Monday, July 11, 2016


Story & Art: John Byrne | Lettering: Ken Bruzenak | Coloring: Glynis Wein
Editing: Michael Carlin | Editing-in-Chiefing: Jim Shooter

The Plot: The Fantastic Four and Wyatt Wingfoot use the time machine constructed by Reed’s rather to transport themselves to the same parallel dimension where Reed believes the elder Richards was stranded a decade earlier. They find themselves in an wasteland with a small town nearby. Sue explores the town, which appears to be out of the Old West save for the advanced weaponry utilized by its denizens. When the town’s leader, Colby, spots Sue with his futuristic six-shooter, she returns to the rest of the FF, but is pursued by Colby’s men.

Sue’s teammates take out the hi-tech cowboys, but their victory is short-lived as a gigantic tri-legged robot arrives and attacks. The FF defeat the robot as well and Colby shows up to make peace with them, explaining that the robot serves a warlord who arrived ten years earlier and conquered this world.

Elsewhere, an armored woman observes the Fantastic Four’s arrival and changes into the raiment of a demure wife. She then goes to visit her husband — Nathaniel Richards.

Sub-Plots & Continuity Notes: A footnote lets us know that She-Hulk currently serves simultaneously as a member of both the Fantastic Four and the Avengers.

Reed reminds readers that Ben chose She-Hulk to fill in for him, and a reference says we can learn more about this in the ongoing SECRET WARS mini-series.

Is It Clobberin' Time? It is, as She-Hulk takes her status as the Thing’s substitute to heart.

My Thoughts: It’s… your typical middle chapter, unfortunately. The FF arrive in the parallel universe and have two fights. There’s very little advancement of the plot, other than the revelation that there’s a mysterious Warlord running things here, and then the double-revelation that said Warlord is apparently Reed’s father. There are no sub-plots, no check-ins with the real universe, and as a result this issue feels kind of useless. I suspect the next installment will recap all the info revealed here, and in the end we’ll wind up with a three-part story that could easily have been condensed down to two.

Oh, and Reed’s elderly father is knocking boots with a woman considerably younger than him, because, well… that’s how John Byrne rolls, doggone it.


  1. Nah, that is just the Richards' way.

    I got to read the whole story in one 68-page issue back in the day so obviously I needed not consider the issue-by-issue divisions separated by month at time, and as such this bit never was anything but wholly competent superheroics for me. Not even trying to be too flashy or earth-shaking, but fun romp anyway, and in its unpretentiousness (especially compared to the Terminus story and other stuff) it's in a way the definite Fantastic Four to me.

    The late '88 publication for us coinciding with my early readership obviously has a lot to do with that.

    Did they call She-Hulk the "Jade Giantess" before, or did Busiek snatch the name from this issue for the #2 of his nostalgia-ridden AVENGERS (vol. 3) run where She-Hulk of Morgan le Fay's "Queen's Vengeance" uses it for her moniker?

    1. I dunno, maybe I was too harsh on this one. I just know I got to the final page and thought, "That's it? Nothing happened!" I think I just expect more substance from Byrne, compared with some other writers.

      I'm not sure if this was She-Hulk's first time being called "Jade Giantess". Some years ago I read her original solo series, but I don't recall if the name popped up there or not.