Menace of the Mole Men
Review and Media by Jon T
Episode #2 - Menace of the Mole Men
Notes: Based on "The Return Of The Mole Man!" from Fantastic Four #22 (January 1964), written by Stan Lee, art by Jack Kirby.
Original Airdate - September 9, 1967
Ben is helping Reed to test out Sue's new force field, when they start receiving complaints from the Baxter Building's other tenants. Reed decides to take the team's tests to an isolated island that he was alerted to by a leaflet mailed to him. When the Four get to the island, the team is stranded there when their U-Car is stolen. They then run into the Mole Man, the ruler of Subterranea, who tells them that he has rebuilt his underground network of tunnels leading to every capital city. He intends to take over the world's governments, and to accomplish this, imprisons each of the Four in a series of traps. The Four have to escape their confinement and prevent the Mole Man from taking over the world.
Review: A sensible set-up for this episode, as Reed decides to transfer the FF's dangerous tests to a remote island (rather than incur 100s of complaints per experiment!). It's too much of a coincidence that Mole Man's island trap comes into play at the same time Reed makes his decision to use the island, but perhaps Mole Man simply figured that sending Reed a pamphlet advertising the island would eventually lead to results!
Reed and Sue use their powers pretty effectively to get out of Mole Man's traps, but poor Ben simply got lucky with a convenient tunnel near to his trap! A nice touch (one that isnít obvious or heavy-handed) is Ben showing a moment of genuine concern towards Johnny after he breaks him out of his trap.
A decent showcase for the entire team.