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Marvel Masterworks Vol 1 2
Marvel Masterworks Vol 1 2 Cover (1997)1997 Cover
Marvel Masterworks Vol 1 2 Cover (2003)2003 Cover
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Appearing in "The Fantastic Four"

This story is a reprint of the comic
Fantastic Four #1.

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Synopsis for "The Fantastic Four"

This story is a reprint of the comic
Fantastic Four #1.

Chapter 1

Fantastic Four Vol 1 1 0001 Title

A shadowy figure fires a flare out of a window. The flare forms the words "The Fantastic Four!"[Continuity 1]

Susan Storm is having tea with a friend. When she sees the flare, she turns invisible, gets into a cab,[Continuity 2] and offers the surprised driver a banknote when she reaches her destination.

Ben Grimm is trying to find a coat that fits him. A clerk in the haberdashery sees the flare. Grimm bursts out of the too-small door, rips a manhole out of the street, follows the sewers, and bursts out when he thinks he has reached his destination. He is struck by a taxi which is wrecked.

Johnny Storm is working on his latest hot rod in a service station. The mechanic sees the flare, which turns into the number 4. Johnny bursts into flame and flies away, destroying his car. The authorities treat him as an enemy attack, so he reluctantly melts the jets that come after him. A nuclear heat-seeking missile locks onto him, and, just as Johnny's flame starts to fade, an impossibly long pair of arms grab the missile and throw it out to sea.

Johnny's savior is the same man who fired the flare. He greets Susan, Ben, and Johnny with the words, "There is a task that awaits us ... a fearful task!" But how did these four people become so fantastic?

To beat the Communists into space, scientist Reed Richards, sister and brother Sue and Johnny Storm, and pilot Ben Grimm sneak off into space in a rocket.[Continuity 3] In space, the four are bombarded by cosmic rays.[Continuity 4] The auto-pilot lands the ship back on Earth,[Continuity 5] where they find themselves physically transformed and possessing remarkable new abilities. Sue can turn invisible. Ben has transformed into an orange, muscular "thing" with super-strength.[Continuity 6] Reed's body became highly malleable, allowing him to stretch into any shape. Johnny's body bursts into flame, and he can fly. They decide to use their abilities to become the super-team known as the Fantastic Four. They give themselves the individual names Mr. Fantastic, Invisible Girl, Human Torch, and the Thing.[Continuity 7][Continuity 8]

(Chapter 2) The Fantastic Four Meet the Mole Man!

Fantastic Four Vol 1 1 Chapter 2 Title
Monster Isle from Fantastic Four Vol 1 1 001

Monster Isle

Atomic plants in the Soviet Union, Australia, and South America have been mysteriously attacked by cave-ins. Another attack occurs in Africa, where a huge monster burrows out of the ground but is recalled by a human figure. The Fantastic Four travel aboard their private jet to Monster Isle, which Reed has deduced is the same distance from each attack. There, they are attacked by a giant three-headed monster. Reed stops the monster, but a cave-in separates Reed and Johnny from Ben and Sue. Beneath the island Reed and Johnny land in the Valley of Diamonds, which temporarily blinds them. The Mole Man appears, revealing he is responsible for the attacks.

(Chapter 3) The Mole Man's Secret!

Fantastic Four Vol 1 1 Chapter 3 Title

The Mole Man explains his origin. Having been ridiculed by humanity, he went off alone in search of the legendary land at the center of the earth. Eventually, he washed ashore on Monster Isle. Making his way through a cavern, he was caught in an avalanche and rendered almost blind.[Continuity 9] However, due to his other heightened senses taking over, he mastered the subterranean creatures[Continuity 10] and built himself an underground empire.

Meanwhile, on the surface, Ben wrestles a rock monster. Ben and Sue find their teammates listening to the Mole Man's plan to invade the surface world. He sends his monster army against the Fantastic Four. Whilst Johnny distracts the biggest one, the team flees through a tunnel, which Johnny seals shut behind them. After the Fantastic Four escape in their jet, Mole Man destroys the island so the surface world cannot trouble him again.[Continuity 11]

Appearing in "The Fantastic Four Meet the Skrulls from Outer Space!"

This story is a reprint of the comic
Fantastic Four #2.

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  • Central City citizens
    • Oil-rig workers
    • Jewelry store employees
    • Power Plant Worker

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Locations:

Items:

  • Priceless marble statue (Melted)
  • Skrullian concealed electronic detonator
  • Skrullian anti-gravity gear and low velocity thermal bomb
  • Johnny's rifle
  • Mounted, stuffed bear head
  • Fantasti-Flare
  • Daily Bugle (First appearance)
  • The Daily Globe (First appearance)
  • Skrullian weapons
  • Skrullian medal, "Highest Award of Bravery"

Vehicles:

Synopsis for "The Fantastic Four Meet the Skrulls from Outer Space!"

This story is a reprint of the comic
Fantastic Four #2.

Chapter One:

Fantastic Four Vol 1 2 Title

The Thing attacks an oil platform off the Texas shore. The Invisible Girl steals a valuable gem from a jewelry store. The Human Torch melts a statue when a town unveils it. Mister Fantastic shuts down a power plant. These impostors meet afterward and reveal how they used their shape-shifting abilities and alien technology to perpetrate their misdeeds. They are Skrulls, and they plan on invading Earth. Fearing the Fantastic Four will stand in their way, these four agents want to ruin their reputation. The real Fantastic Four, in "an isolated hunting lodge," hear the news with dismay.[Continuity 12]

Part 2:

Fantastic Four Vol 1 2 Chapter 2 Title
Jonathan Storm (Earth-616) and Skrull Cows (Earth-616) from Fantastic Four Vol 1 2 0001

The United States Army surrounds the lodge. Wanted for the Skrulls' crimes, the Fantastic Four surrender.They escape from cells specifically designed to hold them and hole up in one of their "many secret apartment hideouts", in order to clear their names. They set a trap for the Skrulls by sending Johnny to sabotage a rocket launch, hoping it will draw them out. He melts through an unused gantry,[Continuity 13] avoids the army's artillery and flames off behind a hangar. "Reed" and "Susan" pick him up and take him back to their hideout. A Fantasti-Flare out the window brings the rest of the team.

(Part 3):

Fantastic Four Vol 1 2 Chapter 3 Title
Skrull-Ship (Water Tower) from Fantastic Four Vol 1 2 0002

The water-tower ship

A fight ensues and the Skrulls are taken, prisoner. The Fantastic Four steal the Skrulls' rocket ship and find their mother-ship in Earth orbit.[Continuity 14] Posing as the Skrull agents, they trick the captain into believing that Earth is too dangerous to invade by passing off images from Journey into Mystery and Strange Tales as real. Reed volunteers to stay behind and remove any trace of the Skrulls' presence on Earth. Convinced his army would be slaughtered, the captain calls off the invasion and awards Reed a medal for bravery.[Continuity 15] On the way home the Fantastic Four passes through the cosmic rays again, causing the Thing to briefly return to human form.

(Part 4):

Fantastic Four Vol 1 2 Chapter 4 Title

Once back on Earth the Fantastic Four clear their names by proving the existence of Skrulls to the military. The remaining three Skrulls transform into cows at Reed's instructions, and Reed hypnotizes them into believing they are real cows. They are left in a field where they can live out their lives.[Continuity 16][Continuity 17][Continuity 18][Continuity 19]

Appearing in "The Menace of the Miracle Man"

This story is a reprint of the comic
Fantastic Four #3.

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Synopsis for "The Menace of the Miracle Man"

This story is a reprint of the comic
Fantastic Four #3.

Chapter 1

Fantastic Four Vol 1 3 0001 Title

The Miracle Man is performing at a theater. He points out the Fantastic Four and mocks them. He claims his powers are far greater than theirs and demonstrates by growing into a giant, turning into a cloud, and controlling thunder and lightning. He even upstages the Thing in a test of strength. While they head home in the Fantasti-Car, Reed wonders whether they could defeat the Miracle Man if he were a criminal. Meanwhile, the Miracle Man plots to bring a monster statue at the Bijou movie theater[Continuity 20] next door to life and use it to terrorize the public.

Chapter II:

Fantastic Four Vol 1 3 Chapter 2 Title
At the team's new headquarters, the Baxter Building,[Continuity 21] Johnny is watching live coverage of the premiere of "The Monsters from Mars" at the Bijou on television. Sue Storm comes in with new costumes for the entire team, including a helmet for the Thing.
Baxter Building from Fantastic Four Vol 1 3 0001

Click to Enlarge

Johnny spots the Miracle Man, who gestures and brings the monster to life. It attacks the crowd and then vanishes. The Fantastic Four call the commissioner, who has received a note from the Miracle Man declaring his intention to conquer the world. The team is authorized to stop the Miracle Man.[Continuity 22][Continuity 23]

Mister Fantastic finds the Miracle Man and his monster robbing a jewelry store, but the Miracle Man hits him with a brick. The Human Torch finds them stealing the army's new atomic tank and confronts them.

Chapter III:

Fantastic Four Vol 1 3 Chapter 3 Title

The Invisible Girl and Thing see the fight and join in. The Thing removes his helmet and rips off his costume before joining the fight.[2] The Human Torch burns the monster down;[3] it was made of wood and plastic. The Thing and the Human Torch are defeated, and the Miracle Man escapes in a truck with the tank in tow, although the Invisible Girl hides aboard unseen.

Chapter IV:

Fantastic Four Vol 1 3 Chapter 4 Title

Back at their headquarters, the remaining members of the Fantastic Four wait for Sue's signal. Johnny pokes fun at Ben, who loses his temper. A fight breaks out between the two, and Johnny storms off. Meanwhile, the Miracle Man is hiding the atomic tank at a junkyard, when he discovers Sue and uses his powers to put her under his command. He has Sue signal the rest of the team with the Fantasti-Flare. Ben and Reed take off in the Fantasti-Copter. Johnny sees the signal from a corner soda fountain and flies toward it.

Chapter V:

Fantastic Four Vol 1 3 Chapter 5 Title
At the junkyard, the Miracle Man fights Ben and Reed, and escapes with Sue and the tank again. Johnny appears, and the three follow the Miracle Man in an antique racing car. Johnny flies ahead and uses his flames to create a flash that temporarily blinds the Miracle Man, who loses his powers. In fact, he never had powers at all; he was merely a clever hypnotist. Reed brings Sue out of her trance, and the Miracle Man is apprehended.
Fantastic Four (Earth-616) from Fantastic Four Vol 1 3 0002

The Thing is annoyed when he perceives that Johnny is getting all the credit for stopping the Miracle Man. Johnny, having had enough of the Thing, quits the team and flies away. Reed wonders what would happen if he were to become their enemy.

Appearing in "The Coming of... Sub-Mariner!"

This story is a reprint of the comic
Fantastic Four #4.

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Synopsis for "The Coming of... Sub-Mariner!"

This story is a reprint of the comic
Fantastic Four #4.
Fantastic Four Vol 1 4 0001 Title

Chapter 1:

Fantastic Four Vol 1 4 Chapter 1 Title

The Human Torch has quit the team. Reed, Sue, and Ben use the Fantasti-Car to search the city for him. Johnny, though, has gone to Swanson's Garage to work on cars. Ben, on a hunch, goes to the garage.

Chapter 2:

Fantastic Four Vol 1 4 Chapter 2 Title

Unable to use his flame because of the gasoline around him, Johnny faces an angry Ben without his power. Ben backs him into a corner, but, before the Thing can hit Johnny, he changes back to his old, human form. Johnny uses the distraction to leave the garage, flame on, and fly away. Ben immediately changes back to the Thing.

Johnny goes to the Bowery to find accommodations. Once in his bunk, he reads a 1940s comic about the Sub-Mariner. Another guest of the establishment notices what he's reading and says, "We got a stumble-bum right here who's as strong as that joker was supposed to be!" He hands the bearded "stumble-bum" a phone book and tells him to tear it in half. The man refuses. The others attack him but get swatted away. The man complains that he can't remember anything: "Why have I spent the long years here, in a fog, with my mind a blank??" Johnny says, "Flame on!" ignites one finger, and burns off the man's beard. He looks just like the Sub-Mariner, pointy ears and all.

Chapter 3:

Fantastic Four Vol 1 4 Chapter 3 Title
Johnny carries the man out to sea and drops him into the water. Back in his native element, the Sub-Mariner remembers who he is.[Continuity 24] He goes to his home, Atlantis.
Fantastic Four Vol 1 4 page 13 Atlantis
It lies in radioactive ruins, a casualty of atomic testing. The Sub-Mariner returns to New York and tells Johnny that he will retaliate by destroying the human race.[Continuity 25]

Chapter 4:

Fantastic Four Vol 1 4 Chapter 4 Title
The rest of the FF, back at the Baxter Building, see Johnny's flare rise from the waterfront. They take the Fantasti-Car to meet him and learn about the Sub-Mariner's revival.
Giganto (Atlantean Beast) (Earth-616) from Fantastic Four Vol 1 4 0001

the original Giganto

Out at sea, the Sub-Mariner finds Giganto, "the largest living thing in all the world," and the Horn of Proteus that can rouse him. He leads the creature towards New York, which begins an evacuation. The army bombards Giganto without effect. The Thing comes up with a daring plan: strap a nuclear bomb to his back, get inside the monster, and leave it there to destroy it. While Giganto takes a nap, Ben carries the bomb down its gullet.

Chapter 5:

Fantastic Four Vol 1 4 Chapter 5 Title

With seconds to spare, Ben makes it out of the monster's maw.[Continuity 26] The Sub-Mariner threatens to use the horn to summon more creatures. An invisible Sue grabs the horn and runs away with it.[Continuity 27] The Sub-Mariner tackles her. She becomes visible. "If you will be my bride," says the Sub-Mariner, "I might show mercy to the rest of your pitiful race!" She responds, "How can I make such a choice?" He threatens again to use the horn. Sue says, "I—I'll do anything—I'll become your bride!" Johnny, though, forms a tornado that pulls the Sub-Mariner into the air and drops him in the ocean. The horn falls to the bottom. The Sub-Mariner swears, "I'll be back!"[Continuity 28]

Appearing in "Prisoners of Doctor Doom!"

This story is a reprint of the comic
Fantastic Four #5.

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Synopsis for "Prisoners of Doctor Doom!"

This story is a reprint of the comic
Fantastic Four #5.

Part 1:

Victor von Doom (Earth-616) from Fantastic Four Vol 1 5 0001

Johnny, while reading an issue of The Incredible Hulk, compares Ben to the monster.[Continuity 29] Ben grabs the comic, but Johnny sets it afire. Reed and Sue stop them before they come to blows. The lights go out, despite their emergency generator. Doctor Doom, in a helicopter, drops a net over the Baxter Building. When Doom calls out to them, Reed recognizes the voice: Victor von Doom, an old college classmate. After an experiment at university, during which Doom tried to communicate with the dead but instead caused an explosion, he was expelled.[Continuity 30] Doom demands Sue as a hostage, and she agrees, going to the roof.

Part 2

Fantastic Four Vol 1 5 Part 2 Title

Doom takes the Invisible Girl aboard his ship, binding and gagging her. He then demands the rest of the FF must enter his ship and pledge not to attack him. The Thing agrees to this by sending off a flare. Doom lowers a cage over Reed, Ben, and Johnny and takes them to his castle. Once there, he tells them that he has invented a time machine and that they must retrieve Blackbeard's treasure chest from the past. With Sue as Doom's hostage, they must agree. Doom presses a button, activating the time platform they were unwittingly standing on. They appear in a port, where they come across two brigands arguing over a stolen bundle of clothes. Ben scares them off. With the clothes, they disguise themselves, including a heavy black beard for Ben. Looking for someone in Blackbeard's crew,[Continuity 31] they go to a tavern. Two pirates tell the barmaid to serve the strangers drugged grog.[Continuity 32]

Part 3

Fantastic Four Vol 1 5 Part 3 Title

Reed, Ben, and Johnny wake up in the hold of a pirate ship. Ben bursts through the deck and subdues the entire crew with the help of Johnny and Reed. When another ship appears, Ben takes command and orders his crew to attack![Continuity 33]

Part 4

Fantastic Four Vol 1 5 Part 4 Title
Benjamin Grimm (Earth-616) from Fantastic Four Vol 1 4 0001
Johnny flames on, harasses the other ship, and raises a cloud of steam. Reed stretches to the other ship like a gangplank, over which their crew passes. A quick fight ensues. While Reed and Johnny haul a treasure chest out of the hold, the crew hails Ben as Blackbeard. Reed empties the chest, reminding Johnny that they only promised to bring back Blackbeard's chest, not the treasure itself, and he replaces the treasure with chains.[Continuity 34] On deck, they realize that Ben is the Blackbeard of legend. He refuses to return with them, ordering the crew to douse Johnny, wrap Reed in a sail, and set them adrift in a lifeboat. Before they can launch the boat, though, a huge waterspout strikes the ship and destroys it. Reed and Johnny make it to shore, where they find Ben and the chest.

Part 5

Fantastic Four Vol 1 5 Part 5 Title

The time platform appears above them and returns them to the present. Doom says that the treasure includes gems enchanted by Merlin and that they will make him "invincible." He opens the chest and discovers that he's been cheated, which gives Ben the opportunity to attack. A single punch shatters the armor—and the machinery inside. It's a robot! The real Doom, in another part of the castle, activates a screen and tells them he will draw the air from their chamber. Sue, still his hostage, sees her chance. She turns invisible and short-circuits his control panel, which explodes. Doom is caught in the blast. She runs to the chamber and opens the door. Rather than confront Doom, who Reed assumes has traps everywhere, they decide to escape. Reed stretches through a window across the moat, Ben pushes that section of wall open while Reed pulls, and Johnny uses "atomic heat" to make a path across the crocodile-infested moat. Johnny then sets fire to the castle, and Doom escapes with his Rocket-Powered Flying Harness. Before he can catch Doom, Johnny's flame runs out.[Continuity 35]

Appearing in "Captives of the Deadly Duo!"

This story is a reprint of the comic
Fantastic Four #6.

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Synopsis for "Captives of the Deadly Duo!"

This story is a reprint of the comic
Fantastic Four #6.
Fantastic Four Vol 1 6 Part 1 Title

After scouting for Dr. Doom, the Human Torch returns to the Fantastic Four's Baxter Building headquarters to report on his lack of success in finding Doom. He arrives just as his teammates are reading fan mail.[Continuity 36] When Reed gets a letter from a fan who is presently staying at a nearby hospital, Reed stretches out his body to pay the boy a personal visit.[Continuity 37] Meanwhile, Ben gets a mocking letter from the Yancy Street Gang, challenging him to a fight. Ben responds by rolling up a titanium steel tile and telling Johnny to mail it out for him. Ben laments over not being able to face a worthy foe like Dr. Doom or the Sub-Mariner.

These words turn out to be prophetic as, at that very moment, Dr. Doom is seeking out the Sub-Mariner and tracks him down in his aerosub, confronting Namor over the ocean[Continuity 38]. Doom manages to convince Namor that they should work together to destroy the Fantastic Four and take over the world.

Part 2:

Fantastic Four Vol 1 6 Part 2 Title
Victor von Doom (Earth-616) and Namor McKenzie (Earth-616) from Fantastic Four Vol 1 6 0001

Namor invites Doom back to Atlantis, where Doom notes his infatuation with Sue Storm. Doom, however, stirs the Sub-Mariner's anger by reminding him how his kingdom was annihilated by atomic weapons tests[4]. Namor agrees to destroy the Fantastic Four but refuses to harm Sue Storm. Doom agrees to let Sue live and then shows off his latest invention which he wishes to use against the Fantastic Four: a magnetically powered "grabber" device that can pull any object no matter how heavy. Namor then goes to the surface world to confront the Fantastic Four as part of their plan.

Meanwhile, at the Baxter Building, Johnny finds a picture of Namor hidden behind a bookshelf and confronts his sister Sue about it. When she tells Johnny that he has no right to go snooping on her property, Johnny alerts the others about Sue's little secret before burning the picture with his flame powers. When Reed asks for an explanation from Sue, she is at a loss for words to explain her infatuation with the Sub-Mariner. Suddenly, Namor makes his presence known to them.

Part 3:

Fantastic Four Vol 1 6 Part 3 Title

While the male members of the team try to attack Namor, Sue comes to his aid. The others find that Namor is prepared for their attacks, and Reed suddenly realizes that Namor must have planted some kind of trap. Reed and Johnny go to search for it. When they fail to find it, Namor gloats when, suddenly, the Baxter Building is pulled out of its foundation and is drawn into space.[Continuity 39]

Part 4:

Fantastic Four Vol 1 6 Part 4 Title

The Fantastic Four and Namor quickly put on breathing helmets. When Johnny fails to escape in the vacuum of space, Reed tries to grab Doom's ship that is pulling them closer to the sun, but Doom has prepared a defensive rocket that burns Reed's hands. With the void of space being close to that of Earth's oceans, Namor -- realizing he had been betrayed by Doom -- agrees to stop him. He then exits the Baxter Building and "swims" toward Doom's ship.

Part 5:

Fantastic Four Vol 1 6 Part 5 Title

There, he breaks through the hull into the ship but finds a locked and electrified door blocking his way into the control room. The Sub-Mariner then uses his ability to mimic the electricity generating abilities of electric eels to begin shocking Doom through the door, forcing him to retreat.[Continuity 40] Namor breaks in and hurls Dr. Doom into space. In the void of space, Doom is suddenly struck by a passing meteor and is carried away. Namor then takes control of the ship and reverses its course, returning the Baxter Building to its original foundation. The Fantastic Four then find Doom's grabber device stashed away in the basement, but they cannot remove it. Suddenly, it flies away to rendezvous with Namor over the ocean. The Sub-Mariner then crashes the ship and the grabber device into the waters below so they cannot be used again and returns to the ocean himself.

Appearing in "Prisoners of Kurrgo, Master of Planet X"

This story is a reprint of the comic
Fantastic Four #7.

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Synopsis for "Prisoners of Kurrgo, Master of Planet X"

This story is a reprint of the comic
Fantastic Four #7.
Fantastic Four Vol 1 7 Title

Part 1:

Fantastic Four Vol 1 7 Part 1 Title

Kurrgo the ruler of Planet X[Continuity 41] is seeking to find a way to save his world from a runaway asteroid that is poised to strike the planet causing an extinction level event. Monitoring the Fantastic Four on Earth, Kurrgo believes that only they can help save his doomed world. This is because the people of Planet X had previously found no reason to explore space and as such only have two working spaceships. Kurrgo takes one of these ships to bring him and his robot to Earth.

On Earth, the Fantastic Four have been invited to attend a government dinner in Washington D.C., although most of the team worries that their powers will cause them to be regarded as freaks or cause embarrassment to themselves, however, they all decide to go when Reed does not accept any of their excuses to bow out. Reed points out to them that he is less than thrilled to go either since he is in the middle of developing a new rocket fuel, but insists that they must attend this social gathering. As they fly to Washington in the Fantasti-Car, Kurrgo's ship lands and his robot uses its atomic scanner to locate the Fantastic Four. As the heroes attend the dinner and are awarded a trophy for their work, Kurrgo activates a Hostility Ray that makes the people of Washington hostile.

Part 2:

Fantastic Four Vol 1 7 Part 2 Title

This also includes the guests at the dinner who begin attacking the Fantastic Four. Not wanting to hurt the civilians, the Four flee the dinner, using their powers to get past the armed guards who try to bar their path. They board the Fantasti-Car and fly back to New York when they notice that they are being followed by Kurrgo's ship and try to flee it, but it follows them the whole way back to their headquarters the Baxter Building.

Part 3:

Fantastic Four Vol 1 7 Part 3 Title

There Kurrgo's robot reveals itself to them and shows how the entire population of Earth now hates the Fantastic Four and that they have swarmed the Baxter Building to try and get at the super group. With no other choice, Reed and the others agree to board Kurrgo's ship and return with them to Planet X.

Part 4:

Fantastic Four Vol 1 7 Part 4 Title

When they arrive on the planet, they learn that Kurrgo has summoned them to use Reed Richard's intelligence to find a way to save his people. Johnny and Ben try to fight against Kurrgo's robot, but Sue makes them stand down and Reed agrees to help. Learning that they have only two working space ships and no time to build more and no means of destroying the asteroid.

Part 5:

Fantastic Four Vol 1 7 Part 5 Title

Reed devises a shrinking gas that he uses to shrink the entire population of the planet so that they can fit in one rocket, giving the only supposed cannister of growing gas to Kurrgo.[Continuity 42] As the Fantastic Four blast off back to Earth in one ship, the people of Planet X pile into another. Kurrgo has decided to withhold the growing gas so that he could rule over his diminutive subjects for the rest of his life. However as the planet begins to crumble, Kurrgo trips and falls and witnesses in horror as the ship containing his people blasts off without him. The Fantastic Four meanwhile rocket back home to Earth where Reed reveals to them that he deceived Kurrgo, as he did not create an enlarging gas, telling his teammates that in the vast universe size is relative and that the people of Planet X will find a suitable home, regardless of their actual size.

Appearing in "Prisoners of the Puppet Master!"

This story is a reprint of the comic
Fantastic Four #8.

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Synopsis for "Prisoners of the Puppet Master!"

This story is a reprint of the comic
Fantastic Four #8.
Fantastic Four Vol 1 8 Title

Reed has been working on a formula to try and change the Thing back to human form and has Sue and Johnny try to bar Ben from entering his lab until it is finished. This leads to a fight between Ben and the others. Fed up with being kept in the dark, the Thing puts on his coat and hat and leaves the Baxter Building. Worried about Ben, Sue turns invisible and follows after him to make sure nothing bad happens to him. However, the Thing soon becomes aware that Sue is following him and tells her to leave him be. However, Sue spots someone climbing up to the top of the Queensborough Bridge and fires up a signal flare to alert Reed and Johnny. When Reed cannot stretch that far to save the man, Johnny flames on and flies after him.

Part 2:

Fantastic Four Vol 1 8 Part 2 Title

Not far away is the Puppet Master[Continuity 43], who is testing out his radioactive clay that can control the people it is modeled after.[Continuity 44] Before he can make the man jump, the Torch saves his life and the heat from the Torch's flame causes feedback that burns the Puppet Master's finger. Furious over the interference the Puppet Master vows to eliminate the Fantastic Four before they can meddle in his plans further. When his step-daughter Alicia enters the room to inquire as to what is wrong, he silences her and tells her to obey his wishes as his step-daughter. To get revenge against the Fantastic Four, the Puppet Master fashions a puppet to resemble the Thing taking control of him and sending orders to come to his apartment. However the Puppet Master is unaware that the Invisible Girl is present with him, and seeing Ben enter a trance-like state, she turns invisible and follows after him to see what's wrong.

When Ben and Sue enter the apartment, Sue's presence is betrayed thanks to Alicia's sensitive hearing. Realizing that the Invisible Girl has followed the Thing to his home, the Puppet Master places gas masks on himself, Alicia and Ben and then fills the room with ether, knocking Sue out. Seeing a resemblance between Sue and Alicia, he disguises Alicia as the Invisible Girl and orders her to accompany the mind controlled Thing back to the Baxter Building so the Fantastic Four will fall for his trap even more. The Puppet Master then begins the next phase of his scheme which involves taking control of the warden of the state prison. When Ben and Alicia arrive at the Baxter Building, both Johnny and Reed are unaware of the trap until Ben suddenly starts attacking them.

Part 3:

Fantastic Four Vol 1 8 Part 3 Title

However, the battle quickly ends when the Thing slams into Reed's chemistry experiment, dousing himself in chemicals that revert him to human form, thus freeing him from the Puppet Master's control. Back in human form, Ben explains everything that happened and Alicia finds comfort in Ben. At first she finds him different, but he suddenly reverts back into the Thing and instantly recognizes him by the touch. Ben is depressed by the fact that the only woman who would be interested in him in his monstrous form just happens to be a blind woman. Meanwhile, the warden at the state prison is ordered by the Puppet Master to free all the prisoners there instigating a massive jailbreak.

Part 4:

Fantastic Four Vol 1 8 Part 4 Title

Waking up from the ether, Sue tries to flee the apartment, but the creaky floorboards give her away. The Puppet Master uses a puppet of Sue to trip her up, but she still manages to fire off a flare signal to alert the Fantastic Four of her location. Soon Ben, Reed, Johnny and Alicia arrive on the scene. While the male members of the group are held at bay by the Puppet Master's robotic puppet, the group saves Sue, but the Puppet Master gets away. They then hear news reports of the prisoners trying to break out of the state prison and rush to the scene to stop the prisoners from escaping.

Part 5:

Fantastic Four Vol 1 8 Part 5 Title

With their superior powers, the Fantastic Four are easily able to stop the prisoners from escaping. Meanwhile, the Puppet Master returns to his apartment to try and utilize a puppet of himself that he believes will make him king of the world. However before he can use the puppet Alicia tries to stop him, knocking the puppet from his hand. Lunging for Alicia, the Puppet Master trips over the puppet and goes crashing out the window, down into the street below. The Fantastic Four then arrive and believing that the Puppet Master is dead, comfort Alicia but are left to wonder what caused him to fall out of the window to his apparent demise.[Continuity 45]

Appearing in "The End of the Fantastic Four!"

This story is a reprint of the comic
Fantastic Four #9.

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Locations:

Items:

Vehicles:

Synopsis for "The End of the Fantastic Four!"

This story is a reprint of the comic
Fantastic Four #9.
Fantastic Four Vol 1 9 Title

The Sub-Mariner is monitoring television broadcasts from the surface to learn that the Fantastic Four has officially declared bankruptcy and are liquidating their assets to pay off their creditors. Learning this Namor is convinced that now is the right time to strike against the group.

At the Baxter Building headquarters of the Fantastic Four, Reed and the others are forced to stand back as creditors begin repossessing Reed's various inventions.[Continuity 46] Unable to stand watching this, the Thing decides to leave to visit his new girlfriend, Alicia. However, when he tries to get a cab he is refused due to the press about the FF's recent financial troubles. In anger, Ben impales the cab on a lamp post and then fires an FF signal flare, bringing Johnny in the Fantasti-Car, who gives Ben a lift to Alicia's house. There, Ben finds his mood soured further when he cannot bring himself to believe Alicia's words of praise and kindness toward him.

When Ben returns to the Baxter Building later it is just moments after a telegram has arrived from SM Studios offering the Fantastic Four to all act in a film based on their lives, offering enough money to the group for them to resume operations. However, despite this salvation, the now penniless super-heroes are forced to hitchhike all the way to Los Angeles to take up the job.

Part 2:

Fantastic Four Vol 1 9 Part 2 Title

When they arrive at SM Studios they are star-struck by all the celebrities upon their arrival.[Continuity 47] When they meet the owner of the studio they are shocked to find that it is none other than the Sub-Mariner who explains to them that he was able to fund the movie studio by selling sunken treasure on the ocean floor. Although he has clashed with them in the past, Namor managed to convince the Fantastic Four that his intentions this time are altruistic in order to help the Fantastic Four earn the money they desperately need.

After acclimatizing them to the Hollywood lifestyle, they then begin shooting the film. Namor takes Reed out to a Mediterranean island where Reed will be filmed apparently fighting the mythical Cyclops,[Continuity 48] convincing Mr. Fantastic that the Cyclops is a mechanical construct.

Part 3:

Fantastic Four Vol 1 9 Part 3 Title

However when Reed stretches to the island he soon learns that the Cyclops is the real creature of myth. While Namor leaves the scene, convinced that Reed will die in the conflict, Mr. Fantastic does just the opposite when he trips the Cyclops making the monster fall into a pit that he cannot get out of. Namor then flies the Human Torch to a part of Africa to battle a tribe of natives whom Namor convinces the Torch that they are really actors. However, after Namor leaves, Johnny realizes that they are the genuine article and that he has been tricked into fighting a tribe of natives who are immune to fire.

Part 4:

Fantastic Four Vol 1 9 Part 4 Title

While they capture Johnny, he manages to flame on and break out of his cell and then superheats a volcano causing an eruption of lava that sends the natives fleeing and then escapes.

Namor then meets with the Thing on a Hollywood beach and informs him that it is him that Ben will have to fight. Although Namor gains the upper hand in the battle, Ben quickly realizes that Namor gets his strength from the ocean and pulls him away from the water.[Continuity 49]

Part 5:

Fantastic Four Vol 1 9 Part 5 Title

The Thing begins turning the battle around when a freak lightning strike hits him causing the Thing to revert to human form. This allows Namor to knock Ben out in a single punch. He then returns to SM Studios where he reveals his entire purpose for bringing the Fantastic Four there was to kill the male members so that he would have Sue all to himself. Sue refuses his advances but is overpowered by Namor's various sea-animal spawned abilities. However, before he can subdue her the male members arrive alive and well (Ben having reverted back into the Thing). They are about to attack Namor when Sue gets in their way and convinces them to stand down. Having been defeated, the Sub-Mariner agrees to honor his deal to complete the film and pay them the money they need and then returns to the ocean. Weeks later the completed Fantastic Four film is released and is a critical success, earning the Fantastic Four enough money to resume their operations.[Continuity 50]

Appearing in "The Return of Doctor Doom!"

This story is a reprint of the comic
Fantastic Four #10.

Featured Characters:

Supporting Characters:

Antagonists:

Other Characters:

Races and Species:

Locations:

Items:

Vehicles:

Synopsis for "The Return of Doctor Doom!"

This story is a reprint of the comic
Fantastic Four #10.
Fantastic Four Vol 1 10 Title

Reed Richards is conducting an experiment on how to photograph Sue while she is invisible when suddenly the team notices the Fantastic Four signal flare in the sky. Trying to rush to the signal, Reed finds the locking mechanism on his lab door jammed and uses his stretching powers to try and reach the release on the other side but his arm goes the wrong way, forcing Johnny to use his flame powers to melt through the lock. The group rushes through avid fans to the apartment of Alicia Masters, Ben's girlfriend, where Ben reveals that he just wanted to show his teammates the various sculptures that Alicia has made of the Fantastic Four's various foes.

Meanwhile, at the offices of Marvel Comics, writer Stan Lee and artist Jack Kirby, who have been licensed to create Fantastic Four comic books based on the heroes' adventures, are stumped over creating a new villain for the group to fight as all their other previous foes have been vanquished.[Continuity 51] As Jack is trying to pitch a new villain named False-Face they are interrupted by Dr. Doom who demands that they call Reed Richards to their office to lure him in a trap, threatening to show them his horribly scarred face if they do not comply.

Part 2:

Fantastic Four Vol 1 10 Part 2 Title
Victor von Doom (Earth-616) and Reed Richards (Earth-616) from Fantastic Four Vol 1 10 0001
Reed is called over, but when he arrives he is gassed by Dr. Doom who then teleports away with Richards as his prisoner. When Reed awakens at Doom's laboratory, Reed is shocked to see his old foe who was last seen being carried away on a meteor[5]. Doom explains that he survived when he was rescued by an alien race called the Ovoids. Learning that these creatures had great mental powers, Doom forced them to teach him their method of transferring minds into other bodies before they returned him to Earth. Doom then demonstrates this ability by swapping bodies with Reed. The two fight it out, but Dr. Doom has the advantage by using Reed's own stretching powers against him.

Part 3:

Fantastic Four Vol 1 10 Part 3 Title
Reed Richards (Earth-616) trapped in Doom's body from Fantastic Four Vol 1 10
Soon the rest of the team, tipped off by Stan and Jack, arrive at Doom's lab and easily subdue "Dr. Doom", Reed's attempts to convince his team that Doom has swapped bodies with him fall on deaf ears. Doom (pretending to be Reed) then convinces the team that the only way to be rid of Doom is to trap him forever. While the other members of the team suggest ideas to do that, "Reed" has a better idea and shows them a trap that he devised in the basement of the lab. With "Dr. Doom" trapped in an unbreakable glass cage, the rest of the team leaves, leaving Reed and Doom alone. Doom gloats over his victory, pointing out that the air cylinders in the unbreakable glass cage will run out of air in exactly an hour and then leaves Reed to his fate.

Part 4:

Fantastic Four Vol 1 10 Part 4 Title

While pretending to be his greatest enemy, Dr. Doom then begins working on a shrinking ray and starts testing it on animals that his teammates realize have gone missing from one of the local zoos when the animals might break free.[Continuity 52] When Sue and the others start to question "Reed's" work, Doom tells them that he has come up with a theory that the dinosaurs went extinct due to their large bodies and small brains. He then suggests that through a process of shrinking someone in size and then restoring them to normal could boost not only their mental power but their physical abilities. Doom then sells the team on the fact that with this method the Torch would be able to fly in space, Sue would be able to turn selected parts of her body invisible, and Ben would be able to revert back and forth from human form. The group is ecstatic and Doom tells them that he will use it on them once the tests are completed. However, Doom really intends to shrink the group down to nothingness, eliminating his hated enemies forever.

Meanwhile back in the unbreakable glass cage, Reed tries to break through a flaw in the glass using Doom's mask and succeeds in punching holes in it. He then takes one of the air cylinders and plugs the hole with it, then tosses another at the first cylinder. The resulting explosion breaks the glass, freeing Reed from his death trap. He then goes to Alicia's apartment and tries to convince her that he is really Reed Richards trapped in Dr. Doom's body.

Part 5:

Fantastic Four Vol 1 10 Part 5 Title

However, Reed is unaware that Sue was there to tell Alicia the "good news" and she manages to knock Reed out by smashing a vase over his head. When Ben and Johnny arrive, they try to attack "Dr. Doom" but Reed manages to instill doubt in their minds, convincing them to bring him back to the Baxter Building with them. However, they bring "Doom" to "Reed" who binds Reed up so he can conduct his shrinking experiment on the other members of the Fantastic Four. When Doom decides to start on Sue first, Reed tries to protest, raising more doubt in the mind of Johnny and Ben.

Johnny decides to test his suspicions by using his flame powers to create a mirage of a stick of dynamite. When the mirage appears, "Dr. Doom" tries to shield his teammates from the blast with his own body while "Reed" tries to flee the scene. Realizing that "Dr. Doom" was telling the truth, Ben grabs "Reed" and pulls him back into the room. With the ruse revealed the process reverses itself.[Continuity 53] With Doom back in his original body, he begins to attack the Fantastic Four. During the scuffle, Reed is knocked back into the controls of Doom's device. In a bit of irony, Doom's shrink ray blasts himself causing him to shrink to seeming nothingness, leaving the Fantastic Four to wonder if their foe has been vanquished forever.

Notes

Continuity Notes

  1. This issue is considered the start of the Marvel Universe. It was first coined as Earth-616 in Daredevils #7, however as Marvel began incorporating super-hero stories from their predecessors Timely and Atlas Comics, the first appearance of Earth-616 has been retconned back to Motion Picture Funnies Weekly #1 which feature the first appearance of the Sub-Mariner.
  2. The cab driver that drives Sue early on in this story is seen again in Fantastic Four #160.
  3. Prior to their rocket flight, Reed and Sue were pulled forward in time to the future of Earth-60166 where they met numerous versions of their future selves who were gathered by their Earth-60166 counterparts to celebrate their 40th wedding anniversary as seen in Fantastic Four: The Wedding Special #1. When Reed and Sue are returned to the exact moment that they were taken from, they retained no memory of the festivities.
  4. As Marvel has continued to publish stories eventually they had to institute a Sliding Timescale as a means of slowing down the advance of time in the Marvel Universe over the length of publications in real time. This was to prevent aging their characters quickly as well as updating dated plot concepts, generalizing real-life events or dates that are mentioned in various stories. Thus all such references should be considered topical references. When Fantastic Four #1 was published in 1961, Reed's spaceship is specifically referred to as a rocket, and his intentions for his mission is to beat the Soviet Union in the space race. Contextually, the story was published during the height of the US/Soviet Space Race, which saw both countries competing to see which one could develop manned space flights. Since then, many retellings of the Fantastic Four's origin have changed the details of Reed Richards' space flight, updating concepts so that they were not considered dated more modern readers. Such as: Fantastic Four #2 states that Reed was attempting to reach Mars. Other stories since then have generalized where his destination was supposed to be. Later in Fantastic Four #236, the origin of the Fantastic Four was updated, it was stated that Reed's experimental ship was intended to travel to the edge of the solar system and while it needed a rocket booster to reach escape velocity from Earth's atmosphere it relied on a Star Drive to reach its destination. This tale also goes on to expand on how the quartet was mutated. Fantastic Four #358 published in 1991 states that the "Star Drive" was intended to bring them into hyperspace in order to visit other solar systems. Fantastic Four #543 stated that Richards was testing faster-than-light space travel.
  5. There are conflicting accounts as to where the Fantastic Four's ship crashed. First it is stated that the crash site of Reeds' Rocket is identified as North of Ithaca, New York in Fantastic Four #245 and Thing #10. Fantastic Four #296 states that the ship crashed in Stockton, New York. Fantastic Four Vol 3 #13 depicts the Fantastic Four crash landing on an island out on an unspecified ocean, while Fantastic Four Vol 3 #60 states that they crashed outside of Central City, California.
  6. The Thing is depicted here with dinosaur-like skin, he maintains this appearance until he eventually he developed his trademark rocky appearance by Fantastic Four #10. Marvel Two-In-One #50 went on to explain that the Thing's form continued to mutate after his initial transformation.
  7. What caused the Fantastic Four to mutate and gain their powers has also been expanded upon over time. Fantastic Four #1 simply states that it was cosmic rays that caused the mutations. Other interpretations are: Fantastic Four #197 goes on to state that it was not just cosmic rays that caused the Fantastic Four to get their powers. It states that sunspot activity caused flaring through the Van Allen Belts causing an increase in neuron activity. The combination of this and the cosmic rays caused the mutations. Fantastic Four #529-532 posits that the cause of the cosmic ray storm was actually a message being transmitted by a creature called the Entity who was seeking out those who seek universal truths as he did. This same storyline also shows Reed Richards going back to the dawn of the universe and his views of himself and his teammates were ingrained on the original cosmic rays that would eventually imprint the Fantastic Four's unique abilities.
  8. Events surrounding this issue have also been expanded outside of retelling how the Fantastic Four got their powers. Fantastic Four: First Family #1 tells what happened to the Fantastic Four from the moment they crash landed and were taken into government custody to Reed Richards beginning to set up the Fantastic Four prior to their battle with the Mole Man. The rest of the series happens between Fantastic Four #2 and 3
  9. The Mole Man's origins were expended in Daredevil Vol 3 #10 and Marvel Universe #4-7.
  10. The monsters of Monster Isle were revealed as having been created by the Deviants as per Marvel Universe #7.
  11. Although Monster Island appears to be destroyed in this story, it actually endured the blast as it was later visited by the X-Men on three occasions thereafter in X-Men First Class Vol 2 #2-3 and X-Men First Class Special #1, and X-Men: The Hidden Years #22. Marvel Universe #7 specifies that the monsters that live here were also created by the Deviants centuries earlier.
  12. In a flashback to the FF's origin, Reed specifically states that the rocket in Fantastic Four #1 was meant to go to Mars. As Marvel has continued to publish stories eventually they had to institute a Sliding Timescale as a means of slowing down the advance of time in the Marvel Universe over the length of publications in real time. This was to prevent aging their characters quickly as well as updating dated plot concepts, generalizing real-life events or dates that are mentioned in various stories. When Fantastic Four #1 was published in 1961, Reed's spaceship is specifically referred to as a rocket, and his intentions for his mission is to beat the Soviet Union in the space race. Contextually, the story was published during the height of the US/Soviet Space Race, which saw both countries competing to see which one could develop manned space flights. Since then, many retellings of the Fantastic Four's origin have changed the details of Reed Richard's space flight, updating concepts so that they were not considered dated by more modern readers. Fantastic Four #236, the origin of the Fantastic Four was updated, it was stated that Reed's experimental ship was intended to travel to the edge of the solar system and while it needed a rocket booster to reach escape velocity from Earth's atmosphere it relied on a Star Drive to reach its destination. This tale also goes on to expand on how the quartet was mutated. While Fantastic Four #1 merely states that it was cosmic rays, Fantastic Four #236 goes further to explain that these rays passed through the Van Allen Belt that is held around the Earth by its magnetic field. Fantastic Four #358 published in 1991 states that the "Star Drive" was intended to bring them into hyperspace in order to visit other solar systems. It's also stated in this story that unusual sunspot activity from Earth's sun also played a role in boosting the strength of the cosmic rays that mutated the Fantastic Four.
  13. This is the first issue where the Human Torch uses his catchphrase "Flame on!"
  14. This is not the first time Reed has encountered the Skrulls. A few years previous he exposed a Skrull spy on Earth, as seen in Marvel: The Lost Generation #11.
  15. The disappearance of the fourth Skrull in this story is explained in Avengers #66 which states that Reed Richards allowed that Skrull to return home.
  16. This story does not give a specific location for where Reed left the cows. Fantastic Four Annual #17, however, places them in King's Crossing, New York, and looks at the consequences of transforming the Skrulls into cows and their effect on the town. Also during this period the Skrull cows bred with normal cows producing a Skrull/Cow hybrid as revealed in Skrull Kill Krew Vol 2 #1
  17. The Skrull cows return as major players during the Kree-Skrull War depicted in Avengers #89-97.
  18. Years later Mister Fantastic repeats the "Skrull Cow" solution to deal with Skrull invaders during a trip back in time to the year 1776 in Fantastic Four Vol 4 #10.
  19. New Avengers #40 revealed that one of these Skrulls was a relative to Emperor Dorrek VII, who considered this an insult. This was partial motivation for Dorrek to begin the Super-Skrull program that eventually led to the Secret Invasion of Earth many years later.
  20. The depiction of the Bijou Theater in this story should be considered a topical reference per the Sliding Timescale of Earth-616. The Bijou was demolished in 1982
  21. The setting of this story is never explicitly given, but the location of the Baxter Building is later given as New York City. Some facts about the Baxter Building: (1) Prior to the Fantastic Four living here, it was briefly the headquarters to the All-Winners Squad in the 1950s as revealed in All Winners Comics 70th Anniversary Special #1. The top floors of the building had recently been reconstructed prior to the FF's residency there following the events of Marvel: The Lost Generation #11. (2) The building was suggested to the Fantastic Four by their military liaison in Fantastic Four: First Family #3 (3) The headquarters was co-designed by Reed and his colleague and former teacher Noah Baxter, as revealed in Fantastic Four Vol 3 #38. (4) Per Fantastic Four #244, Reed purchased the top five floors outright, although he was forced to sell them later when the group hit financial problems in Fantastic Four #9.
  22. As revealed in in Fantastic Four: First Family #3 their uniforms were based on the space suits the team wore into space.
  23. This story provides a schematic of the FF's headquarters in the Baxter Building for the first time. This version shows the Fantastic Four habituating at least three floors. The schematics are expanded upon in Fantastic Four Annual #1.
  24. Sub-Mariner #1 specifies that Namor was stricken with amnesia by Paul Destine using the Helmet of Power. Saga of the Sub-Mariner #6 specifies that this happened circa 1959.
  25. Also in Sub-Mariner #1, it states that the ruins that Namor came upon in this issue were really part of an Atlantean outpost decimated by atomic testing. The true Atlantis resided near Antarctica until it was decimated by Destiny. As per Saga of the Sub-Mariner #7 the people of Atlantis had fled to the Atlantic to set up a new kingdom under the rule of Byrrah.
  26. Giganto was not the only of its kind, as multiple other similar creatures have since been seen. Fantastic Four Vol 5 #3 shows an entire thriving race. It has been explained that the Gigantos were created by the Deviants as seen in Marvel Universe #7.
  27. The Horn of Proteus was recovered by Doctor Doom in Fantastic Four: World's Greatest Comics Magazine #3
  28. Following their encounter with Namor, Reed and Sue were pulled forward in time to the future of Earth-60166 where they met numerous versions of their future selves who were gathered by their Earth-60166 counterparts to celebrate their 40th wedding anniversary as seen in Fantastic Four: The Wedding Special #1. The Sue Storm of this era identifies herself by expressing her doubts on marrying Reed after meeting Namor. When Reed and Sue are returned to the exact moment that they were taken from, they retained no memory of the festivities.
  29. Johnny Storm is seen reading a copy of Incredible Hulk #1. The Hulk made his first guest appearance in Fantastic Four #12.
  30. First appearance of Doctor Doom, his origins were expanded upon in Fantastic Four Annual #2 and Books of Doom #1-6. It was revealed in Astonishing Tales #8 that Victor was attempting to contact the netherworld in order to search for the lost soul of his mother Cynthia.
  31. The crew that Ben commanded as Blackbeard had previously served Red Lucy Keogh, a prior incarnation of the Scarlet Witch as shown in Marvel Comics Presents #60-63.
  32. In our history, Blackbeard was a documented person (real name Edward Teach) rather than a legend. He practiced piracy for 27 months, beginning in 1716. If Teach existed in the Earth-616 universe is unspecified.
  33. Thing's time as Blackbeard was interrupted by a time traveling Doctor Doom and Iron Man in Iron Man Vol 2 #11.
  34. Doom is seeking the Stones of Merlin in this story, while they are lost at sea in this issue they were eventually resurfaced in Dazzler #3-4.
  35. The Fantastic Four's battle with Doctor Doom upon their return to the present was revisited and expanded upon in Hulk and Thing: Hard Knocks #1-2.
  36. This issue features the first mention of the Yancy Street Gang, however the gang does not make a physical appearance until Fantastic Four #15. While it is established that they are a gang that originates from the Thing's old neighbourhood, it is later revealed in the Thing #1 that a young Ben Grimm, used to be leader of the gang before his life turned around. It was his departure from the group that led to their animosity toward him.
  37. The Fantastic Four's costumes are noted as being made to withstand the extreme conditions of space, requiring only the addition of a space helmet. They are also said to be made from Unstable Molecules, which are mentioned for the first time in this issue.
  38. Doom mentions the destruction of "Atlantis" by atomic testing, which was first depicted in Fantastic Four #4. However Sub-Mariner #1 clarifies that this was merely an Atlantean outpost.
  39. Kristoff Vernard revisits Doom's plot from this issue, with considerably more success. He succeeds in launching the Baxter Building into the sun in Fantastic Four #278, although the team survived.
  40. Namor is depicted as having the ability to discharge electricity like an electric eel. The ability to mimic the abilities of other sea life are mostly phased out by his appearance in Fantastic Four #14.
  41. The aliens on "Planet X" and the actual name of their planet is not named in this issue. They are officially named the Xantha and their planet Xanth in Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe #12.
  42. Mister Fantastic recreates Henry Pym's Shrinking Gas formula using Kurrgo's advanced scientific equipment. According to Marvel Saga #5, Reed Richards is "the only other scientist whom the Ant-Man has entrusted with the secret of his reducing formula."
  43. Aka, Phillip Masters. His real name is not revealed until Marvel Team-Up #6.
  44. This issue states that the Puppet Master's clay is radioactive, he obtained it from his native country of Transia, which was revealed in Marvel Two-In-One #41 near Wundagore Mountain. Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe #8 makes the connection between the Puppet Master's clay and the elder god Chthon stating that it is his dark magics that actually give the clay its power.
  45. While it appears that Puppet Master dies in this issue, he survives, and reappears in Fantastic Four #14. It is explained that he spent the time between appearances in a sanatorium.
  46. Fantastic Four #244 clarifies that Reed began purchased the top five floors of the Baxter Building sometime prior to Fantastic Four #3 from property owner Walter Collins. Following this issue, Collins allowed the Fantastic Four to move back into their former headquarters but rented it out to them.
  47. Actors depicted as working for SM Studios include Alfred Hitchcock, John Wayne, Bob Hope, Dean Martin, James Arness, "Miss Kitty", Charles Bronson, Bing Crosby and Jack Benny among others. These celebrity "cameos" should be considered topical references as per Earth-616's Sliding Timescale.
  48. Marvel Saga #1 states that this isn't a cyclops of Grecian myth, but a Deviant mutates
  49. Namor is depicted as having the ability to discharge electricity like an electric eel and use sonar-like deep sea fish. These abilities to mimic the skills of other sea life are mostly phased out by his appearance in Fantastic Four #14.
  50. Namor keeps his movie studio. It's seen again in Fantastic Four #193-195 under its new name Imperial Pictures.
  51. Stan Lee and Jack Kirby are never clearly depicted in this story. They are always seen in shadow or otherwise obscured. This trend would continue in their future Fantastic Four appearances. Based on the Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe A-Z #4 the appearances of Stan Lee and Jack Kirby in this issue are not considered topical references per the Sliding Timescale of Earth-616, that is typically used for real-life individuals that appear in the comics that were popular during the era of publication. This suggests that both Stan Lee and Jack Kirby were working for Marvel Comics on Earth-616 during the early years of the Fantastic Four.
  52. The technology used in the shrink ray used here was the work of scientist Otto Kronsteig. As revealed in Incredible Hulk #155, Doom had utilized Kronsteig to develop the device, then turned it against the scientist after it was completed.
  53. In Sensational She-Hulk #48, Reed explains that the shock of discovery is what reverted the body swap between himself and Doctor Doom.

See Also

Recommended Reading

Footnotes

  1. First and only known appearance to date besides flashbacks
  2. The Fantastic Four's classic blue costumes debuted this issue. The Thing discarded his costume (and helmet) mid-issue. Parts of this costume were worn by Ben at different occasions later in his career: First in Fantastic Four #239, Ben was forced to wear his costume so as not to frighten the already panic-stricken people of Benson, Arizona. Although he had the helmet along with him, he did not wear it. Ben started wearing a similar helmet after being wounded by Wolverine in Fantastic Four #374, but it lasted only a brief period (until Fantastic Four #386).
  3. The events of this story are witnessed from the perspective of other characters who would become active superhumans: The Sub-Mariner: Namor's time as a homeless derelict prior to this story were revealed in Tales of the Marvels: Inner Demons #1, parts of that story overlap with this one. Spider-Man: Peter Parker observes Mister Fantastic and the Human Torch battling the monster from afar in Spider-Man: With Great Power... #3.
  4. Fantastic Four #4
  5. Fantastic Four #6



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