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

From the Mouths of the Marvels:

"Seven hundred years have passed since the men of Avalon placed me in the chair of survival!"

-- Prester John, page 12

Could this panel have possibly been an inspiration for HR Geiger's Alien sketches?


Fantastic Four #54
September 1966 • 20 pages

Publication Date: June 9, 1966

Letters Page: Page OnePage Two

House Ad: Ad #1Ad #2

I: Feature Story: "Whosoever Finds the Evil Eye - - !"

Pages: 20

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

First Appearance: The Wanderer/Prester John, M'Wabu

Guest Appearance: Black Panther, Wyatt Wingfoot, The Wanderer/Prester John, Inhumans: Black Bolt, Triton, Gorgon, Karnak, Crystal, Medusa, Maximus

Origin: Prester John

Cameo Appearance: M'Wabu

Marvel Milestones: First Avalon

Gadgets & Technology: Titanium Baseball Bat, Gyro-Cruiser, Chair of Survival, the Evil Eye, Cyclo-Electronic Chamber, Polarizer Gun, Absorba-Bomb, Triton's Water-Circulation Apparatus

Synopsis: The Fantastic Four and Wyatt Wingfoot are playing a game of baseball with the Black Panther and his tribe, with Wyatt showing everyone he's no slouch with the bat- a special titanium modeled bat developed by the Black Panther. He hits a deep and long drive that Mister Fantastic stretches up and grabs before it can land. After the game ends, everyone retires back to the Panther's palace where they are entertained by a classical pianist, but Johnny is distracted by memories of Crystal.

Meanwhile, the Inhumans struggle for a way to shatter their prison. Medusa tries to appeal to Maximus to reveal the secret of the dome that encompasses the Great Refuge, but he is still stuck in his mad state of mind.

Their time visiting Wakanda nearing its end, Reed and Sue mention they are finally going to go on the honeymoon they haven't been able to find time for since the wedding, and Ben is going to go back to New York to reunite with Alicia. After hearing Johnny discuss penetrating the indestructible dome keeping him from Crystal, the Black Panther gives him a Gyro-Cruiser to aid him in traveling to the far-away land where lies the Great Refuge. Wyatt Wingfoot joins him and they take off across the desert. It isn't long before they are caught in a sandstorm and plunged down a shaft into an underground crypt deep beneath the surface of the Earth. Johnny leaves the Gyro-Cruiser and flies through an eerie doorway that is chiseled in the form of a threatening monster. A strange figure sits inside, slumped over in the seat of an ornate chair. Johnny and Wyatt draw close, and the figure gets up and repels them with a strange force that comes out of what Johnny describes as "some prehistoric flashlight."

Once the duo are shown his force, he identifies himself as Prester John, the Wanderer, and he has just been awoken from seven centuries of suspended animation in the Chair of Survival. He tells them more about himself: back in the twelfth century, he was known as "the Wanderer" and in his travels, he saw inventions and creatures that legend would call flying carpets, abominable snowmen and dragon fire. He disputed a tribe that claimed the earth was round and later found the fabled land of Avalon. There he discovered the Evil Eye, the weapon he now brandishes. He tells them he doesn't trust visitors so he traps Johnny and Wyatt with the Eye.

Back in Attilan, Maximus spends his time crafting a water circulator so Triton can breathe on land. But Gorgon is enraged, telling Maximus it is only the penetrating the barrier dome which should take his time.

Prester John releases Johnny and Wyatt, proving to them that he means no harm. Johnny realizes the Evil Eye might be the only thing that could free the Inhumans and allow him to reunite with Crystal. He snatches it away from Prester John, burning John's hand. Johnny flies away with the weapon but Prester John warns Wyatt that he had not set the safety switch- if left on, the Evil Eye will destruct in an awesome explosion!

Black Bolt has entered the Cyclo-Electronic Chamber where the Absorba-Bomb sits. Here he uses his greatest power- the power of his scream- to juice up the Absorba-Bomb with his incredible energy!

Wyatt and Prester John follow in the Gyro-Cruiser. Wyatt uses a Polarizer Gun and with eagle-eyed aim shoots the Evil Eye from Johnny's grasp. It explodes in the far distance, but Johnny is so disheartened he wonders if he would have better off going with it.

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

--letter pages and house ads provided by mdnitoil

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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