I knew they’d be back. We all knew they’d be back. I have to say, even though I’m no die-hard fan, watching Disney/Marvel put 21st Century Fox in a chokehold by cancelling The Fantastic Four comic was a little hard to watch. Disney really tried to regain the FF and X-Men properties , but Fox really wanted to keep pushing out mediocre movies, so Marvel decided to replace mutants with Inhumans, and the FF got canned.
The Fantastic Four are a flagship franchise. They’re Marvel’s first family! Shutting that book down was symbolic of how ruthlessly protective the Marvel Movie Empire is of its agenda. Whenever the Internet explodes over a celebrated director being removed from the helm of a Marvel movie, I just think, “they shut down The Fantastic Four, of course they’d tell Edgar Wright to shove it.” If there was any illusion that Marvel would remain the same ol’ ever lovin’ comic company that it had been before being bought out, it ends when they shut down an institution to avoid inadvertently promoting a Miles Teller movie.
Fortunately for readers, endings aren’t so permanent in the comic book world. Even if we act like it’s over, we expect a comeback. Disney’s recent purchase of 21st Century Fox paves the way for Mr. Fantastic, The Invisible Woman, The Thing, and The Human Torch to enter the Marvel Movie Universe. So naturally the comic has to come back with them.
For those of you who don’t know, Reed Richards and Sue Storm, “Mr. and Mrs. F,” didn’t die when their book got cancelled. Reed, Sue and their two children, Valeria and Franklin Richards, rode off into the figurative sunset when they walked off into the edge of the universe to explore who knows what after the end of Marvel’s Secret Wars event. There was an ambiguous ending built into their finale so that when it was time for the FF to come back, it wouldn’t be too much of a stretch (sorry). Nevertheless, resurrections are big events in the comic book world, and when something as monumental as the FF is dismantled, you need to have a helluva team to honor its tradition and restore its prestige. This Dan Slott-Sara Pichelli led creative team is doing just that.