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Fantastic Four #2 

Written by Matt Fraction

Art by Mark Bagley

Reviewed by Steve Seigh

Reed Richards is dying. After a near death experience with a really big frickin dinosaur The World’s Greatest Superhero Family is about to embark on an adventure, an journey that could decide the fate of their very lives. In what will only be 4 minutes in our standard Earth time but about a year for the original members of The Fantastic Four and their extended family, Reed, while under the guise of executing an educational family vacation, must search for a cure to his family’s deteriorating health. It’s a massive, cosmic adventure build upon a grave purpose. It’s a chance to have a front row seat to a super hero vacation of epic proportions. And besides, it’s only 4 minutes. What could possibly go wrong?

Fantastic Four #2 picks up directly after the events inside of the outstanding Marvel Now’s FF #1. As each member of the Fantastic Four makes their final preparations before entering the space-time vessel, Pestilence, we’re treated to a number of laugh out loud moments as well as a few tender ones for good measure. This particular issue focuses primarily on Johnny Storm and his need to convince Dana Deering that she’s the proper hero to stand for the Fantastic Four in his stead. For readers who are new to The Fantastic Four this will provide a great insight into the personality of Johnny and his ability to be charmingly persuasive, as well as a bit of a romantic. 

Matt Fraction is doing a hell of a job picking up where Jonathan Hickman left off. In my opinion, Fraction’s Fantastic Four, so far, drips with irrefutable evidence of care and research that clearly honors Hickman’s rock solid foundation over the past several years. It’s a refreshing take on the family that also feels familiar to long time fans of the series. Ah yes, and let’s no forget to mention that Mark Bagley’s art is right at home within the series. Bagley’s line work along with Mark Farmer and Mark Morales’ beautiful colors makes for an epic palate of vibrant visual entertainment throughout the book. 

But don’t take my word for it. Well, do, but then go out and buy the book and judge for yourself. There is something very pure and very satisfying about the world of Fantastic Four and FF.  Both titles leave me with a sense of wonder and excitement that I just don’t seem to get from any other series on the stands today. When I think of epic comics and adventure I can’t help but think of The Fantastic Four. For me it’s a series of danger and consequences that no fan of comics should be without. With a seemingly endless stream of new events being presented by Marvel and DC it’s nice to know that when you read Fantastic Four that you’re a part of a family, you’re a part of their lives. The quiet moments pop with sentimentality and the action is over the top smart and thrilling. This all happens in the span of 4 minutes. What could possibly go wrong?

VERDICT: Everyone should be buying Fantastic Four as well as FF. These two books combined are the crowning jewels of the Marvel universe in my humble opinion and you’d be a fool to miss out on the extraordinary adventure that is about to take place. 

* This review was written while listening to the album ‘Allelujah! Don’t Bend. Ascend! by the band Godspeed You! Black Emperor

4 Responses

  1. Nameitpurple

    After the plot race of the first issue, this felt a little slower and really had time to hit some nice character beats. Fractions work so far, and the ongoing joy of Hawkeye, makes me more comfortable that Marvel have given the Fantastic Four over to some safe hands. As the Fantastic Family now rush off into parts unknown, I guess the stories in Fantastic Four and FF will now diverge and go their seperate ways for the first time in a long time. It will be interesting to see if the tone of either book now shifts as the plots take different directions.

  2. Steve Seigh

    I have no doubt that the events of FF will tie heavily into Fantastic Four. The books sort of work in tandem that way so that we get at least two outings a month with the cast of both books. If Fantastic #2 is any indication as to the level of care that Fraction is going to give this series than I think we’re in for one hell of a ride. I love Fantastic Four and FF like no other. I’m ready. Let’s go!

    Also, thanks very much for you comment and insight. Happy reading, man!

  3. NameitPurple

    Absolutely. One of the (many) great things about the books have been that the two titles offer interesting counterpoints to the same stories. But I think from the “We’ll be back in four minutes” pronouncement,(and judging from the tropes of fiction) I don’t think we have to shout SPOILER-ALERT to say it is going to end up with the Foundation and Family seperated for a mite longer than that. I’m not complaining, I think it’ll make an interesting twist to the dynamic. Plus, I’m almost as interested to see how Lang deals with the surrogate family thrust upon him, as I am the fate of the Fantastic originals. I really look forward to hearing you guys’ opinions as it unfolds. I think we’re in for a hell of a ride.

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