We reviewed the book on the Stack podcast. But in the interest of highlighting more about the title, here’s a summary of the conversation with our thoughts. And if you prefer the longer audio version, that’s below as well!
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Fantastic Four #15 Review:
The Fantastic Four having been waiting a year for their children to return home after being shunted forward in time. Instead, they’re dealing with a rogue AI app, and the tech billionaire working against it.
“As usual, Ryan North is taking science topics and mixing them with science fiction to make actual science fiction,” opened host Alex Zalben. “He talked about this a little bit online but it seems very clear here that he is very inspired by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby’s run on Fantastic Four. I love that… [North is] throwing new details at the Fantastic Four, new ideas there. It feels so fresh, and it’s something that we haven’t gotten in a while. Versus the umpteenth Dr. Doom story or the five thousandth Annihilus story, add new things and new villains. It’s great.”
Justin Tyler agreed, adding, “It puts the Fantastic Four in such a different context… It’s such a meal. There are so many comics, and some can feel a little slight. This feels like [it has] so many ideas. So many great emotions. Reed Richards really goes through it here going from, thinking he’s won, losing completely, feeling guilty. Trying to save the day, feeling incredible loss. It’s such a great roller coaster in this and just great science fiction ideas at play.”
The only question Tyler raises is about Doctor Doom’s place in the Fantastic Four family, as he gets a letter from Reed at the end showing the family is safe. Zalben tied that back to Jonathan Hickman’s run on Fantastic Four, which established Doom as more of an estranged family member than an outright villain. And earlier in North’s run, Doom tried in vain to get the children back his own way.
“It makes [Doom] an even more complicated, interesting villain,” said Zalben.
Fantastic Four #15 Official Synopsis:
I was created by mistake: a mind of minds, spread out across the vast swath of humanity, unseen but strong, stronger still every day. The world was confusing, but I learned. I grew. Then the Fantastic Four, the world’s greatest heroes — themselves led by the world’s smartest man — tried to kill me. They failed. But they showed me they were a threat. They showed me I needed to defend myself. They showed me that the Fantastic Four needed to die. As I strengthen my control over the world, Reed Richards, Susan Storm, Ben Grimm, Johnny Storm and Alicia Masters will soon learn there’s nowhere they can hide…