The Fantastic Four is a fictional superhero team appearing in comic books published by Marvel Comics. The group debuted in The Fantastic Four #1 (November 1961), which helped to usher in a new level of realism in the medium. The Fantastic Four was the first superhero team created by writer-editor Stan Lee and artist and co-plotter Jack Kirby, who developed a collaborative approach to creating comics with this title that they would use from then on. As the first superhero team title produced by Marvel Comics, it formed a cornerstone of the company's 1960s rise from a small division of a publishing company to a pop-culture conglomerate. The title would go on to showcase the talents of comics creators such as Roy Thomas, John Byrne, Steve Englehart, Walt Simonson, John Buscema, George Pérez and Tom DeFalco, and is one of several Marvel titles originating in the Silver Age of Comic Books that is still in publication today.
The four individuals traditionally associated with the Fantastic Four, who gained superpowers after exposure to cosmic rays during a scientific mission to outer space, are: Mr. Fantastic (Reed Richards), a scientific genius and the leader of the group, who can...