This issue feels like a bare-faced stall for time. The “Worlds Within Worlds” that we were promised in the last issue — and in the very title of this one — are only briefly seen, in just one page. To be fair, however, it’s a really brilliant page.
But once again, this issue is a victim to simple logic. Galactus walks a maddeningly oblique path to try to get what he wants — the location of the Silver Surfer. Although we aren’t told that the Silver Surfer is doing anything overt to mask detection of his own Galactus given Power Cosmic, he must be because Galactus doesn’t have the foggiest notion as to where he is. He can find the Fantastic Four easily enough of course. And to show them his power he rips an island up, tossing them into the water where they are quite helpless. Ben sinks instantly, Reed tries to save him, and Johnny is pretty powerless.
This is a genuinely interesting situation for the FF to be in — defeated by a large body of water — and it is thrilling. It would have been nice to note that had Sue — or possibly Crystal — ben with the team, they wouldn’t be in as much trouble as they are, but that point is not made.
In any case, Galactus zips them off into space, and after blasting them with a concept of the cosmos, he plants them back onto Earth, right where they were, but gives them three dopplegangers to fight — evil versions of themselves.
Why go to all that trouble when he already had them powerless in space?
After defeating the dopplegangers, they find the world threatened by Galactus once more when he sends a planet-sized asteroid hurtling towards Earth. This forces us to question exactly how weak and powerless Galactus actually is beyond all his insistences. Surely if he has the power to do all this, then he has the power to free himself from his stranded predicament? The upshot of all this is that the FF agree to help Galactus find the Surfer.
The Surfer has been very clever. He’s actually reducing his size and mass in order to hide from Galactus in the sub-atomic plane. After all, he reasons, atoms with their nuclei and orbiting electrons are very much like the stars and orbiting planets. And since such a place is still on Earth and within the confines of his prison, he is not violating his edict. It’s a fun and creative twist and it’s a shame that we have to wait a whole issue to see what comes of it.
Following the tragic plight of Sue, it seems that the instant someone becomes pregnant their bones turn to glass and they contract a presumed heart condition that means that anyone around them must choose their words extremely closely else they perish. Sue’s all of what, one to two months pregnant, so she must be kept in a bed in a darkened room, away from any mention of hardship from the world outside. Luckily Crystal now has a purpose which is to lie to Sue and shut the curtains of any room that she enters. Ridiculous.