The Primordial Soup: Let’s talk about the Fantastic Four

So this movie came out not too long ago.

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The reviews have been…not stellar.  Granted I haven’t seen the film yet but looking at this,

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I think it’s safe to say that it’s a pretty crappy movie.  But I want to do something different with the Fantastic Four.  They’ve had a massive streak of horrible luck when it comes to movies

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So instead of reverting back to the same angry outbursts and the same tired old jokes let’s talk about how we can make the Fantastic Four better.  Here are three ways we could put one of the greatest superhero teams into a movie that could actually be half way decent.

1. Embrace the insanity

The Fantastic Four was created by legendary comic book artist Jack Kirby.

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Jack Kirby was the artist who worked with Stan Lee to create such icons as the Hulk, The Black Panther, and Thor, who is especially interesting because Marvel’s Thor is probably the best representation of one of Jack Kirby’s favorite tropes/theories: The Ancient Astronaut Theory.

Basically the theory goes like this: A long time ago aliens visited Earth and had such advanced science and technology that the humans who observed them thought they were gods.  They preceded to tell everyone they saw about these gods and that is how beings like Zeus or Thor came into being.  Kirby was a big fan of this theory and it showed up in his work which is why Thor is a living being from another dimension.

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That’s the sort of thing that needs to be in a Fantastic Four movie.  The Marvel Universe is filled to the brim with strange and crazy alien races with all sorts of weird powers and abilities and would make for fantastic stories.  You have one of the Fantastic Four’s greatest foes, Galactus (who is NOT a goddamn cloud monster like the movies dammit!) who is a being of cosmic power that eats planets, not out of spite or malice, but simply because he’s hungry.  If the second Fantastic Four movie had this on screen with more time to explain his motivations.

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You’d have an amazing movie.  The point is that the Marvel universe is home to some of the strangest alien beings ever seen in literature and most of them became known through the Fantastic Four.

2. For the love of all that’s holy fix Dr. Doom!

Dr. Doom is one of the greatest comic book villains of all time.

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In the comics he is a mad scientist, a master of magic and the black arts (his mother sold her soul to the devil), and the leader of his own country.

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He is not, and never has been, a childhood friend to any member of the Fantastic Four who winds up being a whiny little pushover when it’s time to beat someone.

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Forget all the grand strange cosmic threats that the Four have faced over the years, just having someone as powerful as Dr. Doom threatening to take over the world and having a massive battle with armies of robots and black magic would be worth the price of admission alone.  Heck, you could probably make a better movie about the origins of Dr. Doom alone.

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In fact, holy crap why haven’t they made a movie about Dr. Doom yet?!

3. There should be more to a Fantastic Four movie than just the Fantastic Four.

It’s no small secret that Fox and Sony are engaged in something of a bitter feud with Disney over the fate of many of Marvel’s superheroes that is something tantamount to a four year old shoving match on school playground.  While Disney owns most of the Marvel Universe and is working on re introducing Spider Man after Sony borrowed him for a while, Fox is still bitterly clinging on to the two franchises it still has control over: X-Men and the Fantastic Four.

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This brings us to an uncomfortable fact about the Fantastic Four: their best and most memorable comic books usually involve appearances from other, better characters.  The simple truth is that the Fantastic Four haven’t been the kind of superhero team that can carry a comic on their own, what they are really good at is introducing and working with or against other characters.  Besides Dr. Doom here’s a sample of the other characters the Fantastic Four helped introduce.

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The Black Panther and the Inhumans are two movies that are going to be released by Marvel in the not too distant future and they owe their existence to the Fantastic Four.  Then there are the cameos and team up issues which are just too numerous to list here but here are some of the most noteworthy:

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Some of the team’s best stories were created with other characters which is a prospect that, between the long string of crummy movies and the current business climate, seems highly unlikely.  Maybe it’s time for Fox to throw in the towel and let the rights revert back to Marvel, or maybe they could have the Fantastic Four team up with Fox’s other property the X-Men (which could be cool) but either way it is important to remember that the oldest superhero team in comics usually works better with others.

What do you think?

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One thought on “The Primordial Soup: Let’s talk about the Fantastic Four

  1. I agree with your points, but i think it needs one more. Don’t spend much screen time on the origin, if any. Show it in shorthand through brief flashbacks, or better yet, make a short 15-20 minutes long of the origin story and youtube it.

    Like

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