> Reprinted in: Fantastic Four Masterworks Volume 3  •  Fantastic Four Omnibus Volume 1

From the Mouths of the Marvels:

"What?!! You dare attack me again...After I've beaten you before? This time I'll show you no mercy!"

- - The Hulk, to the Thing, page 1

That's an arm sling made of stable molecules, natch!


Fantastic Four #26
May 1964 • 23 pages

Publication Date: February 11, 1964

Letters Page: Page OnePage Two

I: Feature Story: "The Avengers Take Over!"

Pages: 23

Script: Stan Lee
Pencils: Jack Kirby
Inks: George Roussos (credited as George Bell)
Letters: Artie Simek

Guest Appearance: Hulk, The Avengers: Captain America, Thor, Iron Man, Giant-Man, Wasp, Rick Jones

Marvel Milestones: Hulk's "sonic clap", First conclusion to continued "two-part" story in Marvel history

Synopsis: (continued from FF #25)

The Thing attacks the Hulk once again! The Hulk knocks the Thing to the ground and Thing throws dirt in Hulk’s eyes. Blinded, the Hulk is left open to the Thing’s attack. The National Guard holds their fire while the fight continues.

A team of doctors arrives at the Baxter Building to take Reed to the hospital. He struggles, wanting to help Ben, but he’s so weak the doctors rush him into an oxygen tent.

Johnny wakes up in a hospital bed and, still bandaged, flies back into the fight. He’s too weak to fly very far but can still shoot his flame at the bricks of a building, pelting the Hulk with molten rock. Hulk breaks a fire hydrant and aims it at the Torch. The Torch collapses a building onto the hydrant and Hulk jumps out of the way. He takes two large stones and smashes them together. The shockwave of the "sonic clap" sends Torch and Thing hurtling through the air and brings the National Guard to their knees. The soldiers manage to fire a cannon at the Hulk but the green giant catches the shell and tosses it into the air.

Thing allows Johnny to rest and, once again, goes off to face the Hulk alone- but now he can’t find him! Hulk is in the subway tunnel and stops a train with one hand. He orders everyone out and drives the train to the Avengers’ mansion where they are waiting for him. Hulk plows into the crowd of them and uses their numbers against them, knocking one super-hero down after the other. He kidnaps Rick Jones and takes off, the Wasp following close behind.

Reed gets out of his hospital bed against doctor's orders and rejoins his teammates. The National Guard gets word that the Avengers are chasing the Hulk and the Fantastic Four race to meet them.

The Wasp has flown into Hulk’s ear to distract him and flies out just as Captain America attacks the Hulk. He is limber enough to avoid the Hulk’s mighty blows but when the Torch arrives, it distracts him. The Fantastic Four and the Avengers do an excellent job of getting in each other’s way and the Hulk escapes. He leaps onto a construction site, dragging Rick with him.

After the two teams argue, Thor and Thing decide to join forces. Iron Man contacts police headquarters and they tell them of the Hulk’s whereabouts. Both teams go to battle.

The Torch finds Hulk first and tosses fireballs at the steel girder under his feet. Hulk tears hunks of steels from the structure and hurls them at the Torch in response. Iron Man, deciding the strategy himself, pushes Johnny away with a repulsor ray, but pushes it too hard, injuring Johnny. Thing uses Reed as a slingshot and Reed snatches Johnny from the air. Iron Man is buried in girders and is only freed by Thor’s hammer.

Thing rejoins the fight and when both Hulk and Thing hit the same girder, half the construction site collapses! Thing falls into a tub of cement and Hulk is on his feet, ready to attack the blinded Thing. Just then Captain America swings a wrecking ball in the Hulk’s path. Hulk tosses the ball back at the star-spangled Avenger and rushes him. Cap uses judo to keep Hulk off-balance and Hulk stomps the floor under Cap’s feet, sending him into the rafters.

Giant-Man catches the Hulk by the wrist and gets the upper hand by alternating his shrinking and growing powers during the fight, keeping the Hulk off balance. The Wasp sends a colony of ants marching across the Hulk’s skin. The itching Hulk is distracted just enough for Rick Jones to toss a gamma pill down Hulk’s throat. Hulk falls into the river and, unseen by the others, changes back to Banner.

Now that the fight is over, Captain America sympathizes with the Hulk. As he had also lost Bucky, Hulk has lost Rick Jones. That’s why Cap and Rick have become so close. The Fantastic Four and Avengers depart the scene as friends.

--synopsis by Jonathan Clarke, aka doesitmatter, with Gormuu

--letter pages and house ads provided by Crusher Creel

Issues Reprinted
Fantastic Four #21-30

Click on cover image to learn more about each issue.


FF #21

FF #22

FF #23

FF #24

FF #25

FF #26

FF #27

FF #28

FF #29

FF #30


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