Since Reed Richards and his wife Susan Storm-Richards went off to recreate the Marvel multiverse at the end of Secret Wars #9 (March 2016), the Fantastic Four has been non-existent. That is until last week. Sort of.
DC just released the first issue of The Terrifics, a series born out of Dark Nights: Metal. Almost everything about it screams Fantastic Four, starting with the characters they have thrown together to create this new squad.
Mr. Terrific is a genius inventor, just like Mr. Fantastic. He is the one throughout the entire issue barking out the best ways everyone else should use their powers. Does that sound like Reed Richards much?
Plastic Man has the stretching powers like Mr. Fantastic but also adds in the wise-cracking irreverence of Johnny Storm, the Human Torch.
Plas also bumps heads and trades verbal jabs with Metamorpho, the man who hates the monstrous body in which he is trapped a la Ben Grimm, The Thing. Their witty repartee mirrors the relationship between Johnny and Ben.
We also have Linnya Wazzo, an apparent ancestor of Tinya Wazzo – Phantom Girl from the Legion of Superheroes as the lone female. Her powers include shifting into an intangible ghostly form that everyone can see through. Certainly sounds like The Invisible Woman.
The supporting characters are also reminiscent of the FF book. We have an antagonist meddling with technology that gets out of control, providing the springboard for the story. In this case, it is Simon Stagg instead of Victor von Doom, but the same result.
Metamorpho is also in love with Stagg’s daughter Sapphire, calling to mind The Thing’s relationships with Alicia Masters, the daughter of the FF villain Puppet Master.
The similarities don’t stop with the players involved. The heroes end up on an unplanned trip into a hostile universe to fight bizarre creatures. They find some foreign technology that their genius has to figure out how to use. How many Fantastic Four adventure started out exactly the same way?
They even encounter a giant humanoid figure wearing a pronged helmet that just shouts Galactus.
There is zero doubt that DC threw this random quartet of previously unrelated heroes together specifically to bring back the feel of “The World’s Greatest Comics Magazine.” In fact, the entire line of DC’s new age of heroes is a tribute to Marvel superheroes. Hopefully, Marvel follows suit soon and brings back Marvel’s First Family, possibly in the pages of their current series Marvel Two-In-One which is featuring The Thing and Human Torch.
In the meantime, get your FF fill by checking out The Terrifics.
– by Rob Otto