Tuesday, January 24, 2017
Even though the Fantastic Four is broken up and MIA at Marvel right now, you almost can't say it's not for lack of trying. How many times has there been an ancillary FF book, like Fantastic Force, Fantastic Four 2099, or FF? Like today's book! From 2013, FF #1, "Parts of a Hole" Written by Matt Fraction, art by Michael Allred, color art by Laura Allred.
The titular FF here is the Future Foundation, Reed Richard's initiative to raise up the next generation of geniuses. When the Fantastic Four plans a year-long trip outside of the universe, they need adult supervision for the Foundation, even if from their perspective the team will only be gone four minutes. Barring disaster. Reed recently diagnosed himself with a form of cancer, and the trip is an attempt to find a cure. Reed, and later Ben, seem to acknowledge the likelihood of something going wrong.
Each of the team brings in a replacement: Reed picks Ant-Man, Sue gets Medusa, Ben names She-Hulk, and Johnny puts up his girlfriend Darla Deering. We don't see much of her this issue, but she's the girl with pink hair wearing a Thing exo-suit. Since I hadn't seen Darla before, it would be easy to think the worst of Johnny: like he forgot to pick a replacement, and instead just went with whoever he woke up with that morning.
Mostly, we meet the young Foundation students; and Ant-Man struggles with the idea of dealing with kids, since he had recently lost his daughter Stature. She would return (albeit, seemingly younger than she had been with the Young Avengers) but it's jarring to see a mourning Ant-Man in Allred's friendly, cheery style.
Also this issue: Ant-Man works on a "kind of coil" that he wants to use to ride around instead of an ant, which seems like bad branding. Or, if it were any other artist, I'd suspect it being an excuse to avoid drawing ants!