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Classic Lee & Kirby Fantastic Four stories get reimagined for 60th anniversary

Fantastic Four Anniversary Tribute #1
art from Fantastic Four Anniversary Tribute #1 cover by Steve McNiven (Image credit: Marvel Comics)

The Fantastic Four turn 60 this year and Marvel Comics will continue its celebration of the team's anniversary in November with Fantastic Four Anniversary Tribute #1, a one-shot special which pays homage to two classic FF stories by its co-creators , themselves half of the comic book Mount Rushmore, Stan Lee and Jack Kirby. 

Fantastic Four Anniversary Tribute #1 variant cover by Jim Cheung (Image credit: Marvel Comics)

1961's Fantastic Four #1 features the origin of the team and in effect the entire Marvel Universe, while 1965's Fantastic Four Annual #3 depicts the wedding of Sue Storm/Invisible Girl-(now Woman) and Reed Richards/Mr. Fantastic and co-starred pretty much the entire burgeoning MU at the time.

The new special reinterprets both stories page-by-page by a Who's Who of contemporary Marvel artists. And if you look closely at the reinterpreted cover to Fantastic Four #1 by Steve McNiven, you'll notice the story looks like it'll be retold in the contemporary era. 

Marvel has previously published tribute books in similar style - 2020's Giant-Size X-Men: Tribute To Wein & Cockrum #1 and Captain America Anniversary Tribute #1 from earlier this year. 

Marvel Comics executive editor Tom Brevoort says the classic team's 60th Anniversary of the Fantastic Four is a good occasion for today's comic book artists to step up their game and "joust with the King."

"There's really no better way to commemorate this anniversary than by revisiting these classic works anew," Brevoort says in the Marvel announcement. 

Fantastic Four Anniversary Tribute #1 cover by Steve McNiven (Image credit: Marvel Comics)

With the one cover by McNiven and a variant cover by Jim Cheung reimagining the FF Annual #3 cover, artists contributing to reinterpreting Kirby's interior artwork include [takes deep breath]:

Aco, Aaron Kuder, Adam Hughes, Albert Monteys, Alessandro Cappuccio, Bryan Hitch, Cafu, Carlos Pacheco, Chris Sprouse, Daniel Warren Johnson, David Lapham, Elsa Charretier, Erica D'urso, Federico Vicentini, Greg Land, Javier Rodríguez, John Cassaday, John Romita Jr., Kate Niemczyk, Kei Zama, Leinil Francis Yu, Leonard Kirk, Lucas Werneck, Luciano Vecchio, Marco Checchetto, Mattia De Lulis, Michael Allred, Mike Del Mundo, Neal Adams, Nic Klein, Olivier Coipel, Paco Medina, Patch Zircher, Pepe Larraz, Ray-Anthony Height, Rod Reis, Ron Frenz, Simone Di Meo, Stefano Caselli, Steve Epting, Tom Reilly, Salvador Larroca, Jorge Fornes, Kim Jacinto, Walt Simonson, Leonardo Ortolani, Sanford Greene, Terry Dodson, and [exhales] Mark Bagley.

Look for more from Marvel's November 2021 solicitations later this month. 

You really didn't think you were getting out of here without a link to Newsarama's list of the best Fantastic Four stories of all time, did you?

I'm not just the Newsarama founder and editor-in-chief, I'm also a reader. And that reference is just a little bit older than the beginning of my Newsarama journey. I founded what would become the comic book news site in 1996, and except for a brief sojourn at Marvel Comics as its marketing and communications manager in 2003, I've been writing about new comic book titles, creative changes, and occasionally offering my perspective on important industry events and developments for the 25 years since. Despite many changes to Newsarama, my passion for the medium of comic books and the characters makes the last quarter-century (it's crazy to see that in writing) time spent doing what I love most.