“I tried to do a very primal FF story. I decided to do something that was not much more than a punch-’em-up, with elements of characterization thrown in for good measure.”Writer/artist John Byrne, talking about his first issue at the helm of the Fantastic Four
(From Amazing Heroes #1, June 1981)
ReviewTitle: “Back to the Basics!”
Synopsis: Diablo’s elemental minions attack the Fantastic Four individually, but the FF comes together to battle as a team.
Writer: John Byrne
Inker: Byrne (as Bjorn Heyn)
By the early 1980s, Marvel’s first family had seen better days. Things weren’t exactly dire, but the glory days of Stan and Jack were an increasingly distant memory. Enter John Byrne. Already established as a superstar penciler, Byrne took over Marvel’s creaky flagship as its writer and inker, too. The results were immediate: While there’s clearly a feeling-out process going on, this done-in-one tale bristles with energy. Almost immediately, Byrne puts his stamp on the characters and establishes a sense of excitement for what would prove to be an epic FF run of his own.
Cool factor: John Byrne unleashed. That’s a good thing.
Second opinion: “Byrne brought back much of the classic feel of the ‘old’ Fantastic Four and his run is generally considered to be a second golden age.” — The Slings & Arrows Comic Guide (second edition).
Notable: Cameo appearance by Dr. Strange. … No. 98 on Marvel’s “Greatest Marvels of All Time” list.
“Sue, don’t ask any questions! Just do as I say!”Mr. Fantastic, showing off that silver tongue that makes him such a hit with the ladies
FANTASTIC FOUR #232
Published and © by Marvel, July 1981
Cover by John Byrne and Terry Austin
Collected EditionsFantastic Four #232 is reprinted in:
Editor’s note: This review first appeared on Comics Bronze Age, July 13, 2009.