Steve Goble

Choose life. (Deuteronomy 30:19)

Writer: Mike Carlin
Breakdowns: Ron Wilson

If the previous issue featured the title character as the anti-hero, then this one features him as merely the non-hero.

Ben Grimm, aka The Thing, goes on holiday, to visit Sharon on the set of her latest film. It's a monster movie. Ben thinks the giant animatronic dinosaur is real, so he attacks it, ruining both the prop and the shot. He's not very popular for that.

Then he actually goes and makes the same mistake a second time, saving her from a stunt-fall.

The next day, Ben sagely remains in his trailer drinking a can of cola when, whaddayaknow, following the comedy rule of three, a real dinosaur terrorises the set.

As the real-life disaster escalates, twice more we cut back to Ben ignoring all the sounds of carnage, as he resolutely reads his newspaper and refuses to get involved.

By the time he eventually does venture outside to find out what all the screaming is about, the film crew have actually defeated the monster without him.

So then, that's another case solved.

If this were a more humdrum series, then you can bet that the hero would have to be the one saving the day each issue. Instead this title has the freedom to be a little more original than that, and to ignore the usual predictable cliché. It means that the reader won't be able to foresee how subsequent stories will end either, giving some point to reading them.

Now that's how to keep readers coming back for more.

(NB. The Thing was cancelled five issues later)


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