Fantastic Four #14:The Merciless Puppet Master

Review By:


What can possibly be better than a story hinted at on the cover,  the fantastic Four coming face to face under the sea with the Sub-Mariner while he is holding the invisible girl prisoner.

I won’t leave you waiting to wonder on that one, as adding the Puppet Master to the mix is one thing that can indeed make what appears to be the makings of a good story even better.

it is almost hard to believe this is one, cram packed issue, but is there too much to it? or are there enough pages for this story. or will this story prove not to have the depth to be great?



In this Fantastic Four issue, we have a great story, and I don’t want to spoil it by going into too much detail laying it out, but here is a short summary.  Our story begins with the Fantastic Four returning from the moon. From there we get introduced to the still living puppet master, whom takes his time to decide what Fantastic Foe would be the right choice to help him take out the Fantastic Four.

it does not take him long to decide to use the Sub-Mariner for this task, putting Namor under his power, and using him as a puppet against the Fantastic Four. Can Namor be defeated when he is not holding back and guided by the will of the puppet Master?


This story, does not go at all like I would have expected it as i see it progressing, and that is a great asset in its corner.  it has depth in everything, not just how far under water most of it takes place.

We see creative methods used to lead the Fantastic Four right to where the Sub-Mariner thinks he wants them. as the battle progresses though, we see that the puppet master is willing to have no bounds to defeat his foes.  this is all a great part of what keeps the tension there and building.


Artistically this issue proves its worth.  As the humble Jack Kirby again proves to me why he deserves the title he was given, “The King of Comics”. I was in love with the art in this issue from the first page. Seeing both the Fantastic Four on their way back from the moon, and the crowd waiting for them.  Jacks art and Dick Ayers inking made the event seem as epic as it needs to be.

best of all, the quality does not go down from there, in the early pages where the Fantastic Four are relaxing, you can read so much in there faces and body language.

later the battle between the Fantastic Four and the Sub-Mariner is greatly done, letting much of the detail fade away letting us focus on what matters  most, the action.

Originality & Continuity

while when it comes to continuity I never remember thinking or reading that the puppet master ‘died’ at the end of Fantastic Four #8. This belief, however is one that I can accept as a Retcon.

From there I feel the story fits quite well in with the continuity, both joining events from last issue to issues  that would have been over half a year old. Building upon what has been established for all the characters involved quite nicely.

I also feel, this work is quite original, it may reuse the puppet master as the villain, but its done in quite a unique and imaginative way.  Having him now use another foe of the Fantastic Four as his weapon against them.

Characters & Development

Sue Storm and the Love Triangle

 Whenever we have a story with Namor, she seems to be a key part of the feature, and the one with great growth potential.  This is greatly due to the ongoing love triangle between Namor, Sue Storm, and Reed Richards.  

While I do like having this issue unresolved, and I do feel it offers great room to grow Sue’s character.  This issue I feel did little of that, it reestablished that she is looking for Namor, and holds feelings for him.  But it offered little growth into her feelings.

Mr. Fantastic

Where as Sue does not grow from this ongoing triangle Mr. Fantastic does.  we are given about a whole page on his feelings on the matter, how he feels despite all that he can do, the one goal he holds most remains just out of reach.

The Thing Soft and Tough

This issue of Fantastic Four, lets us see both sides of the thing,  his soft side when dealing with Alicia, as well as his tough side, not only for his enemies but for the ordinary people who rub him the wrong way.

Comic Book Review summary

Fantastic Four #14

Read it and then, read it again. The art is top-notch, and the story is touching. this issue combined with last issue, help show us what an ongoing epic this title can offer. We can only hope that the next issue will be as much an epic hit as these last two.

Book Information:
Cover Date: May 1963
Read At:
  • Stan Lee
  • Jack Kirby
  • Dick Ayers
  • Art Simek
Review Ratings:
Originality And Continuity&#9733&#9733&#9733&#9733&#9734&#9734
Character And Development&#9733&#9733&#9733&#9733&#9734&#9734
Deep Love&#9733&#9733&#9734&#9734&#9734&#9734
Referenced In:
Locations And Things:
  • Baxter Building
  • Idlewild Airport
  • Sub-Mariners Headquarters






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