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Appearing in ""Trouble Times Two""

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Synopsis for ""Trouble Times Two""

The Fantastic Four are returning from New Salem where they had just rescued Agatha Harkness and Franklin from the clutches of her evil son, Nicholas Scratch. As they land the Pogo Plane on the roof of the Baxter Building, Agatha blames herself for how her son turned out, but the Fantastic Four reassure her that it was not her fault. Entering their headquarters, they are in for a shock when they find that someone had attacked the Impossible Man and he is now unconscious. Fearing that the intruders might still be in the building, Sue, Johnny and Ben go to look leaving the now powerless Reed behind with Franklin and Agatha.

As the rest of the Fantastic Four search the building, the Thing finds one intruder -- their old foe Klaw. As Ben and Klaw fight it out he is suddenly ambushed by a yet another invader, the Molecule Man, who turns Ben into glass. Elsewhere in the building, Reed laments over the loss of his powers and how useless he feels, Agatha tells Reed that he still possesses his great intelligence and encourages him to put it to good use.

Meanwhile, in Reed's lab, Klaw and the Molecule Man find what they are looking for: Reed's Psi-Amplifier. Before they can use it for their purposes they are ambushed by the Human Torch. But Johnny proves no match for the Molecule Man, who turns the air around his foe into water, dousing Johnny's flame and threatening to drown him. Sue tries a sneak attack using her invisibility powers, but is located thanks to Klaw's sonar abilities and is bound in solid sound. Reed enters the fray, attacking the intruders with an impact gun. However, the Molecule Man turns the weapon into helium and Klaw takes down the FF's leader with a sonic blast.

When Sue demands to know what the two villains want in their home, Klaw explains what led to this moment: After being shunted into another dimension following his battle with the barbarian known as Ka-Zar, [1] Klaw soon found himself returned to Earth via the Nexus of Reality located in the swamps for Florida. When he appeared he spotted the creature known as the Man-Thing just as it discarded a wand into the mire of the swamp. Recovering the wand, Klaw was surprised that it contained the mind of the Molecule Man. Unable to take possession of Klaw's body because he is made of living sound, the two agreed to help each other. Klaw then traveled to New York City where he forced the wand upon a punch drunk boxer, allowing the Molecule Man to possess his body. The two then stormed the Baxter Building in the hopes of using the Psi-Amplifier to make the Molecule Man's possession of the boxer permanent.

Just as they finish their tale, both of the intruders are attacked by the Impossible Man, who is none to happy by their ambush.[2] The two villains are no match for the Impossible Man, whose unique abilities allow him to counter all their attacks. While Klaw and the Impossible Man are fighting, the Molecule Man tries to access the Psi-Amplifier. However before he can succeed, Reed cause it to short circuit, the resulting feedback causes the Molecule Man to drop his wand, freeing his hapless victim. In the aftermath of the battle a curious Reed Richards reaches out for the wand, and is warned too late by his wife as the Molecule Man takes possession of his body.


Continuity Notes

  • Klaw and the Molecule Man explain how they teamed up. They reference the following:
    • He was last seen in Ka-Zar (Vol. 2) #1420 where he clashed with Ka-Zar, ending with him being banished to another dimension for a time.
  • The Molecule Man last battled the Fantastic Four in Fantastic Four #20, after his defeat there he was banished by the Watcher. While banished in a dimension where time moves faster, he created a "son" in Marvel Two-In-One #1 who came to Earth and battle the Thing and Man-Thing. That tale ended with the Molecule Man's wand being knocked out of the hands of his "son" causing the body to crumble to dust. Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe A to Z #7 clarifies that the Molecule Man somehow regained his powers, used them to create his "son" and transfer his essence into him.
    • The Molecule Man's essence lived on in the wand and he discovered that that he could possess any living thing that touched it. This led to a battle with Iron Man and Man-Thing in Iron Man Annual #3. That ended with the wand being taken and being discarded in the swamp by Man-Thing where it was later found by Klaw.

Chronology Notes: A flashback in this story affects the chronology of the following characters:

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