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Flashback: Review of Fantastic Four 124 (July 1972) June 23, 2008

Posted by lotrking in Comic Book Reviews, Flashback.
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In Flashback, LOTRKing reviews a random back issue (in most instances, one he hasn’t read before) and attempts to make sense of both the story and its place in Marvel history.

Finally, for the first time in Flashback, I can say that I fully enjoyed this issue! (Perhaps the fact that Stan Lee wrote it has something to do with that. 😉 ) It wastes no time setting up the story as the very first panel shows Reed fainting and falling out of the Fantasti-Car. The next few pages show the FF trying to saving Reed and themselves (they’ve lost control of the Fantasti-Car) before they finally succeed and take Reed to the hospital. Upon entering the plot thickens as we hear a nurse raving about how she saw a monster break into the medical supplies room. The other nurses try to tell her that she must have been sleeping and dreaming, but we later find out, since this is a comic book after all, that it actually happened.

After we get an obligatory humorous scene involving the Thing (a necessary piece of an FF issue, right?), we see him step into the supply room in question, before being knocked down by an escaping shadowy figure. The mysterious creature then kidnaps Sue, using chloroform to make her unconscious. This quickly leads to a chase as Johnny flies after them, but the monster eventually makes it to a lake, and distracts Johnny by throwing a full grown tree at several nearby pedestrians. By this time, the monster has disappeared (into the lake unbeknownst to Johnny). As the doctors discover that Reed’s condition is a result of extreme exhaustion, Johnny and Ben regroup and decide to save Sue. Meanwhile, Sue turns herself invisible and the monster, thinking she has escaped, goes to recover her. Finding herself in a deserted cavern, Sue uses a stick to nudge a large boulder out of the way in attempts to escape, only to discover that said boulder was blocking a large surge of water from entering the underwater cave. As the doctors discuss what they should tell Reed about his wife, he wakes up in time to hear about her situation, and tries desperately to escape to save her, while Sue is drowning and laments that she will never see her husband or son again.

For being an over thirty-five year-old story, I was intrigued the whole time. We all know that Stan Lee is a genius, but I think we sometimes fail to forget that even his “non-groundbreaking” stories can still be a great read. Not to mention that John Buscema’s art, while a little dated, is still spectacular. Never once did anything look goofy or cheesy, as can often happen in these old-time comics. Heck, this is the first time doing a Flashback where the ending actually made me care enough to read the next issue to see what happens (and the ending was just as strong as this issue!) So if any of you guys (or gals) are looking for an entertaining old-school Stan Lee Fantastic Four tale, you may as well pick this up! (Along with the next issue, assuming you want to see why Sue doesn’t die, and the story behind the mysterious monster.)

Next week: Amazing Spider-Man 228

-LOTRKing

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Comments»

1. Gary - July 23, 2008

The Arwork is not “A little dated”…it is so much better then anything today


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