News broke recently that actor John Krasinski is still interested in playing Mr. Fantastic in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and the internet lost its mind. For good reason, as Krasinski has long been fan-cast in the role and is akin to Patrick Stewart landing the role of Charles Xavier. Of course, as cool as this casting would be, fans need to come back to reality and remember that this next Fantastic Four movie needs more than Krasinski to succeed.
Not that many don't already know that, but it's always great to remind anyone who will listen that bad casting wasn't the root problem of the past Fantastic Four movies. There are many things I think this franchise needs to have a successful run in the MCU, and quite frankly, John Krasinki's involvement is near the bottom of the list. Here are the more important things that need to be considered for the superhero team's next movie.
Skip The Origin Story
Besides the fact that we've seen how the Fantastic Four were created a couple times on screen already, it's worth noting the story itself is honestly dull in comparison to other origins. There's a space accident and then everyone slowly realizes they have super powers. There's no fighting the Axis, murder of parents, destruction of planets or even outcasts taken in by a telepathic professor. They all receive great power, but right off the bat comprehend the great responsibility that comes with it!
Back in the day when superheroes were novel, the Fantastic Four's origin story was entertaining, but by today's standards, it's old hat. If a new Fantastic Four movie must spin up the same old tale, just recap it at the beginning in a couple minutes. Personally, I'd prefer the team get introduced via another movie, like what was done with Spider-Manr, and then the movie just gets into the thick of things similar to Spider-Man: Homecoming. Anything but an entire story based on their origins is fine!
Save Doctor Doom For A Major MCU Movie
Doctor Doom is, without a doubt, one of Marvel's greatest villains. This doubt makes him the biggest bad for the Fantastic Four, though I think the franchise would be best not to shoot its shot with the major villain so early. Give him a mention/a scene or two, but put him in a position where there's no need for an immediate confrontation just yet.
Simply put, Doctor Doom is too versatile a villain to be used and set aside for just one movie. He could play the Loki role for the next generation of Marvel villains and really open up the MCU with Latveria. I definitely want to see Doom involved with the Fantastic Four in some way, but I don't believe he has to be the primary threat. There are other great villains this franchise has, and ones that could help audiences ease into what the Fantastic Four can do and is really capable of.
Don't Be Afraid To Get Weird With It
In regards to the MCU, the Fantastic Four is late to the game. It's going to be hard for this superhero franchise to show the world something it hasn't already seen, and to give these heroes a unique identity compared to everything else out there. My solution is to not be afraid to get weird with it, because there's a lot about this franchise that is pretty unique compared to other franchises.
The core team doesn't have to be weird, but if they're up against someone like Puppet Master or fighting Annihilus in the Negative Zone, things are going to get weird. This is the kind of fun Fantastic Four is capable of getting into, and the type of fun that it should be having. The truth is these heroes aren't the strongest, most cunning or funniest in the Marvel mythos, so they need some gimmick to get people hooked. Get weird!
A Willingness To Tell A Story That Isn't About Centered On Sue And Reed
The Richards' are one of Marvel's ultimate power couples, but a strong marriage between a stretchy guy and invisible woman isn't really the highlight of this team. There's the death-defying and sometimes reckless Johnny Storm, who can literally burst into flames, and Ben Grimm, who is essentially the Elephant Man of the Marvel universe. The latter two should be who a story follows.
In fact, I think there are few things more powerful in the Marvel universe than the story of Ben Grimm being radically changed in a grotesque way and being so disconnected from humanity that his nickname becomes Thing. There's a horrific sadness to a tale like that, and I believe we're in an era where Marvel could explore that isolation and tell a real powerful story about it. To me, Fantastic Four was always at its best when Thing was at the forefront, so I 100% approve of a story driven by him at some point in this franchise's run.
Go To Space For More Reasons Than Obtaining Powers
If your only experience with the Fantastic Four has come from movies, then it wouldn't be crazy to assume this team went to space once and then tapped out. The truth of the matter is the Fantastic Four has been to space a good deal. They've battled aliens, explored the galaxy and had a great time doing so.
The MCU is slowly, but surely going to get more cosmic, and when that time comes, the Fantastic Four will be the perfect candidates to get in on the action. They probably won't be a tremendous help to the likes of Captain Marvel, but everyone always has a part to play in an ensemble adventure. Plus, Reed Richards is a genius, and there's never really a situation where having one on hand is a bad thing. The key will be finding the sweet spot for these guys, i.e. effective ways for them to contribute to adventures without feeling redundant. It can be done, it'll just take a little work!
What do you believe a Fantastic Four movie needs to be successful? Sound off in the comments, and be sure to stick with CinemaBlend for more on what's happening in the world of Marvel and other movie news.