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Preface

The history of the Fantastic Four is subject to the Sliding Timescale of Earth-616. As the oldest super-hero team in the Modern Age and subject of the longest running title a number of details pertaining to their adventures are considered Topical References. In "Marvel Time", as of 2016, the Fantastic Four have been active as a group for fourteen years.

Origins

Fantastic Four (Earth-616) from Fantastic Four First Family Vol 1 1 0001

Reed and his crew being bombarded with cosmic rays.

The brilliant aeronautical engineer Reed Richards inadvertently created the Fantastic Four after deciding to make an unauthorized test flight into space using an experimental rocket of his own design. While the rocket might have made it possible to travel to other star systems, Reed's financiers were losing interest. Reed's girlfriend Susan Storm and her younger brother Johnny insisted on joining Reed on the flight. Reed's old friend Ben Grimm was convinced to pilot the ship.[note 1] Once in space, the rocket was bombarded by a wave of cosmic radiation.[note 2] The craft crashed back down to Earth. [note 3] Emerging from the ruins of the spaceship, they discovered the radiation had mutated their bodies and had given them remarkable new abilities. Reed gained the ability to stretch his body and limbs, Johnny was able to fly and become engulfed in flames he could control, and Sue was able to bend light around her body and become invisible. Ben gained incredible strength and durability, but his body was tragically transformed. He now had a muscular orange, rock-like hide.

All four decided to use their powers to better humanity, and founded the Fantastic Four. Individually they call themselves Mr. Fantastic, Invisible Woman, the Human Torch, and the Thing. They are not superheroes in the traditional sense, but rather explorers, facing whatever challenges that may arise as a family. Reed was the teams resident genius and leader of the group. Ben was initially bitter about his mutation in a monster and was frequently angry or depressed. Johnny was frequently rebellious leaving Sue to act as the teams den mother to the group. [1]

The quartet were quickly picked up by the government and were then contained in a government quarantine facility for those exposed by cosmic rays under the command of Reed's colleague General Walter Montgomery. There Reed was contacted telepathically by Professor Franz Stahl, another cosmic ray mutate who saw their transformations something that evolved them beyond humanity. Stahl caused another mutate, Raymond Perry to go on a rampage in the facility. [2] While the fledgling Fantastic Four stopped Perry's rampage, Stahl escaped from his cell. Having demonstrated the effectiveness of their new powers, Reed managed to convince General Montgomery into releasing the Fantastic Four and allowing them to operate freely. When a series of nuclear facilities began to vanish, Montgomery convinced his superiors to give the Fantastic Four a change to prove themselves. [3]

The Early Years

Fantastic Four (Earth-616) from Fantastic Four First Family Vol 1 6 0001

Original costumes

The group first began investigating a series of strange earthquakes that swallowed up atomic facilities all over the world. Tracing the source of the earthquakes to Monster Island, the group clashed with the Mole Man and his army of creatures who were attempting to take over the surface[1]. Their first mission was a success, but the group faced some publicity issues due to the damages caused by the group. Meanwhile, Franz Stahl continued to contact Reed to try and convince him that they were beyond normal humans. [3] Shortly thereafter, the Fantastic Four were framed for a series of crimes by four members of the alien Skrull race who sought to eliminate the Fantastic Four in the first step of an invasion of Earth. The Four were briefly incarcerated by the authorities until they broke out and Reed used use clippings from comic books to scare the aliens away. The captured Skrull spies were then hypnotized into thinking they were ordinary cows[4].

Reed then set up temporary operations for the group in a warehouse along the New York City shoreline. Discovering that the cosmic rays also altered their space suits so that they could meld along with their powers. Reed decided that they should wear them as costumes until he could better examine them. The threat from the Mole Man was not yet over however as one of his creatures, Giganto attacked New York City. The Fantastic Four quickly defeated the creature which then fled out to sea, revealing themselves to the public and the press for the first time. [5]

Reed next rented out the top floors of the Baxter Building in New York City as their new headquarters. [6][7] Reed then began to examine Ben's transformation, feeling guilty over transforming his best friend into a monstrous form, Reed began investigating how to return him to human form. [8][7] However the group began to show signs of falling apart, particularly Reed's relationship with Sue, which Sue believed was taking a back seat to the establishment of the Fantastic Four. After Johnny, Ben and Sue stormed out on Reed, he was contacted once more by Stahl who was going to unleash the cosmic rays within a meteor at the decontamination facility and mutate the entire world. [7] Reed went after Stahl alone, and soon found himself caught in a telepathic conflict with his foe. Meanwhile, the other members of the group reunited and went after Reed, only to have to face an army of soldiers mutated by cosmic rays. [9] During the conflict, the Fantastic Four defeated the cosmic ray mutated soldiers, and Reed and Sue defeated Stahl in mental combat with the strength of their love for one another. With Stahl seemingly slain, all those affected by his cosmic ray bombardment were restored to normal. The Fantastic Four however only saw a temporary reversal of their powers. In the aftermath of the battle, Reed and Sue reconciled, and Reed vowed to focus on their relationship, fashioning her a ring out of a fragment of the meteor that Stahl attempted to use against the world. [10]

Early on in their career, the group spent their time apprehending monsters such as Fin Fang Foom, Gruto, Klagg and Googam, interring them on Monster Island[11]. The four next clashed with the hypnotist calling himself the Miracle Man. While the group managed to defeat the Miracle Man, infighting between the team prompted the Human Torch to leave the group[6]. While the rest of the team searched for Johnny, the young member discovered the long lost Sub-Mariner who had spent the past decades living in a Bowery flop-house with no memory of his past. Johnny restored his memory and when Namor discovered that his kingdom had been destroyed by atomic tests, the Sub-Mariner attacked New York with his giant monster Giganto. The Fantastic Four slew Giganto and defeated Namor who fled, but not before attempting to kidnap Sue, whom he had become smitten by. Sue also developed uneasy feelings about Namor, putting strain on her relationship with Reed[12].

The group was next attacked by Reed's old college rival Victor von Doom, now calling himself Dr. Doom. He kidnapped Sue in order to force Reed and the others to use his Time-Platform to recover Blackbeard's treasure chest as it supposedly contained a mystic gem that was once owned by the wizard Merlin. Reed and the others were sent back in time and they recovered the chest, but replaced the gems with chains. When they were returned from their own era, Doom attempted to kill them in an airtight room but Sue escaped and freed them and they forced Doom to flee[13]. Doom quickly sought out an alliance with the Sub-Mariner and had him plant a magnetic device within the Baxter Building to pull it into the sun. When Doom betrayed Namor, he and the FF put aside their differences to defeat Doom, leaving him stranded in space while the Baxter Building was returned to its proper location[14]. The Fantastic Four were next targeted by Kurrgo the ruler of the planet Xanth (aka Planet X) who used a beam to turn the world against the Fantastic Four. He then tricked the team to journey to his homeworld to save his people from an extinction level asteroid that threatened to strike their world. Reed developed a shrinking gas that allowed the Xanthians to flee their world on one of the planets two space ships, the Fantastic Four returned home[14]. The Fantastic Four soon clashed with the Puppet Master who attempted to use his radioactive clay to take over the world, a battle that ended with the Puppet Master's seeming demise. The team became close friends with the Puppet Master's blind step-daughter Alicia Masters and she and Ben began dating[15]. During this period, Johnny had a series of solo adventures, regularly seeking the assistance and guidance of his fellow teammates. [note 4]

Fantastic Four (Earth-616) from Fantastic Four Vol 1 9 0001
Despite saving the world multiple times already, the Fantastic Four's operations proved to be costly forcing Reed to file for bankruptcy and liquidate the organizations assets[16]. Reed was also forced to sell the Baxter Building to Walter Collins[17]. The Four found apparent salvation when they were given an offer from SM Studios to star in a Fantastic Four movie. To their surprise the company was run by the Sub-Mariner who tricked the Fantastic Four in accepting the film role which was an attempt to eliminate the male members in order to get at Sue. Reed and the others survived Namor's traps and defeated him in combat. Namor followed through on the contact and the Fantastic Four film was a commercial success netting the group enough money to resume operations[16]. However Reed was unable to buy back the Baxter Building and instead was forced to lease their former headquarter space[17]. The Fantastic Four were next visited by the novice hero known as the amazing Spider-Man who sought membership from the group. After a brief clash, they learned Spider-Man's intentions to join the team as a form of income. When they informed him that the Fantastic Four was non-profit organization, Spider-Man angrily left[18][19][20]. Also around this time, the Fantastic Four began working regularly with the hero known as the Sentry. Most of these adventures are mostly unrecorded or forgotten, but they included a clashes with both Dr. Doom and later the so-called Android Pirates of Dimension Nine[21].

As an extra form of income, Reed licensed out the adventures of the Fantastic Four to Marvel Comics to be adapted into comic books. Soon Dr. Doom returned to Earth thanks to the alien race known as the Ovoids. Learning their ability to swap bodies, Doom used this power to swap bodies with Reed Richards and then attempted to trick the Four into being blasted with his shrink ray. Reed freed himself from captivity and convinced his teammates that Doom switched bodies of him causing the swap to reverse. Doom then became victim of his own shrink ray[22]. The four next attempted to rid New York of the so-called Impossible Man a pesky shape shifting alien from the planet Popup who came to Earth on vacation[23]. During their attempt to get rid of Impossible Man the team met Turbo, a hero from a few years in their future who was briefly stuck in their era[24][25]. Realizing that the Impossible Man craved attention, Reed convinced everyone to ignore the Impossible Man who soon grew bored and left Earth[23]. Johnny briefly left the team again when he was tricked into joining the criminal Acrobat's Torrid Twosome in order to rob a bank. The rest of the team exposed the Acrobat's plot and brought him to justice[26].

The group was next called to Gamma Base in Nevada to destroy the gamma spawned monster known as the Hulk who was accused of wrecking atomic tests. The Four briefly clashed with the Hulk before discovering that the real saboteur, a communist spy calling himself the Wrecker[27]. Reed had finished developing a rocket to fly to the moon so the group could explore the fabled Blue Area. Once arriving there they discovered that the Blue Area contained the ruins of an ancient civilization and had a breathable atmosphere. They were attacked by Russian scientist the Red Ghost and his Super-Apes who had also been exposed to cosmic rays to gain super powers and sought to clash with the Fantastic Four. It was during this conflict that the Fantastic Four first met Uatu the Watcher an alien charged with observing and recording Earth's history. The Watcher decreed that the Fantastic Four and Red Ghost would fight to determine whose country was the greater. The Fantastic Four won, and were allowed to return home while the Red Ghost was left stranded on the Moon[28]. Upon their return home, the Puppet Master resurfaced alive and well and used his special clay to take control of the Sub-Mariner and forced him to capture Sue. When Reed and the others went after her, they freed her from a massive octopus which later crushed the Puppet Master's sub, freeing Namor from their control. Unaware of how he was controlled or why he was fighting, Namor allowed the team to leave without further conflict[29].

The FF were next targeted by the so-called Mad Thinker who organized a plot to have the group briefly leave their headquarters. Johnny left to help his cousin Bones with his flagging surface, Reed took a job with General Electronics, Sue a career in acting, and Ben a career in professional wrestling. However they soon found their new careers as interesting as working as the Fantastic Four and returned to their headquarters to find it taken over by the Mad Thinker. However the Four managed to defeat the Thinker and his creation the Awesome Android thanks to a built in fail safe within the building[30]. Shortly after this Thor was convinced to go to war against humanity by his half brother Loki. During their attack on New York City the Fantastic Four and Spider-Man attempted to stop their rampage and were slain in the process. However, when Thor regained his humanity and fought back against Loki, Odin restored all the damage and returned all the dead back to life. [31] By this time Doctor Doom had taken over the realm of Sub-Atomica in the so-called Microverse and attempted to get revenge against the Four. Shrunk down to Sub-Atomica, the Fantastic Four defeated Doom with the help of the size changing hero Ant Man and Doom fled back to Earth[32]. There Doom then kidnapped Alicia and threatened to take control of the world from a ship armed with disintigration rays that were specifically trained to the Fantastic Four's DNA. Reed managed to get Ben past these defences by briefly reverting him back to human form. Ben shut down the disintigrators allowing the rest of the team to storm the ship forcing Doom to flee[33]. Doom survived and attempted to take Spider-Man as a hostage to lure the Fantastic Four into a trap. Doom erred and actually captured Flash Thompson an avoid Spider-Man fan. By the time the Fantastic Four came to Thompson's rescue, the real Spider-Man had defeated Doom who escaped once again[34].

The Fantastic Four suffered a near tragedy shortly thereafter after the Human Torch clashed with the Eel. In the process of foiling the villain's plot, the Torch absorbed the fury of a nuclear explosion and was critically injured, however the scientific prowess of Mr. Fantastic saw Johnny pull a full recovery[35]. The group went on a vacation cruise shortly thereafter and it was about this time that Namor had found his long lost people and reclaimed the Atlantean throne. Namor kidnapped the Fantastic Four and ordered them to issue an ultimatum to the United Nations: give him sovereignty over the seven seas or face war. Reed petitioned the UN to not give in to the Sub-Mariner's demand and Namor -- having posed as a scientist present during the emergency meeting -- ordered an invasion of the surface. Atlantean soldiers invaded the surface world but were ultimately forced back into the ocean when Reed created a device to drain the water from their helmets. Furious the Sub-Mariner absconded with Sue as his prisoner but Reed and the others followed suit. During the clash, Namor's allies Lady Dorma and Warlord Krang attempted to drown Sue, prompting Namor to rush to her to a hospital, narrowly saving her life. For saving the life of a surface woman however, Namor was abandoned by his people[19].

When the Asgardian trickster god Loki attempted to manipulate the Hulk, the creature's sidekick Rick Jones attempted to contact the Fantastic Four for assistance. Loki intercepted this message, ultimately leading to the formation of a new group of heroes calling themselves the Avengers[36]. Shortly after the group's formation, member Iron Man sought the Fantastic Four's resources to try and find the Hulk[37], but ultimately stopped the Hulk on their own[36]. The Skrulls soon resumed their intentions to invade the Earth, creating the Super-Skrull, a being who could imitate all the powers of the Fantastic Four. Although the Skrull surpassed the group in terms of ability, Reed deduced that his power was beamed to him from the Skrull homeworld and created a device to block this energy, leading to the Super-Skrull's imprisonment in an inactive volcano[38].

Reed soon took to studying Egyptology and discovered ancient hieroglyphics that depicted an Egyptian Pharaoh named Rama-Tut who apparently cured his blindness using a rare radioactive herb. Seeking to cure Alicia's blindness, the Fantastic Four used the Time-Platform they confiscated from Dr. Doom to travel back to the year 2954 BC. To their surprise they soon learned that Rama-Tut was a time traveller himself, hailing from the 30th Century (of Earth-6311). Rama-Tut captured the Four and forced Sue to be his bride while enslaving the male members of the team[39][40]. However, the men were able to free themselves, unbeknownst to them with the secret assistance of Sorcerer Supreme Dr. Strange who also travelled to this period from a few years in the Fantastic Four's immediate future[41]. Freed from their imprisonment, the Fantastic Four rescued Sue and staged a revolt that saw Rama-Tut flee that era in his time machine. The Four collected the herb they needed and returned to their own era[39][42]. However, the mission was ultimately a failure as Doom's Time-Platform neutralized the radioactivity of the herbs, rendering them useless[39].

Soon the Fantastic Four were contacted by the Watcher who warned them of the creation of a new threat, a powerful villain calling himself the Molecule Man who could manipulate inorganic matter. The Fantastic Four clashed with their foe distracting him long enough for the Watcher to imprison him before he could become a threat to the entire universe[43]. Not long after this, Iron Man contacted the Four again on their continued hunt for the Hulk, but Reed and the others were too busy with other cases to lend assistance[44].

Next, the Fantastic Four, and specifically Reed were tapped by CIA agent Nick Fury to help create the technology for the fledgling counter-spy organization that became known as SHIELD[45]. Not long after this the Four investigated the racist rabble rouser known as the Hate-Monger who was spreading his bigotry all over New York. The Four were exposed to the Hate-Monger's Hate Ray, turning the members against each other. Angrily, Reed went after the Hate-Monger alone to stop his coup in the country of San Gusto, and the other members, also still under the effects of the Hate Ray, jealously followed. By the time they arrived, Reed had cured himself of the effects of the Hate Ray and he proceeded to administer the cure to his friends. They eventually stopped the Hate-Monger, who was killed in battle and revealed to be a clone of Nazi leader Adolf Hitler[46].

It was about this time that the Fantastic Four's first foe, the Mole Man, resurfaced. He manipulated events to force the Fantastic Four to seek out a private island to purchase for Reed to store some of his scientific equipment. However, this was a trap set by the Mole Man who intended to sink Manhattan and Moscow below the surface of the Earth to trigger World War III. The Four defeated the Mole Man and foiled his plans in part thanks to Sue's newly developed ability to create invisible force-fields[47]. The Fantastic Four later began working with the Sentry in examining the powerful Cosmic Cube. The Cube briefly took control of Cloc, the Sentry's computer system, before it was stopped by the FF and Sentry[21].

After now months under Reed's often harsh leadership the other members of the team began to feel that it was time to elect a new leader. However, since each member of the team wanted to lead the FF, decisions came to a standstill. It was at this time that Dr. Doom had returned and empowered Bull Brogin, "Handsom" Harry Phillips and Yogi Dakor as his Terrible Trio. Doom and his minions went after each member of the FF individually, capturing the whole group. Doom then attempted to trap them in a room that would transport them into space once it came into contact with a passing Solar Wave. Through Reed's leadership, the Four managed to escape the trap, leaving Doom to suffer the fate that he intended for his foes. In the aftermath of the battle, the group realized that Reed was indeed the one fittest to lead the group[48].

The Earth was next terrorized by the so-called Infant Terrible a infantile alien creature with the power to alter reality on a whim. While the group kept the Infant Terrible away from the influences of mobster Big Joe, Reed contacted the alien's parents who came to collect their wayward child before it could turn its power against the sun[49].

Soon the Hulk returned to New York seeking to get revenge against his former teammates the Avengers who had been hunting him for months. The only heroes in the city at the time were the Fantastic Four, whose numbers were reduced by half due to the fact that Reed fell ill and Sue was caring for him. Johnny was soon injured in combat leaving only the Thing to fight a superiorly stronger foe[50]. Ben valiantly held his own against the Hulk until both Reed and Johnny recovered enough to rejoin the fight. The Fantastic Four then teamed up with the Avengers to stop the Hulk's threat[51].

A while later, Reed finally mustered up the courage to finally ask Sue to marry him. However, before he had the chance, Sue was kidnapped by the Sub-Mariner in another attempt to win her heart. In a fit of rage, Reed raced off alone to rescue her from Namor, leaving Ben and Johnny behind. The pair then recruited the aid of Dr. Strange to track their missing friends and helped Reed rescue Sue from the Sub-Mariner[52].

Not long after this, the Fantastic Four decided to obtain a lawyer and secured the services of Nelson and Murdock, whose co-owner Matt Murdock was secretly the costumed hero Daredevil[53]. The Puppet Master and the Mad Thinker then resurfaced and began working together to use the Puppet Master's radioactive clay to take control of Professor X and use him to manipulate the X-Men into fighting the Fantastic Four. Eventually the X-Men realized what was going on when the two villains revealed themselves, and The Beast destroyed the Puppet Master's clay figure, allowing Professor X to regain control of his own mind. Working together, the Fantastic Four and the X-Men fought the Thinker's Awesome Android until Professor Xavier disabled it, but unfortunately the battle allowed the Puppet Master and Mad Thinker to get away[54].

The Four next went after Gomdulla, an ancient mummy that had come back to life and was rampaging through Manhattan. Also after the creature was Spider-Man, and when Spidey accidentally harmed Sue, the Four attacked him. Eventually the misunderstanding was sorted out and the five heroes stopped Gomdulla[55]. The group was next lured to Yancy Street by the Red Ghost who captured the team and tried to abandon them on the moon. The FF managed to seek cover in the Watcher's citadel, and with the assistance of the advanced technology there they defeated the Red Ghost and returned to Earth[56].

The group next took a vacation in Transylvania, where the Thing was tricked into releasing the ancient alchemist named Diablo who won Ben's fealty over the promise of a cure to his mutation. When the other members of the group learned that Diablo's "miracles" were only short lived, they stormed his castle and Ben, upon realizing this truth helped his teammates trap Diablo once again[57]. Not long after this, Ben and Johnny began to feel that Reed and Sue were getting more publicity than they were and attacked the Sub-Mariner in order to try and generate better press. This not only botched an attempted peace agreement between Reed and Namor, but the pair also learned that Reed and Sue were talking to the press for a special surprise article about them[58]. Another instance where both Johnny and Ben had issue with Reed's leadership occurred shortly after this but they were put in their place by Reed who outsmarted them while posing as an new villain[59].

Unaware that Dr. Doom had survived their previous encounter, nor that he was the ruler of the nation of Latveria, the Fantastic Four accepted an invitation to the Latverian embassy in New York. There Doom tricked them into drinking a drugged beverage making them see the worst of each other. The FF fought amongst themselves until Doom revealed himself. Reed then turned things around by pulling the same trick on Doom before making them use a device that would kill the one with the least brain power. With Doom convinced that he finally killed Reed, Dr. Doom left unaware that he had been deceived[60]. The Mole Man returned once again not long after this, sinking a block of Manhattan down into the Earth and kidnapping Sue. Sue was seriously injured in the rescue and was brought to the hospital. Her life was saved thanks to her father Franklin, a former surgeon who broke out of jail while serving time for manslaughter. Although Franklin was reunited with his children, the authorities soon came to recapture him[61]. Immediately after, the Super-Skrull broke out of his prison and took Franklin Richard's place, sending Franklin to the Skrull homeworld as a prisoner. Breaking out of prison, the Super-Skrull posed as Franklin and created the costumed identity of the Invincible Man. Unwilling to harm their father, Sue and Johnny were reluctant to fight him. However Reed soon realized who they were really dealing with and overloaded his power. He then forced the Skrull rulers to retun Franklin however one of them had planted a bomb on their prisoner to kill the Fantastic Four. With just moments left, Franklin selflessly shielded his family from the explosive, sacrificing his life for them[62]. Not long after this, New York was terrorized by a new super-powered being calling himself Sundown. The Fantastic Four worked together with Spider-Man, the Avengers, the X-Men and Dr. Strange to stop Sundown[63].

The team was next approached by Lady Dorma, who had come to the surface to seek the Fantastic Four's help in defending Atlantis, which was under attack by Attuma a barbarian warrior who believed he was the rightful ruler of Atlantis. The Fantastic Four travelled to Atlantis where they secretly assisted Namor in stopping Attuma's bid for conquest[64]. The group was next pitted against each other thanks to the machinations of millionaire Gregory Gideon who sought to use his wealth to take over the world. However when Gregory's own son got caught in a Time-Platform trap he had set for the Fantastic Four, Gideon realized the errors of his ways and relented[65]. By this time, Johnny and Spider-Man had developed a playful rivalry, sucking the Fantastic Four into their most recent spat after Spider-Man crashed one of Johnny's parties[66]. The encounter left Spider-Man slightly smitten by Sue and he successfully asked her out on a date causing tension between Reed and an eventual clash with the Sub-Mariner who was also jealous[67]. Shortly after this, when the Avengers were framed for crimes that briefly soured the public's opinion of super-heroes, the Fantastic Four were forced into seclusion by the Pentagon until the Avengers eventually cleared their names[68]. The Fantastic Four were next invited to Reed's old alma mater at State University where Reed was scheduled to give a speech. However the festivities were marred when Diablo freed himself and came to America and brought Professor Gregson Gilbert's Dragon Man android to life. the Fantastic Four clashed with both Diablo and the Dragon Man, the fight ending with both seemingly meeting their demise in a whirlpool beneath Dead Man's Lake. In the aftermath of the battle, Reed finally proposed to Sue and she accepted[69].

New Discoveries

During the media blitz over the coming wedding between Reed Richards and Sue Storm, Johnny's old foe the Wizard gathered Trapster, Sandman and the mysterious Medusa to form the first incarnation of the Frightful Four, a group of villains who were the polar opposite to the Fantastic Four. Although the Fantastic Four were caught off guard by their evil counterparts, the group succeeded in defeating the Frightful Four who fled the scene[70]. However, despite the on going wedding plans, Sue was not ready to walk the isle until her father's killer was brought to justice. Reed and the others then used a new prototype shuttle to travel to the Skrull galaxy. There they clashed with Warlord Morrat the man responsible for Franklin's death. The conflict was hampered thanks to their powers being effected by the Skrull homeworld, resulting in Reed needing to use a power-boosting weapon to restore their powers to normal. Morrat sought to claim the Skrull throne and marry Emperor Dorrek's daughter Anelle, but his treachery led to his own demise. With the death of Franklin Storm avenged, the Fantastic Four returned to Earth, however Sue did not relish Morrat's execution[71]. Upon their return to Earth, the Fantastic Four continued their wedding plans only to be attacked and captured by the Frightful Four once again. The FF were left to die on a deserted island with a massive "Q-Bomb". The Four managed to escape, but the resulting blast stripped away their powers[72]. Returning to New York powerless, Reed needed to bide time until his power-booster recharged and attempted to devise artificial replications of their powers. These crude inventions were put to the test when Dr. Doom realized he had been tricked and attempted to get revenge against the Fantastic Four for his prior defeat. However, the blind hero Daredevil came to the powerless quartets aid[73]. When Doom took over the Baxter Building, the Fantastic Four and Daredevil stormed the building and while the heroes fought Doom, Reed recovered the power-booster and used it to restore everybody's powers. Furious at being changed back into the Thing again, Ben defeated Doom by crushing his hands sending him fleeing, then furiously quit the team[74].

Realizing their foes were still alive, the Frightful Four plotted against the Fantastic Four once again, kidnapping Ben as he left the Baxter Building and using the Wizard's ID Machine to make him evil. Then with Ben on their side, they managed to capture the rest of the team[75]. Reed and the others managed to break free, and while Sue secretly sabotaged the ID Machine, the Wizard captured Johnny and exposed it to him. Johnny then pretended to join the Frightful Four while Reed and Sue attempted to escape with Ben[76]. Realizing the ruse, Johnny was taken prisoner and brought back to the Baxter Building where Reed had just succeeded in restoring Ben's mind to normal. The Frightful Four were all easily trounced and captured, saved for Medusa who managed to escape[77].

Soon it was Reed and Sue's wedding day and among the guests in attendance were the Avengers, the X-Men, Doctor Strange, Nick Fury and his agents of SHIELD, and Spider-Man. Dr. Doom, seeking revenge for his previous defeat used am "Emotion Changer" to make various villains feel compelled to attack the wedding. These criminals included regular Fantastic Four foes such as the Puppet Master, Red Ghost and his Super-Apes, Mole Man and his Moloids, the Mad Thinker and his Awesome Android, Super-Skrull, the Beetle, Attuma; as well as Iron Man foe the Mandarin, Black Knight, the Unicorn, the Melter; Thor foes such as the Grey Gargoyle, the Cobra, Mr. Hyde, the Enchantress, the Executioner; Avengers foe the future warlord Kang the Conqueror; Spider-Man and Daredevil's nemesis Electro, Giant-Man foe the Human Top, and members of the terrorist organization known as Hydra. While the wedding attendees fought the army of super-villains, Reed was visited to the Watcher who offered Reed any of his scientific devices at his disposal. Reed chose a Time Displacer that returned all the villains to where they came from with no memory of their battle. The device also apparently effected Dr. Doom as Reed and Sue were able to finally be married without any further interruption[78]. Shortly after the wedding, Dr. Doom captured and imprisoned the Avengers in Latveria. The Fantastic Four made an attempt to go and rescue them but were stopped by the United Nations for diplomatic reasons. Eventually the Avengers managed to escape on their own[79].

As Reed and Sue's marriage had a rocky start, with hardly a moment to stop and enjoy newly wedded bliss when Medusa sought the Fantastic Four's protection. They learned she was part of secret race called the Inhumans and that she was being sought out by one of her people, a powerhouse named Gorgon. While trying to defend Medusa, the Four accidentally reawoke the Dragon Man who then kidnapped both Sue and Medusa, leaving the rest of the team at Gorgon's mercy[80]. The Four managed to subdue the Dragon Man, but Gorgon escaped with Medusa. Johnny ended up tracking down Medusa along with the rest of the Inhuman royal family, Black Bolt, Triton, Karnak, Lockjaw and Medusa's sister Crystal whom Johnny was smitten by immediately. However the Inhumans did not wish to be discovered and a battle broke out when Johnny brought the rest of the team to them[81]. The Inhumans were on the run from the Seeker an Inhuman hunter seeking to return them to their home the Hidden Land which was under the rule of Black Bolt's insane brother Maximus. Fearing capture they teleported away leaving the FF to return to their base where they found the Seeker had already been, and captured the Dragon Man mistaking it for an Inhuman. Tracking the Dragon Man to the Seeker's ship, the Four were unable to stop Dragon Man from breaking free and terrorizing the city[82]. The group quickly subdued the Dragon Man but the Seeker and his minions fled. Using a device Reed was able to track them to the Hidden Land of the Inhumans. They arrived just as Black Bolt retook the royal crown from his insane brother. Maximus however sought to conquer the world and built a device that he believed would slay all the humans on Earth, leaving only Inhumans behind to claim the planet[83]. However, the machine proved to be ineffectual due to the fact that Inhumans and normal humans were genetically similar. Undaunted, Maximus then decided to seal the Hidden Land away from the rest of the world, activating a device that erected a massive indestructible dome around the Hidden Land which was commonly referred to as a "Negative Zone" (not to be confused with the dimension of the same name). The Fantastic Four were forced to flee, lest they be trapped inside, a decision that devastated young Johnny who couldn't bare to leave Crystal behind. Johnny then vowed to do whatever it took to see Crystal again[84].

However, Johnny would not get the chance to find a way to save his sweetheart, at least not initially, as the Fantastic Four were soon were warned by the Watcher of the coming of Galactus, a powerful cosmic being that consumed entire planets for sustenance. The group initially clashed with the herald of Galactus known as the Silver Surfer before Galactus himself arrived on Earth[84]. While the Fantastic Four attempted to stop Galactus from feeding on their world he unleashed his lethal Punisher cyborg upon them. With time running out, the Watcher then endowed Johnny with extra power to travel through space to get to the Worldship of Galactus to obtain the only weapon that could stop him[85]. By this time, the Silver Surfer had been convinced of humanities worth by Alicia Masters and joined the fight against Galactus, however even his herald was no match for the world eater. Soon Johnny returned to Earth with the Ultimate Nullifier the one thing that Galactus feared. Faced with imminent destruction, Galactus agreed to spare Earth and left, but not without banishing the Surfer to remain trapped on Earth. With Galactus defeated, the Watcher and the Surfer went their own way while the Fantastic Four attempted to return to a life of relative normalcy[86].

Having just graduated high school, Johnny went on to Metro College even though his mind was still focused on finding Crystal again. There he met and became fast friends with Native American student Wyatt Wingfood. The Thing, believing that Alicia had chosen the Silver Surfer over him became depressed over his condition once again and secretly left the group[86]. Ben was manipulated by a scientist named Ricardo Jones who stole Ben's powers and sought to eliminate Reed Richards in order to find fame in scientific discovery. When the impostor arrived at the Baxter Building he fooled Reed and Sue into thinking he was the real Thing, even when the real Ben Grimm came trying there was an impostor in the mix. At the time, Reed was experimenting with a device that could open a portal to Sub-Space (later called the Negative Zone) and Ricardo used this as an attempt to try to kill Richards by trapping him in that dimension. However, moved by Reed's bravery, Ricardo sacrificed his life to get Reed back to Earth. Upon Ricardo's death, Ben reverted back to his mutated form and rejoined the team[87].

The group next accepted an invitation to go to the African nation of Wakanda ruled by the mysterious Black Panther. After surviving a "hunt" the Fantastic Four were welcomed as friends into T'Challa's kingdom[88]. However the celebrations were mired by Ulysses Klaw a man determined to obtain Wakanda's rare supply of Vibranium and was also responsible for murdering T'Challa's father T'Chaka. The Fantastic Four helped the Black Panther defend his kingdom from Klaw's solid light constructs until the Panther seemingly slew Klaw, who in reality sought refuge in his Sound Transformer[89]. While Reed, Sue and Ben returned to the United States, Johnny and Wyatt went on to try and find a way to break past the barrier surrounding the Hidden Land. In their travels they revived the ancient warrior known as Prester John an immortal being from the fabled land of Avalon. Witnessing the power of John's weapon the Evil Eye, Johnny took it in an attempt to free the Inhumans but the weapon grew quickly unsable forcing Wyatt and John to make Johnny get rid of it before it reached critical mass and exploded[90]. Back in New York, the Thing found the Silver Surfer meeting with Alicia trying to learn more about humanity. Thinking that the Surfer was attempting to make time with his girl, Ben attacked, until the rest of his teammates convinced Ben that the Surfer wasn't trying to steal his girl. Meanwhile back in the east, Johnny and Wyatt found what they thought was the best lead in their search to free the Inhumans: their teleporting dog Lockjaw[91].

However Lockjaw merely teleported Johnny and Wyatt back to New York. Johnny was soon attacked by the original android Human Torch of the 40s who was revived by the Mad Thinker and his sentient computer Quasimodo. The rest of the team joined the Torch, and convinced his predecessor to join them in stopping the Mad Thinker. Ultimately, the Thinker had Quasimodo seemingly slay the original Human Torch and fled. After laying the first Torch on a table in the lab the Four went on their separate ways with Wyatt and Johnny continuing their quest to free Crystal[92]. Back at base, Reed and Sue faced some friction in their marriage due to Reed's constant work on studying the Negative Zone. Soon they were attacked by Ulysses Klaw, who had been mutated into a being of solidified sound. Reed, Ben and Sue barely held their own until the Black Panther was able to provide Reed with a pair of Vibranium knuckle bands which allowed him to defeat Klaw and turn him over to the authorities[93].

As Johnny and Wyatt continued their quest, Reed, Sue and Ben prevented the Sandman from trying to break the Wizard out of prison. The Sandman however later succeeded in attacking the Baxter Building and stealing some of Reed's inventions. While at the same time, Dr. Doom had lured the Silver Surfer into his kingdom and managed to steal the Surfer's Power Cosmic[94]. Doom soon came after the Fantastic Four with his new cosmic powers just as Johnny was once more steered back to New York by Lockjaw. Doom then single handedly defeated each member of the team, but decided to spare their lives when Reed admitted that Doom was unstoppable[95]. However Reed had already deduced a plan on how to defeat Doom, and began building a counter measure while Doom ran amok around the world giving a show of power before ultimately deciding to eliminate the Fantastic Four once and for all[96]. The Four then attacked Dr. Doom head on to give the military and Stark Industries enough time to build a working model of Reed's Anti-Cosmic Flying Wing device. Reed then used this device to trick Doom into fly into space, hitting the barrier that was put to keep the Silver Surfer on Earth. Upon hitting the barrier, Doom was seemingly slain and the power stolen from the Surfer was then returned to it's rightful owner[97].

Upon returning to their headquarters the Fantastic Four were attacked by the Sandman again, who used the devices he stolen from Reed to construct a new costume that enhanced his abilities. During the course of the fight the portal to the Negative Zone was opened and Reed was sucked in while the Sandman escaped. The Four watched in horror as Reed was drawn to the destructive centre of the Zone with no way to save him[98]. However, salvation came in the form of Crystal who had recently been freed from the barrier in the Hidden Land thanks to Black Bolt. She brought the Inhuman Triton back to the Baxter Building and the undersea Inhuman ventured into the Negative Zone and succeeded to rescue Reed from sudden doom. However, when they returned to Earth they unknowingly led the exiled warlord Blastaar to Earth, who quickly formed an alliance with the Sandman[99]. With the aid of Crystal and Triton, the Fantastic Four managed to defeat and subdue Blastarr, but the Sandman managed to evade capture once again[100].

Their headquarters was next compromised by the arrival of mercenary Deadpool and his sidekick Hydra Bob, who were attempting to get back to their own time some eight years in the Fantastic Four's own future. As a side effect to their time travels, they would create chronal flashes that wiped out short term memories in order to avoid changing history, further complicating things. Eventually, Reed deduced a way to return Deadpool and Bob back to their own time, and in the time stream they were assisted by the future Fantastic Four who ultimately brought the two time displaced trouble makers back to their own time. Thanks to the chronal flashes, none of the members of the Fantastic Four in the present remembered this encounter[101].

In order to appease Sue, Reed then decided the team needed to go on another vacation and the group stumbled upon a Kree Sentry that was left on Earth millions of years ago. They clashed and were forced to destroy the robot in battle[102]. This got back to the Kree Supreme Intelligence who sent Ronan the Accuser to try the Fantastic Four for crimes against the Kree Empire. The Four proved to be superior fighters to Ronan who was forced to flee after losing the battle[103]. The FF soon learned that Alicia went missing, much to Ben's dismay. Unknown to them she was taken by members of the scientific Enclave to their Beehive headquarters so that she could sculpt the appearance of their new creation merely called Him. Meanwhile, Reed used his scientific knowhow to determine how the Enclave took Alicia without a trace[104]. Replicating the special armband to teleport to the Beehive. There they rescued Alicia and helped Him emerge from his cocoon. As they returned to New York, Him used his power to destroy the Enclave's headquarters[105].

Sue's Pregnancy

After dropping Alicia off at the hospital to recover, Ben expressed new doubts about his relationship with her and Reed promised to help change him back to human form, informing Ben that he enlisted the aid of renown chemist Dr. Santini[106]. Upon returning to their headquarters, Sue collapsed and after some tests the team was happy to learn that Sue was pregnant. While Reed stayed to watch on Sue, Ben went to check on Alicia after she was discharged from the hospital. At her apartment he found a mysterious package that was delivered to her by mistake. They were soon attacked by Live Wire, Shellshock and Ivan minions of the emotion controlling Psycho-Man a traveller from the Microverse seeking to conquer the Earth for his overpopulated people. Ben was easily overpowered and the strange package recaptured. Psycho-Man was found again on Panther Island by the Inhuman Royal Family and the Black Panther who called to the Fantastic Four for aid. Ben and Johnny were sent to assist and the ultimately destroyed Psycho-Man's massive emotocaster device. While they captured Psycho-Man's minions, Psycho-Man himself managed to escape back into the Microverse[107].

By this time, Dr. Santini was replaced by the Mad Thinker, who posing as the scientist altered the experiment to turn Ben back into human form. It instead made Ben evil once again and with a particular hatred of Reed Richards[106]. While the Fantastic Four battled Ben, the Thinker stole more of Reed's scientific secrets, while Reed himself deduced the Mad Thinker's involvement in matters[108]. Storming the Mad Thinker's hideout, Reed and the others rescued Santini and apprehended the Mad Thinker. Returning to base they were then attacked by the Thing, but at the last moment Reed blasted Ben with his Menta-Wave Unit just as the Mad Thinker remotely unleashed his newest and most powerful Android upon the group[109]. With Ben restored to normal, he joined his teammates in battling the near unstoppable android, until Reed defeated it by casting it into the Negative Zone. However, the experience made Reed realize that with Sue being pregnant and the constant threats from their foes were too much risk for their unborn child and made the decision that he and Sue should leave the team[110].

While Reed and Sue headed by train to California, Ben, Johnny and Crystal were left to determine the fate of the team. At that time the Silver Surfer decided to menace the world in the hopes of causing every nation to unite in brotherhood to face a common foe. The Watcher pulled Reed back to New York to help his teammates face the Silver Surfer whom they convinced that his methods were misguided[111]. Sue returned to the group and was targeted by the Trapster, however he was sent fleeing thanks to the FF and Daredevil[70]. Dr. Doom soon resurfaced and after losing a clash with Daredevil, he convinced the Fantastic Four that Daredevil's body was possessed by Dr. Doom[112]. Attacked by the Fantastic Four, Daredevil got aid from Spider-Man and Thor who attempted to convince the FF that they were being tricked. Reed, Johnny and Ben however believed that the other heroes were merely robots built by Doom. However, Sue convinced the others that they were wrong and the battle was quickly ended[113]. Soon the Surfer sought out the Fantastic Four for help when Galactus was on his way to force the Surfer to be his herald once more. Johnny and the others stood up against Galactus' Punisher cyborg, while the Silver Surfer -- unknown to them -- fled into the Microverse. Galactus soon called off his enforcer and demanded that the Fantastic Four find the Surfer or he would have no choice but to consume Earth[114]. The Fantastic Four initially refused and so Galactus created cosmic powered duplicates of Reed, Ben and Johnny to attack the heroes. They ultimately defeated these constructs, but had no choice but to find the Surfer. Reed deduced that the Surfer fled to the Microverse and they followed after him in Reed's newly constructed Reducta-Craft[115]. There they clashed with the Surfer and convinced him to help Galactus. The Surfer did help Galactus in finding the energy he needed in an uninhabited solar system but found himself exiled on Earth to be used by Galactus again in the future. Meanwhile, the team were attacked by the Psycho-Man[116], whom they defeated in battle and convinced to let them go to defend the Earth from Galactus, pointing out that if Galactus fed on Earth, the Microverse would be destroyed as well. However when they returned to Earth they were surprised to find that Galactus had been defeated in their absence[117].

Back on Earth, Reed devised a means of restoring Ben back to his human form, however he cautioned that should Ben change back into the Thing the transformation would be permanent. Soon after they were attacked by the recently escaped Wizard, who nearly defeated the team with his new "Wonder Gloves", but was defeated, making Ben question his decision to renounce his powers[118]. During this time the police were emptying out the Mad Thinker's hideout accidentally freed his Android Man creation. Drawn by the signals coming from the Wizard's Wonder Gloves, the Android Man tracked the gloves to Ben, who had brought them along with him on a date with Alicia. No match for the Android Man in his human form, Ben used the Wonder Gloves to change himself back into the Thing once again, and defeated the Android Man single handedly, however it was a hollow victory for Ben who was still processing his worth to Alicia due to his mutation[119]. Johnny later got a letter asking for Johnny's help on the land owned by his people the Keewazi tribe. There Reed, Ben and Johnny learned that the Red Star Oil Company had constructed a massive robot based on the Keewazi god Tomazooma to try to force the Keewazi off their oil rich land. Helping Keewazi leader Silent Fox in driving away the Communist backed corporation. Also at this time Sue was taken to hospital for her impending birth, but doctors soon became aware of a potentially lethal complication of her impending childbirth[119]. Returning home, Reed examined the medical charts and determined that the cosmic rays that powered Sue were complicating her pregnancy threatening to kill both Sue and her unborn child during birth. Reed deduced that he needed an element from the Negative Zone in order to save Sue's life and Johnny and Ben refused to let Reed go alone. Travelling into the Negative Zone together they were captured by the brutal Darwinist known as Annihilus who captured the group. Learning that Annihilus' Cosmic Control Rod was the energy source Reed needed, the trio stole it and attempted to flee the Negative Zone, however caught between Annihilus and the Annihilation Zone, Reed compromised with the strange creature, syphoning the energy he needed and returning it to Annihilus in exchange for safe passage back to Earth. Rushing to the hospital, Reed succeeded in saving Sue's life, who gave birth to a healthy baby boy[120].

Crystal Joins the Team

Fantastic Four (Earth-616) Crystal Joins the Team (Fantastic Four Vol 1 81)

Crystal joins the team

With Sue unable to play an active role on the team to raise her newborn son, Crystal petitioned to join the team. Both Johnny and Reed were both apprehensive about the idea, but she proved herself during a rematch with the Wizard who attacked them with new and improved Wonder Gloves. Although the Wizard managed to escape, Crystal convinced both Reed and Johnny that she was the perfect replacement for Sue while she was away from the group[121]. Shortly thereafter, the Fantastic Four were invited to a wedding party being thrown at Avengers Mansion for Yellowjacket and the Wasp[122]. Needing royal approval from the Inhumans, Crystal insisted on returning to the Great Refuge, but upon summoning Lockjaw she was captured by the Alpha Primitives a slave class that carried out menial tasks for the Inhumans. The rest of the team travelled to the Hidden Land where they were captured and learned that Maximus had once again taken over the Inhuman throne and sought to take over the world with a Hypno-Gun[123]. Black Bolt managed to free himself and the Royal Family and they in turn freed the Fantastic Four and the others. Working together, the two groups destroyed Maximus' Hypno-Gun, but Maximus and his minions managed to flee into space[124]. On their way back to America, the Four were stopped by Nick Fury and his agents of SHIELD who requested the Fantastic Four's help investigating reports that Dr. Doom was supplying robots to a communist nation in Eastern Europe. Travelling there the group was easily captured and made prisoner in Dr. Doom's homeland of Latveria, unable to leave due to defences around the nation. Doom intended them to live there until the day they died[125]. With the people of Latveria revolting against Doom's rule, Dr. Doom had the Fantastic Four knocked out and brainwashed into thinking they had lost their powers before ordering all the dissidents, and his hated foes eliminated[126]. Overcoming their brainwashing in the attack by Doom's robots, the team succeeded in destroying the robots. Before taking the fight to Doom, the group was joined by Sue who had come searching for them[127]. Splitting up, Johnny, Reed and Ben fought with Doom's minion Gustav Hauptmann a Nazi war criminal, while Sue and Crystal went alone. The pair ran into Doom alone, and he invited the women to sit with him to a banquet much to their shock and surprise. When Hauptmann almost destroyed some of Doom's priceless artwork, the monarch grew tired of the match, slew Hauptmann and allowed the Fantastic Four to leave unscathed[128]. Not long after returning to the Baxter Building, their headquarters was broken into and Reed's Space Scrambler device was stolen. Johnny attempted to go after the thief but they flew too high into the upper atmosphere preventing Johnny from following, or learning that the thief was the Silver Sufer who later used the Scrambler in yet another failed attempt to break through the barrier that kept him trapped on Earth[129].

Returning home, the team went to see a the bizarre new home that Sue and Reed had purchased to raise their newborn son in. Unaware that they were being watched, the group were gradually struck blind by elements inside the metallic house, Trapped inside with no vision, their unseen observer -- the Mole Man -- made his presence known[130]. The group were greatly outmatched against their old foe without their vision, until a stray shot seriously wounded Reed and destroyed the device making them blind. Furious, Johnny savagely went after the Mole Man and subdued him before he could activate a device that would blind the entire world[131]. Soon after his capture the Mole Man then managed to escape. During the lull, Ben decided to leave to visit Alicia only to be abducted by a Skrull calling himself the Slave-Master. Not long after Ben's departure, the Mole Man set the house to self destruct, forcing the Fantastic Four to abandon it before they could be slain in the blast[132]. Ben was taken to the planet Kral IV where Skrulls who were inspired by the American gangster culture of the 1930s forced alien slaves to participate in arena battles. There he befriended another alien named Torog. Meanwhile on Earth, Ben's teammates discovered him missing and after spending fruitless hours scouring the city searching for him, Reed ultimately deduced that Ben had been captured by Skrulls[133]. As Ben continued to fight for his life, Reed tracked Ben to the planet Kral IV, and Johnny and Crystal joined him in going after Ben[134]. On Kral IV, the Fantastic Four quickly learned the of the situation and pitted the various Skrull gangs against each other while they freed Ben while in the middle of a forced match against his friend Torgo. With Torgo's aid, the Fantastic Four staged a slave uprising that saw the gangster Skrull's empire crumble. Following the Skrulls defeat, the Fantastic Four returned to Earth once again[135].

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 Fantastic Four #1
  2. Fantastic Four: First Family #1
  3. 3.0 3.1 Fantastic Four: First Family #2
  4. Fantastic Four #2
  5. Fantastic Four: First Family #3
  6. 6.0 6.1 Fantastic Four #3
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 Fantastic Four: First Family #4
  8. Marvel Knights 4 #22
  9. Fantastic Four: First Family #5
  10. Fantastic Four: First Family #6
  11. Marvel Monsters: Fin Fang Four #1
  12. Fantastic Four #4
  13. Fantastic Four #5
  14. 14.0 14.1 Fantastic Four #6
  15. Fantastic Four #7
  16. 16.0 16.1 Fantastic Four #9
  17. 17.0 17.1 Fantastic Four #244
  18. Amazing Spider-Man #1
  19. 19.0 19.1 Fantastic Four Annual #1
  20. Amazing Spider-Man #375
  21. 21.0 21.1 Sentry: Fantastic Four #1
  22. Fantastic Four #10
  23. 23.0 23.1 Fantastic Four #11
  24. Marvel Comics Presents #160
  25. Marvel Comics Presents #161
  26. Strange Tales #106
  27. Fantastic Four #12
  28. Fantastic Four #13
  29. Fantastic Four #14
  30. Fantastic Four #15
  31. Thor: First Thunder #5
  32. Fantastic Four #16
  33. Fantastic Four #17
  34. Amazing Spider-Man #5
  35. Strange Tales #112
  36. 36.0 36.1 Avengers #1
  37. Avengers: The Origin #3
  38. Fantastic Four #18
  39. 39.0 39.1 39.2 Fantastic Four #19
  40. Rise of Apocalypse #3
  41. Doctor Strange Vol 2 #53
  42. West Coast Avengers Vol 2 #22
  43. Fantastic Four #20
  44. Avengers #3
  45. Fury #1
  46. Fantastic Four #21
  47. Fantastic Four #22
  48. Fantastic Four #23
  49. Fantastic Four #24
  50. Fantastic Four #25
  51. Fantastic Four #26
  52. Fantastic Four #27
  53. Daredevil #2
  54. Fantastic Four #28
  55. Spider-Man Family Vol 2 #2
  56. Fantastic Four #29
  57. Fantastic Four #30
  58. Strange Tales #125
  59. Strange Tales #127
  60. Fantastic Four Annual #2
  61. Fantastic Four #31
  62. Fantastic Four #32
  63. Untold Tales of Spider-Man Annual #1997
  64. Fantastic Four #33
  65. Fantastic Four #34
  66. Amazing Spider-Man #8
  67. Untold Tales of Spider-Man Annual #1996
  68. Avengers #13
  69. Fantastic Four #35
  70. 70.0 70.1 Fantastic Four #36
  71. Fantastic Four #37
  72. Fantastic Four #38
  73. Fantastic Four #39
  74. Fantastic Four #40
  75. Fantastic Four #41
  76. Fantastic Four #42
  77. Fantastic Four #43
  78. Fantastic Four Annual #3
  79. Avengers #25
  80. Fantastic Four #44
  81. Fantastic Four #45
  82. Fantastic Four #46
  83. Fantastic Four #47
  84. 84.0 84.1 Fantastic Four #48
  85. Fantastic Four #49
  86. 86.0 86.1 Fantastic Four #50
  87. Fantastic Four #51
  88. Fantastic Four #52
  89. Fantastic Four #53
  90. Fantastic Four #54
  91. Fantastic Four #55
  92. Fantastic Four Annual #4
  93. Fantastic Four #56
  94. Fantastic Four #57
  95. Fantastic Four #58
  96. Fantastic Four #59
  97. Fantastic Four #60
  98. Fantastic Four #61
  99. Fantastic Four #62
  100. Fantastic Four #63
  101. Cable & Deadpool #46
  102. Fantastic Four #64
  103. Fantastic Four #65
  104. Fantastic Four #66
  105. Fantastic Four #67
  106. 106.0 106.1 Fantastic Four #68
  107. Fantastic Four Annual #5
  108. Fantastic Four #69
  109. Fantastic Four #70
  110. Fantastic Four #71
  111. Fantastic Four #72
  112. Daredevil #38
  113. Fantastic Four #73
  114. Fantastic Four #74
  115. Fantastic Four #75
  116. Fantastic Four #76
  117. Fantastic Four #77
  118. Fantastic Four #78
  119. 119.0 119.1 Fantastic Four #80
  120. Fantastic Four Annual #6
  121. Fantastic Four #81
  122. Avengers #60
  123. Fantastic Four #82
  124. Fantastic Four #83
  125. Fantastic Four #84
  126. Fantastic Four #85
  127. Fantastic Four #86
  128. Fantastic Four #87
  129. Silver Surfer #5
  130. Fantastic Four #88
  131. Fantastic Four #89
  132. Fantastic Four #90
  133. Fantastic Four #91
  134. Fantastic Four #92
  135. Fantastic Four #93

Notations

  1. The intent of the space flight by the future Fantastic Four has always been subject to the Sliding Timescale in order to keep the concepts of current so as not to prematurely age the characters. In Fantastic Four #1 it states that they were trying to beat the Soviets in the space race, while Fantastic Four #2 states they were trying to reach Mars. Fantastic Four #236 updated accounts eliminating all Cold War and Space Race references and any notion that the Fantastic Four were the first Americans into space. In this new iteration it was stated that Reed was testing out a new "Star Drive" to get beyond the solar system. Fantastic Four #358 went a step further to state that the Star Drive was intending to get beyond the solar system by accessing hyperspace. Fantastic Four #543 were experimenting in faster-than-light space travel. The distance they were attempting to travel and what sort of technology varies due to the Sliding Timescale.
  2. Many accounts simply state that the Fantastic Four were exposed to cosmic rays, however a number of further explanations have been provided. Fantastic Four #197 states that it was a combination of the cosmic rays and unusual sunspot activity combined with the rays passing through the Van Allan radiation belt. Fantastic Four #532 states that the cosmic rays were actually a message being sent by an alien calling itself the Entity, who -- many years after the birth of the Fantastic Four -- brought Mister Fantastic back in time to the birth of the universe where his impressions of his personality and that of his teammates was imprinted on the cosmic rays which resulted in each crew member aboard the ship obtaining unique powers which were also reflective of their personalities.
  3. There are multiple accounts of where Richard's ship crashed on Earth. Fantastic Four #245 and Marvel Saga #1 state that the crash took place in Ithaca, New York. Fantastic Four #296 states the ship crashed in Stockton, New York. While Fantastic Four Vol 3 #60 states the crashed outside of Central City, California.
  4. For specific chronologies of each Fantastic Four member that appeared in Strange Tales #101 through Strange Tales #134, refer to each individual member of the Fantastic Four's own specific chronology. However, stories from those comics where the entire team was significantly present are chronicled below.