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What is the slogan of the Fantastic Four?

The Fantastic Four are a fictional superhero team appearing in American comic books published by Marvel Comics. The group debuted in The Fantastic Four #1 (cover dated Nov. 1961), which helped to usher in a new level of realism in the medium. The Fantastic Four was the first superhero team created by writer-editor Stan Lee and artist and co-plotter Jack Kirby, who developed a collaborative approach to creating comics with this title that they would use from then on. The four individuals traditionally associated with the Fantastic Four are Mister Fantastic, the Invisible Woman, the Human Torch, and the Thing. The team was created after Stan Lee listened to a pitch by Jack Kirby for a superhero team that would outdo Lee’s Justice League of America. Lee and Kirby produced the first issue of The Fantastic Four in 1961, establishing the team as four friends who gained superpowers after exposure to cosmic rays during a scientific mission to outer space. As a result, they adopted the names Mr. Fantastic, the Invisible Woman, the Human Torch, and the Thing. Since their original 1961 introduction, the Fantastic Four have been portrayed as a somewhat dysfunctional yet loving family. Breaking convention with other comic book archetypes of the time, they would squabble, hold grudges, and react emotionally to one another in a more realistic manner than most superheroes.


The release of The Fantastic Four #1 (Nov. 1961) was an unexpected success. Lee had felt ready to leave the comics field at the time, but the positive response to Fantastic Four persuaded him to stay on. The title began to receive fan mail and Lee started printing the letters in a letter column with issue #3. Also with the third issue, Lee created the hyperbolic slogan “The Greatest Comic Magazine in the World!!” With the following issue, Lee and Kirby introduced the team’s most frequent nemesis, Doctor Doom, as well as the heroine the Invisible Girl’s boyfriend the Human Torch’s best friend, Pilot Benjamin J. Grimm, in a cameo appearance as a menacing figure. Issue #4 marked a milestone in the evolution of comic books. Despite the team’s argumentative behavior in that issue, Lee decided that the characer bickering added realism that no other comic book publisher had yet explored.. That issue marked the first superhero title wherein the characters gave in to pettiness and bickering. Thereafter, Lee and Kirby would put the team members through anything, amplifying the tension and humor derived from their character flaws.


Stan Lee and Jack Kirby created the Fantastic Four after Lee decided to create a comic-book series that did not rely on the conventions of the time. The differences between the Fantastic Four and other contemporary comic books made The Fantastic Four #1 a big seller.

Kirby recalled:

I had to do something different. The monster stories have their limitations – you can just do so many of them. And then it becomes a monster book month after month, so there had to be a switch because the times weren’t exactly conducive to good sales. So I felt the idea was to come up with new stuff all the time – in other words there had to be a blitz. And I came up with this blitz. I came up with The Fantastic Four, I came up with Thor (I knew the Thor legends very well), and the Hulk, the X-Men, and The Avengers. I revived what I could and came up with what I could. I tried to blitz the stands with new stuff.

The release and instant popularity of The Fantastic Four #1 led Lee and artist Jack Kirby to continue the series with enthusiasm. Kirby recalled: “We got a lot of fan mail on it, and we kept introducing new things. Both Stan and I felt that the public wanted things that were bigger and better.” Kirby elaborated that “after that then Spidey and Thor began to be hits, Captain America began to sell, and we found ourselves on a par with, if not outselling, DC Comics. So we said, ‘Let’s continue these books.'”

Origin Story

The Fantastic Four’s origin story establishes that they are so dedicated to scientific discovery that they are willing to travel through space to find it. The crew in the original story consist of Reed Richards, Ben Grimm, Susan Storm, and Susan’s younger brother Johnny. Reed has mastered the sciences of space travel, chemistry, physics, and biology, while Susan Storm has her mastery in other fields. Ben Grimm, Reed’s college roommate and best friend, was a successful test pilot who agreed to fly their experimental rocket. Johnny Storm was enrolled into the program at a young age by his sister. Susan Storm named the craft the Fantastic after her and Johnny’s fathers contribution as well as her love for Reed.

In Kirby’s original synopsis of the story the Fantastic Four were to have gained their abilities after stealing a spaceship to travel to Mars to beat the Communists to the planet. Stan Lee discarded this idea saying it made them come off as bad guys but both creators as well as most comics historians acknowledge that the Cold War culture resulted in Kirby’s initial idea. Kirby’s new synopsis harkened back to pulp magazines he read in his youth and raising the question to Lee ‘What if a crew of space explorers were exposed to cosmic rays from an uncharted area and consequently developed superhuman powers as a result of the exposure?’. Lee turned this basic outline into the first ever issue of The Fantastic Four and had Kirby pencil and ink the story. Kirby modeled The Thing on himself, giving his creation Ben Grimm a similar personality and making him a heavier set figure as Kirby was. Also similar to Kirby, The Thing was Jewish.


The slogan most commonly associated with the Fantastic Four is:

“The World’s Greatest Comic Magazine!”

This hyperbolic slogan, which first appeared on the cover of Fantastic Four #4 in 1962, was created by Stan Lee as part of his efforts to promote and distinguish the series from other superhero comics of the time. Though not literally true, it captured the ambitious spirit of Marvel’s fresh approach to superheroes.

Lee recalled coming up with the slogan in a 2000 interview:

By the fourth issue, we started to get a lot of fan mail. I figured we must be doing something right, so I figured I’d come up with a slogan. I made up “The World’s Greatest Comic Magazine!” I don’t know whether we were or not. Who knew? But suddenly from the mail we were getting, we were beginning to believe we were.

The slogan became so closely associated with the Fantastic Four that it appeared on nearly every cover through the 1960s, helping to cement the comic as a best-seller. Though initially hyperbolic, the popularity and acclaim of the Fantastic Four series over the years has led many fans and critics to genuinely consider it one of the greatest superhero comics ever created.

The Fantastic Four’s Powers

Here is an overview of the core Fantastic Four members’ superpowers:

Mr. Fantastic

– Real name: Reed Richards

– Powers: Elasticity, shapeshifting

– Can stretch his body into any shape and size

Invisible Woman

– Real name: Susan Storm

– Powers: Invisibility, force fields

– Can render herself invisible and project powerful force fields

Human Torch

– Real name: Johnny Storm

– Powers: Fire, flight

– Can engulf his body in flames and fly

The Thing

– Real name: Ben Grimm

– Powers: Super strength, durability

– Has strong, thick rock-like skin and super strength

Major Storylines

Here are some of the most notable Fantastic Four comic book story arcs over the decades:

The Galactus Trilogy

– Issues: Fantastic Four #48-50 (1966)

– Creators: Stan Lee, Jack Kirby

– The famous introduction of Galactus and the Silver Surfer.

The Coming of Galactus

– Issues: Fantastic Four #242-244 (1982)

– Creators: John Byrne

– Galactus returns to Earth and Terry Richards is revealed as the herald.

The Trial of Reed Richards

– Issues: Fantastic Four #262-263 (1984)

– Creators: John Byrne

– Reed Richards is put on trial for saving Galactus.

Inhumans Saga

– Issues: Fantastic Four #240-263 (1982-1984)

– Creators: John Byrne

– A lengthy storyline focusing on the Inhumans royal family.

The Wedding of Reed and Sue

– Issue: Fantastic Four Annual #3 (1965)

– Creators: Stan Lee, Jack Kirby

– Reed Richards and Sue Storm finally get married.

Members Over the Years

While the original foursome has remained the most well-known lineup, the Fantastic Four has had many different members join its ranks over the decades:

Member Powers First Appearance
Mr. Fantastic (Reed Richards) Elasticity Fantastic Four #1 (1961)
Invisible Woman (Susan Storm) Invisibility, force fields Fantastic Four #1 (1961)
Human Torch (Johnny Storm) Fire, flight Fantastic Four #1 (1961)
Thing (Ben Grimm) Super strength, durability Fantastic Four #1 (1961)
Crystal Elemental manipulation Fantastic Four #45 (1965)
Medusa Prehensile hair Fantastic Four #36 (1965)
She-Hulk (Jennifer Walters) Super strength, durability Fantastic Four #265 (1984)
Ms. Marvel (Sharon Ventura) Super strength, flight Fantastic Four #306 (1987)
Ant-Man (Scott Lang) Size manipulation, insects Fantastic Four #384 (1994)


The Fantastic Four have done battle with many villains over the years, here are some of their greatest foes:

– **Doctor Doom** – A scientific genius and master sorcerer, Victor Von Doom is the Fantastic Four’s archnemesis. He was introduced in Fantastic Four #5 (1962).

– **Galactus** – A cosmic entity that consumes entire planets, he was introduced in the classic “Galactus Trilogy” in Fantastic Four #48-50 (1966).

– **Mole Man** – The Fantastic Four’s first villain, Harvey Elder rules an underground kingdom. He first appeared in Fantastic Four #1 (1961).

– **Annihilus** – A bug-like creature from the Negative Zone who commands vast insectoid armies. He debuted in Fantastic Four Annual #6 (1968).

– **Diablo** – An alchemist named Esteban Corazón de Ablo who uses potions and elixirs. He first appeared in Fantastic Four #30 (1964).

– **Super-Skrull** – An alien Skrull who possesses all the powers of the Fantastic Four. Introduced in Fantastic Four #18 (1963).

– **Impossible Man** – An impish shape-shifter who provides comic relief. He debuted in Fantastic Four #11 (1962).

– **Puppet Master** – Phillip Masters uses radioactive clay to control the minds of others. First appeared in Fantastic Four #8 (1962).

– **Klaw** – Ulysses Klaw is a Dutch physicist who became a living sound converter. Fantastic Four #53 (1966) marked his first appearance.

In Other Media

The Fantastic Four have been adapted into other media over the years:


– Fantastic Four (1967-1970) – A Saturday morning cartoon show featuring redrawn panels from the comics. Ran for 20 episodes.

– Fantastic Four (1978) – An unreleased animated pilot loosely based on the Lee/Kirby issues.

– Fantastic Four (1994-1996) – An animated series featuring Doctor Doom and the Silver Surfer. Ran for 2 seasons.


– The Fantastic Four (1994) – An extremely low-budget unreleased film produced by Roger Corman.

– Fantastic Four (2005) – Live-action film starring Ioan Gruffudd as Reed Richards and Jessica Alba as Sue Storm.

– Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer (2007) – Sequel to the 2005 film with Laurence Fishburne as the voice of the Silver Surfer.

– Fantastic Four (2015) – A reboot directed by Josh Trank starring Miles Teller as Reed and Michael B. Jordan as Johnny Storm.

Video Games

– The Fantastic Four (1997) – Side-scrolling action game for the PlayStation.

– Fantastic Four: Flame On (2019) – Action RPG for mobile devices.

– Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer (2007) – Movie tie-in game for PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, and Nintendo DS.


For over 60 years, the Fantastic Four have remained one of Marvel’s most iconic superhero teams. Their revolutionary approach changed the comic book industry in the 1960s and Stan Lee and Jack Kirby’s creative synergy led to many classic stories. The FF broke new ground with their dysfunctional family dynamics and cosmic adventures. Though there have been many lineup changes, the core ideals of exploration and family remain integral to their appeal. Their legacy continues to influence superhero comics today. Excelsior!