Black Panther (4th series) #27

Issue Date: 
June 2007
Story Title: 
Two Plus Two: Part Two

Reginald Hudlin (writer), Francis Portela (penciler), Victor Olazaba (Inks), Val Staples (Colors), VC’s Cory Petit (Letters), Niko Henrichon (cover), Daniel Ketchum (Assistant Editor), Axel Alonso (Editor), Joe Quesada (Chief), Dan Buckley (Publisher)

Brief Description: 

The Fantastic Four return home from their adventures in space. They quickly go their separate ways only to be disturbed by a loud crash. As they investigate they find that it is a bug that has escaped from the Negative Zone. Quickly the group brings the fight to the bug. Nothing quite seems to work against it as Storm, the Human Torch, and the Thing all use their various powers against it.
The Black Panther is meanwhile trying to find a weapon to use against it in Reed Richards’s stash. He has a quick and unwanted conversation with Maria Hill as she offers him help in fighting the bug. T’Challa refuses.
In Wakanda two of Shuri’s, T’Challa’s sister, friends discuss the American warships not far from their coast and insist that Shuri takes charge of the country while T’Challa is in America. When she refuses G’Mal, decides that during the night they should go check out the ships themselves.
Back at the Baxter Building, the Black Panther brings in the big guns, but still nothing works against the bug. They quickly realize he’s going after a water tower, and decide to distract him long enough to use King Solomon’s frogs. They join the battle once more and finally get close enough just as the frogs activate.
The Fantastic Four and the bug quickly find themselves falling through the air, only to land amongst a crowd of angry skrulls. To make matters worse, as they look up they see zombie versions of their fellow heroes wearing the armor of Galactus.

Full Summary: 

At the Baxter Building, the Fantastic Four along with Gravity and Michael Collins reappear. As the groups disperses after their mission, T’Challa attempts to go check on the status of the transfer of the Wakandan Embassy to the Baxter Building, but Storm suggests they take a “nap” instead.

Later, just as the Thing is falling asleep in his bed, there’s a loud crash. He jumps up and heads out to find Johnny just as confused as he is. The two of them head to Storm and T’Challa’s room, where they find no answers either. Storm already left to check on the children. As she enters their room, she narrowly avoids a blast. She retaliates and fries HERBIE with a blast of lightning. The children run to her apologizing for HERBIE’s reaction, but they explain he was protecting them from the bug.

The male members of the Fantastic Four attempt to figure out just what they’re dealing with. The Black Panther discovers that judging by how it entered, it came from the Negative Zone. What disturbs him is that the creature is able to overcome each security device the Baxter Building has. The Thing bets that it’s clobberin’ time.

Elsewhere in the building a Wakandan worker runs from the giant bug-like intruder. The Dora Milaje step in to protect her, but find them selves out matched as their weapons break on his hide. Just as he’s about to bite into one of them, the Thing grabs it and points his fist into the bug’s face. He continues to beat it down.
Finally the bug uses it’s extra legs and strength to trip Ben just as Johnny joins the battle. He blasts the bug, but it easily swallows his fireball. He spits it back out in a cloud of black smoke extinguishing the Human Torch and sending him flying down the hall. The bug lifts it’s leg to crush Johnny, but as its foot smashes down, Johnny is saved.

Storm asks if he’s alright and then checks on Ben as well. As the Thing wonders where the Black Panther is, Storm explains he’s looking through Reed Richard’s weapons. Storm blasts the bug with a huge crackle of lightning, allowing the Thing to charge in once again.

T’Challa and HERBIE search through Mr. Fantastic’s many devices. As HERBIES explains what a device does, the Black Panther gets annoyed at Reed’s disorganization. HERBIE then alerts the Wakandan king that there is an incoming call from SHIELD. T’Challa tries to ignore it, but HERBIE informs him that they insist.
Sub-Director Maria Hill appears before him as a holographic image projected from HERBIE. She informs him that the 42 was invaded and it appears that the Baxter Building was as well. T’Challa explains that he has things under control.
Hill tries to insist on sending help, but T’Challa denies her. She then offers heroes instead of SHIELD agents, assuming the Black Panther’s renegade involvement in the Civil War is his reasoning for not wanting assistance. The Black Panther denies her again and then hangs up on her. T’Challa gets annoyed that they’re offering to send the Fantastic Four help, when the 42, their own prison is being overrun by hostiles. HERBIE then informs the Black Panther that the Royal Palace of Wakanda is calling. As he dons his mask, he yells for them to call back.

In Wakanda, Shuri, T’Challa’s sister, speaks to two of her friends. They watch as the American Navy sits just miles offshore and wonder why their King doesn’t strike. Shuri assures them that he doesn’t want to start a war.
T’Challa’s cousin believes their king has gotten soft from his time in the west. When G’Mal warns him not to speak like that, he tells them about T’Challa’s reprimand to the council. Shuri wonders how G’Mal knew about that, but he merely says that the walls have ears and whisper. When T’Challa’s cousin warns him that perhaps they’re listening now, G’Mal reminds them that it isn’t saving him that matters, it’s the nation. He then tells Shuri that she needs to step up to the throne while her brother is on the other side of the world. When Shuri refuses once again, G’Mal offers another idea. He thinks that they should sail out at night and check out the American warships.

In the Baxter Building the fight continues. The Wakandans worry about the antique the bug is eating, while the Fantastic Four see the Black Panther arrive with a cart full of weapons. He pulls out a massive gun and yells for them all to stand clear. The blast creates a large explosion, but the bug is unphased. T’Challa grabs another weapon, one that shoots foam that hardens like steel. It traps the bug, but within seconds, it frees itself. The Fantastic Four look on, wondering what the next step should be.

They notice that the bug is eyeing something outside. They realize that he’s going for the wooden water tower to satiate his hunger. The Human Torch asks what else the Black Panther’s got up his sleeve. T’Challa pulls out King Solomon’s Frogs once again. Despite T’Challa’s misgivings against magic and the Things protestations, they agree to get close enough to try and teleport the bug somewhere.

As a team, the four attack. The Wakandas watch and pray to the Panther God to watch over their king. The four wait for the frogs’ power to kick in, when suddenly the Fantastic Four and the bug are all teleported out of the Baxter Building. W’Kabi and the other Wakandas can only look on in disbelief. The fight continues even as they traverse the time/space continuum.

They reappear in midair, and immediately begin falling to the ground far below. Storm grabs the Black Panther, the Human Torch takes to the air, leaving the Thing to plummet with the bug. As Storm reaches the ground she apologizes, explaining she thought they had a plan for things like that. The Thing explains that they did; it was Sue. They begin to look for the bug, but suddenly realize the more important question is where are they? The Black Panther begins to come up with a plan, but Johnny realizes where they are as he sees a large crowd of Skrulls.

Just as the thought of fighting not only the bug and the Skrulls sinks in, the Thing points to the sky where zombie versions of heroes they know exit a portal, all wearing the armor of Galactus.

Characters Involved: 

Black Panther, Human Torch, Storm, Thing (All Fantastic Four)


Michael Collins (former Deathlok)

Negative Zone Bug Warrior

Zombie versions of Luke Cage, Giant Man, Hulk, Iron Man, Spider-Man, Wolverine

Dora Milaje

Maria Hill
Franklin Richards

Valeria Richards
Shuri, T’Challa’s Sister

T’Challa’s cousin


42 Prison Guards

Negative Zone Natives
Wakandan Embassy Workers

Story Notes: 

This issue is part of the Initiative crossover dealing with the fallout of Civil War.

The Black Panther and Storm joined the Fantastic Four in Fantastic Four #543 because Mr. Fantastic and the Invisible Woman decided to take a leave of absence to work on their marriage. Also, in Civil War #7 the Wakandan Embassy, where T’Challa and Ororo had been staying, was destroyed.

This issue takes place immediately following Fantastic Four #546.

The Zombie Heroes’ adventures are chronicled in the Marvel Zombies mini-series. The first appeared in the Ultimate Fantastic Four Series, then movies into their own mini-series. With their introduction in the main Marvel Universe, the distinction between the completely separate Marvel Universe (616) and the Ultimate Universe seems to be fading.

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