SDCC: Marvel: Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends Panel
Here is the latest in our year-long look at one cool comic (whether it be a self-contained work, an ongoing comic or a run on a long-running title that featured multiple creative teams on it over the years) a day (in no particular order whatsoever)! Here‘s the archive of the moments posted so far!
Today we look at Chris Eliopoulos and Marc Sumerak’s Franklin Richards: Son of a Genius!
Roughly speaking, Franklin Richards: Son of a Genius is a riff on Bill Watterson’s classic comic strip, Calvin and Hobbes, with Franklin Richards, son of the Fantastic Four’s Invisible Woman and Mr. Fantastic (the genius part of “Son of a Genius”) taking on the role of Calvin, and H.E.R.B.I.E. the robot serving as a substitute of sorts to Hobbes.
Of course, the comparison is not a perfect one, as H.E.R.B.I.E. is a bodyguard as well as Franklin’s friend, and unlike the misadventures that went on in Calvin’s imagination, the misadventures of Franklin and H.E.R.B.I.E. actually happen.
Other than that, though, Eliopoulos and Sumerak deftly capture that same blend of childhood innocence mixed with childhood mischievousness.
When you live with a father who invents new fantastical devices every day, there’s plenty of ways to get into trouble, and Franklin seems to try to get into all sorts of trouble all at once.
Marvel releases the Franklin Richards stories as a series of one-shots that come out about three times a year, sometimes more, sometimes less. Each one-shot has about three to four stories in it.
Eliopoulos and Sumerak’s Franklin is an interesting character – he’s a bit goofy, but at the same time, he’s quite heartfelt.
Check out this story showing the more human side of Frankin…
As you can see, Eliopoulos nails the cartoon style perfectly.
And he and Sumerak hit the beats in Franklin’s relationship with his dad well.
Here’s a slightly goofier story introducing a new adversary for Franklin…
This is a really fun series and I’m glad that Marvel has found a way to keep producing these one-shots (it’s a novel approach that sure beats giving Franklin an ongoing series that would only be canceled after five or six issues). Marvel has collected the one-shots into a series of digests.
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