GM Recommended Reading: Fantastic Four #52-#53 (First Black Panther Appearance)

Black Panther‘s first appearance was quite different than that seen in the latest Marvel MCU movies, but also similar at times. Today we will be looking into Fantastic Four #52 and #53.

In this story we start off by seeing the Fantastic Four fly around in a new ship given to them by The Black Panther. Eventually they are invited to Wakanda and are engaged by Black Panther himself although he is halted quickly. We soon find out it was just to test his skills and we get more of a back story on Black Panther. In the backstory we eventually learn of Klaw. In this story, Klaw and his goons are actually the ones that kill Black Panther’s father which causes him to get revenge for his father. After this, with the help of the Fantastic Four, he stops Klaw from releasing his secret weapon!

The writing is done by the talented Stan Lee and this is obvious when you look at the style of writing. Lee will often throw in a bubble and be somewhat of a narrator. When it comes to character and writing it is done very well, and we get the iconic dialogue that we expect from Lee. The progression is slow and themes are a little dated, but that is to be expected since this was released in 1961. Overall the story is still appealing and will get fans more insight to the Black Panther before the film is released.

Now the art is done by the iconic Jack Kirby. Kirby, in my opinion, is one of the greatest artists to put ink to comics and it doesn’t shy in these issues. He gave Black Panther an almost menacing and mysterious appearance. The Fantastic Four are also done very well. Kirby also did well drawing a jungle environment for the issues as well as some colorful characters like a giant, crimson gorilla.

Now this is an issue you need to check out before the movie is released. It will give so much insight as well as it overall being a good read. I would give this story arc an 8 out of 10.

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