Questionable Rumor Department: Marvel Is Allegedly Cancelling ‘Fantastic Four’ To Spite Fox

As we all know, Fox owns the film rights to the Fantastic Four, and they’re going full-steam ahead with their version of Marvel’s First Family. And, according to excitable fanboys who really should know better, Marvel’s decided to spite the hell out of Fox by canceling the comics. That’ll show ’em!

Essentially, Bleeding Cool started a rumor that Marvel’s head, Isaac Perlmutter, was all upset that Fox is making money off the Fantastic Four. More specifically they claimed that:

The belief inside the higher echelons of Marvel is that promoting these properties in comics only benefits Fox’s movies at the expense of those from Marvel Studios.

There’s so much wrong in that sentence, just in terms of common sense, that it’s amazing this was allowed to see print. First of all, Fox also owns the film rights to the X-Men, a property that clearly Marvel isn’t supporting with all sorts of comic books. Certainly there are no newly launched solo books either, featuring beloved characters and writers. It’s terrible how Marvel treats a once beloved and now obscure property. Just terrible.

Secondly, it’s nice that Bleeding Cool has such faith in the comic book industry, but the simple truth is that the movies sell the comics, not the other way around, and publishers are very much aware of this. This is why Batman is somehow involved in more than a quarter of all the books published under the DC Comics label and gets his own weekly series and a digital series to boot. There’s a lot you can say about Perlmutter as a boss, but he’s running Marvel to make a profit.

Finally, Marvel tends to react to new movies that aren’t part of Marvel Studios by aligning the book to better match with the movie. This is why Peter Parker is Spidey again in the comics, despite that being a terrible idea.

This is not to say that the Fantastic Four aren’t in trouble. Their relaunched book is not selling the way Marvel clearly had hoped, and Comic Book Resources did, in fact, follow up with a report that a “hiatus” was planned for the book, which is actually fairly common for the team. Just check their publication history on Wikipedia. They’re beloved characters, but again and again, it’s been shown that nobody loves them enough to actually buy their books.

In other words, what’s likely actually going to happen is that the Fantastic Four get spiked, keep showing up in other books, and then, right before the movie comes out, a new FF book debuts with a team that looks just like the one in the movies. And then it’ll last maybe twelve issues before getting canceled. Look at it this way: At least they’re not forcing Wolverine, Ghost Rider, the Hulk, and Spider-Man to team up again.