Fantastic Four 246-247

Tell Me Again Who's Land This Is!

Oh yeah.

This is a commentary on Fantastic Four 247.

John Byrne's six-year run on the Fantastic Four is celebrated. This is one of the issues from that run.

For those coming into this issue with no knowledge of Doctor Doom and his previous encounters with the Fantastic Four, here's a brief backgrounder: Many years before, Doctor Doom wrested control of a small, Eastern European country called Latveria. Doom built it up into a technological powerhouse. Zorba, the brother of the previous ruler, incited a rebellion, and, with the aid of the Fantastic Four, succeeded in throwing out Doom. Zorba turned out to be despotic, just like Doom. But, unlike Doom, Zorba also turned out to be incompetent. Latveria began to degenerate.

At this point, Doom return's to reclaim kingship of his shattered land.

He's not exactly unwelcome as this panel will show.

a villager hugs dr. doom

I love this next panel, Doom is holding the body of a woman he has promised to protect. One of his robots, now under Zorba's control,  shot the girl right from under him. After reading this panel you just know Doom is going to kick some serious ass.

dr. doom holds a dead villager and warns those who harmed her

And here's the power of Doc Doom on display.

dr. doom blasts a robot

I'm not too crazy about John Byrnes drawing of Reed and Sue (I'm not saying it's bad - John Byrne does not know how to do a bad drawing), but his rendition of the Thing is awesome. Check this out.

the thing pushes the earth while fighting some robots

And this.

the thing punches out some doom bots

This is another great scene between a townsman called Josef and Doom. The people of Latveria are not convinced that Doom has truly returned,  since he was reported as having perished, but, apparently, Doom is validated by how he carries himself. Underneath that mask, Doom is grotesque, but not in this issue. In this issue he's the handsomest man in town.

villagers expresses happiness at dr. doom's return enlarge

Comic books should be simple. If we had a comic called the Fantastic Four we should see each of the four in awesome action against a bunch of baddies. Oh yes!

The Invisible Girl.

invisible woman creates a force sphere inside a doom bot

Mr. Fantastic.

mr. fantastic tosses some doom bots around

The Human Torch.

the human torch blasts some doom bots

The Thing. Look how tough he is.

the thing gets hit by a doom bot blast but is unaffected

Here's another scene that show's the special bond between Doom and his people. Boris is his butler; faithful to Doom even under torture.

dr. doom finds his faithful servant, josef, and carries him out of the dungeons

Notice how the immensity of the castle is rendered magnificently by Byrne.

the fantastic four goes through a hall of doom's castle enlarge

Up in the castle, smoke billowing from the ravaged City. Doom prepares to take out Zorba. I just love the composition of this panel, the mood is spot on.

dr. doom about to throw zorba from the parapet enlarge


This story is tremendously satisfying taken as a single issue. The pacing and the ending is truly wonderful. The personality and history of Doctor Doom is the focus here and it really cements him as a major villain in the Marvel Universe - only a few can stand beside him, Magneto and the Kingpin come to mind. If you are only going to read one issue of the Fantastic Four this should be it.

Posted by  Pete Albano - November 21,  2010

Did you like this post?

fantastic four 247 cover

fantastic four by john byrne omnibus

Amazon Prices

Fantastic Four : In Search Of Galactus

My Comic Shop Prices

Fantastic Four : In Search Of Galactus HC (2010)

Fantastic Four (1961) comic books

This is what the Fantastic Four by John Byrne Omnibus looks like :

HTML Comment Box is loading comments...