- Boy, if there's one thing burns my butt more'n anything it's a super-goon makin' speeches!
- -- The Thing
Appearing in "Choices"
- Martha Winslow (First appearance)
- Kate Dwyer (First appearance)
- Danny Winchell (First appearance)
- Doombot (Destroyed)
- United States of America
Synopsis for "Choices"
In Belle Porte, Connecticut, Sue discusses purchasing a house with Martha Winslow, a friend of its owner. Sue is incognito, disguising herself with a brown wig as "Susan Benjamin"; with a second child on the way, Sue and Reed have decided to establish secret identities in order to give Franklin and the baby something like a normal life. After closing the purchase, Sue takes her segment of the Fantasti-Car and returns to the Baxter Building.
At LaGuardia Airport, Ben disembarks, aware that his presence has made his fellow passengers terrified of a possible attack. He hails a cab home, brooding during the trip on recent events. Suddenly, the cab is torn in half, and Ben is confronted by Tyros, who has seemingly been restored to his power as a herald due to the machinations of Doctor Doom. Ben attempts to trap Tyros by wrapping the remains of the cab around him; however, Tyros hurls Ben away with a column of psionically-manipulated earth. Tyros strips away the metal cocoon, in the process ripping away the containment suit that Doom had provided him. Tyros revels in the increased power, unaware that losing the suit's life-support system is hastening his own death. Tyros finds Ben near a supermarket in Queens and sends him crashing through the building with a single blow.
Johnny, in his new loft in Manhattan, is greeted by Sharon Selleck, who thanks him for coming to her rescue in King's Crossing. After chatting with him briefly, Sharon impulsively kisses Johnny, only for him to be distracted by Ben's emergency flare. Johnny flies out the skylight and heads towards Queens.
On her way home, Sue is intercepted by a giant airship that engulfs the Fantasti-Car. Hiding her civilian clothes and raising a force field, she is confronted by Doctor Doom, who uncharacteristically slaps her for defying him. Sue responds by tearing off her enemy's head with a force field shear, correctly deducing that only a Doombot, not Doom himself, would have committed such a violation of his peculiar moral code. The true Doom then appears through a video globe, and Sue challenges him to confront her in person or have his ship torn apart. Doom compliments her on her fire and muses that Sue, whom he once believed to be the weakest member of the Fantastic Four, may actually survive a battle with him.
However, he opens a bulkhead, showing the war zone below. The supermarket is in ruins, and both Ben and Johnny seem to be losing their battle against a resurgent Tyros. Doom then presents Sue with her choice: stay on board and challenge him, thereby dooming her friend and brother, or going to their aid and acknowledging Doom's superiority. Sue, realizing that she has no choice at all, curses Doom and flies into battle.
On the edge of Earth's atmosphere, the Silver Surfer spies an interstellar matter transferral beam striking New York. He heads back to Earth to investigate.
- This issue of the Fantastic Four begins with the members of the team appearing in other publications:
- Reed went missing at the end of Fantastic Four #257, he will not be seen again until Fantastic Four #261.
- Sue was last seen at the end of Fantastic Four #257 house hunting.
- Johnny was last seen with the rest of the team rescuing Sharon Selleck from the town of King's Crossing in Fantastic Four Annual #17.
- Chronologically, Ben appears in a flashback from Deadpool #35 where he and Franklin encounter the mercenary Deadpool and a new incarnation of the Frightful Four.
- Sue is house hunting for a new home to provide Franklin a stable family environment after he was tortured by Annihilus in Fantastic Four #251-256.
- Sue mentions that she is going to have a second child. Sue became pregnant after a romantic interlude between her and Reed in Fantastic Four #254. The baby will come to term in Fantastic Four #267.
- Kate Dwyer becomes a babysitter for Franklin Richards as seen in her next appearance in Fantastic Four #264
- Ben's reference to a rough couple of days is in reference to their return from the Negative Zone and defeating Annihilus in Fantastic Four #256-257, his trip to the visit the Inhumans and rescuing the mutant Lucas Jackson in Thing #3-4.
- Sharon was last seen in Fantastic Four Annual #17. She tries to make a move on Johnny here as she has had a crush on him since Fantastic Four #251. She is unaware that Johnny is interested in her friend Julie Angel.
- Johnny mentions that Reed is at Avengers Mansion. He was there in Fantastic Four #257; Johnny is unaware that Reed was kidnapped by an alien force at the end of that story.
- Sue mentions the inhibitor ray that Doctor Doom used on them in order to force the group to help him liberate Latveria from Prince Zorba. This happened in Fantastic Four #246-247.
- The Silver Surfer appears here following the events of Defenders #125 where the Tribunals force the founding members of the Defenders (one of whom is the Silver Surfer) to disband and never unite again.
- The energy beam that the Surfer sees leaving Earth is the one that kidnaps Reed in Fantastic Four #257.
- Events of this story are told in Tales of the Marvels: Blockbuster #1, which states they take place in June.
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- 6 Image(s) from Fantastic Four Vol 1 259
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