Matt Fraction has some big shoes to fill as he takes over the “Fantastic Four” Marvel comic book title from Jonathan Hickman, who was one of the best writers since John Byrne handled the First Family of Marvel years ago. Fraction spoke with CBR.com on Nov. 27 about his plans for the title.
“At first I didn’t think I’d do it,” Fraction said “Then I thought about it for awhile and kind of figured out how I could do a take that wasn’t like Jon’s stuff and in a way that excited me to actually write it. So it was one of those things I came around to as I sort of found my way in.”
Fraction said that the ideas that really attracted him to the title was the family’s influence on the entire Marvel Universe as well as the fact that they are explorers. With his best work coming in titles like “Immortal Iron Fist” and “The Invincible Iron Man,” it is easy to believe that he should slide into his new role nicely.
“I’m using this as a book to create new characters, concepts and settings, with one notable exception. I want ‘Fantastic Four’ to be about traveling and inventing new stuff as quickly as I can think of it,” Fraction said. “I can’t say much about the adversaries and supporting characters the FF will meet in their travels without spoiling things, but I want to tell stories that are true to the original spirit of the book; where they are scientists and astronauts and they meet both friendly and wicked races and deal with science fiction concepts and the family dynamic.”
There will be two titles each month with the Fantastic Four involved, the first being the original team as they are away traveling. The second, titled “FF,” will be about their replacements they hire to run things in town while they are away on their missions. That team will include Scott Lang’s Ant-Man, Medusa of The Inhumans, She-Hulk and Johnny Storm’s girlfriend Miss Thing.
“One book is about the family that you’re born with. The other is about the family that you’re stuck with,” Fraction said. “My goal is to tell stories with big super hero and science fiction ideas and plenty of heart. I would love to tell stories that could be described as something like ‘The Incredibles’ meets ‘Doctor Who.’ That’s a terrific goal. It’s an impossible bar to leap over, but there you go.”
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Shawn S. Lealos is a member of the Oklahoma Film Critics Circle, the professional film critics’ organization of Oklahoma. He is also working on a book about the Stephen King dollar babies called “Dollar Deal.” To read more of his writing, visit shawnlealos.net.