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Human Torch goes haywire in Fantastic Four #36 preview

page from Fantastic Four #36
(Image credit: Marvel Comics)

Fantastic Four #36 continues Johnny Storm's cosmic evolution into what Doctor Doom called a "true Human Torch" when he shot Johnny with a raygun that made his flaming powers go totally haywire back in FF #34.

(Image credit: Marvel Comics)

Unable to turn his powers off, Johnny has quickly gone from being the FF's happy-go-lucky daredevil to an emotional wreck as he faces a fate not unlike that of Ben Grimm, who is traditionally (but not always) perpetually trapped as the Thing - but with much more dangerous implications for anyone or anything around him that isn't fireproof.

In this four-page preview from writer Dan Slott, artists Nico Leon and Dono Sánchez-Almara, and letterer Joe Caramagna, Johnny has a flamed-on freak out in Reed Richards' lab as the self-proclaimed Mister Fantastic tries to figure out how to stop Johnny from getting hotter and hotter as the cosmic energy in his body builds uncontrollably.

At the same time, Franklin Richards, Reed's teenage son, seems to have a solution that may work for everyone: drain Johnny's excess cosmic power, and use it to re-empower his own reality-altering abilities. On the other hand, Sue Richards, Johnny's sister and Franklin's mom, finds this to be more than a little selfish.

Here's the preview, including the cover from Mark Brooks:

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page from Fantastic Four #36

(Image credit: Marvel Comics)
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page from Fantastic Four #36

(Image credit: Marvel Comics)
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page from Fantastic Four #36

(Image credit: Marvel Comics)
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page from Fantastic Four #36

(Image credit: Marvel Comics)
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page from Fantastic Four #36

(Image credit: Marvel Comics)
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page from Fantastic Four #36

(Image credit: Marvel Comics)

The family drama around Johnny comes hot on the heels (we make ourselves laugh, at least) of the Richards family secrets that were revealed in September 15's Fantastic Four #35, which may have far-reaching ramifications for Reed and the bunch.

Fantastic Four #36 (which also doubles as the legacy numbered #681 - notice that we're creeping toward FF #700) is due out September 22. 

If you want a glance ever further ahead in Marvel's future, dig into the just-released Marvel Comics December 2021 solicitations.

George Marston

I've been Newsarama's resident Marvel Comics expert and general comic book historian since 2011. I've also been the on-site reporter at most major comic conventions such as Comic-Con International: San Diego, New York Comic Con, and C2E2. Outside of comic journalism, I am the artist of many weird pictures, and the guitarist of many heavy riffs. (They/Them)