FANTASTIC FOUR ANNUAL #5 (1967): 1st Psycho-Man and Livewire

Even well into 1967, with an ever-expanding roster of heroes and villains, the Fantastic Four continue to produce the best stories.  They also make the best annuals—just about every single one has been essential reading.   And this one is no different.

First of all, we learn that Susan Storm is pregnant.  I’m pretty sure she’s the first pregnant superhero. She faints to show us all her condition.

The gang is pleased.

Second, we meet Psycho Man, who is a lot like Kirby’s Psycho Pirate (for DC)—only he’s got a groovy machine with signs on it.

Psycho Man wants to kill all humans to clear off Earth so his own people can live on the planet, the FF want to stop him, and along the way Black Panther and the Inhumans join in the fun.

Then, there’s a back-up Silver Surfer story—his first solo adventure—which is a continuation from FF Annual #4, in that it involves Quasimodo, who first appeared in that story.  I think this is the first time (and only time?) an annual from one year was continued in the following annual.

Psychoman has two lackeys who are basically copies of members of The Enforcers. Livewire, who has an electric lasso (and who will later join the Circus of Crime), and Shellshock, who uses a souped up firearm.

Also, some sweet Inhumans pin-ups!

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