Appearing in "A Robinson Crusoe in the Negative Zone"
Synopsis for "A Robinson Crusoe in the Negative Zone"
Continued from last issue...
Reed Richards has been cast into the Negative Zone after being beaten in combat against his Counter-Earth doppleganger the Brute, who switched their costumes in an bid to usurp his position as leader of the Fantastic Four. With his powers gone Reed fears for his survival, even as he is being attacked by creatures native to the Negative Zone. However with his military honed fighting skills Reed manages to fight them off taking a pause to rest on an asteroid in order to determine how to get out of his current predicament.
Back on Earth, the Brute tries to pose as Reed Richards when he's intruded upon when the other Fantastic Four members, Tigra, Thundra and Impossible Man arrive for a meeting. Between Thundra's unappreciated advances on Ben, Johnny ineffectual advances on Tigra, and Impossible Man's immature bantering causes the Brute to lose his temper. However, he passes it off as fatigue and his "loss of powers" and dismesses the rest of the team, deciding to take advantage of the fact that he is on a world where Susan Storm is not only not in a coma like her Counter-Earth counterpart, but also married to Reed Richards as well.
While the other Fantastic Four members try to relax by watching TV. Ben gets annoyed by Thundra's continued advances and decides to skip out and go for a walk and thing on his own, however his solitude is interrupted by Tigra who decides to zip in and include herself wherever Ben is going. While the two go out for a bite to eat, Reed Richards manages to start a fire in the Negative Zone, attracting a bat like creature that makes a tough meal to eat. Back on Earth, Tigra and Thing's dinner is interrupted when they spot a robot rampaging on the streets with an apparently stolen bank vault. The two battle it across the city smashing it into New York Harbour when their fight takes them to a garbage scow.
While back at the Baxter Building, Susan Richards wakes up from her bed with troubled thoughts: She isn't sure that the man she is sharing her bed with is really her husband and begins to suspect that he might be the evil Reed Richards from Counter-Earth. While in the Negative Zone, Reed Richards are thoughts are similar, wondering how long it will take for his wife to realize something is wrong. His thought are interrupted when he is suddenly approached by the Negative Zone's ruler Annihilus.
This story is continued in Fantastic Four #181...
- Reed refers to himself as a World War II veteran. In Fantastic Four #11 it was first stated that Reed fought in World War II. This has been retconned out of Reed Richard's history per the Sliding Timescale of Earth-616, as Reed fighting in World War II would drastically age the character. Any reference to Reed being in the military should be generalized.
- Reed lost his powers last issue, a natural progression since he first discovered it in Fantastic Four #157. His powers are eventually restored in Fantastic Four #197.
- The Counter-Earth Reed Richards refers to his version of Sue is in a coma. This happened in Warlock #6 during a similar space flight that created the Fantastic Four on Earth.
- Annihilus was last seen in Captain Marvel #37 where he was easily defeated by Rick Jones in the Negative Zone.
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