May 18, 2013

“All Hope Lies In Doom”

There are many comics worth reading; many genres, many popular names, many themes to choose from. But if you’re new to comics or you are searching for a new series, where do you start? The great thing about comics is you can get many at your local comic store or, if you want a wider selection, you can buy them online. Even better, for those interested in Marvel comics, they offer a deal known as Marvel Digital Comics Unlimited (or MDCU), which is where you pay one price and get a year’s subscription to read as many comics available on their online library (which is quite extensive and covers many decades). One of my personal recommendations is a great series called FF.

No, the FF does not stand for Fantastic Four (though they are closely related). What FF stands for is Future Foundations. Future Foundations is an organization/club started by Mr. Fantastic to include extremely brilliant children and work together to solve the world’s problems. These are the sort of kids who can keep up with Reed Richards intellectually and most could easily obtain PhDs though they aren’t even high school age! The members include Alex Power of the Power Pack; the Moloids Tong, Turg, Mik and Torr; Bentley (clone of the super-villain, The Wizard); and Valeria Richards. Other members to join are Spider-Man, Artie Maddicks, Leech and Uhari co-heirs Vii and Wuu.

The first overall story line is really memorable and one that really makes the series worth reading. The basic storyline starts with the return of Reed’s time-traveling father, Nathaniel. Nathaniel starts to secretly converse with Valeria (who, at about the age of 4, is as smart if not smarter than her father) and warns her that the world is going to end unless they concoct an elaborate plan to stop Mad Celestials from destroying Earth. The one big clue she gets as part of her plan is “All hope lies in Doom”. This starts a chain of events that really tests the Fantastic Four, especially since now they must include their arch-nemesis as part of their team in order to save the Earth.

What makes this storyline so intense is the additional problem of the Council of Reeds (who are trying avoid the Celestials yet use our world as bait so that they may return to their worlds while trapping the Celestials on ours). With this the Future Foundation must stop both the Council of Reeds while simultaneously stalling the Mad Celestials long enough for unexpected help to arrive. What readers won’t suspect are the acts of Doctor Doom, whom, for a glorious moment, will transition from villain to anti-hero (but I can’t say more, that’s what reading is for!). This new Doctor Doom really adds a level of complexity to the story, one that is almost touching and makes the reader question the character that is Victor Von Doom.

I highly recommend this series to all readers. This is one of my all-time favorites and I think really sets a standard for modern comics that shows the quality of work that goes into it. The intensity of the series will keep you going, while the few comic relief moments will crack up readers (if they can get the complex or sometimes intellectual jokes). If you need a new series to read, start with FF.

Image Credit: Marvel

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