As people who read Panel Discussions might know by now, one of my pet peeves is hero-on-hero comics, i.e. issues that pit one hero against another to satisfy the immemorial question, “Who’d win in a fight, Captain America or Captain Boomerang?” (I’d love to see that comic by the way). This issue of FF (not “Fantastic Four” but “Future Foundation” the new team sans Johnny) involves The Thing up against Reed Richards and Sue Storm. Surprisingly, I loved this issue. It’s one of my favorite purchases recently, proving that there’s an exception to every rule, and a positive for every peeve.
One reason I liked it was Tom Grummet’s penciling. He was able to draw a city being ravaged by a mind-controlled Thing while keeping it stylized so it wouldn’t greatly upset anyone (coincidentally, this issue came out around the same time as the 9/11 ten year anniversary). Also, I thought he did a great job of drawing Sue Storm in particular. Sometimes other pencilers try too hard to make her look matronly, and in the process make her look uninteresting and plain. Here, she looks like a cool superhero and could feasibly be a mother of two (of course, comics have to be allowed some unreality).
This issue features Sue Storm going to extreme lengths to try and free Ben from his mind-control. I was reminded of Green Arrow’s tie-in from Blackest Night when Black Canary made the hard decision to allow her mind-controlled husband to be frozen in a block of ice to prevent him from hurting anyone. No block of ice could hold The Thing, so Sue had to go a step further…
It’s the sort of thing that can only happen in comics. Reminding me again of why I love the medium.
For another Fantastic Four issue I’d recommend, click here.