- The world must not lose a magnificent brain like mine!
- -- Doctor Doom
Appearing in "The Master Plan of Doctor Doom!"
- Doctor Doom (Victor von Doom)
- Terrible Trio (First appearance)
Races and Species:
- Doctor Doom's Armor
- Doctor Doom's Time Platform
- XZ-12 Device
- Cosmic-Beam Gun
- Refrigeration Unit
Synopsis for "The Master Plan of Doctor Doom!"
Due to the lack of observation from his teammates, Reed Richards has to chase a dinosaur that has come through Doctor Doom's Time Platform.[Continuity 1] When the creature is captured and returned to his proper time, Reed scolds his teammates for not following his orders. This leads to an argument between the members of the Fantastic Four. The Thing suggests that they elect a new leader for the group, an idea that is shared by both Johnny and Sue.
Meanwhile, a mysterious man watches over the bail hearing for a thieving carnival act who calls himself Yogi Dakor. The man pays Yogi's bail and brings him to a warehouse where Dakor joins two other criminals: protection racketeer Bull Brogin and "Handsome" Harry Phillips, a con-man. They are surprised to see that the "man" who bailed them out was really a robot and that they were gathered by Doctor Doom to be his instruments in destroying his hated foes the Fantastic Four.
Back at the Baxter Building, Ben, Sue, and Johnny decide to have a vote to see who should be the next leader of the Fantastic Four. This election proves useless when each member votes for themselves. This leads to Johnny and Ben coming to blows as Sue watches. The fight is broken up by Mister Fantastic who points out that they need his leadership, particularly with the threat of Doctor Doom still looming over them. He then puts them to work cleaning up the mess created by Johnny and Ben's brawl.
Back at his secret hideout, Doctor Doom puts his minions through an experimental process to endow them with super-human powers. Harry is granted enhanced hearing that will allow him to hear the Invisible Girl no matter how hard she tries to be quiet. Bull is given enhanced strength, although not as a strong to beat the Thing. Finally, Yogi Dakor is made completely fireproof in order to best handle the Human Torch. Thus the Terrible Trio is born. In order to lure the Fantastic Four into a trap, Doom has Yogi Dakor pose as a wealthy Maharajah who is gifting the Human Torch with a fireproof automobile. When the Torch finally realizes it is a trap, he is shocked to find that Yogi Dakor is as impervious to his flame powers as the car and is felled by knock out gas.
The Thing is later lured out to Yancy Street after receiving yet another taunting letter from the Yancy Street Gang.[Continuity 2] There he is attacked by Bull Brogin. At first, the Thing has the upper hand, but Brogan utilizes a device that briefly reverts Ben back to human form. Without the power of the Thing, Grimm is quickly knocked out and taken prisoner. Back at the Baxter Building, Reed tests out Sue's reflexes with an ambush attack but it is not received well, as she is still angry at him. After Reed leaves, she is visited by Harry Phillips, who is posing as a flower delivery boy. He plans to knock her out with a knock-out formula in the flowers, but Phillips reveals his intent too soon and Sue manages to hold her breath and escape by turning invisible. This proves to be a failed strategy, as Phillips is able to hear her movements and blast her with knock-out gas as well. Reed is later lured into a trap set by Doctor Doom, who uses a robot fashioned after the Thing to send out a Fantastic Four signal flare to lure Reed out. When Richards shows up, both the Thing robot and Doom manage to capture him in an escape-proof container.
Doom then takes Richards back to his hideout where his other teammates are prisoner. Doom then tricks the Terrible Trio into thinking they are getting paid, but instead of money, the box containing their "reward" spirits them off to another dimension where Doom can call on them whenever he needs them next.[Continuity 3] As the Fantastic Four begin to break out of their confinement, Doom attacks them directly, able to hold his own with the various technological gadgets in his armor. But when the Fantastic Four begin gaining the upper hand, Doom seals them in the room. This room had been prepared to take advantage of a "Solar Wave" that was passing through the Earth that would transport the Fantastic Four into the oblivion of deep space. As the Solar Wave passes it begins to open a portal into space in the very room. Realizing what is happening, Reed commands Sue to use her invisible force field to pin Doom to the wall outside, putting him at risk of falling through the portal as well. Not willing to die along with his enemies, Doom opens a window into the room in order to try and disable the trap. This allows the Fantastic Four to pull the Doctor into the room. As Doom struggles with the Thing, he falls through the portal and into space.[Continuity 4] With their enemy seemingly vanquished, the Fantastic Four escape through the window to safety. In the aftermath of the battle, the other members of the Fantastic Four realize that Reed is the only one fit to lead them.
- The Time Platform here is actually a duplicate of the one created by Doctor Doom in Fantastic Four #5. The original platform is still in Doom's castle, as seen in Avengers Annual #2. Fantastic Four Annual #11 explains that although this is referred to as "Doctor Doom's" time machine, it's actually a duplicate that Reed built.
- Per the Thing #1, the animosity the Yancy Street Gang shows towards the Thing stems from the fact that he previously used to be the leader of the gang. His departure from the group was seen as a betrayal.
- Upon Doom's apparent demise at the end of this issue, the force keeping the Terrible Trio in another dimension was severed and they were returned to Earth, as revealed in Strange Tales #122.
- Although Dr. Doom appears to perish once again by being lost in space, he survives thanks to an impromptu rescue by Rama-Tut in Fantastic Four Annual #2.
- This issue contains a letters page, Fantastic Four Fan Page. Letters are published from Robert J. Egan, Richard E. Torg, Brady Flowers, Gary Mullins, Lana Fuller, Jerry Johnson, J.H. Gardner, Gary Martin, and Stephen Foston.
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