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Feeling Fantastic

I just read the first actual Fantastic Four comic that Marvel's put out in ages. Apparently, it was released with consideration for an anniversary of their first appearance? Which made me think about the story I heard about Stan Lee's impetus to create the group.

He had this uncle or something who knew that Stan's comic business wasn't doing too well. Stan didn't think that he could keep going much longer. Mr Uncle-or-whatever comes and says "Hey, Stanley. Those DC dudes . . . " I'm probably paraphrasing. But.

"Those DC dudes are killing it with their Justice League mag. Whole team of heroes. That's what sells, m'boy. Making all the dusty dollar bills. Why don't you make one of those super teams?"

And he did. In a way. But the Justice League's popularity owed something to the prominence of the heroes that composed the team. It starred DC's greatest hits, who were already firmly established. By that point, some had been around for decades. Stan Lee's response, the Fantastic Four, were completely new. They weren't building on anything. But they still exploded. They basically built the foundation for the modern Marvel universe.

Today, people criticise DC for making a Justice League movie that hasn't earned its existence as Marvel's Avengers film did with years of solo movies for the team's major figures. It's the reverse situation. And the creation of the Fantastic Four belies those criticisms. It doesn't matter how you put the thing out there if what you put out there is good.

And that's an argument I won't take further around Justice League because my ability to objectively judge the quality of entertainment is firmly dubious. That's avowed.

But hey. I did like that movie.

Bonus Question!

Which Beatle would provide the best company for Ben Grimm?

My first instinct was George Harrison, but I think that Ringo's tastes would be more compatible with Ben's.

Copyright © 2011, Jaymes Buckman and David Aaron Cohen. All rights reserved. In a good way.