The Fantastic Four #28, July 1964
Written by: Stan Lee (The Leader!)
Drawn by: Jack Kirby (The King!)
Inked by: Chic Stone (The Master!)
Lettered by: Art Simek (The Letterer!)
I think I’ve reached a conclusion: It’s only the comics where Artie Simek letters where there are jokes at the expense of the letterer, so I’m going to say that he’s the guy who, at least partially, comes up with the joke titles. Or maybe Stan Lee was more comfortable making fun of him than Sam Rosen, probably one of those. In either case, I love it.
The Mad Thinker is back, and he’s got another overly complicated master plan. This one involves the Puppet Master creating a doll of Professor X and controlling him, so he can tell the X-Men to defeat the Fantastic Four. However, first the X-Men have to bring the FF to a specific plateau where the Thinker has planted traps designed to get rid of them. Then the Puppet Master commands Professor X to put the X-Men to sleep, and then they win! Except the Beast manages to snatch the doll from the Puppet Master just before he falls asleep, freeing Professor X so he can stop the Thinker’s otherwise unbeatable Awesome Android.
This is a pretty decent issue. Unlike the team-up with the Avengers the Fantastic Four just did, this one had a pretty good reason, and a logical team-up of villains behind that reason. I can totally buy the fact that the Puppet Master couldn’t mind control Professor X without the Thinker’s calculations of using a precise amount of his radioactive clay. That not only explains why he didn’t do it before, but is also a good setup for good ol’ heroes fightin’ heroes. Plus I just like the Awesome Android and his big grey eraser head.