BY MATT TUCK
FB@ The Comic Blog
There is a strong indication that the Fantastic Four will debut in Multiverse of Madness. The problem is that their key issues were already so expensive, and the MCU will only push them higher. What’s a collector do? Invest in the Richards children.
We know that Marvel Studios is actively developing a Fantastic Four movie. That’s old news, right? What we don’t know is the direction the studio will be taking with the FF. One of the hot rumors surrounding MOM is that Ioan Gruffodd will reprise his role as Reed Richards from Fox’s FF films from the early 2000s.
Given the state of the Multiverse in the wake of Spider-Man: No Way Home and now the return of Patrick Stewart to the role of Professor X (at least that’s what we assume), it leads to questions about the FF movie. It’s easy to draw the conclusion that Marvel is rebooting the franchise, but if Gruffodd is appearing as Mister Fantastic in MOM, that muddies the waters.
Let’s assume Gruffodd is back as Reed Richards. Instead of an entirely new cast for Marvel’s FF movie, that could mean the studio is looking elsewhere for the future of the franchise, namely the Richards children.
With that in mind, here are five issues that could prove to be sleeper picks in the future.
FANTASTIC FOUR ANNUAL #6
The most famous of Reed and Sue’s kids is Franklin. Debuting as an unnamed baby in 1968, he would go on to be one of the most powerful characters in all of Marvel Comics. Because of that immense power level, it would be hard to imagine Marvel Studios leaving Franklin and his story potential on the shelf. It also gives collectors another reason to want FF Annual #6 as it was already valued for being the first appearance of Annihilus.
This is the most expensive key on today’s list. While higher grades will run into the four figures, you can still get an affordable lower grade copy. At the moment, anything below a 5.0 shouldn’t cost much more than $300.
FANTASTIC FOUR #245
Now that the Multiverse is fully opened, it leaves a clear path for the time-hopping adult Franklin Richards to arrive in the MCU. Although Franklin first appeared as a child in the Silver Age, an adult variant named Avatar arrived on the scene in 1982’s FF #245.
We haven’t seen any graded copies trade hands since last summer when a 9.8 sold for $103. Want to save more money? Go with a raw copy for around $20.
FANTASTIC FOUR #376
Avatar may have been the first time readers saw Franklin as a grown man, but he wasn’t the only variant to cross paths with the FF. In 1993, the world was introduced to Psi-Lord (not to be confused with Psyduck the Pokemon), another adult version of Reed and Sue’s omega-level mutant son. Since this isn’t the first Franklin variant to grace the pages of a comic, most collectors pass this over in favor of FF #245. That keeps the prices low, and you can own a raw copy of FF #376 for $10 or less.
FANTASTIC FOUR #54
Because Franklin has been in the FF comics since the 1960s, it’s easy to think of him as the only Richards child. However, his sister, Valeria, was introduced in 2002, and she could have MCU potential as well. Pinpointing her exact first appearance is debatable. Technically she was seen in utero in FF #50, readers had to wait for more issues before Valeria was born. There’s also a Valeria Von Doom variant in the Fantastic Four mythos, though that is a different character.
While she has not been a major FF character in the past 20 years, it’s her involvement with another FF team that could lead to investment speculation. At the moment, FF #54 sells for $20-$25.
FANTASTIC FOUR #579
No one is talking about the Future Foundation, but this is a team that could easily fit the Marvel mold. Debuting in FF #579 in 2010, the other FF was a team of gifted teenagers that operated under the tutelage of Reed Richards. The original members included Franklin, Valeria, Alex Power, and Dragon Man. After the Fantastic Four left the Earth-616 dimension when their powers were fading, the Future Foundation quietly filled the void, though it didn’t catch on at the time. Put them in the MCU, and that could be a different story, and it will make the current $10 value a worthwhile investment.
THE FUTURE FOUNDATION OF THE FF
Young Avengers and/or the modern West Coast Avengers are coming to the MCU, not that anyone is shocked by that. Marvel chief Kevin Feige has been talking about Young Avengers for years, and the key characters are coming together on Disney+. The indication is that Marvel Studios is going younger with its teams, and that could be where the Future Foundation fits in. At the least, the studio could be looking at the Richards children for the future of the FF despite that being an unlikely road. As cheap as their key issues are at the moment, it’s worth the investment just in case.
Matt Tuck is the author of the novel, Lost Bones of the Dead. He is a professional writer, avid comic collector, former teacher, and the Blogger Supreme. You can follow him on his Facebook page, The Comic Blog, or on Instagram at matt.tuck.writer.