Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Comics Rant: Fantastic Four #200

It’s Fantastic Four #200 written by Marv Wolfman with art by Keith Pollard and Joe Sinnott and a color job that even Marvel doesn’t want you to remember by F. Mouly (What type of first name is F.? Oh,
you mean that whoever had the job of lettering this book just said “Fuck it” and decided not to spell the whole thing out? Sounds about right to me.) And I Tash Moore, am here in all my after 2014 glory to bring you the rant I was clearly too damn lazy to write about before we hit 2015. Hey, to be honest I tried to hammer this out but whoever came up with this holiday shit really needs to plan it a little better. Santa needs to sit down with the New Years Baby and come up with a plan to have these holidays a week apart. Kind of like the NFC/AFC Championships and the Super Bowl. But with all the football talk aside (What pass interference? Pick up that damn flag, dammit!) I’m here with Fantastic Four #200 to rant about and it was so big that it was told in three parts. Also, Marvel scammed a full $0.60 out of us for this issue. To buy Stan Lee some new glasses and NOT pay Jack Kirby I bet.

First off, Jack Kirby did the artwork for the cover. I’m sure that after he turned in the page Marvel then erased his name for it and gave all monies to Jim Shooter.
Just because. So as we start this issue Dr. Doom is super mad at the Fantastic Four for forcing him to kill his own clone. I can’t really say that I feel what Doom is going through here. It’s not often that a man makes a clone and then has to kill him in order to save himself. Well, unless you’re Spider-Man. The Jackal, FTW! Doom’s upset clearly, but that doesn’t mean that he doesn’t have his shit together. Doom’s all like “I’m so going to kill you, Reed Richards! You and your murder hoe! But I gotta take care of this United Nations problem in NYC and maybe get some killer ramen.” It happened just like that. I promise. Okay, I lied.  But it would be nice if it did. So Doom does the old I’m gonna leave you guys locked in this room while I leave and hope you die from this gas bit. We all know how that works out, don’t we?

Doom is off to NYC in a big ass plane with a giant DD on the side of it. I wonder if Daredevil knows that Dr. Doom is using his plane……oh wait. That Doom. At least Doom rides in style. I think in honor of him, I’m going to paint a giant TM on the side of my car. Or not. Reed uses his new amped up stretching powers to get free by going through a damn key hole and turning off the power to Doom’s castle. It’s funny because who would in their right mind think that Dr. Doom who is the greatest mind of our time would just have a huge ass button that said power off? No wonder this jerk never got that degree. I’d pay top dollar ($4.99) for a mini series by JMS where Dr. Doom goes back to a community college. How many “Bah!” do you think it’d have.

So Doom is off to NYC and Reed has freed the Fantastic Four. The Thing goes to have his girlfriend Alicia Masters let go from Doom’s underground jail. Then Thing and Alicia start to kiss. So then Reed and Sue follows. Zorba then enters the room. Johnny then walks over to kiss him but Zorba draws his gun and says “It ain’t gonna happen!” This clearly happened off panel. Yup. So after all the kissing, the FF hop in the pogo plane because Reed has learned of Dr. Doom’s plan to take over the world. Cue Pinky and the Brain music. How’d Reed learn of Doom’s new plan. Why, like a fucking tool, Doom left all his plans on the table in the room right out where everyone can see it. Holy shit, Doom is making Dr. No look great at this point.

Part two of this tale has Doom hitting up the UN and has the statue he had made of himself sent to the UN building. The Statue is taken into the room with all the delegates. Doom watches from his remote New York home. Reed sends Sue, Ben, and Johnny to take care of the delegates. Doom’s plan is to have the statue let off some goofy ass light that drives people mad. I had no fucking clue as to how this is supposed to make the leaders of the world turn it over to him. Next time I see Marv Wolfman, I’ll have to ask him just what the hell was going on in this issue. So the UN delegates are fighting each other. So when Sue, Johnny, and Ben enter the room they get attacked as well. I smile at the whole thing because they don’t fight back at all. They just hold each other while Sue just covers them with a force field. What a way to be proactive guys.

Part three is the main event. Doom vs. Reed. One on one. Dude in armor with all types of bad ass stuff vs…….a dude that can stretch. Seems like a mismatch on paper, but you’d be wrong. Reed and Doom go at each other and at points it's pretty damn brutal. Reed even forms his head into a mace and clocks Doom upside the head. Good for Reed. He’s showing he ain’t no sissy boy. Doom is showing just how crazy and full of himself that he can be. He’s saying that Reed only tries to stop him because he’s jealous of Doom. Doom is the man and Reed wants to be like him. Doom feels like Reed is beneath him, and he should also kiss Doom’s boot. Hey, it’s Doom’s world and we’re just living in it. The whole thing comes to an end when Reed, after what seems like a lifetime, uses a device he used on Doom in Fantastic Four #11 that disables his armor. Reed then exposes Doom to his weird crazy ray and Doom loses his mind. Legit stuff. Again, I didn’t write it, ask Wolfman.

The end of the story comes with Reed returning the now crazy Doom back to Latveria where Zorba is made the new king until elections can be held. Zorba thanks Reed Richards and the rest of the Fantastic Four for helping his people take down Dr. Doom and restore peace and freedom. The now babbling Dr. Doom is going to be locked up in a cell in Latveria awaiting trial for his crimes and the Fantastic Four ride off into the sunset. Great story and great art. It was a pretty good arc that had a legit resolution. Today’s comic book writers can look at this whole arc as how to plan out a story. Beginning, middle, end. Not the shit we have now. Beginning, ?, $. That’s sounds about right to me. Well I had fun reading this and can’t wait to bring you the rest of this bronze age run. Until next time, drop me a line at theverbalmosh@gmail.com I’ll respond. I think.

-Tash Moore

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