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Quote1.png Look at the size of this gapin' glob! If I saw 'im in one'a them comic-mags the Marvel people put out about us-- ...I'd think they'd flipped their gourd! Quote2.png
Thing, regarding the Giant Octopus

Appearing in "What If Spider-Man Had Joined the Fantastic Four?"

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Synopsis for "What If Spider-Man Had Joined the Fantastic Four?"

Uatu the Watcher explains to the readers that there exist many realities. In each alternate reality, there is a divergence from what what has happened and what could have happened.

The Watcher focuses on an alternate reality in which Spider-Man attempts to join the Fantastic Four as a solution to his money problems. Originally, Spider-Man is turned down by the group, but in this alternate reality they allow Spider-Man to join, causing the birth of the Fantastic Five.

With Spider-Man on the team, his association with the Fantastic Four grants him acceptance from the population unlike his mainstream counterpart, who is labeled a menace by the Daily Bugle.

The Fantastic Five take on a number of villains, including the Vulture and the Red Ghost and his Super-Apes. While Mr. Fantastic, Thing, Human Torch and Spider-Man go on these adventures, the Invisible Girl often stays behind to monitor things from base.

Sue is eventually seduced into meeting Namor the Sub-Mariner, who is under the control of the Puppet Master to get revenge on the Fantastic Five.

Quote1.png First time I ever saw a female who could keep her mouth shut so long! Quote2.png
--Ben Grimm, while Sue held her breath under water

After freeing Sue and Namor from the Puppet Master's control, Sue decides that she loves Namor and wants to stay in his kingdom with him, after months of neglect from the team thanks to Spider-Man's inclusion in the group. Accepting her request, Namor conditions her body so that she can breathe underwater (a process that is apparently permanent), and the remainder of her former comrades leave in defeat, Spider-Man regretting to have joined the group.


  • Cover art: Modifications by Romita. Earth-721
  • In the Watcher's introduction on parallel worlds there are: the world where Reed Richards became the Thing instead of Ben Grimm was first seen in the story "What Mad World?" in Fantastic Four #118; the Fantastic Four fighting alongside the Invaders is from Fantastic Four Annual #11/Marvel Two-In-One #20; the Avengers' battles with the Squadron Supreme first happened in Avengers #8586, but this appears to be their combat with them in Avengers #141144; Spider-Man's battle with "a certain colorfully-clad alien" is a nod to the first Marvel/DC Comics crossover in Superman vs. the Amazing Spider-Man #1; Killraven's world first seen in Amazing Adventures (Vol. 2) #18; and Deathlok's world, which appeared in Astonishing Tales #25.
  • The Watcher's narratives of the origins of the Fantastic Four and Spider-Man occurred in Fantastic Four #1, and Amazing Fantasy #15, respectively.
  • The beginning of the story shows Peter Parker getting the idea of joining the Fantastic Four in order to earn a living. This parallels to the events of Amazing Spider-Man #1. In the original story, the Fantastic Four turn Spider-Man down, causing him to flee. Later he gets framed for a crime that the Chameleon committed and be branded a menace by J. Jonah Jameson following a failed space flight by his son and astronaut, John Jameson.
  • The final battle of the Fantastic Four before Spider-Man joining the group was when the team traveled to the southwest to battle the Hulk. This is a reference to the first battle between the Thing and the Hulk in Fantastic Four #12.
  • The Chameleon's plot in this issue is foiled by Spider-Man joining the Fantastic Four. Originally in Amazing Spider-Man #1, the Chameleon disguised himself as Spider-Man in order to frame the wall-crawler for the theft of some plans that the spy would sell to the communists.
  • An additional divergence in this reality is the battle against the Fantastic Five and the Vulture. The Vulture originally appeared in Amazing Spider-Man #2 and battled Spider-Man alone. After many attempts to defeat the Vulture, Spider-Man eventually created a device that counteracted the magnet-powered flying harness the Vulture used.
  • The Fantastic Four originally battled the Red Ghost on the moon in Fantastic Four #13. In the original story, the Invisible Girl traveled to the moon with the rest of her teammates and battled against Red Ghost and his Super-Apes.
  • The Fantastic Four battled a Puppet Master-controlled Namor in Fantastic Four #14. However in the original story, Sue wasn't tricked into meeting Namor and taken captive until after the Red Ghost mission (since Sue went to the moon with the team in the mainstream reality). The battle with Namor is almost entirely the same, save for the fact that in this version of the battle Sue decides to stay with Namor at the end of the story.
  • This reality and its version of the Fantastic Five are seen again in What If? #21.

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