Appearing in "Rip Wide the Sky!"
- Fantastic Four
- Danny (First appearance)
Races and Species:
- Negative Zone
- S.H.I.E.L.D. Space Station
Synopsis for "Rip Wide the Sky!"
At the construction site of the Fantastic Four's new headquarters, one of the construction workers falls from the scaffolds and is rescued by Mister Fantastic, while the Invisible Woman and Torch secure the structure and prevent falling girders from harming anyone. The Fantastic Four are more than happy than to deal with more mundane dangers after their final battle with the Beyonder. Reed then takes the team on a tour of their partially completed headquarters. Each of the team recalls how their headquarters blew up after everyone had pretty much moved out of the building anyway. They are taken down to the sub-basement some fifteen stories down. The construction foreman tries to tell them about a wall that keeps crumbling but before he can the Fantastic Four depart after a S.H.I.E.L.D. alarm begins to go off. After the heroes are gone, the villain known as Basilisk bursts through the wall after being trapped for months. He uses his powers to incapacitate the foreman and starts heading above ground so he can plot revenge against the Thing and Spider-Man. When he gets to one of the upper floors, he notes that he is on the same street block as the Fantastic Four's old Baxter Building. However as he tries to make sense of this new structure, the Scourge of the Underworld -- disguised as a construction worker -- sneaks up on Basilisk and shoots him through the chest with a powerful gun, that sends the villain smashing out the window and down into the streets. With his newest target dead, Scourge exclaims his mantra, "Justice is Served!"
Meanwhile, the Fantastic Four are teleported to S.H.I.E.L.D. headquarters where they meet with Nick Fury who needs them for an important mission. When She-Hulk points out their aircraft carrier was recently destroyed, Fury tells them that they are actually aboard S.H.I.E.L.D.'s space station. He then shows them the reason why he summoned the Fantastic Four: A strange swirling mass of energy that is hovering over the Earth. Reed realizes that this must have been caused when their original headquarters was launched into space and destroyed. In its destruction the Negative Zone portal must have been activated and now there is a tear in reality between the two realms. Soon the Fantastic Four are off in a ship towards the breach. When in its proximity, Reed puts on a special space suit that will protecting him from the destructive forces of the barrier between the positive and negative matter universes so he can scan them and determine how to close the portal before it can rip open any more potentially threatening the destruction of both universes.
Reed is unaware that his process is being observed by Blastaar, who has set in motion events to lure his foes into a trap in order to destroy them. Blastaar is mocked by Annihilus, who is somehow still alive after his last encounter with the Fantastic Four. When Annihilus tries to reach out of his cell to grab the Cosmic Control Rod on Blastaar's chest, a defense mechanism shocks his arms, and Blastaar goes back to work. Inside the tear, Reed is protected by a force field and he begins to explore, however he is suddenly caught in a tractor beam that pulls him into the Negative Zone side. His force field protects him for now, but Reed fears that if his suit is breached he will be destroyed if any of his positive matter strikes anything in the Negative Zone.
While everyone believes Reed is lost, Sue refuses to believe it and fires the shuttle into the breach. Because they are not wearing protective suits, they pass through the distortion field and are converted into anti-matter so that they are safe when the cross over into the Negative Zone. Aboard a nearby ship, Blastaar has Reed prisoner and threatens to breach his spacesuit causing him to explode. But before he can, She-Hulk rips through the hull of the ship and tries to attack. Blastaar blasts her out, but the rest of the Fantastic Four force their way in. Inside the ship, Sue tries to free her husband, but he warns her of the deadly danger touching him will cause and tells her to focus on Blastaar's Cosmic Control Rod. Turning invisible, Sue manages to snatch it off Blastaar's chest. Sue then uses it to deflect Blastaar's attacks and orders him to surrender. Blastaar then tries to trick Sue into believing that the cell holding Annihilus is an atomic disintegration. Sue doesn't fall for it, but Johnny does and grabs it from his sister and tosses it in. Suddenly the wall the cell blasts open and out emerges a revitalized Annihilus.
Meanwhile, outside the breach, Nick Fury is informed by his scientists that the catastrophic breach in reality is about to expand.
- The Fantastic Four were last seen in Avengers #266 where they assisted the Avengers and Molecule Man in repairing the damage done to Earth during their final battle with the Beyonder in Secret Wars II #9.
- The Fantastic Four visit the construction site of their new headquarters. Their old headquarters the Baxter Building was destroyed by Kristoff Vernard in Fantastic Four #278. The construction of their new headquarters began in Fantastic Four #285 and construction is finished in Fantastic Four #296. It is officially named the Four Freedoms Plaza in Fantastic Four #299.
- The FF mention the destruction of the Beyonder. They were led to believe the Beyonder died in Secret Wars II #9. However the Beyonder's energies were returned to their point of origin and created a new universe which the Beyonder controls. The Fantastic Four learn this in Fantastic Four #318–319.
- This issue features the return and demise of the villain known as Basilisk. However his appearance here is a little more complex than it would appear to be:
- Basilisk recalls his battle with Spider-Man and the Thing in Marvel Two-In-One #47 where he was caught in a volcanic explosion that left him trapped underground all this time.
- What he is unaware of was he was pulled forward in time as a minion of the Sphinx against Nova and other time displaced heroes from the past in Nova (Vol. 4) #33–35. According to the Sliding Timescale of Earth-616 he was pulled forward approximately 5 years into the future. When he was returned he was brought back with no memory of his time in the future.
- Although killed by Scourge here, incidentally enough he was also resurrected five years in the future by the Hood in Punisher (Vol. 8) #5, where he and other Scourge victims were sent to kill the Punisher.
- The Scourge of the Underworld was a group of individuals posing as Scourge, who were hired to go out and assassinate super-villains. As revealed in U.S.Agent #4 the Scourge program was the brainchild of Thomas Halloway, formerly the wartime hero known as the Angel. At the time of this story, the Fantastic Four had one previous villain killed by Scourge, the Hate-Monger in Secret Wars II #2. Also at the time of this story the Scourge program was being investigated by Captain America in Captain America #358–362. It is eventually shut down by U.S.Agent in U.S.Agent #1–4.
- She-Hulk mentions how the S.H.I.E.L.D. Helicarrier was destroyed recently, this was the case in Marvel Graphic Novel: The Sensational She-Hulk #1. However it had been rebuilt or replaced in Power Man and Iron Fist #121 which is Nick Fury's last appearance as well.
- Blastaar is wearing the Cosmic Control Rod which he took from Annihilus in Marvel Two-In-One #75. He was last seen in Secret Wars II #7 as part of the Legion Accursed gathered by Mephisto in a failed attempt to destroy the Beyonder.
- Annihilus appears here after his apparent demise in Fantastic Four #256, his survival is ambiguous at best. However, Fantastic Four (Vol. 3) #44 states that any time Annihilus is destroyed he's reborn in a new body. Fantastic Four #255 revealed that Annihilus had begun to rapidly age since Blastaar stole the Cosmic Control Rod from him.
- Fantastic Four #279: the original Baxter Building is launched into space and destroyed.