> Reprinted in: Fantastic Four Masterworks Volume 6  •  Fantastic Four Omnibus Volume 2

From the Mouths of the Marvels:

"'Twas I who invited you for the hunt! But, I neglected to tell you one thing...it is you who shall be hunted!"

-- Black Panther, page 10

The Black Panther dons his ceremonial garb to take on his biggest challenge yet: the Fantastic Four!


Fantastic Four #52
July 1966 • 20 pages

Publication Date: April 12, 1966

Letters Page: Page OnePage Two

House Ad: Ad #1Ad #2

I: Feature Story: "The Black Panther!"

Pages: 20

Script: Stan Lee
Pencils: Jack Kirby
Inks: Joe Sinnott
Letters: Sam Rosen

First Appearance: Black Panther, Wakandan Emissary

Guest Appearance: Black Panther, Wakandan Emissary, Wyatt Wingfoot; Inhumans: Gorgon, Karnak, Medusa, Crystal, Black Bolt

Cameo Appearance: Maximus

Marvel Milestones: First appearance of nation of Wakanda, CCW (Cosmic-Channel Waves), Black Panther revealed to be boxing champion of African continent

Gadgets & Technology: Magnetic Wave Ship, Stalking Costume Compartment, Polarity Guns, Devitalizing Pool, Titanium Cuffs

Synopsis: Reed tries out a new Magnetic Wave Ship, a fantastic flying machine which is a gift from the Wakandan chief, the Black Panther. The Black Panther's chief emissary tells Reed he can keep the craft if they travel to Wakanda and meet with the Panther, further telling them there will be a hunt held when they get there. They accept the invitation and pick up Johnny and Wyatt Wingfoot at college so they can tag along.

The chieftan is pleased to hear the news and raises a giant Panther totem. He dresses in his ceremonial stalking costume and prepares for their arrival. This will be the greatest hunt of all, he tells himself.

Meanwhile, the Inhumans are frustrated in their attempts to shatter the barrier that holds them prisoner inside the Great Refuge. The Inhumans turn to their leader, Black Bolt, for help, but it seems that only the raving-mad Maximus holds the key to their freedom.

The Fantastic Four land in the African jungle nation of Wakanda. But what they see is like no African tribe they have ever known. Underneath the typical sub-Saharan brush lies a man-made jungle of futuristic technology. Their Wakandan guide vanishes and Reed senses that something is wrong. When Thing tries to escape, he is shocked by the metal trap door, making him feel very woozy.

Suddenly, the Black Panther leaps from the shadows! With the element of surprise and the Thing off-balance, his feline agility is more than a match for the team. He leads a flying Human Torch straight into a vacuum chamber, deflaming him and imprisoning him inside the chamber. There is one down!

Wyatt Wingfoot takes the point and scouts the area for the remaining three. Reed tries to talk him out of it, since he has no super-powers, but Wyatt is determined to help. As soon as he leaves, the Panther's snipers hit them with magnetic anti-polarity beams, flinging the FF far from each other, leaving them vulnerable to the Panther stalking them one at a time. The Panther detects Sue's scent and finds her, even though she is invisible. He is so fast he gets inside her force field before she can fully form it and gasses her with a sleeping agent. Two down!

When he tracks down the Thing, the Panther finds the super-strong super-hero drinking from one of his great traps: the Devitalizing Pool. The water he drank for refreshment actually weakens the Thing, allowing an even fight for the Panther, hand-to-hand. Thing swings a wild punch into a refrigerator unit and accidentally freezes himself. Three down!

Wyatt escapes the battleground and knocks out the Panther's men and electronic scanners, who monitor the battle from the periphery for their leader. Using his Native American tracking prowess, he finds the Human Torch's hidden prison. Meanwhile, the Panther fights Reed while both are plunged in total darkness. With the superior advantage of fighting in the dark with catlike sensory abilities, he binds his outstretched arms to a set of high-tech Titanium Cuffs. The fight is over. The Panther has won!

But only for a brief moment, as thanks to Wyatt, the Torch is free and Johnny has liberated Thing and Sue. The Black Panther is no match for the assembled team, now that the element of surprise has turned back on him, and he surrenders. It is now time for the Panther to explain what this is all about....

(continued in FF #53)

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

--letter pages and house ads provided by Crusher Creel

Issues Reprinted
Fantastic Four #51-60 and Annual #4

Click on cover image to learn more about each issue.


FF #51

FF #52

FF #53

FF #54

FF #55

FF #56

Ann #4

FF #57

FF #58

FF #59

FF #60


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