FANTASTIC FOUR #44-47 (1965): 1st Inhumans

The introduction to The Inhumans starts with Gorgon in Fantastic Four #44…

…but over these five issues the whole core team is introduced: Black Bolt (#45); Crystal (#45), who hits it off with Johnny Storm right away; Karnak the Shatterer (#45); Triton (#45); Lockjaw the dog (#45)…The art is by Jack Kirby, but it looks very much like Mike Mignola…

Gorgon comes looking for Medusa, who was introduced as a super-villain many issues ago. Since then, she became an ally to the team.

The reader don’t know why he’s looking for her, but of course we, with the benefit of hindsight, know she’s being retconned as an Inhuman.

Medusa kidnaps Johnny Storm to force him to protect her, but inadvertently awakens Dragon Man.

After a tussle with him, the four stand with Medusa against Gorgon.

Gorgon tells Medusa that she is part of his race, not the human race and not a mutant.

During the discussion, Lockheed teleports in with Crystal.

Human Torch’s feelings for her are immediate…

She takes Johnny to the Inhumans’ underground city, where Karnak flips him like a burger.

Of course, the rest of the team also makes their way to the Hidden Refuge and we get the big, fun fight.

And, of course, there’s the Romeo and Juliet element of Torch and Crystal. When we finally meet Black Bolt, he kicks Thing’s ass.

Skybreaker even appears (but he’s not given a name).

All this, and The Frightful Four (lamenting the loss of Medusa), too!  And the first appearance of the air cycle!

Great, great stuff.  One of the best Lee-Kirby stories of all time.  And next, they introduce Galactus.  It’s breathtaking how much they managed to cram into each issue of this book.  And I’m not the only one who thought this.  Look who wrote a letter!

Future X-Men artist Dave Cockrum!

Leave a Comment