Published: February 23rd, 2017
Written by: Stan Lee
Art by: Jack Kirby
Marvel Comics, 301 Pages
This stretch of issues in the classic Stan Lee/Jack Kirby run of Fantastic Four really enhances things quite a bit.
At this point, we’re about a year removed from the big arrival of Galactus and the Marvel universe has truly taken shape. Things feel less experimental and as if Lee has truly found his grove.
Additionally, Jack Kirby’s work seems to improve slightly with each volume of this classic series and that’s impressive, as the guy was damn good before he even started drawing these characters. I mean, the guy was already working on Captain America as far back as the 1940s and he started professionally drawing comics in the late ’30s.
This stretch also introduces some new villains and reworks some already classic ones like The Sandman, who now has a cool suit and feels like a legit threat on his own without the help of the other three members of the Frightful Four.
We also get the debut of Ronan the Accuser, Blastaar, Adam Warlock (going by “Him” in these earliest stories) and one of my favorite and very underutilized villains, Psycho-Man.
Plus, we also get more appearances by the Inhumans, Black Panther and Silver Surfer.
All the stories within this volume are action-packed and top notch classic Marvel stuff. Just when you think that Lee and Kirby had found their stride, they find ways to surprise you. Both men are f’n legends for a reason.
Pairs well with: the other Marvel Masterworks collections.