Issue by Issue – Marvel Two-In-One #47

Writer – Bill Mantlo
Artist – Chic Stone
Inker – Chic Stone
Colours – Bob Sharen
Letters – Gaspar Saladino, Diana Albers

Of all the days it could be, it just so happens to be The Thing’s birthday and what better day than to tease the big galoot? So it is that Reed and Sue and the kids do just that with the big man with even Agatha Harkness getting in on it. Eventually it is time for the festivities and that is when Ben gets a mysterious package and high-tails it out of there as fast as he can. It seems that every year, the Yancy Street Gang like to play a little trick on Ben and get him a gag gift every year and this time since their gift was essentially a cry for help, Ben knows it has to be bad. Arriving on the scene, The Thing is promptly attacked and shot down from the sky and to say that he is a little mad is putting it lightly, but it also confirms his suspicions. Written by Bill Mantlo and drawn by Chic Stone, the story is a lot of fun for nobody would have ever thought to see Ben team with those who have plagued him for years with taunts and jeers and tricks. As it is though, for those that are long-time readers or not, there is a grudging respect from both sides as they all grew up in the same neighbourhood and when it comes down to it, they would do anything for the other if it really mattered. The rest of the book finds Ben fighting off all manner of traps including killer robots and just when it looks like it all might be lost because even The Thing gets tired, the Yancy Street Gang overthrow their captors and lend a hand to the man who came to free them. When all is said and done though, everyone stands defeated and a villain is revealed leaving the book on a cliff-hanger. As for the villain himself, he will shock readers a little bit as he is not known to be a Fantastic Four bad guy and just what his motivations might be still have yet to be revealed. Even more important, one has to wonder just who it is that will get them all out of the mess they find themselves in. Again, this was a fun issue with one of the strangest team-ups to be found yet, but one that works on every level and provides a lot of enjoyment for those that pick up the book.

3.5 out of 5

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