Collects Fantastic Four #544-550.
Writer: Dwayne McDuffie
Artists: Paul Pelletier, Rick Magyar
The Civil War storyline tore the FF apart literally: Reed joined Tony supporting the registration and even made a highly unsuccessful clone of Thor, Susan and Johnny joined the resistance with Steve, and Ben left to France, not taking sides. Now, McDuffie has the unenviable task of uniting the FF family again but he does it with style for the most part.
Reed and Susan take a leave of absence, working on their marriage. The Black Panther and Storm are stepping into the team in their place. Panther has a very different leadership style from Reed; I have only seen him in the Avengers so I wasn’t prepared.
After Reed and Susan leave, the former Deathlok comes to see T’Challa. It appears that the grave of a young, very unsung hero named Gravity has been robbed. The boy’s gone. The only way to know what had happened is for the team to go to the Moon and see the Watcher. (Yep, it’s an FF book alright.) After a bit of blustering, they find out that Epoch has the body. Unfortunately, just when the new FF reach her, the Silver Surfer and the Stardust arrive, followed soon by their master, Galactus!
Meanwhile, Susan and Reed arrive on Titan where they are the house guests of Mentor. However, soon Reed discovers something strange.
This was a very enjoyable collection. I really enjoyed T’challa and Storm here (Storm is one of my all-time favorite comic characters but don’t know T’challa at all) and the adventures feel very FF. Healing the rifts from the Civil War might have come a bit too easily, but that’s to be expected. Galactus and later the Frightful Four are great, classic villains and I enjoyed them, despite Susan being a used as a hostage.