Fantastic Four Annual (1st series) #3

Issue Date: 
November 1965
Story Title: 
“Bedlam at the Baxter Building!”

Stan Lee & Jack Kirby (creators), Vince Colletta (inker), Artie Simek (letterer)

Brief Description: 

There’s a commotion outside the Baxter Building, as everybody has turned up to celebrate the wedding of Mr. Fantastic and the Invisible Girl. SHIELD has taken over security. Dr. Doom, in the meantime, plots revenge by using a device to manipulate villains into attacking the Fantastic Four on this day. Luckily, other heroes are more than ready to help the Fantastic Four against the villains’ attack. Eventually, the Watcher himself intervenes by allowing Mr. Fantastic to search his home for a weapon. Reed finds and uses a device that in effect turns back time and lets the villains, including Doom, lose their memories of this event. With the danger over, Reed and Sue finally tie the knot in front of their friends and family, though apparently not their writer and artist…

Full Summary: 

Today’s the day! Wedding bells for Reed and Sue! is the headline of a newspapers Dr. Doom is holding in his hands. In a fit of rage, he tears it to shreds. He decides this is his greatest chance for revenge. But his attack must be fool-proof, irresistible, all-powerful! Only by scoring the greatest victory of all time can he score off the humiliations of the past. Since the Fantastic Four are the greatest fighting team the world has ever known, only a greater team will destroy them. An army of super-villains!

He goes to a device, planning to use this high emotion charger to fan the flames of hatred of every evil in existence. He shall transform their wedding day into their day of final destruction!

Outside the Baxter Building, an excited crowd is waiting and famous guests are admitted. The Thing greets Tony Stark decked out in a top hat and his companion d’jour.

Among the crowd, Patsy and Hedy gush about Tony Stark and look for Millie the Model, while fans chant they want Irving Forbush!

Unnoticed in the crowd, the Puppet Master clutches a small lifelike figure controlling the next guest to walk toward the Thing. When Ben Grimm is about to shake his hand, Nick Fury shouts a warning and two of his agents take out the stranger.

Fury explains SHIELD’s hidden brainwave camera took this picture of the man’s head. See these two mental patterns? It means another mind was controlling him.

Angrily, the Puppet Master soliloquizes that, if Fury hadn’t interfered, his puppet would have shaken the Thing’s hand and injected him with enough poison to kill him. He had sworn never to attack the Fantastic Four again, yet something seemed to force him to do it. He flees, assured that the power of evil he senses will make others attack the FF until they succeed. He runs past an alley, not noticing the three Super-Apes in there, soon joined by their master, the Red Ghost.

Meanwhile, the Thing returns to the lobby of the Baxter Building where one of the guests, Professor Xavier, is waiting. He asks what is wrong and the Thing informs him that someone is out to clobber them. But he doesn’t want to tell Reed on his wedding day! What does the Professor think he should do?  Xavier advises him to be on guard. Telepathically, he senses danger.  

Moments later, a drill bursts through the ground. Out comes the Mole Man and his Moloids. The Mole Man orders them to focus on the Thing. An invalid cannot do them any harm.

Telepathically, Professor X alerts the X-Men, who were waiting nearby. Beast and Marvel Girl tackle the Mole Man while Cyclops’ eye blast drives back the Moloids. Iceman seals the hole in the ground.

Unhappily, the Thing decides that he will have to involve Mr. Fantastic after all. He hurries upstairs and hears his girlfriend Alicia Masters scream for help behind a closed door. When he bursts inside, the Red Ghost’s baboon shocks him with a high voltage shock ray. Ben is momentarily stunned.

Hearing the noise, Reed hurries inside while Sue protects herself and Alicia from the apes with a forcefield. The Orangutan grabs Mr. Fantastic’s arm and the Red Ghost gloats that they have a score to settle. The Torch sends fireballs at him but the flames pass through the villain’s ghost body. The spy intends to fire at the Torch with an electrode scrambler gun. Reed intends to take the brunt of the blast, figuring his body’s resilience will afford him better protection.

But suddenly there is a mysterious hum from the doorway. A strange, unearthly force envelops the Red Ghost and his apes and sends them to an alien dimension. Their savior is Dr. Strange. Reed thanks him, but Strange reminds him the FF have aided him in the past. He is grateful for the chance to repay the debt. It seems that danger takes no holiday. Not even for a wedding.

The Thing is suspicious. Too many of their old sparring partners popping out of nothing all at once… Reed agrees. They are under attack by some unknown foe!

In Latveria, Dr. Doom smiles a sinister smile as his emotion machine has caused the most deadly array of evil-doers ever assembled to converge on the Fantastic Four.

Outside the Baxter Building lurks the evil Mandarin. The Black Knight on his flying horse approaches as do the time-travelling Kang, the Amazing Android and the Gargoyle.

Luckily, heroes are nearby too. Thor’s curiosity is aroused when he sees a strange alien craft approach the Baxter Building. In it, the Super Skrull fires a weapon at him. Temporarily stunned, Thor plummets earthward but breaks his fall by catching his hammer on a roof’s edge. He throws his hammer into the spacecraft.

The Fantastic Four hear the explosion and the Torch flies off to check the situation out.

The Thing suggests they should have just eloped. Alicia chastises him for that.

Reed turns to their lawyer Matt Murdock, who is among the guests along with his partner Foggy Nelson and their secretary Karen Page. Murdock is to tell the guests there will be a slight delay. Is there anything he can do? Matt asks. Do what he told him without asking questions, the Thing snaps.

Matt asks Karen and Foggy to do it. All this excitement is getting him down. They buy his excuse and he changes into his guise as Daredevil to join the fighting.

Outside, he sees a truck of HYDRA agents bringing along a vortex bomb to attack the Baxter Building. Daredevil attacks them and throws them off the truck.

The Avengers too join the fray. Captain America is attacked by the Cobra, who he throws into the Asgardian Executioner. The Enchantress orders him to smash Cap.

Mr. Hyde enters the fray, intent on showing the Executioner how to kill Cap. Luckily, Hawkeye fires an arrow which shackles Hyde to the wall.

The Enchantress gestures and a safe is about to drop on Hawkeye, which luckily is caught by Spider-Man’s web.

The Executioner still fails to actually hit Captain America.

A few blocks away, the Black Knight intends to hit Daredevil with his stun lance but is attacked by the Angel. The Knight aims at him and the Angel dodges, then goes for the lance.

Below, the Mandarin fires his new nerve ray ring at the Angel, who is paralyzed. On an iceslide, propelled by Iceman, Beast catches his teammate. Iceman is attacked by several villains who are in turn blasted by Cyclops. Soon the battle turns into a free-for-all.

Iron Man goes for the Mad Thinker’s Awesome Android, taking him out before he can become a bigger threat. The Human Top finds there is one faster than him as the arrogant Quicksilver kayos him.

In the meantime, Attuma commands Atlantean troops to the surface. However, at that moment, the speeding Hydra truck steered by Daredevil drives into the ocean. As the bomb detonates, the invasion force is drawn back to the watery depths by the giant vortex.

Unaware of this during the melee, Mr. Fantastic wishes they had the power of the Hulk but wonders if he would even fight on the heroes’ side. He hears someone call and turns to see the Watcher. Reed exclaims he thought he was forbidden to interfere. It is so written, the Watcher announces, but if Reed ventures with him he may find the key to victory.

Reed follows him as they traverse dimensions to their destination, the Watcher’s home. The Watcher announces he is not at a liberty to help but, if Reed finds something he believes is useful, he can take it as the Watcher cannot interfere.

After long soul-searching, Reed believes to have figured out several devices. He takes one, believing it is the answer to their dilemma. The Watcher warns him its power is unimaginable. If used wrongly, it will destroy him. He returns Reed back to the battle.

Reed figures out the device is a subatronic time displacer capable of transporting living beings back to the immediate past. He returns the villains to where they were before they attacked, with no memory of what has happened since. Exhausted, he sinks down and is caught by the Thing. The Torch observes that the gizmo disappears as well.

The thing carries him back to his bride. Reed silently figures Dr. Doom was behind all this and he will lose his memory too.

And soon Sue and Reed kiss as man and wife. And as the gala reception begins in the grand ballroom, Gabe Jones informs Fury of two party crashers outside. They say their names are— Fury doesn’t care. No one comes in without an invite. And so Dugan, Jones and Fury throw the two protesting gentlemen out.

Imagine them keeping them out! Jack Kirby marvels. Stan Lee decides they’ll show them by returning to the bullpen and start writing their next adventure…

Characters Involved: 

Human Torch, Invisible Girl, Mr. Fantastic, Thing (all Fantastic Four)

Angel, Beast, Cyclops, Iceman, Marvel Girl, Professor X (X-Men)
Nick Fury, director of SHIELD
‘Dum-Dum’ Dugan, Gabe Jones (agents of SHIELD)
Captain America, Hawkeye, Iron Man, Quicksilver, Thor (All Avengers)
Dr. Strange


Alicia Masters

Karen Page
Foggy Nelson

Dr. Doom
Puppet Master
Red Ghost
Super Apes

Enchantress, Executioner
Mr. Hyde
Mad Thinker
Awesome Android
Human Top
Black Knight I
Super- Skrull
Atlantean soldiers
HYDRA agents

Patsy Walker and Hedy

Stan Lee and Jack Kirby

Story Notes: 

A variation of the scene with Lee and Kirby attempting to crash Reed & Sue’s wedding was replicated in the 2007 film, Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer, in which Stan Lee (as himself) attempts to attend the wedding.

Written By: