Fantastic Four Road Trip #1 is a one-shot from Marvel Comics out December 2. Doctor Doom writer Christopher Cantwell gives artist Filipe Andrade a chance to get creative with grotesque surrealism. That surrealism furthers with colorist Chris O’Halloran and letterer Joe Caramagna contributing to the weirdness.
Fantastic Four Road Trip #1: Simply Fantastic
Cantwell takes the Fantastic Four out of the drama of their mainline series for some family times. Fantastic Four Road Trip #1 follows the titular family trying to get some vacation time in them. Seeing the Fantastic Four going about their usual quirks is certainly a breath of fresh air. Like when Sue Storm and Ben Grimm make bets on whether Reed turns their trip into a small expedition. That same decision by Mister Fantastic certainly opens a chance to show both the FF’s family drama and superheroism.
Where Fantastic Four Road Trip #1 really stands out is in the artwork by Andrade. His exaggerated cartoony art style gets highly creative when the Fantastic Four get caught in a death trap. Body horror and surreal effects like Franklin being in multiple places at once are a grotesque display of the FF. They explore the strange and are part of it, which can be to their detriment. It’s what makes some scenes where the Fantastic Four’s cabin turns into an abstract art piece fascinating and horrifying.
Some of the stranger aspects of Fantastic Four Road Trip #1 display themselves through color by O’Halloran. In scenes featuring Franklin/Powerhouse, his yellow and blue clothes and black hair make him stand out. It’s what makes his role in the overall plot stand out. The lettering by Joe Caramagna features both hand-drawn wordmarks that can look as absurd as the art and uniform lettering as a contrast. This juxtaposition serves as both a forewarning and a way for things to become more mundane as the plot advances.
One Little Detail
On the flip side, while it isn’t a requirement to read previous material, it helps to see where the plot fits. This is particularly important in regards to Franklin with events from the mainline comics. It’s only because Franklin’s attitude throughout the one-shot reflects these events.
Fantastic Four Road Trip #1 Is Good For The Reader
Fantastic Four Road Trip #1 is a good issue just to see Marvel’s First Family be themselves. The family dynamic between them is always a sight to behold as they drive each other crazy with their quirks. The artwork is most definitely what will attract readers for combining surrealism with the grotesque. Because by all accounts, the Fantastic Four are explorers in all things of the Marvel Universe.