Week in and week out, as comics stream into Wizard HQ, I end up reading quite a few books each week: the good, the bad and the ugly.
So after all that reading, when I end up finding a writer that constantly delivers for me as a reader—in this case Captain Britain and MI 13 scribe Paul Cornell (go read his Marvel Max mini Wisdom for a great intro into the crazy goodness he’s been bringing to the 616)—I get really excited to see their names attached to a new project.
On top of that, I am always drawn into a comic that has an awesome and original premise. Hearing Cornell was doing an FF mini got me pretty psyched. Then I read the solicit text, which explained that the book would be an in-continuity tale where Marvel’s first family has to venture into the world of fiction to battle evil alongside characters from the works of Jane Austen and Mary Shelley—among other famous authors—well…yeah…I’m sorry, do I even need to explain how awesome that is?!
Now, that would normally be enough to have me raving (and so far, it is!), but Cornell’s humor and handle of the FF in this super self-aware tale is just a joy to read. So, here are a few of the moments that led to the gush-fest that is this blog post:
All images below can be clicked on and enlarged
Instead of being yet another writer working with the FF trying to write new—and usually stale—dialogue between Ben and Johnny when they’re fighting/arguing, Cornell takes a completely different and hilarious route and gives a cool nod to anyone who’s ever read a Fantastic Four comic. No need to say what’s already been said 700 bajillion times, ya know?
And six pages later…
Ok, maybe I found this funnier than most as I’m possibly the only comic fan out there who shamelessly has the soundtrack to the Rachel Leigh Cook, Rosario Dawson and Tara Reid-starring “Josie and the Pussycats” on his iPod, but the idea of Earth’s biggest brain being a big fan of that flick is definitely worth a good laugh either way.
Another fun little nod as these “real world” heroes—from a fictional work, obviously—enter the world of fiction and can see their own speech bubbles. It’s the only way—as readers—we’ve ever seen them talk, so just seeing them get a kick out of it is fun (and when was the last time we saw a Reed Richards just having fun with discovery and not fretting about Skrulls or ruining his marriage with too much work? It’s great to see the guy in good spirits again!). Plus, it helps establish how crazy things are set to get if “talk bubbles” are just the tip of the Fictoverse iceberg.
Really, really enjoyable writing aside, how can you not get giddy for some amazing Niko Henrichon covers?!
Not enticed to check it out after all that?
First, that’s crazy!
Second, check out my interview with Paul Cornell for more on the series that should turn you around if I haven’t made a believer of you yet.
It’s my pick of the week and I highly recommend any fans of truly imaginative tales give it a shot. It’d be near impossible to be let down by this story, and it’s only issue #1!