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Take 10: FF Villains

The most fiendish foes of Marvel’s first family, the Fantastic Four

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Every week, a secret cabal of Marvel staffers gathers to discuss the best of the best when it comes to the House of Ideas. This week in FANTASTIC FOUR #559, Marvel's First Family faces the New Defenders—but will they prove to be the FF's latest friends or newest foes? Reed, Sue, Ben and Johnny have got to be hoping for the latter, as they've already got an impressive assortment of villains gunning for them, something the Secret Cabal aims to demonstrate this week with their list of the 10 most fiendish Fantastic Four foes of them all! For each baddie you get a quick bio as well as a special spotlight comic courtesy of Marvel Digital Comics Unlimited. As always, these picks reflect the personal choices of the Secret Cabal, not the official opinion of Marvel or Marvel.com, and can be considered subjective at best. Enjoy!

10. THE RED GHOST First Appearance: FANTASTIC FOUR v1 #13 (1963) Find Out His Deal… Here Why He Makes The List: "During the heat of the Cold War, Red Ghost acted as the Soviet foil to the Fantastic Four. If his obsession to land on the moon before the Americans wasn't ambitious enough for this balding Bolshevik, he turned himself into a living phantom capable of becoming intangible at will, completing his transition into a serious scourge of super villainy. We're talking about a guy who makes up for his lack of strength and raw power by having a crew of super apes do his dirty work. You hear that? SUPER APES! Sweet." – Secret Cabal member CommanderCool Spotlight Comic: FANTASTIC FOUR v1 #13—The FF travels to the moon to tangle with the Red Ghost for the first time!

9. THE PSYCHO-MAN First Appearance: FANTASTIC FOUR ANNUAL #5 (1967) Find Out His Deal… Here Why He Makes The List: "This mad scientist and would-be conqueror ruled the Microverse with an iron glove. However, setting his sights on bigger—literally—goals, he attempted to take over the main Marvel Universe. The FF were there to stop him every time. However, when teamed with the Hate Monger, he managed to forever cement his place as one of the First Family's top 10 villain by fundamentally changing one of the members, temporarily transforming Sue Storm into the frightful foe Malice. Breaking free of his control, Sue defeated the Psycho-Man and declared that she was no longer the Invisible 'Girl,' but the Invisible Woman, having come into her own powerful self." – Secret Cabal member RunawayJ Spotlight Comic: 4 #11—The Invisible Woman must overcome her demons to defeat the Psycho-Man before he destroys New York City!

8. THE SUPER-SKRULL First Appearance: FANTASTIC FOUR v1 #18 (1963) Find Out His Deal… Here Why He Makes The List: "Two words: Fantastic...one. Forget the FF, the Super-Skrull's got all their powers in one body...oh, and, he can shapeshift. Makes the dude kinda hard to beat if you can't even figure out who he is! It's just too bad the guy's so loyal to his silly Skrull emperor...with all the awesome abilities he's got, he could surely conquer and rule some puny planetoid somewhere all on his own!" – Secret Cabal member MightyMsM Spotlight Comic: FANTASTIC FOUR: FOES #3—Reed Richards' plan to incarcerate all the FF's opponents hits a snag when the Super-Skrull interjects!

7. THE MOLE MAN First Appearance: FANTASTIC FOUR v1 #1 (1961) Find Out His Deal… Here Why He Makes The List: "He might be short and ugly, but to underestimate this subterranean ruler would be an immense mistake. Mole Man controls legions of deviant monsters, subject to his every whim, not to mention he's no slouch in the brains department. So you got an old guy who lives underground by himself and commands hideous monsters while plotting world domination. Creeeeeeepy." – Secret Cabal member HeartOfOak Spotlight Comic: FANTASTIC FOUR v1 #1—The newly-formed FF come up against their inaugural menace in the malevolent Mole Man!

6. THE PUPPET MASTER First Appearance: FANTASTIC FOUR v1 #8 (1962) Find Out His Deal… Here Why He Makes The List: "Ah, good old fashioned world domination. You don't see much of that anymore; these days most of the villains have ideals or heroic streaks or some other lame wholesome attribute. But not the Puppet Master. World domination was his game and his plan was to toy with the FF to get it (literally). And although his goal was a little clichéd, you have to give him some creative points for his method. Sculptures made out of radioactive clay that allow you to control the sculptees? Now that's fun AND disturbing!" – Secret Cabal member Mercury552 Spotlight Comic: FANTASTIC FOUR v1 #8—In his first appearance, the Puppet Master turns the Thing against his teammates!

5. THE SKRULLS First Appearance: FANTASTIC FOUR v1 #2 (1961) Find Out Their Deal… Here Why They Make The List: "What makes the Skrulls so scary? That they're green pointy eared space-aliens with wrinkly old chins? Sure. But, really, it's the fact that they can shapeshift into anything. Your mom, your best friend, that cow in the field over there. They could be anywhere and you wouldn't even know it. And you know, they also kind of orchestrated this whole infiltration and invasion of the Earth without any of the heroes figuring it out until it was too late. Why? For a lot of reasons, but in large part because they hate the FF. Nice going, Richards…" – HeartOfOak Spotlight Comic: FANTASTIC FOUR v1 #2—The sinister Skrulls rear their ugly, shape-shifting mugs for the very first time!

4. NAMOR THE SUB-MARINER First Appearance: MOTION PICTURE FUNNIES WEEKLY (1939) Find Out His Deal… Here Why He Makes The List: "So he's got his own undersea kingdom, he's declared war on the surface world any number of times and he even joined up with Dr. Doom once or twice—no big deal. The real reason Namor deserves a place on this list? He's got the hots for Sue Storm! And you'd better believe that doesn't sit well with Reed Richards. It takes one heck of a guy (in one tiny Speedo) to make the smartest man alive act like a jealous high school kid." – Mercury552 Spotlight Comic: FANTASTIC FOUR v1 #4—The Sub-Mariner leaps into the Silver Age and comes head-to-heads with the FF!

3. ANNIHILUS First Appearance: FANTASTIC FOUR ANNUAL #6 (1968) Find Out His Deal… Here Why He Makes The List: "This guy's name is derived directly from the word annihilate. Let that sink in for a bit. Okay. Now imagine that person as a giant insectoid wielding an all-powerful Cosmic Control Rod. And he isn't just some bad guy bent on total world domination. Oh no, Annihilus already rules an entire universe called the Negative Zone. He wants more. It's enough to run chills down your spin." – HeartOfOak Spotlight Comic: ANNIHILATION #1—With only a ragtag army standing in his way, Annihilus leads the Annihilation Wave on a campaign to claim the universe for his own!

2. GALACTUS First Appearance: FANTASTIC FOUR v1 #48 (1966) Find Out His Deal… Here Why He Makes The List: "When you're hungry, you go to the fridge, right? Grab a snack and you're all set. Galactus? Our homeboy in the purple and blue cosmic toga has to nosh on planets to quiet his rumbling tummy. And for big G, Earth is just another dish on the menu, a fact that has put him squarely at odds with the FF time and again. Nobody's gonna eat Earth on the FF's watch!" – Secret Cabal member Agent M Spotlight Comic: FANTASTIC FOUR v1 #49—Galactus makes his first trip to Earth and may prove more than even the FF can handle!

1. DOCTOR DOOM First Appearance: FANTASTIC FOUR v1 #5 (1962) Find Out His Deal… Here Why He Makes The List: "Doctor Doom epitomizes everything great about Marvel villains. Some see him as a selfish tyrant motivated by jealousy, warped by his own ambition and desire to destroy Reed Richards. Others see him as a misunderstood man, one who rules Latveria with an iron fist for the good of the land and its people, as he realizes what the country needs to keep it safe. Some see him as both, but no matter how you see him, he's infinitely compelling. Is there any story not made better by Doctor Doom?" –Secret Cabal member OneManDynasty Spotlight Comic: FANTASTIC FOUR #258—Live a day in the life of Doctor Doom in this classic by FF creative legend John Byrne!

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