10 FANTASTIC FOUR/SPIDER-MAN Stories Marvel Studios Can Tell In The Upcoming Reboot And Beyond
Marvel's First Family are coming to the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and while Jon Watts may no longer be in charge of the upcoming reboot, we'd still like to see Spider-Man swing into Fantastic Four...
At the end of 2020, Marvel Studios announced that the director of their Spider-Man trilogy, Jon Watts, would take the helm of the upcoming Fantastic Four reboot. Unfortunately, the filmmaker recently decided to depart the project, presumably meaning the hunt is on for a new filmmaker to take charge of what we hope will be a movie that finally does Marvel's First Family justice.
Reed, Sue, Ben, and Johnny coming to the Marvel Cinematic Universe is a big deal, and while we don't know exactly what the plan is for them yet, they're bound to change this shared world forever. But even without Watts behind the camera, we can't help but wonder whether Spider-Man is going to be involved.
This team has a long, rich history with Peter Parker, and it would be crazy for that not to be touched on either in this first Fantastic Four movie or in an eventual sequel. Heck, even Spider-Man 4 is a possibility! There are a lot of great stories and comics Marvel Studios could take inspiration from, and it's those we're taking a look at here.
We think you'll be surprised by some of these suggestions, so hit the "Next" button to check them out!
10. "Spider-Man Vs. The Chameleon"
An obvious choice in many ways, but adapting Amazing Spider-Man #1 for the Fantastic Four reboot could be a genius idea. In the comic, Peter Parker realises he can no longer earn money in show business thanks to J. Jonah Jameson's editorials in The Daily Bugle, so instead tries to join the Fantastic Four.
The team don't trust the masked hero and doesn't need or want another member, so Spidey is refused entry to the group. Making this even more enjoyable is the fact that Spider-Man ends up fighting them!
Making a few changes to this story would be necessary for the Marvel Cinematic Universe, of course, but it would be a lot of fun for the movie to make use of Spidey in this way. Meanwhile, a battle between this foursome and the wonderous wall-crawler would be a nice showcase of their powers.
Mark Waid and Mike Wieringo's Fantastic Four run should absolutely inspire what we end up seeing in this reboot, and this two-part team-up between Spider-Man and the Human Torch is a must-read.
Taking place in Fantastic Four #512 - #513, this story portrays the wall-crawler as a beloved superhero, while Marvel's First Family are reviled by the public. Johnny turns to Peter for help with the tone-deaf question of how he copes with being hated by the public 99.9% of the time. A battle with Hydro-Man in a water park follows, and both heroes take shots at each other along the way.
It might be fun for this team to be introduced, only for the public not to be sure what to make of them. Johnny asking for Spidey's advice (seeing as he's still a divisive hero even with his identity no longer publicly known) does make sense, and it could similarly play out during this fight...Far From Home confirmed Morris Bench exists, remember!
8. "Future Foundation"
When Johnny Storm was believed dead after making what appeared to be the ultimate sacrifice during a battle with Annihilus' forces in the Negative Zone, Reed, Sue, and Ben turned to Spider-Man.
Joining the team in his best friend's absence, Peter Parker proved to be a pivotal part of the newly dubbed "Future Foundation," a team that saw the foursome also training some of the heroes of tomorrow. Giving the Fantastic Four a similar role in the MCU would definitely be something different, and they could enlist Spidey as one of the heroes who helps train these young geniuses.
That nicely sets the stage for Peter to one day become a high school science teacher, and gives the web-slinger the opportunity to show that he is indeed one of the MCU's smartest heroes. Of course, while he's there, Spidey would definitely need that snazzy white costume.
7. "The Dazzling Human Torch, On The Trail Of The Amazing Spider-Man!"
A story that played out in the pages of Strange Tales Annual #2 (from the dream team of Stan Lee, Jack Kirby, and Steve Ditko), this isn't necessarily a classic, but it proved to be an important story for Spider-Man and the Human Torch. As well as being the wall-crawler's first comic book team-up, Peter Parker and Johnny Storm's dynamic as "frenemies" was firmly established here.
Spidey needs the Torch's help to clear his name after he's framed for a robbery, and their regular meeting place atop the Statue of Liberty was also introduced in this story.
A brief team-up like this would be a good way to showcase Johnny's powers, while also establishing friction between the two heroes that would likely play out on screen over a number of years. This could be as simple as the Human Torch interfering in the web-slinger taking on some crooks, but it certainly wouldn't be the worst way to have them cross paths for the first time.
Written by Chris Claremont with artwork by Frank Miller, Marvel Team Up #100 saw Spider-Man once again team-up with the Fantastic Four. Featuring the debut of New Mutants character Karma, this adventure saw a mind-controlled Peter Parker squaring off with the entire team.
Hero vs. hero battles are always a blast, and tying this into whatever villain Marvel's First Family faces could be a lot of fun. As the team is investigating that threat, they find themselves forced to square off with Spider-Man, establishing their dynamic by having him owe them one!
Johnny would love holding that over Peter, and while there are other elements here which could be adapted, the fight Claremont and Miller came up with would translate perfectly to the big screen.
5. Amazing Spider-Man #3
This issue of Amazing Spider-Man primarily focused on the wall-crawler's battle with Doctor Octopus, but the Human Torch came to Peter Parker's school to give students a motivational talk.
That ended up inspiring the youngster to continue being a superhero, though Spidey would later rub Johnny up the wrong way by revealing that he'd already beaten Doc Ock (just as the Fantastic Four member was setting off to take him on himself). A faithful adaptation of this subplot wouldn't work, but the general idea could definitely end up inspiring what ends up on screen.
Perhaps the entire Fantastic Four could visit Spidey's college, and it's that which leads to Peter attempting to join their ranks? Either way, this is an absolute classic, and not a bad place to start.
4. "The Sinister Secret Of Spider-Man's New Costume"
The wall-crawler got a taste of the Multiverse in Spider-Man: No Way Home, but a piece of another world was left behind when Eddie Brock returned to his reality and a piece of his symbiote remained. Now, the hope among fans is that the MCU's Peter will bond with a Venom that takes the wall-crawler down a similar route to his comic book counterpart.
Of course, he'll ultimately realise that his new costume is more dangerous than it looks, so it's entirely possible the web-slinger will turn to the Fantastic Four for help in ridding himself of the alien.
If that happens, then we'll almost certainly see the live-action debut of the "Bombastic Bag-Man." One of Spidey's most memorable costumes, it was presented to him by Johnny Storm as a joke to protect the hero's secret identity as he headed home shortly after the symbiote was put in captivity.
3. "The Roommate Experiment"
Shortly after he was resurrected, Johnny moved in with Peter Parker and the two became roommates.
Needless to say, it didn't work, and these two clashed from the start. It was a fun play on their old dynamic as "frenemies," and the wall-crawler ultimately becomes determined to evict his good buddy. Along the way, he gets caught up in some of the Human Torch's misadventures, and now that Spidey is nearing college age, why can't he move in with another of his fellow superheroes?
He does have his own place in the Big Apple these days, and if the Fantastic Four are running the "Future Foundation," then he and Peter could very easily be part of that (potentially even as students rather than teachers).
2. New Fantastic Four
We're certainly not suggesting this factor into the first Fantastic Four movie, but it sure would be fun to see the "New Fantastic Four" assemble in the MCU sooner rather than later.
In this Walt Simonson-penned story, Hulk, Wolverine, Ghost Rider, and Spider-Man are forced to come together in the absence of the original team. This unlikely group of heroes does a surprisingly good job, and while it doesn't take long for Reed, Sue, Ben, and Johnny to return, the team-up that followed was a blast, and this would make for one hell of a star-studded adventure.
She-Hulk could replace The Hulk, while Kevin Feige is rumoured to have big plans for Ghost Rider. Wolverine, meanwhile, is obviously going to factor into future stories when the X-Men are rebooted.
1. "Spider-Man/Human Torch"
Dan Slott's Spider-Man/Human Torch series picked up with the two heroes at various stages in their respective superhero careers, telling some touching, highly amusing stories along the way.
We even got to learn how Johnny learned that Spider-Man and Peter Parker were one and the same, and if we're being honest, these two being paired up in a Spider-Man 4 is an absolute must one day. For now, though, there are lots of cues Marvel Studios could take from this series, even if it's just tonally.
Assuming Marvel Studios is going to continue getting the opportunity to tell stories involving Spider-Man, then here's hoping this movie is able to lay the groundwork for an eventual team-up like this one.