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Comics Should Be Good Top 50 Countdown! – #5

Here’s #5! Click here for the master list!


Fantastic Four #5

This is the big bad voodoo daddy, the first appearance of Doctor Doom, one of the seventeen best super-villains of all-time!!

I don’t think there’s really much more to say about this issue, created by Jack Kirby and Stan Lee, except to note that it has one of the silliest examples of the drawbacks of the Marvel Method of writing, as it seems pretty clear at one point that Lee says in the script that the Fantastic Four (who are back in time to steal some pirate treasure) steal some pirate clothes. Now, you’d figure the way you’d draw such a scene is the standard routine where they knock out some pirates and take their outfits. However, Kirby took the instruction literally and had the Fantastic Four steal a big bag of pirate clothes. I think it is the goofiest plot point in the early issues of the Fantastic Four (and there are a lot of them!).

That said, come on, it’s Doctor Doom!

‘Nuff said, indeed!

However, another notable Marvel character DID first appear in the fifth issue of a series, as Ghost Rider first showed up in Marvel Spotlight #5.

OH! How could I forget Maverick, the Sensational Character Find of 1992! He first showed up in X-Men #5.

And I actually feel quite dumb for not noting that the famous “One punch” issue of Justice League was also #5. Remember when that issue was a real collectible? Late 80s/Early 90s was a weird time, man…

I have to mention how Doom actually made an appearance in the fifth issue of Amazing Spider-Man, too, mostly because that amuses me.

Oh, Asteroid M first showed up in X-Men #5!

There’s got to be more notable fifth issues out there, I just can’t think of any more offhand! Help me out, folks!


Bernard the Poet

July 25, 2008 at 2:46 am

“one of the seventeen best super-villains of all-time!!”

1) Dr Doom
2) Galactus
3) The Submariner
4) James Jonah Jameson
5) Dr Octopus
6) Green Goblin
7) Elektra
8) The Kingpin
9) Bullseye
10) Magneto
11) Lex Luthor
12) Darkseid
13) Black Adam
14) Deathstroke the Terminator
15) The Joker
16) The Penguin
17) Catwoman

Am I right, sir?

i love the fact that the computer put a pair of sunglasses before Kingpin. Obviously, he is the most fashionable villain on that list. :)

Patrick Joseph

July 25, 2008 at 5:11 am

Perfect choice.

When was the last time you said, “Wow, that Absorbing Man, he really had a decent plan of attack.” In Quasar #5, an Acts of Vengence crossover, the Quicker Picker-Upper attacks Quasar already with a chunk of Adamantuim in his hands, making him nigh-invulnerable. Even better, he uses that to touch the Quantum bands, making him on par with the Silver Surfer, power-wise! Alas, it’s too much power, and he passes out or something from too much.

I love that issue of Spider-Man where Doom decides to kidnap the webslinger for help against the Fantastic Four, only to mistakenly grab Flash Thompson. Marvel comics were just as goofy as DC stuff back in the day.

Other notable debuts at #5: the Shroud in Super-Villain Team-Up, Doctor Destiny in JLA, Manhunter (Mark Shaw) in 1st Issue Special, Liberty Legion in Invaders, the Black Marvel and the Blazing Skull in Mystic Comics (hey, there’s apparently something going around with guys with flaming skulls), but most importantly, Bessie the Hellcow in Giant-Size Man-Thing.

Also pretty darned notable were Steve Gerber’s covert abduction of Howard the Duck from the Mervel universe in Spider-Man Team-Up #5, and of course the famous “One punch!” clocking of Guy Gardner in Justice League #5. Those would be pretty strong arguments for breaking the FF streak if not for, you know, Doom.

I think there’s a goofier plot point than that, and it’s right in this issue: While impersonating a pirate, Ben originates the legend of Blackbeard. Yep, forget that Ed Teach guy, Blackbeard was actually the Thing dressed up in some goofy clothes and sporting a hybrid pirate/Yancy Street accent.

“one of the seventeen best super-villains of all-time!!”

Oh no, Brian, you’re not pulling me into that one again… ;-)

I just wanted to point out an important tidbit of history: not once in this story, does Dr. Doom cry.

lorin helller

July 25, 2008 at 9:47 am

I could be wrong, but I think the 5th issue of JLI has the classic “One punch” confrontation between Guy Gardner and Batman. Certainly doesn’t beat FF #5, but its up there.

I first read this as a kid in “Bring On the Bad Guys,” Stan the Man’s second follow-up to “Origins of Marvel Comics.” You neglect one of the silliest plot points in the story: Doc Doom gets the FF to capitulate by throwing a net over the Baxter Building. A net. Gosh, that building won’t run away now! If I remember right, the net didn’t even extend down to the first floor. Then Doom demands that Sue be turned over to him as a hostage, and they comply. Duh.

Patrick Joseph

July 25, 2008 at 12:10 pm


The net was electrified, you know! Which should have electrocuted the poor building, now that I think about it.


Oddly enough that issue was Amazing Spider-Man #5 (a favorite of mine too), which gives Doom here at least two notable appearances in the fifth issue of a series.

This is one of the most ridiculously awesome single issues of all time. Time-travel! Pirates! Dr. Doom! It has everything.

#5 is a toughie. For lots of books it’s the concluding part of the opening story arc (see: New Teen Titans (v2), Legion of Super-Heroes(v3), Advantageous Spider-Man).

It’s a fairly popular final issue for DC implosion titles (Firestorm, Steel, and Doorway to the Unexpected).

Lost Girls started in Taboo #5.

The FF #5 cover was in that big book of Marvel Comics’ history with Spider-Man on the cover that was just called “MARVEL”. It’s burned into my brain.

I’d argue he is Top 5, not just Top 17….

Grrrr…. Animal Man 5 is one of the best comics of all time and he was robbed. I’m not saying you’re wrong, but I really wanted Animal Man 5 to get this slot

Forget to 17 or top 10. This is Marvel’s main bad guy. He and Lex Luthor are the alpha males of villians of their companies. No more phone calls please.

A good take on the Absorbing Man? Sounds like Earth-X series ripped off Quasar! (He pretty much absorbed everything including Ultron)

while none of these are more important than the first appearance of dr. doom, i have three #5’s that top my list in terms of how great and rereadable they are: the infamous one punch issue of justice league, the first “talking with david” story in starman (hasn’t been mentioned yet), and animal man #5, which not only mapped out the rest of grant morrison’s infamous and spectacular run, but also had one of the ten greatest covers in comic history.

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