Dark Reign: Fantastic Four #4 (of 5)
(w) Jonathan Hickman
(a) Sean Chen & Lorenzo Ruggiero
FC, 32 pgs w/ ads $2.99 US
Fantastic Four #569 will be rocking comic shops in mere minutes and the majority of of readers will be jumping ship, as Mark Millar and Bryan Hitch finish up their lauded run. I’m going on the record now that they shouldn’t. Dark Reign: Fantastic Four author, Jonathan Hickman, is set to take over Stan Lee’s and Jack Kirby’s baby, and it’s due to be…well, fantastic.
In Dark Reign: Fantastic Four, Hickman has the cast of characters playing their spelled out roles, but the biggest thing is how he treats the Richards’ children. Both Franklin and Valeria play significant bits instead of being swept under the carpet as is often the case. Usually, these two kids are dead-weight and hold the title down, but Hickman makes them significant and equal partners in the super team.
Hickman also follows up on Reed Richards and the fiasco he helped create in the Marvel universe. Reed visits a billion alternate realities via his creation, The Bridge, and looks at how to solve the Civil War / Secret Invasion / Illuminati problem.
I have high hopes for Hickman’s tenure on Fantastic Four, but it shouldn’t be hard for him to deliver. Just check out any of his stellar books published through Image Comics. (Dana Tillusz)