What does “FF” mean to you? Are you already subscribed to “FF” as a shortened pseudo-acronym for “Future Foundation”? Maybe you’re a DC fan and it is short for “Freedom Fighters.”
To me, the FF is the Fantastic Four. The Fantastic Four should be just that: fantastic. Oh, and there should be a family aspect to the FF. Occasionally, the reader should feel like he maybe just walked in on something. Not a domestic disturbance, mind you, but a family discussion. When errors are admitted, days are shared, and emotions are all in play.
That is exactly what Jonathan Hickman delivers in this book. It’s all on display here: familial discussions about what went wrong, and how to make things right again, adventure-filled days, and a wide range of emotions. The rogue Reeds are playing through their plot, and the FF are trying to counter those plots, but they do not quite know how to achieve success. There’s frustration and struggle present in this book, and it makes this issue a better read for it. And, yes, precocious reader or reviews, there is action and adventure too. Hickman truly continues to write the complete package in this book.
Barry Kitson, meanwhile, draws the complete package. I’ve liked Kitson’s work for as long as I can remember (a”Batgirl” special maybe?) and have watched him carom off of title after title of late. I hoped he would find somewhere to put his talents to good use and I really hoped that it would be somewhere I was already reading, if for no other reason than the selfish consideration of wallet preservation. Thankfully, Kitson’s here and he brings his very best (and someone else’s that he nicked while they were busy chit-chatting) to this book. Every panel in this book is damn near frame-worthy were it to be diced up and sold as a set of panels. Kitson’s knack for detail and his ability to balance that without sacrificing story or character make this quite a gorgeous little comic. Paul Mounts jumps in and bathes the entire issue in magnificent colors. His coloring of Ben Grimm is just a little too smooth for my taste, but the rest of the book looks great.
In “FF,” I’ve found a book that I never really knew I wanted to read. The Thing is always going to draw my attention, but unless he’s headlining, he’s not enough to command comic cash from me based solely on his inclusion. Throw him into a book that is filled with lively characters, treacherous plots, and attention-grabbing scenarios and, well, you get “FF.” So do yourself a favo and: go get “FF.”