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Fantastic Four Vol 1 3

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Quote1 Why must we always fight among ourselves? What's wrong with us? Quote2
-- Mister Fantastic

Appearing in "The Menace of the Miracle Man"Edit

Featured Characters:


Other Characters:




Synopsis for "The Menace of the Miracle Man"Edit

The Miracle Man is performing at a theater. He points out the Fantastic Four and mocks them. He claims his powers are far greater than theirs and demonstrates by growing into a giant, turning into a cloud, and controlling thunder and lightning. He even upstages the Thing in a test of strength. While they head home in the Fantasti-Car, Reed wonders whether they could defeat the Miracle Man if he were a criminal. Meanwhile, the Miracle Man plots to bring a monster statue (at the Bijou movie theater next door) to life and use it to terrorize the public.

Chapter II: The Monster Lives!

Baxter Building Diagram FF3

Click to Enlarge

At the team's new headquarters, the Baxter Building, Johnny is watching live coverage of the premiere of "The Monsters from Mars" (at the Bijou) on television. Sue Storm comes in with new costumes for the entire team, including a helmet for the Thing. Johnny spots the Miracle Man, who gestures and brings the monster to life. It attacks the crowd and then vanishes. The Fantastic Four call the commissioner, who has received a note from the Miracle Man declaring his intention to conquer the world. The team is authorized to stop the Miracle Man.

Mister Fantastic finds the Miracle Man and his monster robbing a jewelry store, but the Miracle Man hits him with a brick. The Human Torch finds them stealing the army's new atomic tank and confronts them.

Chapter III: The Flame That Died!

The Invisible Girl and Thing see the fight and join in. The Thing removes his helmet and rips off his costume before joining the fight. The Human Torch burns the monster down; it was made of wood and plastic. The Thing and the Human Torch are defeated, and the Miracle Man escapes in a truck with the tank in tow, although the Invisible Girl hides aboard unseen.

Chapter IV: In the Shadow of Defeat!

Back at their headquarters, the remaining members of the Fantastic Four wait for Sue's signal. Johnny pokes fun at Ben, who loses his temper. A fight breaks out between the two, and Johnny storms off. Meanwhile, the Miracle Man is hiding the atomic tank at a junkyard, when he discovers Sue and uses his powers to put her under his command. He has Sue signal the rest of the team with the Fantasti-Flare. Ben and Reed take off in the Fantasti-Copter. Johnny sees the signal from a corner soda fountain and flies toward it.

Chapter V: The Final Challenge!

Mr Fantastic Tire

At the junkyard the the Miracle Man fights Ben and Reed, and escapes with Sue and the tank again. Johnny appears, and the three follow the Miracle Man in an antique racing car. Johnny flies ahead and uses his flames to create a flash that temporarily blinds the Miracle Man, who loses his powers. In fact, he never had powers at all, he was merely a clever hypnotist. Reed brings Sue out of her trance, and the Miracle Man is apprehended.

The Thing is annoyed when he perceives that Johnny is getting all the credit for stopping the Miracle Man. Johnny, having had enough of the Thing, quits the team and flies away. Reed wonders what would happen if he were to become their enemy.

Continuity Notes

Thing (Early Costume)

Thing discards his costume

  • The Fantastic Four's classic blue costumes debuted this issue. The Thing discarded his costume (and helmet) mid-issue. While the Thing's helmet did not last long, he did start wearing a similar helmet after being wounded by Wolverine in Fantastic Four #374, but it lasted only a brief period (until Fantastic Four #386). As revealed in in Fantastic Four: First Family #3 their uniforms were based on the space suits the FF wore into space.
  • Lt. General Fredricks appears for the first time. He goes unnamed. He appears next in X-Men #2, and becomes a minor recurring character in that series.

Publication Notes

  • This issue marks the first appearance of the Fantastic 4 Fan Page. Fan letters printed were written by Alan Weiss, Rick Wood, Unsigned, George Paul, Bill Sarill and S. Brodsky. It is quite possible that the S. Brodsky letter from Brooklyn, NY came from Sol Brodsky. Sol reportedly inked this issue and became a Marvel executive in 1964. The Brodsky letter asked the Editor how he was able to put out seven other comic titles in addition to Fantastic Four. The Editor responded to the question, saying "with great difficulty".
  • At the end of the issue is a bonus pinup, featuring (click to enlarge):
  • "The Greatest Comic Magazine in the World!!" tag line was added to the cover of this issue. It would be replaced by the more familiar "World's Greatest Comics Magazine!" starting with Fantastic Four #4.
  • The cover price increased to 12¢ with this issue.
  • This issue is reprinted in other comics and books, see references for more info.[2]

Human Torch has two left hands on the cover, as noted in a letter printed in issue #5.

See AlsoEdit

  • None.


  1. First and only known appearance to date besides flashbacks
  2. The first story is reprinted in the following comics/TPB's:

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