There's alot of speculation, both positive and negative, about Fox's upcoming The Fantastic Four reboot. Though the previous two had spot-on casting in my opinion, the poor writing and direction led to two average (or worse) movies. Already, the reboot has attracted a storm of criticism for its casting and story choices, most notably Michael B. Jordan as the Human Torch, Doctor Doom as a blogger/hacker, and Sue being the adopted sister of Johnny. Of course, for each angry Fantastic 4 purist is someone cheering every decision.
The debate makes one thing abundantly clear - Fox is taking many risks with the team. So what key elements must be in place? What makes the Fantastic Four the First Family, not only of Marvel, but of comics in general? Here are four ways Fox could doom the movie... or make it Fantastic.
1. Johnny and Sue- Family From the Start
One of the biggest hurdles for the new Fantastic Four will be the relationship between Johnny and Sue. They're not best friends, they're brother and sister- Sue is far more mature, but is also highly protective of the hotheaded Johnny. This dynamic is key. Older siblings are always protective of their younger ones, even if they don't always like them. If this relationship is turned from "true siblings" to "adopted friendship", it could throw the dynamic off for the rest of the team as well. Sue and Johnny were the first to bring the family element to the team, and it has to be that way here too.
2. Victor Von Doom-More Than a Blogger
Just about no one was happy to hear that Victor Von Doom, supergenius, master of science, technology, and the arcane, would be an angry blogger in the new movie. This one is fairly simple-Doom MUST grow beyond this role, and quickly, if he is to do the comic version justice. His intellect should be intact from the start, and whether or not he gets powers, he has to be more than a jealous rival.
3. Reed Richards-Fantastic, not Ultimate
Many people have said the new movie is based on the Ultimate Comics. In the case of Reed Richards, I hope this isn't true. In the Ultimates line, Reed goes on to become a "thousand year old megalomaniacal boy genius who almost wiped out most of Europe on a whim" (Nick Fury, Secret Wars #1). It is one of many questionable decisions in the over-the-top and controversial Ultimate Comics, and would absolutely ruin the movie/series if it came to pass. Reed is at his best as the absentminded genius and family man, not at Doctor Doom xerox.
4. Marvel's First Family
The Fantastic Four have some of the best, if not the best, team dynamics in comics. They are a family, bound more tightly than any other group could possibly be. This dynamic won't be present at the start of the movie, but by the end, it should be falling in to place. It is one of the unique factors that makes Fantastic Four such a great read. This aspect is truly more important than any other. Not having that family bond is like Superman not being a boy scout, or Spider-Man not dropping quips throughout a fight. If it is missing, it isn't really the Fantastic Four.