Saturday, April 4, 2009


The last two pages of Fantastic Four #132 are the most devastating, heart-shredding, and just plain sad in all of history in any medium.

It sure felt like that at the time.

Crystal (Inhuman Elemental Adorable Innocent Hippie-ish Hottie) has been dating The Human Torch for about seven years' worth of comics at this point. She even replaced Sue for a while and looked much cuter in her FF-variant costume. Johnny loves her and we love her and their love and our love will never die and the Beatles will never break up and flowers are the new money and Crystal is adorable.

Only we found out last issue that Crystal is dating Quicksilver. Quicksilver! Snotty Speedster and son of Magneto. She rescued him from a recent "Avengers" issue and they hooked up. It all happened so fast. Johnny, Schmonny. Johnny does not take it well and flames on like he's never flamed before.

Crystal makes her choice on these last two pages, and it's very well-written. She has her reasons and is nothing less than totally honest with Johnny. Johnny is shockingly mature about it, but we KNOW he's dying inside. The art conveys this beautifully. So does my own dying inside.

Then she walks away, and it really felt like we would never see her again, and never get to see how great John Buscema draws girls.

Ooooo the walking away was hard enough. Leave me alone. I want a Charleston Chew and a Grape Nehi, stat. But it gets worse!

The Thing knows Johnny is utterly crushed, and for once in his life, does not bust on him. He just casually asks him if he wants to see "The Godfather" when they get back to New York. That's the kind of small but HUGE moment that makes Marvel the bestest. At the time "The Godfather" was a REAL sensation in the REAL world and even my 9-year-old self was aware of it. And so were Ben and Johnny! They must be real, too. I knew it! I'll keep this to myself, but I knew I was right.

And then, Johnny says sure, why not, let's go, but his back is turned on Ben, and he's crying. He's fucking crying! He's not just a cocky fireball-hurling thinking-man's Bobby Sherman. He's got a big fat heart in there and it just sus-ploded into thirty-quintillion fiery shards.

NOBODY at DC cried. Not even the chicks.

This is the kind of scene and kind of issue that explains why there are Marvel-people and why there are DC-people. Today both companies put out emotionally-drenched stuff, but back then only Marvel was doing stuff like this. It kept you coming back and actually caring about what was going to happen to these people.

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