HOME ABOUT SUPPORT US SITES WE LIKE FORUM Search Fanboyplanet.com | Powered by Freefind FANBOY PLANET
Comics Today's Date:

Hey Kids! Comics!

Ultimate Fantastic Four #6
writers: Brian Michael Bendis and Mark Millar
artists: Adam Kubert, John Dell and Danny Miki

As the second re-thinking of Marvel's First Family goes, Ultimate Fantastic Four had it easy. The first time around was Jim Lee's Heroes Reborn project, in which Lee tried to make sense of why this particular group of four would go off into space without violating several child endangerment laws. Lee was constrained by trying to pay homage to continuity - all of continuity, compressing it into less than a year.

Thankfully, Bendis and Millar had no such limitation, and snuck it all past us.

Still, some fans have howled. Of all the ultimizing done in the past few years, this is the most radical, mostly because the Fantastic Four here are so …young. All so young. Right now, it looks like it's even a rethinking of Bendis' original presentation of the Fantastic Four in Ultimate Marvel Team-Up. Take away what you thought you knew and loved, and just look at the core concept, and you'll find a pretty nifty comic.

Most of the major ideas associated with the Fantastic Four have been crammed into this initial six issues. The boy who will be Dr. Doom lurks on the edges of Reed Richards' bonding with the people who become his family. Amped up to a much more believable level of dangerous, the Mole Man plays a key role. Instead of a space shot, the four gain their powers through an attempt to breach the Negative Zone, that stalwart plot element of every creative team's run on the original book. Somehow, Bendis and Millar got it all in without any of it seeming forced.

More importantly, they have given the Four more equal footing with each other. Reed may still be the smartest, but Sue and Johnny are no slouches in the brains department. Granted, Johnny is still the hot-headed immature one, but that doesn't make him stupid. Only Ben doesn't quite belong, but Bendis and Millar firmly cemented his friendship with Reed and thus his place with the group.

Again, hindsight makes it easy. Sue discovers the greater usage of her powers almost immediately, whereas with Lee and Kirby it was a couple of years before it even occurred to them that maybe she could do something besides turn invisible. Despite her name, there's no way this version will be an invisible woman. (That is, of course, assuming they all take the code names we're familiar with - that hasn't happened yet, and really, is Reed old enough here to be Mister Fantastic?)

Marvel hit another one out of the ballpark with this. Combining Millar's flair for high plotting and Bendis' incredible eye and ear for characterization turned this into an extremely satisfying story. Of course, having Kubert do the penciling didn't hurt, either, and he turned in work both tight and inventive.

Of course, for a variety of reasons including Bendis having to essentially rewrite the rest of the Marvel Universe proper, this creative team has already disbanded. Next month, though, we may forget our sorrow as Warren Ellis and Stuart Immonen step in.

It won't be what we thought we wanted, but I'll lay odds now it will blow fans away.


Derek McCaw


Our Friends:

Official PayPal Seal

Copyrights and trademarks for existing entertainment (film, TV, comics, wrestling) properties are held by their respective owners and are used with permission or for promotional purposes of said properties. All other content ™ and © 2001, 2014 by Fanboy Planet™.
"The Fanboy Planet red planet logo is a trademark of Fanboy Planetâ„¢
If you want to quote us, let us know. We're media whores.
Movies | Comics | Wrestling | OnTV | Guest | Forums | About Us | Sites