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Characters: Fantastic Four

Fantastic Fournote 

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     Reed Richards (Mr Fantastic) 

Reed Richards (Mr. Fantastic)

  • Absent-Minded Professor: Sometimes extending as far as Ditzy Genius. Whenever there's a Broke Episode, Reed is usually the culprit.
  • Action Hero
  • Alliterative Name
  • Arch-Enemy: Doctor Doom.
  • Badass Bookworm: Something that tends to get lost in many adaptations. People like to forget that in his younger days he did some very Indiana Jones-esque missions for the US government and, oh yeah, stole a rocket and tried to fly to the moon.
  • Bizarre Human Biology: The body of Ultimate Marvel's Mr. Fantastic is an infinitely extensible fluid-filled sack containing, in place of an alimentary canal and other organs, just a squishable bolus of microbes that perform all metabolic functions.
  • Chosen Conception Partner: Double Subverted. His college sweetheart, Alyssa Moy turned him down because she believed that she should try and have children with less intelligent men to smarten up the future generation. When this didn't work out, she became interested in Reed again, but by this time, he was Happily Married.
  • Depending on the Writer: Reed's disposition varies from series to series. Sometimes he's nice but a bit unnecessarily gruff, sometimes he's a complete Jerkass, sometimes he's just absent minded.
  • Distinguished Gentleman's Pipe: Reed used to smoke a pipe from time to time, before it became PC not to smoke.
  • Enemy Mine: Happens a lot with major antagonists for Reed such as with Doctor Doom and Galactus.
    • Notable when Reed's daughter Valeria brokered a deal with Doom. Doom will work with the Future Foundation to bring down a group of amoral alternate Reed Richards. In exchange, they would heal his super-intelligence crippling brain damage. Doom upon being restored gathers a summit of the FF's most intelligent enemies to work on strategies to kill the Reeds. At the Foundation's headquarters.
  • Happily Married: To Susan.
  • Jerkass: Can be one at times though it will usually be followed by a Jerk with a Heart of Gold moment.
  • Karma Houdini: For the most part during the Civil War storyline. He did some pretty heinous things without any repercussions.
  • Master of Disguise: Mr. Fantastic has infrequently used his stretching powers to assume a different face.
  • My Greatest Failure: Being responsible for changing Ben into the Thing, as well as his failure in being able to reverse it, gives Reed a lot of grief.
    • To a lesser extent, he feels like he wrecked Sue and Johnny as well, having ruined all three of their chances to live normal lives; it being his idea to steal the starship that led to the events granting them their powers. His formation of the Fantastic Four and turning the team into celebrities is his attempt to make up for it.
  • Nay-Theist: Reed is stated to be a humanist, although he does believe in the existence of God.
    • Fridge Brilliance: Reed and the others have all met God face to face, and He even brought Ben Back from the Dead. What kind of pathetic excuse for a scientist would he have to be to meet God in person and reject the scientific evidence that he exists? It doesn't mean the experience would have to change his philosophy though, which is why Reed still identifies as humanist.
  • Not So Different: With Victor. Although they're on opposite ends of the good vs. evil thing, both Reed and Doom are insanely intelligent, somewhat condescending, and often only care about completing whatever task at hand will best benefit whatever, tossing aside everything else.
  • Omnidisciplinary Scientist
  • Papa Wolf: Don't mess with his kids.
  • Power Perversion Potential: Reed can stretch any part of his body — and yes, it has come up in subtext that this is why he and Sue are so Happily Married.
  • Reed Richards Is Useless: Once Fridge Logic catches up with him, anyway.
    • Also subverted in that he does invent many things that have everyday uses. Most of them are bought by companies with competing products in order to keep them from hitting the streets and putting them out of business.
    • Alternate Universe Reed Richards Is Awesome: In universes when Reed is not bound by Status Quo Is God, he's capable of even more amazing scientific accomplishments than in the main 616 verse.
    • Alternately, consider this: It has been somewhat established that one year of comic book time is 4 years in real time. So despite passing only 10 years in the comic world, (40 years for the readers), they've advanced to a level equal to us if not more (though the validity of this is fluid at times.)
  • Rubber Man
  • Science Hero
  • Sesquipedalian Loquaciousness
  • Skunk Stripe
  • Small Steps Hero: What originally made Reed different from Doom. While Doom believes Utopia Justifies the Means, Reed will forego scientific progress if it harms too many people. Later stories, however, started to revoke this.
  • The Smart Guy: Even by Marvel standards where everyone seems to have a minimum IQ of 240, Reed is recognised as the go to guy for intelligence.
  • Teen Genius: Entered university at age 14, had doctorates by the age of 20.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: Reed will usually always pick out the easiest solution, not giving any foresight to matters such as tact, emotions, feelings, practicality, or possible future consequences (such as permanently shrinking an alien race to evacuate them off a doomed planet, or turning Skrulls into cows without considering the ramifications of ingesting alien flesh or the morality of it). When this happens, Sue will usually call him out on it.
    • One of the interesting common threads in alternate-universe Marvel stories is that in the event something terrible happens to Sue, Franklin, and/or Valeria, Reed will immediately go straight off the deep end. He's relying so heavily upon his family to keep him in check that if the unthinkable happens, he rapidly goes through all the stages of grief and right into insanity. This can be seen most clearly in the What If? where Sue died while giving birth to Franklin; Reed ignores the baby in favor of going on a suicide run against Annihilus. In more modern stories, Reed goes instantly nuts in the Marvel Zombies universe when Franklin and Valeria are killed.
    • Made a plot-point in Jonathan Hickman's run. Reed is faced with two choices. One: run off and join an interdimensional Council of Reeds from different universes committed to making creation itself a better place—ahem, by any means necessary, up to and including murdering Beyonders, killing Galactuses and carving up solar systems. The other choice is to stay at home in the 616 with his loving family and be the father to Franklin that Nathaniel never was to Reed. The Council of Reeds is by far the more logical choice—Valeria and even Nathaniel (a little) call him out on it—but Reed stalwartly refuses. Why? One reason: Franklin. The one thing our Reed created that all those other Reeds, with all their science and vast machinery and good intentions never could.

     Susan Storm-Richards (The Invisible Girl/Woman) 

Susan Storm-Richards (The Invisible Girl/Woman)

  • Action Girl: She's generally portrayed as the strongest member of the team these days. Doctor Doom is more afraid of her than he is of The Thing.
  • Action Mom
  • Alliterative Name: Before she got married, anyway.
  • Barrier Warrior
  • Beware the Nice Ones: During the Civil War storyline, she confronted Reed about his pro-registration stance and Reed stated that he did it all to protect Sue. Sue then proceeded to send an invisible column above and below all 35 floors of the Baxter building and asked Reed if she looked like she needed protection.
  • Big Sister Instinct: Towards Johnny.
  • Cleavage Window: Her 90s outfit.
  • Cool Big Sis: To Johnny.
  • Custom Uniform: Early on, Sue experimented with a miniskirt variation that didn't last. Then came the Stripperific outfit in the 90s, followed by a more modest variation.
  • Deadpan Snarker
  • Faux Action Girl: She started off as one of these, but Character Development kicked in.
  • Green Lantern Ring: Her force-fields act as this.
  • Guile Hero: Invisible Woman should be portrayed as this. She shamed Ben Grimm into piloting the ship during the first issue. She was also told to distract many of the Silver Age male supervillains. After Psycho Man temporarily turned her into Malice she used her knowledge of Reed and Psycho Man's personalities to track him down and take revenge on him. When Dr. Doom stole the power cosmic from the Silver Surfer, she tricked him into flying into a mountain. During the Civil War, she spied on Reed. As any real chessmaster/manipulative bastard/guile hero would tell you, the greatest achievements in theses tropes is to make certain that your opponents don't realize you are a social expert.
  • Happily Married: To Reed.
  • Heart Is an Awesome Power: Once the writers found out some really creative ways to use her powers...
  • Hello, Nurse!
  • Instant Armor: She's used her forcefields in this way once or twice.
  • Leotard of Power: Her 90s outfit.
  • Love at First Sight: When she was 12-13, she met a 19-year-old uni student and got a Precocious Crush on him. Fortunately, they didn't hook up until she was much older.
  • Mama Bear: DO NOT mess with her children.
  • May-December Romance: Sue met Reed when he was 19 and she was 12, getting a crush on him at first sight (okay, so maybe more of a March/May, but you get the idea). Thankfully, they got together much later in life.
  • Mind over Matter: Her invisible force field basically boil down to such, with the handy trait of Invisibility at her discretion.
  • Most Common Super Power: For a time during the mid-90s, the Invisible Woman wore a skimpy costume with a cut-out "4" on her cleavage. This was before writers and editors realized that they didn't have to dress Sue up in a slinky costume to make her sexy — she was already a MILF.
  • Ms. Fanservice: Her regular costume(s) already flatter her, but her sex appeal often gets dialed up in alternate universes, especially ones where her invisibility is tweaked to put her in Naked People Are Funny situations (as seen in 1602).
  • Only Sane Woman: She keeps Reed in check.
  • Personality Powers: Originally, Sue was very shy and her invisible powers showcase her introverted nature.
  • Psychic Nosebleed: Often, when Sue is holding a forcefield against a particularly strong opponent.
  • Single Woman Seeks Good Man: Her relationship with Reed.
  • Spontaneous Weapon Creation: One of the many possible uses of her force fields. In one X-Men/Fantastic Four miniseries, she has a Mama Bear moment and uses a force sword to slay a Brood queen in close combat, leaving the males of both teams rather shocked.
  • Stripperific: Unusual for a comic series in that the team's main female member only rarely falls under this trope, preferring a modest blue bodysuit identical to the ones Reed and Johnny wear, but it does happen - like when she wore a certain costume for a few years in the 1990s. The change was widely panned by fans and removed.
  • Team Mom
  • This Looks Like a Job for Aquaman: Suffered from this before getting her force field power.
  • Took a Level in Badass: Hoo boy. She's the page picture for a reason. See her entry on Comic Books for specifically why.
  • Violently Protective Wife: It's a horrible idea to mess with Reed when Susan is around.
  • Xenafication

     Ben Grimm (The Thing) 

Ben Grimm (The Thing)

  • Ace Pilot: The reason Reed wanted him flying the rocket.
  • Action Hero
  • Ambiguously Jewish: Until it became canon. His full name is Benjamin Jacob Grimm.
  • Badass Adorable: The Marvel Universe's best example. No other character has such a perfect balance between being completely lovable and completely awesome.
  • Badass Normal: Ben's regained his humanity on a couple of occasions. Not that it keeps him from contributing to the Four's efforts.
  • Battle Strip: Ben Grimm, in the very first issue, had the habit of ripping off a trenchcoat, pair of pants, sunglasses, and a fedora every time he went into battle.
  • Beauty to Beast
  • Blessed with Suck
  • Boisterous Bruiser
  • Book Dumb: Ben Grimm is much smarter than most folks gives him credit. A college graduate and former marine, he was a test pilot and astronaut (which requires two Master's degrees or a PhD to be even considered for that kind of duty) as well as gifted mechanic before his transformation. He might not be a scientific genius like Reed or Doctor Doom, but he more than makes up for it with the street smarts he earned growing up in a rough lower-class neighborhood. It's a trait that comes up several times in the comics when he manages to outsmart several villains who think he's an idiot. Sadly this is something that's lost in many adaptations, the live-action movie kept it in though.
    • Not only is he a college graduate (a fairly common thing nowadays) but he's a graduate of the same college that Reed Richards and Victor Von Doom (the two smartest people on the planet) went to. Probably a pretty good school.
  • Can't Stay Normal: Ben has been reverted to human form many times over the years, but for one reason or another (the cure wearing off, or Ben choosing to change back to help his friends), he always returns to being the Thing.
  • Captain Colorbeard: Thanks to a very weird Stable Time Loop, The Thing was the famed pirate Blackbeard. Yes, that one.
  • Catch Phrase: "It's CLOBBERIN' TIME!"
    • Other ones include, "My sweet aunt Petunia" and "Whotta revoltin' development!"
  • Custom Uniform: In the team costumes' first appearance in issue 3, Ben ripped his up until only shorts were left, because according to him he couldn't move in the full bodysuit. Since then he's usually worn just the trunks, but he's alternated with a belted singlet, full pants with no top, pants with a tank top, and yes, even a full bodysuit.
  • The Big Guy
  • Dagwood Sandwich: Ben loves these.
  • Deadpan Snarker
  • The Determinator: The Champion declared him Earth's greatest hero, because even if he's not the most powerful, he will not yield.
  • Elemental Baggage: The Thing's rocky exterior makes him incredibly heavy, to the point where he has to use an elevator by himself to avoid overcoming the max lift weight and everything meant to accommodate him has to be built very large and reinforced.
  • Fluffy the Terrible: One of his nicknames is "The Ever Lovin' Blue-Eyed Thing".
  • Genius Bruiser: Although his smarts are usually overshadowed by super-genius Reed. Ben lampshades this as he assembles a cosmic ray device, musing that he's watched Reed long enough to play Mad Scientist himself. There is also the fact that Grimm was a highly qualified test pilot before he became The Thing; no mean feat brain-wise.
    • The idea of The Thing being simultaneously physically strong, ugly, and smart was seen as revolutionary in comics.
  • Gentle Giant: As long as you don't make him mad.
  • Hair-Trigger Temper
  • Heroic Spirit
  • Hope Spot: During the early days of the series' run, Ben would periodically revert back to his old human self for a few minutes before turning back into The Thing again. Not only did this give Ben hope that the power of the cosmic rays were weakening on him, but it gave the rest of the four hope it might do the same for their powers.
  • Hot-Blooded
  • I Just Want to Be Normal
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold
  • Large Ham: Especially when he and Johnny are bickering or arguing.
  • Layman's Terms: Ben usually dumbs down the complex explanations Reed Richards comes up with for the people around him. When Reed starts speaking too Star-Trek even for him, it's also Ben who normally snaps at him to "Speak English, Stretcho!"
  • Lightning Bruiser: Another thing that's often overlooked is that he's just as fast and agile as he was as a human. He's studied multiple martial arts and has even tutored other members of the team in them, the only thing that's suffered is his manual dexterity due to his fingers being the size of sausages.
  • Made of Iron: Being transformed into the Thing sucks in a number of ways, but it does come in mighty handy when you end up fighting guys like the Incredible Hulk and he punches you with a blow that would reduce any ordinary human to paste.
    • And he can go for a spacewalk without a suit, needing only a air supply to keep him from suffocating.
  • Monster Modesty: Despite his issues with his appearance, he wears the least of the 4 - his standard "costume" is a pair of pants / shorts. At present, he's upgraded to a Sleeves Are for Wimps version of the "Future Foundation" suit.
  • Names to Run Away From Really Fast
  • The Nicknamer: Some of his nicknames include "Stretcho" for Reed, "Bic-head" and "Matchstick" for Johnny, "Suzie-Q" for Susan, "Jade-Jaws" for Hulk, etc.
  • The One Who Made It Out: And oh, do the Yancy Street Gang resent him for it.
  • Personality Powers: Ben is very solid and stubborn and, appropriately, Ben as The Thing is made of rock and stone.
  • Power Creep: One of the most severe cases in Marvel, actually. Originally Grimm could lift around 5 tons (which was more or less Spider-Man's maximum limit at the time, though Grimm was always tougher), but he got stronger and stronger until he could press about 90 tons. However he often displays feats of superhuman strength way beyond this theoretical limits (hauling skyscrapers, anchoring spaceships taking off from Earth) even though Marvel still swears up and down he can only do 90 tons.
    • A future version of Ben managed to easily overpower him, stating "We keep getting stronger for the rest of our life."
  • Powered Armor: At one point, Ben was turned back into a human and lost his powers as the Thing. Since he still wanted to help the rest of the team out, Reed constructed an Iron Man-like suit of armor for him that resembles his rocky Thing form. The suit allowed Ben to simulate the strength and durability he had when he was the actual Thing, albeit not quite on the same level.
  • Pro Wrestling Is Real: The Thing, as well as several other super strong characters are a part of a superhuman wrestling federation called Unlimited Championship Wrestling.
  • The Rival: To Incredible Hulk, which is an amusing case given that the Hulk is usually portrayed as vastly stronger than the Thing physically.
    • True, but Grimm can hold his own against the Hulk in combat by way of being a far more skilled martial artist.
    • There was one time he defeated the Hulk, and that was the period when Ben mutated even further into a craggy, rocky form even stronger than his previous "smoother" body, and the incarnation he was facing was the grey/"Joe Fixit" Hulk whose base strength is even weaker than any of green versions. Also, their earliest encounters had them roughly even in strength.
  • Rock Monster: The Thing looks like he's made of rocks (even though he isn't) and many who don't know who he is think he's a monster.
  • Running Gag: Ben's never-ending war against the Yancy Street Gang, a group of off-screen Harmless Villain street youths he sometimes obsesses over.
  • Status Quo Is God: The Thing gets turned into a human about once every few years, but always gets turned back, usually because he needs to help someone out.
    • It's something of a running gag. Sometimes when it happens he actively tries to regain his powers as he feels useless and naked without them.
      • In one story arc, Reed tried to remove Ben's mutation and add it to his own elasticity, but Ben refused to let him. "You're you an' I'm me, an' that's the cosmic plan."
    • Cruelly played with in the 'Three' storyline, where Ben is given a formula that allows him to become human for one day a year. It just so happens that the day he choses is the day Annihilus tries to invade via the Baxter Building, meaning Ben has to watch as Johnny sacrifices himself to save the Earth.
  • Translator Buddy
  • The Woobie: In universe, no less.
  • Uncle Wolf: Again, the Richards children, who are his godchildren. Messing with them is a good way to get your face turned into goo by a large, rocky, orange fist.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: With Johnny.
  • Weak, but Skilled: Compared to the Hulk, Ben's a more skilled fighter, generally smarter, and a competent martial artist. This contrasts with Hulk being Unskilled, but Strong.
  • What Have I Become?: In the first few issues of the series back in the 1960s, Ben didn't take being transformed into a living pile of orange rocks too well. He's still not all that happy about it, but he's mostly come to terms with it.
    • As Reed says "He has his good days and his bad days."
  • Wolverine Publicity: He's starting to lapse into it, as a member of the Fantastic Four and the Avengers simultaneously, plus appearing in FF.
  • Yiddish as a Second Language: To be fair, he's a). Jewish and b). from Lower East Side. Comes with the territory.

     Jonathan "Johnny" Storm (The Human Torch) 

Jonathan "Johnny" Storm (The Human Torch)

     Franklin Richards 

Franklin Richards

     Valeria "Val" Richards 

Valeria "Val" Richards

  • Brainy Baby -> Child Prodigy: She's not even four and she's already equaling / excelling her father.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold
  • Kid from the Future: She was introduced this way as Valeria Von Doom (A.K.A. Marvel Girl), with Doctor Doom as her father (Sue was still her mother). Her current incarnation is named Valeria Richards, yet she still has connections to Doctor Doom, given that he had a hand in her delivery and named her after a girl he loved (and Valeria was even his familiar at one point).
  • Little Miss Snarker: Depending on the writer.
  • Mini Dress Of Power: As Marvel Girl (her costume had elements of the FF uniform and Doctor Doom's).
  • Morality Pet: For Doctor Doom, who is far more moral when around her, and works had to make her happy. Partly subverted in that he used the knowledge she gave him in order to find ways to conquer additional worlds.
  • Odd Friendship: About the only person in the world who can call Doctor Doom 'uncle'.
  • Other Me Annoys Me: After the events of "Forever/All Hope lies in Doom" arc(s), both the future adult Valeria and current child version Valeria seem to dislike each for no reason.
  • The Runaway:After the events of the family's cosmic vacation, Valeria upset over being lied to about the family's situation runs away to stay with Uncle Doom.
  • Token Evil Teammate: Well, not really evil, but her brain is definitely much bigger than her heart.

Friends and Allies

     Willie Lumpkin 

Willie Lumpkin

     Alicia Masters 

     Uatu The Watcher 

Uatu the Watcher

     Agatha Harkness 

Agatha Harkness

     H.E.R.B.I.E. 

H.E.R.B.I.E.

     Thundra 

Thundra

     Nathaniel Richards 

Nathaniel Richards

Villains

     Victor Von Doom (Doctor Doom) 

Victor Von Doom (Doctor Doom)

  • Affably Evil: May try to destroy you, but still knows how to treat a guest.
  • Big Bad: One of Marvel's most iconic.
  • Disproportionate Retribution: Reed didn't even do what Doom blames him for. This has not stopped Doom from repeatedly trying to kill / destroy / crush / annihilate / insert grandiose adjective here Reed and his entire family in various over-the-top ways on numerous occasions in vengeance.
  • Enemy Mine: Is currently a member of the Freedom Foundation.
  • Evil Overlord
  • Large Ham: TREMBLE WITH FEAR BEFORE DOOM'S TITANIC MONOLOGUES!
  • Minor Injury Overreaction: The accident he blames Richards for was actually caused by the demon Mephisto, who merely gave him a long, thin scar by scratching his face. He's not exagerrating now, though, since when he first put on his armour it was molten hot, because he didn't wait for it to cool, so underneath he's genuinelly covered head to toe in third degree burns.
  • No, Mister Bond, I Expect You to Dine: The page image, natch.
  • The Rival: Reed Richards is #1.
  • Third-Person Person: They know to call him Doom, because that is what he constantly calls himself.

     Bentley Wittman (The Wizard) 

Bentley Wittman (The Wizard)

     Peter Petruski (Paste Pot Pete / Trapster) 

Peter Petruski (Paste Pot Pete / Trapster)

  • Abnormal Ammo: Fast-drying glue that quickly solidifies and can hold almost anything. As the Trapster, he added various other chemical substances to his arsenal.
  • Berserk Button: Calling him by his former name- Paste Pot Pete.
  • Butt Monkey
  • Cut Lex Luthor a Check: Why didn't he just market his glue and become a millionaire?
  • Epic Fail: Most of his super villain career
  • Fail O'Suckyname: Paste Pot Pete
  • Not-So-Harmless Villain: Despite his reputation of a joke, he has proven himself quite dangerous since he started to use his glue in lethal ways. He has successfully framed Spider-Man for his murder once, which forced Spidey to take four temporary secret identities.
  • Rogues-Gallery Transplant:At first, he was exclusively a foe of the Torch and the Thing. It didn't take him long to include Reed and Sue in his grudge, though. He later became a recurring foe of Spider-Man, but fared no better against the wall-crawler, either.
  • Sticky Situation: A super glue gun.
  • Trap Master

     The Mad Thinker 

     Philip Masters (The Puppet Master) 

Philip Masters (The Puppet Master)

     Annihilus 

Annihilus

     Kl'rt (Super-Skrull) 

Kl'rt (Super-Skrull)

     Galactus 

     Mole Man 

Mole Man

     Ronan The Accuser 

Ronan The Accuser

     Red Ghost (Ivan Kragoff) and his Super Apes 

Red Ghost and his Super Apes


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