The origins of the Fantastic Four are easy to recap: One day, four scientists—Reed Richards; his girlfriend, Susan Storm; her younger brother, Johnny Storm; and Reed’s old college chum Ben Grimm—were out flying around in space when they were bombarded by cosmic rays. After returning to Earth (via a crash landing, of course), Reed found he could stretch and twist his body in impossible ways, Susan had the power to disappear, Johnny could fly and hurl fireballs at the same time, and Ben, well, he looked like a human rock, with stone strength to match.

Less clear is whose idea it was to create these characters in the first place. Writer Stan Lee says his boss at Marvel, Martin Goodman, told him to come up with a superhero team to compete with DC’s Justice League. Lee was reportedly fed up with the comic-book world at that point, but he obliged. Artist Jack Kirby says that he already had all the drawings, and that all Stan Lee did was fill in some dialogue. Whatever.

What we do know is that the Fantastic Four were an instant hit when they debuted in U.S. drugstores and comic-book shops in November 1961. The roughly 500 issues that have followed are a testament to the quartet’s staying power. The first issue, in which our heroes battle the dreaded Mole Man, is of course collectible, as is the Galactus Trilogy (Fantastic Four numbers 48-50, March to May, 1966), in which the foursome meets the legendary Silver Surfer.

Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)

Cover Browser

Cover Browser

Philipp Lenssen's incredible archive of over 94,000 comic book covers - Wow! Wham! Yikes! Browse by title from the … [read review or visit site]

Jamie Coville's in-progress ode to the history of 20th century comic books. Start with his Newsstand Period Part 1 … [read review or visit site]

Popeye's Thimble Theatre

Popeye's Thimble Theatre

Bruce Shults takes us on a comprehensive Popeye fan tour, from the early comic strips to cartoons and collectible m… [read review or visit site]

Barnacle Press

Barnacle Press

This collection of obscure newspaper comic strips provides scans browsable by title, year and date. Showcases comic… [read review or visit site]

Other Great Reference Sites

Most watched eBay auctions    

Fantastic Four #45 Vol 1 Very High Grade 1st Appearance Of The InhumansFantastic Four 52in Solid Vf. First Appearance, The Black Panther.Fantastic Four #52 Fn/vf (silver Age Marvel)Fantastic Four #48 Key Cgc 7.0 (1st Silver Surfer,1st Galactus) Marvel ComicsAmazing Spider-man #15 & 50 Avengers #57, Fantastic Four #45 Low Grade Set Vol 1Fantastic Four #48 Vol 1 High Grade 1st Appearance Of The Silver SurferFantastic Four #45 Vol 1 Pgx 7.5 Unrestored High Grade 1st App Of The InhumansFantastic Four 1 Cgc 1.8 Signed By Stan Lee Bill Sienkiewicz Fantastic Four Page Sinnott Inks Issue 231 Moench Byrne ScriptsFantastic Four #48 Cgc Ss 2.5 Signed X2 Stan Lee Joe Sinnott 1st Silver SurferFantastic Four #48 Vg 1st Silver Surfer + Galactus! Marvel 1966 Bright O/w PagesFantastic Four #52 Cgc 6.0 1st App Black Panther Marvel Silver Age Key ComicFantastic Four #36 Vol 1 High Grade Unrestored 1st Appearance Of Frightful FourFantastic Four #45 Vol 1 Very High Grade 1st Appearance Of The InhumansFantastic Four #45 1st Inhumans! A Real No-reserve 7-day Auction Listing! 1965Fantastic Four #49 Cgc Ss 5.5 Signed By Stan Lee 1st Galactus 1965Fantastic Four #1 Golden Records Original Owner High Grade Silver Age MarvelFantastic Four #45 Vol 1 Very Nice Mid Grade Unrestored 1st App Of The InhumansFantastic Four #48 Galactus March 1966 Nice Vg+ 4.5 Key IssueFantastic Four #52 - Unrestored High Grade - 1st Black Panther! - 19661963 * Fantastic Four #14 * Marvel Comics Est 5.5 Fn- * Rare Off White Pages !!!Fantastic Four #45 Uk Pency Copy Vol 1 Super High Grade 1st App Of The InhumansFantastic Four #13 Marvel 1963 - 1st Apps Of The Red Ghost & The Watcher!!!!Fantastic Four #67 Marvel 1966 - Origin & 1st App Him (warlock) - Stan Lee!!!!Fantastic Four #26 -high Grade- 1st Thing Vs Hulk Battle! 3rd App Capt AmericaFantastic Four #67 (1967) Rare First Appearance & Origin Of Him Adam Warlock ^Fantastic Four #11 ('63) Cbcs 5.0 Vgf 1st Impossible Man - Nice Book No CgcMarvel Comics Silver Age Lot Of 14 Low Grade Avengers Spider-man Fantastic FourFantastic Four #52 • Marvel 1966 • Middle Grade • 1st Black PantherFantastic Four #85 Cgc 9.4! Off-white To White Pages! Doctor Doom! Gorgeous BookFantastic Four (1961) Issue 12 Lower Grade | 1st Hulk Crossover | Lee | KirbyMarvel Comics Fantastic Four #67 Vg/fn 1967 Silver Age 1st App Him (warlock) KeyFantastic Four #48 Cgc 6.0 1st App Silver Surfer & Galactus Movie Key Silver AgeFantastic Four #67 -higher Grade- Marvel 1967 - 1st App & Origin Of Him WarlockFantastic Four 48 1st Silver Surfer Cgc 6.0Fantastic Four #52 (1966) Rare Key First Appearance Of Black Panther Scarce ^Fantastic Four #52 (1966) Cgc 5.0 Off-white To White (restored C-1)Fantastic Four 48 Galactus Marvel Comics March 1966 Loose/missing PagesFantastic Four #8 1st Appearance Of Puppet Master Jack Kirby _bFantastic Four #53 Cgc 7.5 1st Klaw Origin Black Panther Key Silver Age ComicFantastic Four #45 Cgc 3.5 Oww 1st Appearance Of Inhumans (doctor Doom) 12/65Fantastic Four #49 And #50 2 Copies Of Each Low Grade Set Vol 1Fantastic Four #45 Yes Guys! 9.2 Grade Very Rare To See In This Price1963 * Fantastic Four #11 * Marvel Comics Cgc 7.5 Vf- * Rare White Pages Pin-upFantastic Four #13 Apr 1963 1st Appearance Watcher & Red Ghost Jack Kirby LeeFantastic Four #45 Original Cover Only Vintage 1965Fantastic Four #97 Cgc 9.4! White Pages! Incredible Eye Appeal! High End! Fantastic Four #93 Cgc 9.4! Off-white To White Pages! Amazing And Vibrant Color!Fantastic Four #55 Marvel 1966 - 4th App Silver Surfer - Silver Surfer V.s ThingFantastic Four # 1 Cgc .5 Origin & 1st App Of Fantastic Four! Affordable Copy!!Fantastic Four #48 (mar 1966, Marvel) 4.0 Vg 1st Silver Surfer Galactus Key!!!Fantastic Four 13 Vg/f 1st Watcher!Fantastic Four #25 (classic Hulk & Thing Battle Cover) (apr.1964) Marvel ComicsFantastic Four #67 Cgc 5.0 Origin & 1st Appearance Of Him Warlock Stan LeeFantastic Four #18, Marvel 1963, Vg+ Condition, 1st Appearance Super-skrullFantastic Four 211 Cgc 9.6 White Pages 1st App Of Terrax Mile High Ii PedigreeFantastic Four 25 Vg+ 2nd Hulk Vs Thing!Fantastic Four #56 1st Klaw Key Wow Fine- Beauty Inhumans Silver SurferBowen Mr. Fantastic Full Sized Statue, Marvel, Fantastic Four, Randy BowenEssential Fantastic Four 1-7 The Thing 1-3 Human Torch 1 Tpb Lot Of 11

Recent News: Fantastic Four Comics

Source: Google News

Is Disney Courting This 'Fantastic Four' Star for Boba Fett Role?, October 13th

Rather, it concerns the standalone Boba Fett movie, still in the very early stages of pre-production. The rumor, which comes from the Meet the Movie Press podcast, alleges that the actor currently in talks to play the legendary bounty hunter is...Read more

'Fantastic Four' Reception: Simon Kinberg Wants To 'Make More Movies' With ...
KpopStarz, October 12th

I do think that there is a great Fantastic Four movie with that cast. But there's so many different elements that need to come together perfectly. It's like a collaboration between all these strangers. And if there's a few things that don't go right...Read more

Star Wars: The Boba Fett Spinoff May Be Eyeing Fantastic Four Actor
Cinema Blend, October 10th

In the wake of Fantastic Four being a critical and financial bomb, the fallout was vast. Amidst a storm of rumors and reports of behind the scenes problems, director Josh Trank was removed, or perhaps left, the standalone Star Wars movie he was...Read more

The Week in Disappointment – Avengers: Infinity War, Spectre, Fantastic Four ...
Flickering Myth (blog), October 10th

I'm glad someone was finally brave enough to take the unpopular position that Fantastic Four wasn't all that good. Simon Kinberg would also like you to know that he's really upset with that Dentist that shot Cecil the Lion and isn't happy about Putin...Read more

Fantastic Four Inc.
Fortune, October 9th

There's a brilliant post about how Reed Richards incorporated only to avoid taxes, which seems like a genius maneuver for a prolific inventor. Superheroes got to eat too. strengths. The company has a treasure trove of patents. weaknesses. The...Read more

Why Fantastic Four Failed, According To Its Producer
Cinema Blend, October 8th

When a bad movie is released, everybody from the studio to the media spends a lot of time trying to figure out what the problem was. This past summer's Fantastic Four reboot went sideways so quickly that people started to figure out where it went wrong...Read more

5 Reasons Why FOX Should Green-light The Fantastic Four Sequel, October 6th

The Josh Trank directed Fantastic Four reboot is already considered one of the worst comic book films of all time to most comic fans. But, I am one of the very few people who looked forward to this film going into it and was not as disappointed as...Read more

What Rooney Mara Thought Of Kate Mara's Fantastic Four
Cinema Blend, October 5th

It's common knowledge that not only has Kate Mara not actually seen Fantastic Four yet, but neither has most of the cast. But what about Kate's little sister, Rooney Mara? Did she shun the film like the rest of the world? Or did she ignore popular...Read more