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Fantastic Four by John Byrne Omnibus - Volume 1 Hardcover – November 23, 2011
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At nearly 1100 pages, weighing just over 7 lbs, this monster collects 47 different Marvel Comics titles from the 1970s into the 1980s that feature FF characters touched by Mr. Byrne either as just the penciler or the full writer/artist. I was personally happy to find the opening story in the collection is a forgotten favorite from a 1977 Marvel Team-Up two parter by Chris Claremont with Mr. Byrne on pencils. The fast paced dramatic tale pits Spider-Man alongside the Human Torch and then Ms. Marvel against a rampaging Super Skrull (an alien infused with the powers of the Fantastic Four).
From there we move onto a great 1979 issue of Marvel Two-In-One #50 where the Thing decides to travel back in time with a cure that would only work on a younger version of himself in his earliest days as the monster after his fateful transformation.
The collection then delivers all of Mr. Byrne's work on the main run of the Fantastic Four title beginning in 1979 as penciler, then as full creator in 1981. What's neat about this collection is that between gaps in his early work on the title, the Omnibus editors have added in pages that give not only a brief synopsis of FF issues in-between the Byrne issues but also tosses in quick explanations as to why Mr. Byrne was not involved in the issues not collected here.Read more ›
Byrne's run really starts at issue #232, although this heavy@ss tome also collects the FF-related stuff he did prior. As such, MARVEL TEAM-UP #61-62 (Spidey teaming up with the Torch and then with Ms. Marvel against the Super-Skrull) and FANTASTIC FOUR #209-218 feature his pencil work (with Byrne getting tapped as the new regular artist of the FANTASTIC FOUR even as the comic book was in the middle of a sweeping eleven-part Galactus saga). MARVEL TWO-IN-ONE #50 (presenting the Thing vs. the Thing) and FANTASTIC FOUR #220-221 showcase not only his pencils but his script-work as well. But it wasn't until he officially began illustrating AND writing FF in issue #232 that he began to impose his own visual interpretations. The most striking shift is in how Reed Richards looked, metamorphosing from a standard muscular gent to a slim, high browed science hero who looked befittingly more academic. The Thing also gradually underwent a physical change, eventually assuming that rocky starfish-shaped figure which in my mind will always be the most iconic.
Byrne's creativity was off the charts. Sometimes, or maybe often, his dynamic talent with the pencil and inks overshadows his gift for writing.Read more ›
Byrne over the course of his FF run brings back almost all of Lee & Kirby's best villains & heroes from their original 103 issue run: the Silver Surfer, Galactus, Skrulls, the Black Panther, the Inhumans, and most importantly Doctor Doom! It's been said by many others but it bears repeating ...this is easily the best take on the Fantastic Four since Stan Lee & Jack Kirby left the book! Byrnes grasp on the characters (particularly Ben Grimm) is spot on. Byrne mixed just enough nostalgia with just enough of the "next big thing" ( the X-men "guest appearance", expanding on the Galactus Mythos) to propel the franchise forward. Outstanding.
The Omnibus itself is beautiful presentation. The cover is gorgeous and really pops when seen in person!Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Fabulous collection. I am delighted to have it and lock forward to many hours of reading some of the best Marvel mythos ever created. Read morePublished 3 months ago by JP Fish
Second greatest run of the FF. Right behind Lee-Kirby run in mid 60s.Published 10 months ago by Jeffrey Beckham
I bought this first and foremost as a fan of John Byrne, and did not regret it. The book itself is of high quality, with thick pages, full-color reprints of original artwork, and a... Read morePublished 12 months ago by BuccoFan
Great Buy on a Huge Heavy Book ! Must for all Fantastic Four Fan that remember having the individual comic books when they were kids.Published 14 months ago by Michael Derenda
This is a great collection of stories from a legendary artist. I have the original issues, but this allows me to enjoy those same stories without digging through my collection to... Read morePublished 15 months ago by Hexigore
John Byrne has a lot of love and respect for these characters, as well as creators Stan Lee and Jack Kirby. That love shines through every page of this massive tome. Read morePublished 17 months ago by Ian
Some of the Best Art and Storytelling of the Eighties. Clearly John Byrne is the son of Jack Kirby and Neal Addams, and this shows in every panel. Read morePublished 24 months ago by Allen
I purchased all these comics by John Byrne many decades ago as a youth. All those comics are boarded & bagged; this is a great alternative. Read morePublished on January 23, 2014 by chris gendron