Fantastic Four Vanished Because Marvel is a Hot Mess

The Fantastic Four have finally returned to the Marvel Universe after years missing, and have finally revealed the reason they disappeared. According to Reed Richards, he and his wife disappeared because being a Marvel hero became an endless slog of one world-ending crisis, or epic supervillain scheme after another.

That's a reason that even fans of Marvel's movies can understand, now that Infinity War has raised the stakes to the level of universe-wide murder. And with Reed Richards, Sue Storm, and their kids now making their way back into Marvel's regular world, they're doing do with hopes of taking on a new mission. Instead of fighting villains, it sounds like the new Fantastic Four are going to be focusing on breaking down scientific walls, instead of real ones. And hopefully, becoming something MORE than just another team of "super heroes."

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The explanation for the long absence of the Richards family is finally given in this week's preview of Marvel Two-in-One #11, when Ben Grimm and Reed take the spotlight together. Until now the comic has been named for the twin heroes The Thing and the Human Torch, the only two members of the original team who "survived" Marvel's massive Secret Wars event. We won't rehash the entire event here, but only say that it was Reed Richards who finally saved the Marvel Multiverse in the event's final act, taking his wife Sue with him into a presumed death. Except, as Marvel fans learned ahead of the Fantastic Four's new comic being announced, they didn't die at all.

Secret Wars II Doctor Doom and Reed Richards

They've been spending the years since Secret Wars rebuilding Marvel's multiverse, only now returning with their son and daughter. Needless to say, Ben asks to know why Reed and Sue left him and Johnny behind... and after years of wondering, Mister Fantastic gives a reason fans never expected.

All credit must go to Chip Zdarsky and the art team for not only reminding Ben Grimm what the Fantastic Four were originally supposed to be, but the readers, as well. Before answering Ben's question - "Why did ya leave us behind? Me and Johnny..." - Reed takes him to a random universe, where the Richards family exhaustively researched a sentient form of water. Once Ben stops paying attention to the cutting-edge, theoretical biology Reed is detailing, defending his disinterest by claiming he "forgot how boring you can be," Reed doesn't have to explain at all. He and Sue are scientists, whose entire life's work was supposed to be made up of scientific study and world-changing breakthroughs. The kind of stuff Ben, Johnny, other heroes, and probably plenty of readers just find "boring."

With the Marvel Universe making him (the world's most brilliant man) and his teammates (one-of-a-kind proofs of theoretical physics) into plain old super heroes, tasked with fighting villains and facing more "exciting" challenges, Reed and Sue apparently tapped out in Secret Wars. They took their children to discover the multiverse, and expand their minds the way 'the children of the Fantastic Four' always should have. But now that they have returned to a comic book universe as embroiled in Infinity Stone war as the MCU, is it time to give up science once again, and just show how good they are at beating up bad guys?

That remains to be seen, but at least now fans have a reason - and a good one, at that - for the Fantastic Four disappearing from Marvel Comics. A better reason than the rumored, vengeful one, anyway. Check out the full details for the coming issue hitting stands this Wednesday, below:

  • Writer: Chip Zdarsky
  • Art: Ramon Perez
  • Cover: Paul Renaud
  • THE FANTASTIC FOUR are BACK! But there’s fallout from their absence, both in the universe and in the family. The THING and MISTER FANTASTIC go on a voyage to rectify mistakes and heal wounds...but is it too late?

Marvel Two-in-One #11 will be available on October 31st, from Marvel Comics.

MORE: Ant-Man Director Still Wants Fantastic Four Crossover

Source: Marvel Comics

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