It’s like ‘License To Drive’ only Franklin and Val are the Corys. That should terrify you… Your Major Spoilers review of Fantastic Four #11 awaits!
Writer: Dan Slott
Artists: Paco Medina/Kevin Librand/Paolo Villanelli/Juanan Ramirez
Colorist: Jesus Aburtov
Letterer: VC’s Joe Caramagna
Editor: Tom Brevoort
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: June 26, 2019
Previously in Fantastic Four: Franklin and Valeria are growing up fast… but not fast enough to legally operate Fantasti-Cars in NYC! But wouldn’t you know it, the day of their big driving test is at the exact moment the entire Microverse might implode and take our reality with it! Going to parallel worlds? Easy. Parallel parking? Kinda hard!
THE DEPARTMENT OF EXTRA-NORMAL MOTOR VEHICLES
As we open our issue, Franklin Richards is deep in the throes of a terrible malady, the unstoppable menace of “being a teenager.” His surly demeanor makes for a few difficult moments as the team splits up to deal with strange interdimensional rifts and effects. Two buses have been merged together, a strange crystal has appeared at Coney Island and size-anomalies are threatening life across New York. Unfortunately, while the team brings each problem to heel, they also get the attention of the DEMV: The Department of Extra-Normal Motor Vehicles. And since the FF also has a couple of underaged members who have been piloting Pogo Planes and Fantastic 4X4’s all over the city, they are now officially required to get their licenses. It’s a simple thing for Valeria to learn all the various ins and outs, but Franklin, whose psionic powers seem to be fading out again, has more issues. And then, an attack from the Microverse drags the entire team in, driving instructors and al!
FRANKLIN’S POWERS ARE FADING
This issue debuts a new villain, Gargantua, a female from within the Microverse, and her attitude is a lot of fun, especially in how simply she ends up being defeated. This issue’s main weakness for me is the multple art teams, making things feel pretty fragmented, especially with the sudden Latveria segment in the middle of the issue. (Suffice to say, Doom plus radioactive clay is a bad idea.) The realistic depiction of teenage attitude is kind of refreshing in a comic book setting, but it ends up getting undermined a little by the end of the issue. IN fact, the biggest weakness of the comic for me comes in the fact that the fun and frippery make the whole thing feels a bit slight. Reed and Sue’s realization that they have a teenager with a driver’s license at the end of the issue is nicely handled, though, and I hope to see more of the ramiifications of that in coming issues. Slott’s Fantastic Four has been a very successful reintroduction of the World’s Greatest Comic Magazine, and this issue continues to blend heroics, family and exploration into a successful burrito of comics fun.
BOTTOM LINE: AN UNEXPECTED ENDING
All in all, it’s great to see the FF back in action and the focus on family and real-world rites of passage makes this issues a fun read, leaving Fantastic Four #11 with a better-than-average 3.5 out of 5 stars overall. I’d have preferred one art team throughout the issue, and sometimes the concepts are a little too clever for their own good (like the Fantastic 4X4, a concept that skirts the line between wonderful and migraine-inducing for me), but we still get an entertaining story out of the deal, and the new uniforms look awesome.
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FANTASTIC FOUR #11
Teen angst mixes with dimensional travel in the way that only the Fantastic Four can, with several different artists working on a fun story.