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Fantastic Four Volume 1 - Jonathan Hickman, Dale Eaglesham The Fantastic Four deal with the Wizard, the Council of Reeds, Nu-Earth, and Franklin Richards' birthday...

There was a time in my life when the Fantastic Four was undisputedly my favorite comic. I must have been a subscriber for six or seven years. Aside from reading Fantastic Four by John Byrne Omnibus - Volume 1 and Fantastic Four: 1234, this is my first foray into the FF's adventures in a decade or more.

The book starts off a little slow. The Wizard-centric story at the beginning didn't knock my unstable molecule-made socks off, but it did introduce the young Wizard clone, Bentley. The second story, however, kicks things into high gear. I love the concept of the Council of Reeds, Reed Richards from various space-time continuums that team up and solve all the world's problems. It's a great story, too. The third story takes place in parallel with the second, a vacation for Johnny and The Thing to Nu-World that goes bad. The fourth story, Franklin's birthday, has its share of poignant moments. The art was pretty good. When did the Fantastic Four start wearing short sleeves?

My only gripes with this book have to do with pacing. Not a hell of a lot actually happened. It was the complete opposite of the last omnibus I read, Frankenstein, Agent of S.H.A.D.E., Vol. 1: War of the Monsters. While I don't expect a slugfest per page, I felt like this volume was all setup for future tales.