Fantastic Four: Full Circle by Alex Ross (graphic novel review).

Thank the Illuminatii, a traditional Marvel story. A decent plot, play of dialogue and decent art. Alex Ross might not be using watercolours this time but this also shows how good a penciller and inker he is. The Thing has never looked greater, even if I had to look up what a Dagwood sandwich was. Clearly, Ben Grimm has an appetite.

In ‘Fantastic Four: Full Circle’, a late night snack for the Thing turns into an appearance of a dead body that releases deadly insects. Fortunately, the rest of the FF are there to take them on and they realise they have to go into the Negative Zone to find out what is going on. I’m being careful not to give too many plot spoilers but if you’re old enough to remember Fantastic Four # 51 then you’ll know a crucial plot element. To survive the transition into Negative Zone, Reed Richards provides them with special fabric costumes, even if the Thing laments he’s still only got a pair of trunks.

How much more to say. We do see a lot more of the Negative Zone this time, including seeing their version of Earth. There are a lot of cameos that might test your memories and the FF deter rather than get into fights. I think I would have been curious to seeing Alex Ross drawing Blastarr but then I would like to see how he tackles all kinds of characters.

I should point out Ross’ colour choices are interesting but equally effective. Oh, if you are missing out on his watercolours, look at this foldout cover briefly detailing the FF’s origins. Modern day comicbook creators take note: this is how to tell a story.

GF Willmetts

October 2022

(pub: Abrams Comics Art/Marvel, 2022. 64 page graphic novel hardback. Price: $24.99 (US), £31.99 (CAN), £17.99 (UK). ISBN: 978-1-4197-6167-6)

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