WARNING: The following contains spoilers for Fantastic Four #17, by Dan Slott, Luciano Vecchio, Carlos Magno, Bob Quinn, Sean Izaakse, Erick Arciniega and VC’s Travis Lanham, on sale now.
Comicbook superheroes have pretty straightforward origin stories. In DC, Superman and Supergirl came to earth because their planet Krypton exploded. Batman became Gotham’s hope because his parents were killed. On the Marvel side, we know about the super soldier serum and the radioactive spider that made Captain America and Spider-Man. But these origin stories always leave room for more exploration and depth and that’s exactly what Marvel is doing with its first family- The Fantastic Four. Although the MCU will surely put their own spin on the origin when the Fantastic Four make their debut in that universe.
Marvel Rewrites The Origin Story Of The Fantastic Four
The origins of The Fantastic Four has been pretty straightforward. So far, we’ve come to know that the team was trying to reach the planet Spyre when the cosmic rays which gave them their powers struck. But things got worse for The Fantastic Four as Spyre took them for invaders and called them The Fantastic Four “Four-told,” who posed a “Fantastic threat” to the world of Spyre. The leader of Sypre, the Overseer (who is definitely not a good guy) harnessed this threat to empower himself and made his own super powered army called the Unparalleled. Now, Fantastic Four #17 has revealed something new. The Overseer didn’t just irradiate his own people: he did it to The Fantastic Four, too. The cosmic rays in their origin story were all part of his plan.
The Fantastic Four Expose The Overseer
It’s clear that the Overseer is a dictator but under a facade. But Fantastic Four #17 strips that facade away. Reed and Sue of The Fantastic Four discover that it was the Overseer who created the invasion. This means the the Fantastic Four could have avoided all the trouble of being mistaken as invaders and made it to Spyre peacefully. But this didn’t happen as the Overseer created the storm of cosmic rays, making The Fantastic Four look like invaders and to make matters worse- giving them their powers at the same time. The Overseer wants to be seen as a hero who protected the people from the four (or The Fantastic Four). For that he sows discord among the team and tries to get them to kill each other. But the Overseer certainly didn’t see his plan through because a member of his own army- Sky from the Unparalleled doesn’t turn against Johnny. This gives Reed the opportunity to expose the Overseer for what he is.
But there’s a problem. Since The Fantastic Four weren’t created by a mere accident so it means that them undoing the actions of the Overseer also puts their own powers and history in jeopardy. It could result in them rewriting their own history.
Fantastic Four #18 releases January 20, 2020.