then orders Ben and Johnny to patrol the city and keep an eye out for the Nega-Man. As Ben flies off in the Pogo Plane with Johnny not far behind, they are suddenly shocked when they witness objects rising into the air from the streets below....

Ben interrupts Reeds recounting of this adventure to tell him to hurry up and get to the point. Reed tells them the entire episode is just too incredible not to go over every detail and continues his tale..

Ben and Johnny spot the Nega-Man attacking the city and swoop in to stop him. Seeing his foes, the Nega-Man uses his powers to coat the Pogo-Plane in ice, causing it to crash, but the two members of the Fantastic Four manage to escape unharmed. When Johnny searches for the Nega-Man, the only trace he finds is a note demanding that the city give him their treasury or face the wrath of the Nega-Man. As the two regroup, they wonder if Reed and Sue will need help in Midvale.

At that moment, the couple are landing the Fantasti-Car outside the home of Richard Janus, who they see is a man confined to crutches. Reed has Sue turn invisible so that Richard does not see her. While Reed begins to demand answers as to how Janus has been able to tap the power of the Negative Zone, Sue begins to quietly snoop around for clues. When they suddenly hear a craft land outside, Reed hides out and ambushes the Nega-Man as he arrives. During their struggle, Richard manages to pull a gun from a drawer and shoot the man who claims to be his brother. Reed and Sue are shocked when the body of the Nega-Man begins to fade into nothingness.

Richard explains to them that he continued his experiments in negative power after college, ignoring Reed's warnings in regards to the danger. During his experiments he accidentally created a negative duplicate of himself that was pure evil. With the Nega-Man now destroyed, Reed and Sue believed the danger was over. They were wrong....

As Reed concludes his story, he explains that Richard had recently become obsessed with obtaining more Nega-Power and succeeded in using it to cure his damaged legs. They are soon joined by Sue and brought up to speed. When Ben is about ready to charge into the Negative Zone to recover Janus alone, Reed stops him from being to hasty. Suddenly an alarm goes off within the Baxter Building, warning them that something from the Negative Zone found a way to portal to their world. The Fantastic Four are horrified to learn that this foe is none other than Annihilus.

Solicit Synopsis

His name is Janus - and he is the key to the most terrifying menace ever to face the Fantastic Four - and the whole of the human race!


Chronology Notes

Flashbacks in this story affect the chronologies of the following characters:

Mister Fantastic:

Invisible Girl:

Human Torch:


Richard Janus:

Publication Notes

  • Lee, Buscema and Romita credited with "last-minute revisions, deletions, and addenda."
  • This story cannibalizes an unused story drawn by Jack Kirby that was initially rejected by Stan Lee. The story was intended for Fantastic Four #103. Shortly thereafter Jack went on to work for DC Comics. This issue was released (likely intentionally) on the same month as Kirby's first issue of the New Gods over at DC. As the story goes, the story was initially rejected as not being exciting enough. When Stan decided to use the story anyway in order to capitalize on Kirby's work over at DC, he massively re-wrote the story and had both Buscema and Romita add the new story pages. The story became a bit of lore as much of the original tale was lost. However by 2008 much of the unused pages were recovered. Marvel hired Stan Lee and Ron Frenz to complete the missing elements of the story and it was released as close to its original form as possible in Fantastic Four: The Lost Adventure #1. That version of the story has since been delegated to Earth-8466 according to the Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe A-Z #3
  • This issue contains a letters page, Fantastic Four Fan Page. Letters are published from Jim Elston, Steve Smith, Jason Arnowitz, Harri Coloni, and Dave Manners.
  • As seen on page one, this issue is Story#520-Z.

See Also


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