Fantastic Four #12 features the story “The Fantastic Four Meet the Incredible Hulk,” which is divided into four parts, including “Mission: Stop the Hulk,” “Who is the Wrecker,” and “The Hulk at Last.” As the cover indicates, this story involves General Thunderbolt Ross seeking the Fantastic Four’s help with apprehending the Incredible Hulk, who is accused of destroying missile defense equipment. Fantastic Four #12 is the first superhero crossover in the series. It is also the first of many battle between the Thing and the Hulk.
The positives of this issue is that it continues to establishment of a Marvel Universe, with the Fantastic Four and the Hulk meeting. The story is fun, if by today’s standards a bit cliché, with the villain of the story providing the justification of having the superheroes battling each other. In addition, Kirby’s action panels are nicely done and the battle between the Hulk and the Fantastic Four was fun to read. Finally, the cover to this issue is just awesome with how it sets up the promise of the impending encounter within the issue.
The down sides to this issue that the meeting and subsequent battle between the superheroes comes late in the issue and is relatively short, which makes it come off as a bit of a tease. The other down side is the villain is a generic communist spy, which is a bit disappointing. Finally, while it does help to flesh out the idea of a Marvel Universe, it doesn’t really add to the overall progression of the Fantastic Four series and thus feels more of a one shot.
Having said that, Fantastic Four #12 is definitely worth reading and is certainly entertaining. Plus, it’s nice to see the first encounter between the Thing and the Hulk, especially considering how many times they’ve battled over the years.
- Editor: Stan Lee
- Cover Artists: Jack Kirby, Dick Ayers
- Writers: Stan Lee
- Pencilers: Jack Kirby
- Inkers: Dick Ayers
- Colorists: Stan Goldberg
- Letterers: Artie Simek