Matt Fraction also ties a big fat red bow on his incredible near year-and-a-half run with the Allred art family on FF, a comic you can otherwise consider “The Fantastic Replacement Four”. Perhaps surprisingly, this title turned out the better of the sister books, and even as it lost Fraction’s regular scripting duties (he remains the plot-master, however), FF’s quality never took a fall.
FF #16 could easily have the title Ant-Man #16.NOW if it wanted, and knowing Marvel – and the recent announcement of comedic extraordinaire Paul Rudd as Scott Lang – you know they would have loved to!
You see, there’s a viable reason why the 2nd Ant-Man lies front and center here. It was none other than Doctor Doom, murderer of Lang’s daughter Cassie, who disrupted the school for brilliant kids that further enraged its dizzying faculty. *Minor SPOILERS* In FF’s finale, you can bet Lang and Doom confront, Ant-Man gets the upper hand, and Doom receives the punishment he deserves. *End SPOILERS* But should so many of the pages of this book have been dedicated to said battle? Should a book chiefly known for its belly-aching humor, curious creatures, and the close-to-home life of a replacement cape go down like that? The fight is so long-winded you’d think one of the Watchers wrote it. Actually…
Even if the thick of Lee Allred’s swansong to Fraction’s incredible creation comes off forced, there are enough smiles to go around in the last 10-pages to satisfy most. Mike and Laura Allred handle the pencils and colors as they impressively have since day one, Val gets hers, and there’s Pym Particles! While FF is the most unfortunate victim to Marvel’s recent string of cancellations, the Allreds (at least the art team) slide right over to Silver Surfer, a natural if any. Not coincidentally, of course, the issue’s epilogue features a few panels with our favorite intergalactic herald.
So, even with Fraction sadly absent from the glorious finale of the Future Foundation, there’s no question 2013’s finest comic scribe was there in spirit to give an awkward nod…and wave these crazy kids goodbye.