Source: Sci-Fi Wire
Submitted by: S.K. Sloan
J. Michael Straczynski, who takes over writing Marvel Comics’ Fantastic Four series, told SCI FI Wire that the story will deal with the government’s efforts to remove the children of Reed and Susan Richards from their “dangerous” household. Starting in June with issue number 527, Straczynski will be writing a story that begins when the New York City Child Welfare Department comes to visit the Richards’ house, and they think it’s for a charity donation.
“No, they say they’re there for an investigation,” Straczynski (creator of Babylon 5) said in an interview at Enigma Con at the University of California, Los Angeles. “They say, ‘We know you love your kids, Franklin and Valeria, but it’s not a safe environment to raise the kids. You’re attacked all the time; police are always being called here.’ Then the kids say, ‘Oh, yeah, it’s been a busy year. I was taken to hell for a while. Blair’s possessed. Mom was thrown off the roof.’ So, you see, the city welfare department has a valid point of view. Yes, you care for your kids, but is this a safe environment for them? We have to really confront that. How do you deal with that?”
Straczynski said he wanted to mix the cosmic with the family elements, and that’s why he always loved Fantastic Four. “Reed, for a guy who’s as smart as he is, has a lot of things that aren’t resolved,” he said. “He’s always searching for ‘Why are we here? What are we doing? Where are we going?’ And after all this time, to not be any closer to finding the answer to these questions bugs him.”
Straczynski, who has also written for the Amazing Spider-Man and Supreme Power comic series, added: “I want to ground the book in reality, address the current problems in the world of today.”
Opening with the story “Distant Music,” Straczynski said, “I’m tending the farm. My job is to not break anything. It’s not my character. It’s not my universe.”
As for the upcoming 20th Century Fox film version of Fantastic Four, Straczynski said that he hasn’t read the script and doesn’t plan to adjust anything in the book to accommodate the movie. “I know the movie has their origins being portrayed,” he said. “I have an echo of that in the book, but that’s really about it. It’s a whole separate thing.” The Fantastic Four movie opens July 8.