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The Best Argument For Reed Richards Being Pro-Superhuman Registration Act

This is a feature called "I'll Sell It Ya." This is about the arguments made in comic books for why characters act differently about things in the past. I have a couple of features, Abandoned an' Forsaked and Abandoned Love, that both deal with the idea of dropping past comic book plots and character approaches, but the first one of those deals with instances where the original story was then retconned to make way for the new one and the second feature, Abandoned Love, is just about when stories are dropped. Here, we will spotlight the explanations given for why the old approach was dropped. You might not like the reasons, but these are the reasons.

Today, based on a suggestion from reader Rich S., we look into the best argument for why Reed Richards made such a dramatic turnabout on his stance on the idea of registering superheroes.

Anyhow, the story all begins with the initial discussion of the Superhero Registration Act back in the late 1980s. In 1988's Fantastic Four #336, Walter Simonson, Ron Lim and Mike DiCarlo show Reed Richards opposing the idea of the act...

We fastforward to 2006, in the New Avengers Illuminati Special #1, where Brian Michael Bendis and Alex Maleev have Iron Man reveal that the act is once again being considered by Congress (here it is still referred to as the Super Hero Registration Act)...

As you can see, Reed is all the way on board with Iron Man's plan. There's no, like, "Oh man, I dunno, Tony." No, Reed is all the way on board.

Sure enough, Tony was correct and an explosion during a fight between the New Warriors and some supervillains led to dozens of innocent children being killed. That led to the Superhuman Registration Act (at it was now called) being pushed through Congress very quickly.

So Iron Man, Reed Richards and Yellowjacket head up a charge to deal with the Act and Reed is clearly thrilled to be working with two other geniuses on problem-solving, as seen in Civil War #2 (by Mark Millar, Steve McNiven and Dexter Vines)...

Number 42 is a Negative Zone prison. It is called 42 because it was #42 on a list of 100 ideas Tony, Reed and Hank came up with.

Up until this point, all Reed has been giving for an explanation is that "it is the law, so we have to obey it." In Fantastic Four #540, by J. Michael Straczynski, Mike McKone, Andy Lanning and Cam Smith, Reed goes a little bit further into his theories in a talk with Peter Parker...

Pretty weird stuff.

Soon, though, a new writer would take over Fantastic Four and we would get the best possible argument that Reed could give...

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