This issue continues straight from Matt Fraction’s Fantastic Four 1. It introduces the four replacement Fantastic Four that will star in the FF series: She Hulk, Medusa, Ant Man (Scott Lang) and Darla Danning aka Miss Thing. It further discusses the journey that the Richards family will undertake in the main Fantastic Four book as well, but the main focus is on the replacement members.
This issue was simply fun. Each of the replacement members has a scene or two with the member they’re replacing. The Thing and She Hulk’s scene was my personal favourite, and Matt Fraction seems to understand the basics of She Hulk’s personality. It’s an amusing scene that shows how much She Hulk enjoys being super powered, and enjoys having fun in general. I don’t know much about Scott Lang, but I like his characterization here.
Unfortunately, neither Medusa nor Miss Thing have as much characterization in this issue. Medusa is only introduced as the queen of the Inhumans – it doesn’t show us what Medusa is like as a person. There’s plenty of room for that in the future, but giving us a hint in this issue would have been better. We also still don’t know much about who Miss Thing is, or why the Human Torch chooses her as his replacement. All we know is that she’s currently dating the Human Torch – that’s not enough reason to care about her considering how many women he’s been with over the years.
Those scenes are intercut with the FF kids describing what the Future Foundation is about. These pages aren’t quite as enjoyable as the rest of the issue, but it’s a decent way to be introduced to the franchise.
The art is simple, yet effective. It’s nice to see some actual muscle definition on She Hulk’s arms – she’s been drawn way too skinny in most of her recent appearances (especially with Greg Land’s art in the Uncanny X-Men AVX tie-ins). It looks like more effort is put into characters’ eyes than anything else, which looks a bit weird at times, but it isn’t necessarily a bad thing.
Like Fantastic Four 1, this isn’t quite good enough to win over any new Fantastic Four fans, but existing fans will likely enjoy this issue. It’s a fun comic that introduces the FF to anyone who is new to the franchise, or for those who have been away for a while. My only real complaint is that we still don’t know much about Miss Thing, and that Medusa’s characterization could have been clearer. Despite those complaints, this comic was still an enjoyable read. I’m at least looking forward to seeing where Matt Fraction goes with this.