“We have hidden from the Seeker for years! You will not reveal our presence now!”
The Fantastic Four are fighting a group calling themselves The Inhumans. A member called Triton disclose they are hiding from someone or something called The Seeker before he is forced to run to the nearest source of water in New York, a dock. We now see The Seeker who happens to be a man who is sworn to track down Inhumans and he happens at that moment to be at the FF’s headquarters, where he and his assistants take the Dragon Man into their airship. The FF fight the Inhuman to a standstill, eventually wearying the incredibly powerful Black Bolt, and the strange group decides to run away. Returning to their base, the FF find Dragon Man gone and, checking their security tapes, see that The Seeker has taken him. Reed has a machine that allows him to track the kidnappers and they set off to confront them, only to be captured themselves. As the Seeker relates the history of the Inhumans the Dragon Man awakens and escapes, freeing Triton, who had also been captured.
This continues the introductory saga of the Inhumans, and it’s remarkable to see how the story keeps spinning out. This is a different style of storytelling than we’ve seen before in FANTASTIC FOUR. With previous multi-parters, everything has been set up in one issue, and resolved in another, with only minor plot variations introduced in between.
But here we have characters acting and their motivations are only explained several issues later. The story started two issues ago with Medusa on the run, and we found it was because Gorgon was chasing her. Now we find out why he was chasing her, which was because the Inhumans were all under the threat of discovery from The Seeker who has been hunting them in order to return them to The Great Refuge.
Whether by accident or design, this is rather advanced storytelling. Even today with any writers’ six-issue arc story, you wouldn’t get such a restrained approach to character motivation, at least not without a whole lot of foreshadowing. In fact, it’s the lack of foreshadowing here that adds to the off-balance feel of the story, and which keeps the reader just like the FF — always trying to catch up and make sense of what is going on.
Kirby’s pencils haven’t looked better, either. Joe Sinnott came on as inker a few issues back and he is really starting to get into Kirby’s style. Colletta, though accomplished, was just a bad fit for Kirby. Sinnott is one of the inking greats and his slick, solid brush inks compliment Kirby’s style brilliantly. Sinnott pulls him back a little bit from his characteristic blockiness, and gives a smoothness to the characters, even The Thing who always looks best when his outline is round and his texture is straight.There are a lot of truly great artists here and they’re firing on all cylinders… and it’s still only the beginning.