Nostalgia Critic Real Thoughts on – Fant4stic

Doug and Rob give their thoughts immediately after watching the movie. They just couldn’t wait to get out their anger.

About Doug Walker

Creator of 5 Second Movies, Nostalgia Critic, Bum Reviews and more.

23 comments

  1. About the Johnny Storm race thing: frankly, I get the impression that it was just something the writers/producers shoved in there, and that it really didn’t serve any purpose other than to try to shoehorn in some diversity. Like Rob says, in the end, they didn’t even do anything with it as far as the family dynamic between him and Sue or anything, so what was the point? Just to try to piss fans off? That’s pretty much how it came across anyway. “Here’s an idea: Have A Point!” In the end, if there isn’t a substantial reason for it, if they don’t do anything with it, then all it ends up being is just an insult to the fans.

    • The excuse I heard is that the actor was one of Josh Trank’s favourites.

      (Which makes me think – why not make him Reed, then? A less stereotypical role, and doesn’t clash with his sister.)

    • My guess is that it got downplayed intentionally after the reaction.

      And, well, yeah, if you’re pissed by the race change, then I don’t really have any sympathy for you.

      • If you’ve paid any attention to any of my posts on this subject, you would have noted that my problem is specifically the POINTLESSNESS of the change. You don’t just chuck 50+ years of comic book history without giving a substantial reason for what you’re doing. There was no point to the change, ergo they shouldn’t have bothered with it. Once again, as I have pointed out numerous places on this page, the real problem is that they made the change specifically as a substitute for actually developing the character. Calling out creative laziness is not racism; not even close.

      • Let me introduce a concept to you: Chekhov’s Gun. The rule is simple: if you introduce something in your story that draws a lot of attention to itself, you have to make it an important plot element. If you put a loaded gun on a table in Act 1, then in Act 2, someone must fire it.

        Whether you like it or not, ditching 50+ years of comic book history to cast one half of a pair of siblings as a different race is the kind of thing that is going to draw attention to itself. It raises questions, even in the most innocent of minds. Like, are they true siblings? Is one of them (or both of them) adopted? If so, what happened to their parents? How did they end up as family? Could they be half-siblings or step-siblings? If so, how did that take place? And most importantly, how does any of this affect the relationship of the characters, their identities as heroes, and their roles within the story?

        In essence, they put a loaded gun on the table, made sure we could all see it very clearly, and then did absolutely nothing with it. That’s not racism; that’s bad storytelling.

        And if they had no intention to address Johnny and Sue’s relationship as siblings, then they shouldn’t have bothered to cast them as different races. It contributed nothing to the narrative and did nothing but alienate fans. Again, not racism, but bad storytelling. It’s not as if anyone was going to get mad at them for simply sticking to the 50+ years of comic book history and keep them as nearly-identical siblings. The change contributed nothing, which makes it pointless. But in the end, it just ends up being yet one more reason why this movie is terrible: they couldn’t even make good use of what could have been a decent opportunity to develop these characters.

  2. Devil's Advocate

    as has been said before, the reason for the controversy over Human Torch wasn’t about racism, it was that his sister wasn’t black too since they have to be biological siblings.

    • Thats other way around. Human Torch should be white aswell

      • As previously stated, it’s nowhere in Johnny Storm’s bio or character mythos that dictates that he needs to be Caucasian beyond history. One could make the argument that Captain America needs to be white for historical accuracy (it wouldn’t make sense for a non-white to be made into a living symbol of American patriotism in the 1940s), but the same CAN’T be said about Johnny Storm. Johnny was created during the era when nearly every main character in American comics was white by default, but that era is over; the 1960s have been over for a long time now and that world doesn’t exist anymore. It only matters if Johnny is an impulsive, hot-headed teenager/young adult. His skin color is irrelevant. The film’s producers didn’t want the F4 to be made of of all white people because this is the 21st century and non-whites want to be represented as well. Diversifying the main cast wasn’t the problem; it has how incompetently the diversity was handled. Don’t change a main character’s skin color for the sake of diversity and then just toss the whole idea aside like a toy that you got tired of playing with. Personally, I would have preferred if both and Susie *and* Johnny had been black, that way there would’ve been an interracial romance between Sue and Reed. Heck, they could have just made Reed black and accomplished the same thing. After all, where is it etched in stone that all super geniuses have to be white?

        Fant4stick was just a hot mess of a movie no matter how one looks at it. The director(s) should never have tried to take a dark and gritty approach to the Fantastic Four. The dark and edgy approach only works for characters/franchises that are dark and edgy. It works for Batman and Wolverine because those characters are dark and brooding, but you can’t try to apply the Dark Knight formula to every franchise and expect it to work. The Fantastic Four were never dark nor edgy. FF has always been a goofy comedy. The F4 were meant to represent a light-hearted, silly, fantasy vision of the space age, so the dark, edgy, joyless Batman formula won’t work with those characters no matter how one tries to apply it. An F4 movie could have some serious moments, but the entire film being serious? Nah, it won’t work.

        • The Real Silverstar

          Josh Trank liked Michael B. Jordan, and Jordan was in Chronicle, a movie this one was desperately trying to mimic, that’s really all there is to it. Doing something provocative or noteworthy with the race change was never on the table, which is why the whole thing came off as so half-assed and unnecessary. Don’t inject an idea like that if you’re not going to do anything of note with it; it’s trying to explore the Seven Seas without leaving the security of your bathtub.

          • This. It may be true that there was no distinct reason NOT to make the change, but the real problem has always been that there was no distinct reason FOR the change, either. It was utterly pointless. If they were going to do it at all, they should have made a point to do something substantial with it. They didn’t, so what was the point? To irritate the fans, and that’s it.

            For the record, I was never pissed off about them making Johnny black. I was pissed off because I knew they were doing it as a substitute for making him a decent, rounded, well-written character. Hollywood laziness in action.

    • There is nothing about the story that says they have to be biological siblings,

      It is still racism. There’s no reason to care.

      • Only 50+ years of comic history. I guess we can just ignore that.

        The bottom line is: they really didn’t give a substantial reason for the change, so there really was no point to it. It was a cheap substitute for actually giving us well-rounded characters who were true to the comics. That’s not racism; that’s calling them out for creative laziness.

        Here’s the thing: if they were going to make Sue and Johnny into adoptive siblings, that would have been fine IF AND ONLY IF they had actually done something meaningful with it. As it is, they barely felt like family at all. Again, creative laziness. If you’re going to have two people who for 50+ years have always been portrayed as nearly identically-looking siblings, and you want to change that, you really need to do something substantial with that.

  3. Pure anger? As soon as I heard those words, I knew I was going to enjoy this video. Yeah, Fan4stic really is the worst superhero movie of all time, in my opinion. At least all the other bad superhero movies aren’t boring. Also, I actually like the 2000 Fantastic Four movies. Lastly, on the black Johnny Storm, I thought it was odd since it’s not comic accurate but it wasn’t worth complaining about, especially since Micheal B. Jordan is a good actor. I just kinda tilted my head and went on.

  4. This movie was such an epic failure that, considering the original wasn’t that well received, I’m almost having a hard time believing Fox didn’t put out this stinker on PURPOSE. It was such a failure in filmmaking, storytelling, and characterization in every way…while in a world so full of superhero movies that everyone knows what works and what doesn’t now…that there’s no excuse for this film.

  5. The Real Silverstar

    Fox had to pump out another Fantastic Four movie in order to prevent the rights from reverting back to Disney/Marvel; that’s the ONLY reason this movie exists. The grim ‘n’ gritty ‘Chronicle’ approach just doesn’t work with this franchise. This is one problem I have with superhero movies right now: the tendency of filmmakers to try to turn every superhero movie into Wolverine or The Dark Knight. The grimdark approach works for Batman and Wolverine because it actually fits in with their characters, back stories, personalities and mythos, but you can’t just slap the Dark Knight makeup onto every superhero movie franchise and expect it to work. The Fantastic Four have never been dark ‘n’ gritty; they’re goofy, upbeat, World of Tomorrow, weird science, Welcome-to-the-Space Age characters, so trying to go ‘Chronicle’ with those characters fit like a pair of cement pants. (Speaking of pants, why was the Thing starkers? Yeah, Ben becomes a big rock monster, but he’s still human; he sometimes doesn’t wear a shirt or shoes, but he’s always worn pants. Give Ben some dignity…and some slacks.) You can have a F4 movie with some serious moments in it, but a dark humorless F4 movie? Ain’t gonna work.

  6. I’m surprised Rob is still so Pro-Marvel. I get that Marvel is our best option right now but their movies are so safe and routine that they’ve been boring for YEARS now. Marvel is at Paranormal Activity 4 stages now where it has its fans and the movie is still competent but its also very badly dated.

    What we need in our superhero movies is more chances being taken. It doesn’t matter if that chance bombs or succeeds, just don’t make it a copy/paste to either Iron Man 1, Avengers or Dark Knight. There are more than 3 types of superhero movies in the world…go all out campy, go subtle like Unbreakable, go serious without being dark and broody, go soap opera drama with emotional stakes and twists, etc

    • I agree with you wholeheartedly. The problem is that producers are afraid of anything that hasn’t been tried before. New ideas scare corporate suits, because they don’t know how audiences are going to react to them. They stick to the safety net of tried-and-true formulas because those have proven themselves to be money makers. Execs prefer putting things in boxes because that’s safer for them.

  7. Don’t agree about the race thing. It just shouldn’t be an issue. Playing it up only makes it seem worse.

    That said, it still is a flaw that they downplayed their family relation that much.

  8. What burns my shit is that it’s totally possible to make a great and fun Fantastic 4 movie. Trying to make them gritty and dark is the most misguided attempt at trying to make a corny setting seem more relevant to modern audiences. Fantastic 4 is a super hero family at the end of the day, so why don’t they just try to make it a family film? Don’t go for an R-rating, even if you’re introducing the Moloids or trying to make Doom more hardcore. You already got a movie like the Incredibles that fits the Fantastic 4 mold perfectly, and it even had a dash of Watchmen thrown in for good measure. and it didn’t suck! Like seriously Fox, when are you gonna git gud and have more faith in the source material?

  9. GreenGoblinsOckVenom86

    I think this movie was pretty bad too. It’s funny how Dr. Doom has been portrayed in the movies. In the other Fox produced movies, he’s a rip off of Norman Osborn from Spider-Man 1 and in this he’s more of a rip off of Ultimate Eddie Brock/Venom. I wish They could get it right. I’m hoping that Marvel gets the rights back at some point. Fox probably better sell them or they will probably lose them with no compensation like they did Daredevil.

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