Fantastic Four #225- The Blind God's Tears
Cover Date: Dec 1980 Price:$ .50
Writer: Doug Monech Artists: Bill Sienkiewicz and Pablo Marcos
Story: I'm guessing that last issue something must have happened with mysterious red mist, because the FF are in an ice cave in the North Pole investigating the occurrence. The mists were throwing off the FF's powers, so they went investigating and found the cave and an accompanying city. They are talking with the god Korgon, who is about fifteen feet tall. Korgon is lying down on a giant bed because he is dying...and naturally, that's where the FF come in to help.
Korgon gives a ridiculously lengthy backstory about his existence. It seems he was once just a man, who loved the daughter of the king. Their love was forbidden, so they took off one night as star crossed lovers so often do. As they fled, a meteor crashed and irradiated the spot it crashed into. The radiation ended up killing Korgon's forbidden love and blinding him. Korgon called the whole incident with the meteor the Darkfield Illumination, because it blinded him in a normal sense but gave him strange glowing red eyes that showed him visions of evil things. Well, people around Korgon took to thinking he was a god and started worshipping him. You would think he would have denied it, but oh well...
Anyway, it turns out Korgon keeps his Arctic kingdom alive by using his "tears", or the energy that comes out of his glowing eyes, to power a machine that heat the caves and create a water cycle of heating, precipitation, and freezing. His mutated rains give the plants life and make for a sort of tropical oasis in the middle of the arctic. But now Korgon's powers are all out of whack, and if he can't "weep" into his machine, he and his city won't survive.
Meanwhile, in the mythical land of Asgard, the main Asgardian deity Odin watches the situation and mumbles the word "Loki." Odin tells his golden haired son Thor, the god of thunder in the Marvel Universe, that he has a job for him. Thor's a giant "daddy's boy", so he prepares to check out the scene.
At the arctic oasis, Reed gives Korgon his powers back by pulling energy from the "rain machine" and shooting it into Korgon. The FF then celebrate Korgon's renewed health with Korgon's followers in a scene of revelry that's not unlike a modern day rave. Sue Storm appears to be dancing on tables...she is quite spastic in these old comics. One moment' she's overwhelmed by the fact that her missions always turn violent, the next she's shaking it for some vikings in a cave.
Korgon refills his machine so that his followers can live, and then tells Reed he wants to become a man again. Reed says okay, and the two plan to reverse the process by sucking the energy out of Korgon. One of Korgon's followers hears of this plan, however, and formulates a plot to sabotage the whole affair.
Reed shoots Korgon with the machine that is supposed to take his powers, but it has been tampered with and gives Korgon more powers. Korgon goes a little crazy and tries to kill the heroes. Reed tries to reason with the god, but nothing short of the intervention of the mighty Thor saves the day. Thor tells Korgon to chill, and Odin appears in an apparition to tell Korgon that he was sabotaged, and that Korgon needs to accept that he is a god. Odin tells Korgon that being a god is about having followers, and finding a balance (kind of like writing a comics blog!). Odin then says that he is often sabotaged by his own son Loki, and that he wouldn't have it any other way. Well, he puts it differently, but you get the idea.
After the gods have their heart-to-heart, Korgon accepts that he needs to remain what he is, and that his followers need him. Korgon sends the FF and Thor on their merry ways, and the issue ends by promising a "Samurai Destroyer" would be coming next month!
What I thought: The more I think about it, the more ridiculous this issue's resolution is. The FF would have been dead without Thor. But there wasn't really a good reason for Odin to be monitoring the team's affairs. Korgon is not an Asgardian god, and the only thing Monech uses to explain Odin's watchful eyes is that Odin has "been there." It's kind of funny, really. When the two gods kind of talk things out, it reminds me of the end of an episode of Full House or something. Uncle Odin has to take little Korgon aside and the sappy piano music starts up to indicate the "moral commentary" portion of the show. As the two gods realize that it was miscommunication all along, the whole audience learns a lesson, and then Family Matters comes on...
I think the whole "Korgon's Alive!" party was really out of place, and the scenes where Korgon's followers keep threatening the FF in case anything goes wrong were unnecessary. But hey, this comic is not bad for being from 1980. It could have been a lot worse. And I like Thor, so it's cool to see him come in and beat people up. After all, he is a "warrior born."
Thanks for reading, and until next time, Vive la Fantastique!