What do I need to know about the Fantastic Four to enjoy the movie?

I’m planning to see it only because Ioan Gruffudd is in it. Otherwise, I know nothing about the franchise except that four (count 'em) astronauts get fried by something in space and then find they have superpowers. And one of them is like the Hulk only he’s orange and looks like he’s made out of rocks.

So what do I need to know?

That’s pretty much it. The slant of the Fantastic Four has always been that they are a family of people with super powers, compared to how the X-Men essentially operate a school for youths with super powers. In the FF comics, Reed Richards (Mister Fantastic) and Ben Grimm (the Thing) were best friends, Reed was dating the younger Susan Storm (Invisible Woman) and they eventually marry, and Sue’s younger brother is Johnny Storm (the Human Torch). And in the comics, Victor Von Doom is Reed’s academic rival in college and becomes his arch-enemy, Doctor Doom.

Also, the Thing isn’t nearly as strong as the Hulk, but he maintains his intelligence and cognitive functions all the time since he can’t change back into human form. He’s a kind-hearted tough guy from the streets of Brooklyn, and surprisingly sensitive considering he’s trapped in that craggy, rocky body. And Mister Fantastic and Doctor Doom are two of the world’s most brilliant scientific minds.

race/group I was born into! Also, the Thing is ;j

2 questions (it having been a long time since I read the FF):

  • is Ben Grimm/The Thing actually stronger than normal men, or is he just (pardon the expression) rock hard?

  • Dr. Doom is all electrical? At least that’s what I gathered from the commercials. I always thought he was just a brilliant criminal genius, and leader of a small European country, who happened to wear that iron mask dealy. I don’t recall him using any super powers in the comics.

The thing is stronger then normal [del]jews[/del] peole. While your average strongman can barely tear a phonebook in half, the thing can barely lift a mountain.

The electrical power were pulled out of the script writer’s ass. Doom has a working knowledge of both Robotics, and Magic. He also has a serious mad-on for the fab Four. Also, he has a small scar on his face, and is insane enough to think he looks hideous. Thus, the mask. Actually, he looks kinda like Stan Lee, as I recall. Later artist changed this.

When I was a wee fanboy I remember Marvel put out a series of encyclopedia-style comics detailing the abilities of heros and villains. I think The Thing could bench-press the equivalent of something like 80 or 85 tons ( vs. 100+ for The Hulk ).

But I haven’t read any FF stuff in over a decade, so continuity, always ever so fragile on comic book universes, may have changed.

  • Tamerlane

Doesn’t that make a bris difficult? :slight_smile:

Yeah, I know…

Yeah, Thing is very strong, moreso than Spider-Man, but less so than Hulk or Superman.

And Dr. Doom is a scientific genius with great knowledge of magic and the occult as well. He is the despotic ruler of the tiny Balkan nation of Latveria, and his armor gives him limited super-strength, the power of flight, and invulnerability to certain attacks. However, in the movie, it seems like he will be portrayed as a contemporary of the FF, or perhaps their benefactor for the space mission. He is one of the best villains in the history of comics (and the major inspiration for Darth Vader), but I’m worried his character will be oversimplified to the point of being an electricity-shooting goon in a metal mask.

I’m hoping they can do at least as good a job on Doom as they did for the Spider-man villians. The complexity of his nature will be difficult, but I think if they can approach the quality of them and Magnus (Magneto) I’ll be happy.
I heard someone ask the question, “Why would you hire Jessica Alba to be invisible in a movie?”

I understand the sentiment.

You mean, the way they substituted Jet Jaguar for the Green Goblin? :dubious:

But really, they did a good job of that movie. However, on my first time seeing the costume in a magazine,this was my reaction. (Kinda)

[nitpick]Ben Grimm is from “Yancey Street” on the Lower East Side of Manhattan. Stan Lee based it on Delancey Street.

Correct. I believe this is the original text from the Marvel Handbook, which notes Grimm can bench 85 tons. Unknown whether there’ve been changes since then. And for funsies here’s the entry on Doctor Doom. No inherent electrical powers (and hey, THANKS FOR THE SPOILER TAG ON THAT) but certainly Doom in the comics has used electrical discharges as offensive weapons on more than one occasion.

That stuff’s in teh commercials, so it’s fair game.

The commercials and extended movie trailers have all shown him shooting electricity, so there was no need for a spoiler tag. It would be like putting “zombies eat people in Land of the Dead” or “we meet the Oompa Loompas in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” in spoiler tags.

Fuck. Guess there’s no point in buying a ticket now!

Well, shit. We’re all like that.

How come I didn’t see Herbie the robot in the trailers? Have the kept his design a secret?

Nah. A real spoiler would be if I said “Willy Wonka exploits his ommpa loompa workers and makes billions off their suffering without investing anything back into the community” He’s basically an evil capitalist. He even does horrible things to childern.

Small nitpick/question. Originally, wasn’t the extent of the damage unknown? But, as his mask was still red hot from the forge when he put it on, it was later revealed that it was originally a small scar but was, after the mask was first put on, serious disfigurement?

Peace - DESK

Yeah, that’s pretty much it.