Five you say? Not Four? How could this be? Is it cannon? No it’s not. Is it in parallel universe? Yes. Will it appear in a Marvel movie? No, because The Fantastic Four and Spider-man have their rights owned by different films studios. So where did this team come from? This post hopes to tell you all about it.
It all started back in 1977 with the first issue of Marvel’s “What If?” series. This series is all about exploring the alternatives within its own stories. So, “What If Uncle Ben didn’t die?” “What if The Avengers didn’t stay together?” so on and so forth.
This series begins with “What if Spider-man joined the Fantastic Four?” The series usually begins with an opening from The Wacther, the omnipotent observer of the Marvel Universe explaining the nature of parallel universes and how and where the issue explores the road not taken. In issue 1 we follow Spider-man early on in his career desperately looking for a new means of cash flow.
In the mainstream comics he approaches the Fantastic Four and asks to become a member of the team. The team politely decline. In one universe.
In the “What If” reality the team agree to take Spider-man on. Spidey joins the team acting as the second smartest guy on the team. He aids in the fearsome foursome on some of their most iconic adventures making things a whole lot easier for them. Though this doesn’t do much for Sue Storm who before Spider-man’s arrival, was the second smartest on team. This leaves Sue to feel very lonely and out of place on the team. For her, things aren’t great on the Fantastic Five.
So when the team come up against the arrogant Lord of the Sea Namor, AKA The King of Atlantis and also the ‘first mutant,’ Namor offers Sue a chance to stay in Atlantis, she takes up his offer feeling as if she has no place on team.
The Fantastic Five minus Sue equals The Fantastic Four again. Leaving a heartbroken Reed Richards and a guilty feeling Spider-man who felt that he could done more during their time in Atlantis.