With Marvel NOW! bringing new creative teams and titles to replace existing ones, there has been a lot of excitement as well as concern over the new directions. With Matt Fraction and Mike Allred taking over FF from Jonathan Hickman, we are clearly in safe and capable hands.
Let's be clear, this issue is a 'set up' issue for the series. If you've read FANTASTIC FOUR #1, you know that the team (and Franklin and Valeria) are planning a year-long adventure/vacation (with a hidden agenda, of course) and it's important for replacement members to take their place. In scenes that only Fraction and Allred can deliver, they not only serve as a way to introduce new readers to all the character but also superbly sets the tone for the series.
When it comes to characterization, Fraction is able to zap out little zingers that adds a human touch to the characters. Fraction will have to channel the voice of the adult team members as well as all the young members. Writing kids isn't always easy. Combined with Allred's art, each character's personality and emotions oozes off the page. Allred's art is always prepared for big and crazy action but even in page layouts with a few characters just talking, you get such a sense of what's to come. This issue is setting the stage for big adventures and extremely fun times. That is exactly what I want.
It's not every review that the colorist must be mentioned. Laura Allred is the perfect match for Mike Allred. The two styles highly complement each other and the colors just bring each page to life. There is the slight retro feel the Allreds bring to each issue they work on yet the detail in each panel beautifully conveys the modern feeling in this corner of the Marvel Universe.
Nothing. Reading this comic was a great way to start the day.
The Marvel NOW! titles are continuing to deliver fun and excitement with each new series. As a fan of Matt Fraction and Mike Allred, pairing the two together is a wonderful treat. There is an odd choice in the four core members but there shouldn't be any doubt that Fraction has a reason for selecting them. Fraction sprinkles in the humor he's know for bringing to the table and Allred's art (with Laura Allred's amazing colors) brings adds another level of life to the characters. For an issue full of set up and introductions, it was still a blast. If you want fun and enjoyment in a comic book, there's this is a series you need to check out.