Pouring the Foundation
While I did jump in at Fantastic Four #600, I decided it might be a good idea to step back and take a look at the FF series (a much more attainable near-term goal than trying to read hundreds of Fantastic Four back issues). Obviously, this issue picks up after the infamous Fantastic Four 588, so I knew why Johnny was missing - but beyond that my mind and expectations were wide open. Needless to say, I didn't have much of a clue (outside what I could glean from four line intro page) what was going on when the issue started. The good news is, I didn't really have to. I was able to pick up on the characters, their role and the current goings on very quickly. I attribute this to the great writing and pretty decent art - which painted to picture rather nicely.
The story was really easy to follow for a new reader as well. I believe it was the introduction of Spider-Man as a new member of the "Club" that really allowed me to feel part of the story and the team, right away. As the issue presses on, we see various interactions within the team, stages of grief and how everyone is moving forward - to the future. The world and its problems did not stop because of Johnny's sacrifice.
One of the best parts of this book was the true family feeling it portrayed. Right down to the home cooked meal and father-son disagreements. As many of you have realized, this book is definitely worth picking up, though I doubt there are many of you out there that haven't read this... If by some strange happenstance you haven't, do so. It even ends with a pretty interesting twist/cliffhanger.
And by all means, don't listen to what Nathaniel Richards has to say...