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Fantastic Four #8 Review

5

Ben Grimm is accused of murder!

The Good

Things get a bit more tight here and sub-plots that were pushed off to the side for the tie-in come back in full swing. Everything in this book works so well. It all fits together very nicely and what really pushed this over the edge is that each, individual story, while fantastic on their own, never outshines any of the other side stories. There's a lot of awesome here and no filler.

I've said it time and time again about this series, but I love how writer James Robinson connects the FF world in this book. It pays homage to the past and utilizes it in well thought out ways that give this book a lot of depth. Bringing in Jim Hammond to take over the Future Foundation is a bold move, but one that sits well with Sue, which is something I really liked. She won't have to worry about her kids because they're in good hands. Their dialogue together was incredibly emotional and touching and the highlight of the issue.

Leonard Kirk does a tremendous job on this issue, with Scott Hanna on inks, and Jesus Aburtov on colors. The opening page featuring two S.H.I.E.L.D. agents escorting Ben Grimm away is not only beautiful to look at, but it gives a real sense of size for The Thing, something some artists don't do well with him because he's always clobbering. Kirk shows a very passive, handcuffed Ben with a sadness strung across his face. It's one hell of a way to open up a issue.

The Bad

As a person who normally doesn't find the Fantastic Four appealing (sorry), there's actually little for me to dislike about this issue and series as a whole. Sure, I could throw a complaint in about how this ties into Original Sin's main story as much as pizza sauce ties into brick laying, but this is less of a tie in issue and more of an issue whose story is a result of the events of Original Sin.

The Verdict

Once again, FANTASTIC FOUR impresses me to no ends. I wasn't an FF fan before, but now I am, so I'd say Robinson accomplished a mission every writer has, which is to get everyone to enjoy their books. On top of that, Kirk and company do such a wonderful job on art duties. The Fantastic Four is so disjointed at this point in the story, but that's what makes this book such a great read. Nothing is going well for these guys, but it doesn't feel like Robinson is being malicious. He's just telling his story and it's a story I can't put down. Overall, I highly recommend this issue and series.

12 Comments
Posted by powerflux

did he really kill someone? If not, who is he accused of killing?

Posted by DrellAssassin

I don't read this series (thinking I might pick it up in trade), but I love that the Original Sin "tie-ins" have been mainly books taking the fallout from Original Sin and running back to their own stories to see how that affects them.

Edited by Cap10nate

I have been loving this series. I agree with your comment that even though nothing is going right that it doesn't appear malicious. I feel like with a lot of writers like Rick Remender, that the bad stuff that happens to characters do seem malicious and he isn't someone I want writing my favorite character for that fact (although he currently is with Cap). It gets to the point where you cringe before you pick up the next issue worrying what is going to go wrong for my character. I don't get that feeling with Robinson for one reason or another although a lot of bad things have happened to the First Family over the past 8 issues.

My only complaint is that I wish they would bring back the FF title so that it could focus on Jim Hammond and the kids. With the Future Foundation, Reed & Sue, Ben, Johnny, and Val all being in different locations, there isn't enough panel time to feature everybody in one monthly comic. Either the book has a couple pages focused on each character each month or someone's story is only advanced once every couple months. If you only have to show 5 pages of story each month for each of the story lines that are going on, the arc could drag out forever. Bringing back FF would help, but I doubt it is economically viable as this book is already almost out of the top 100 books sold for the month despite how good it is.

It was great to finally see Sue unleash as it has been teased in a couple issues.

Posted by Cap10nate

did he really kill someone? If not, who is he accused of killing?

He was found holding the corpse of Puppet Master in a locked room without windows that Reed could only get into by squeezing under the door after they were heard fighting inside by Ben's girlfriend, Alicia Masters, who is also the Puppet Master's stepdaughter. Whether or not he actually killed is still be seen although I highly doubt it. I'm sure it is a frame up of some sort.

Posted by Oscars94

Accidental hugicide.

Posted by BR_Havoc

@cap10nate: I agree with everything you said. When Robinson first took this book over and it was to be the fall of the Fantastic Four, I was so worried that he would do it like Remender. Break heroes down to nothing in a way you dread reading the next issue or worse do what Slott does saying a character can never be happy because that is part of the them.

So far what this book has shown us is a family can be taken through hell, but they will keep fighting to stay together.

Edited by brinkthemoviemyfavoritemovie

We need a new series with the FF kids and we need it YESTERDAY. Damn this issue for reminding me!

But seriously, what a surprisingly amazing issue. Probably the best thing that came out this week IMO. I'm not usually a Fantastic Four or Robinson fan, at all, either. Caught up with this for the OS tie-in since it hadn't gotten far yet and it's been fine so far, but yeah, wow, kinda blown away by this particular one.

Edited by Teerack

Wow Sue kicked the Avengers ass. :O Best battle of the week for sure.

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Posted by Magnetic_Eye

Just goes to prove how good writers who know their characters and their craft well are able to turn reviewers around who normally didn't find the FF appealing and who wasn't a fan.

James Robinson is a great writer. He hasn't divided or alienated the fan base. He has concentrated on telling great memorable stories.

I've been reading Fantastic Four since 1974 and Robinson is imo right up there with some of the best writers ever to scribe Marvel's first family.

This is mature in depth storytelling with substance and style. Why can't Marvel hire more writers of his caliber to pen their flagship characters???

The art team also deserve high praise for their outstanding work.

Fox can make their crappy alternate re-imagined counterfeit but I would rather read the real thing by Marvel anyday.

Posted by CrazyScarecrow

I need to start reading the Fantastic Four again. Why is the costume red now though? I really enjoyed the classic blue. I wish that would comeback.

Posted by CaptainMarvel4Ever

Pfft, I was an F4 fan before it was cool.... hopefully I still will be after Fox's movie..... gulp

Posted by CoryNick

Really love this series and Robinson's Invaders also!