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Episode 190: Intergalactic peace treaty? Seems simple enough! Send in the Fantastic Four! (Fantastic Four #37) -- April 1965

Episode 190: Intergalactic peace treaty? Seems simple enough! Send in the Fantastic Four! (Fantastic Four #37) -- April 1965

NASA vs The State Department

In this episode:

Mike and Ed discuss the peace treaty between Earth and the Skrull Empire, as negotiated by Reed Richards and the Fantastic Four. How does Reed have the authority to sign such a treaty on behalf of Earth? Do the ends justify the means? Don’t the Fantastic Four have a conflict of interest given that a Skrull killed Sue Storm’s father? How would we feel if a Russian super team completed this negotiation? And now that we have gone to another galaxy, are we going to be able to go to Mars?

Fantastic Four Vol 1 37 | Marvel Database | Fandom

More detailed summary of the podcast (from AI):

Edward and Michael are discussing the Fantastic Four's recent mission to the Skrull’s home world. Edward believes that peace has been achieved, thanks to the efforts of Reed Richards. Michael is skeptical and points out that there is no evidence to support Reed's claims, and that the Fantastic Four's actions could be seen as hostile and unauthorized. He questions who authorized the mission and if it was sanctioned by the United Nations. Edward believes that sometimes the US needs to take action, even if it's not sanctioned by the UN, and that in this case, it worked out. Michael is concerned about what would happen if it didn't work out.

Behind the issue:

This is the first appearance of the Skrull home world, but it is not named here (and is not named until 1983 — “Tarnax IV”). The Skrulls keep their promise not to invade Earth for three years, but change their minds in Captain Marvel #2 when they discover that the Kree had an interest in the planet.

In this issue:

Sue Storm is unhappy that the Skrulls were not punished for killing her father. This leads to Reed Richards deciding to take the team to the Skrulls’ homeworld to bring the murderer of Sue’s father to justice. And so the team embarks on this mission, flying in a spaceship of Reed’s design, and with the blessing of NASA. They land on the Skrull. homeward and battle the Skrulls, leading to their capture. They are held captive by the Skrull who murdered Sue’s father, Morrat, who plans to murder the Fantastic Four too. Just before they are killed, Reed offers Morrat unlimited power in exchange for sparing their lives. Meanwhile, Morrat’s girlfriend Anelle tells her father, the Skrull King, that Morrat has captured the Fantastic Four. This angers the King, who races to confront Morrat. Before he arrives, it is revealed that Reed tricked Morrat into repowering the team (they had been depowered when they were captured), and this time the Four are about to defeat the Skrulls when the King arrives with reinforcements. Anelle is nearly killed by accident by the soldiers during their standoff with the Fantastic Four but is saved by Sue’s invisible forcefield. This leads to Reed negotiating with the King to deliver to them the Skrull who killed Sue’s father. They learn that it was Morrrat, who has been killed in the firefight. The Fantastic Four then journey home, safe and sound from their adventure.

Assumed before the next episode:

Reed starts to wonder how far he will go to impress Sue. What do you do after nearly starting an intergalactic war?

This episode takes place:

After the Fantastic Four return from their wildly irresponsible revenge mission to the Skrull homeward.

Full transcript:

Edward: Reed Richards has done it again, Mike. There is peace in the world. Peace in the universe. There's peace in the galaxy in the entire universe. We are no longer at war with the scrolls. Thank you. Reed. Richards.

Michael: Well, okay. ? Yes. If we believe what Reed Richards says, then sure. But much like a lot of Reed Richard. Advice to us about battles and adventures that are unseen. There's no other proof beyond his good word. And what's kind of crazy right now is that what we're talking about is how Reed Richards and his team, the Fantastic Four, went to the scroll home world.

Edward: That's right. We took the battle to them. They've been invading us, and we said, you know what? Enough of this, we're gonna take the battle over. I was gonna say overseas, but it's not overseas. It's over stars. What do we have vocabulary for? What they.

Michael: over empty space. They went to the squirrel home world. A home world of people of, sorry, of like beings that can shapeshift and turn into,

Edward: I think you can call them people. I think squirrels are people.

Michael: Well, okay, let's call 'em people. They,

Edward: they're not human people, but they're still people. Like, I think that we can use the broad definition of people. I think it could be insulting to call them. Not people. They're an animals. They're, they're people.

Michael: Okay, well, sure, we'll call 'em people. So, but they're people that can take the form of anybody. So we're taking the word of Reed. Richards that he. To the scroll home world to negotiate a peace treaty, but at the same time also bring a killer to justice like somebody who killed his future father-in-law to justice. So let's break this down a little bit. ,

Edward: there's a lot going on here, Mike. And we haven't even gone to the fact they didn't go there alone. They combine the technology that they've developed with research scientists at NASA in order to develop this, subspace traveler to travel to other galaxies. Like we've just opened up the universe for human explor.

Michael: Okay. That's fascinating. And so, and I,

Edward: you don't seem to care, like you don't seem to care on these

Michael: I aren't you, Lou, aren't you a little worried, ed, that it looks like either, there's a few things happening. Number one, the Fantastic Four took it upon themselves to basically invade a planet for no shifting people.

Edward: It was with, nasa, it was Fantasic, Four, and nasa.

Michael: I haven't read that being, I know that they had NASA technology, but did NASA Greenlight the plan to go invade another planet, to grab somebody and then also negotiate a peace treaty? And does NASA has a capability to do that? Is that within their authority?

I doubt it. Number one, ,

Edward: I don't know. I'm not sure The founding fathers really decided on what NASA could or could not do, was wasn't on their list of priorities when they were making the constitution in the 1700.

Michael: Well, it, it wouldn't be, but that's just assuming that this only affects America, which it doesn't. What happened here is that American citizens went to another planet and in a hostile way to grab one of their citizens to bring them to justice, number one. And number two then apparently had free reign to negotiate a peace treaty with these people. And that isn't,

Edward: what do you prefer? They didn't, Mike, do you want them to go there and then start a war? They went there and they ended a war. That's good. That's good news.

Michael: Well, I don't know. I mean, this is what we're hearing.

Edward: What you don't know. You don't know. Do you want us to be at war with them? You, we. Peace is good news, right? We can agree on.

Michael: No, no, but hold on a second. We have to go through the proper channels on this to figure out this is done right, and this is actually in our interest. So number one, who green lit this? Who authorized this? Is this an American thing only or is this on behalf of the world? Did they go to the United Nations and get, and somehow, for the first time in human history, Get all the nations to agree to one thing, which was that we're gonna send these four people who aren't trained in any form of diplomacy to go there in an active war and negotiate peace. That is wild to me that that would be authorized by anybody.

Edward: Well, I'm pretty sure the UN did not authorize it, but if we waited for the UN to authorize things, nothing would get done and we'd still be at war with the scrolls. And so sometimes the US has to take things into their own hands and just take action. And we did take action and it worked out.

Michael: Okay, this time, okay, let's say what would happen to it if it didn't work out. Like it's like we send the Americans send these envoys being the Fantastic four who have no training in this type of activity of negotiating peace. Send 'em over and it backfires. And at least the, to this girls actually, redoubling their efforts to take over the earth. Well, and it's not just Americans pay the price of the entire, it'd be the entire Earth.

Edward: Are we at, would we be at any worse place than we were?

Michael: Yes,

Edward: the scrolls were already ready to, these girls have already attempted at least two or three invasions that we know of. They're, they're coming after us. They're trying to take over our planet, and now they're.

Michael: So I'm wondering yet if they're trying to invade us because Reed Richards ghost to their planet and kidnap their citizens . You know what I mean?

Edward: Like this is the, this is the first time he's gone there. They, unprovoked, they came after us and they came after us again and again trying to take over our planet and now we've turned the tables on them. This is like Japan has attacked us in World War ii. And we turned the table and said, no, no, no, you can't take our Hawaii. We're gonna come after you and go to your islands. And that's what we did. And we did it well enough. And, and not only did we do it well enough, we did it with a small little Strikeforce team. We didn't have to blow up a scroll planet or even a scroll city. He went in and spoke with the emperor himself, herself, emperor somebody. He, negotiated with somebody over there and they've agreed to not attack us. .

Michael: But Ed, if you bring in like the, world War II and America fighting Japan. Japan attacked America and America responded by. That was an act of war, which led to America actually fighting Japan, which is, yeah, I don't wanna sound too Pollyanna, but limited between those two countries. At least at the start of it, right before the countries actually can volun, can actually declare war on the other nation here effectively. The United States declared war on the scrolls and there

Edward: no declared war on the planet Earth and they and America stepped up and got them to say, No,

Michael: no, but America has to go, has to go through the proper channels. They can't just decide something so significant about going to war with another nation without actually getting the rest of the world on board with it.

Edward: Well, they're not, but they're not going to war with the other nation. The other. The nation declared war, not the nation, the emperor, the empire, the squirrel empire declared war. On earth, on all the countries on earth. Cause they don't care to them. We're all the same. We're all, we're all people, we're all humans. And so the US says Hey, no one else is taking care of this. No one else has the technology to take care of this. But this fantastic four working with nasa, developed the technology to go after the scroll home world. And they went straight there and they negotiated a piece so that the scrolls, wouldn. Anyone on Earth again, it wasn't like they negotiated a piece just with America. They could have done that, but why would that, that would be a terrible thing for them to do. They said, Hey scrolls, go ahead and invade our planet as long as you leave this continent alone.

Michael: How would you have felt if Russia, which does have Superpowered individuals and does have, technology, what, how would you feel that they went to the scroll world and tried to do what the Fantastic four did and it back.

Edward: Well be a, be a problem if we backfired. But it didn't back. If it didn't backfire. If the Russians went over there and negotiated the scrolls, I'd be like, given like a little swastika, high five, no, well, not swastika. What do they have? Would I be doing that hammered hammer sickle? I'd give a little sickle high five. There are enemies, but they, but they helped us. They would, and that's great. Sometimes the Russians and the Americans need to get together. Were on the same side to stop the squirrels from.

Michael: But Ed, but so right now on our earth, we actually have international organizations that are designed to work cooperatively to actually achieve the goals of the group, right? We have the United Nations, which is the entire earth. We have nato, which actually is set up to to deal with the Warsaw Pack group of countries. And so there, it's not like one NATO country could decide to attack Russia without having. , quite frankly, the rest of the nations in NATO objecting to it. There's a system in place and I think the same thing should happen here when it comes to dealing with intergalactic relations.

Edward: Well, maybe there was May.

Michael: I don't understand why there isn't.

Edward: May, maybe there maybe NASA and Fantasic Four talked to the rest of nato. I don't know. We don't know exactly what the channels they went through. I'm pretty sure they did not ch check in with the Soviets before they did it. But I think that's just the world we live in. We live in a in the, in reality, we don't wanna be sharing our subspace travel technology with the Russians for as long as we can anyway.

Michael: But right now, the first question is there a clear and present danger presented by the scrolls to the planet Earth? And you're saying, well, because they've invaded before and they've been repelled. The answer is yes. Okay, fine. Assuming that's correct, then, is it that every country for itself can deal, can figure out how to deal with it and then how do they and I think the answer has to be no, it has to be that there's no,

Edward: you're right, you're right.

Michael: You're in a democratic, the democratic nations that are involved in military alliances that they wouldn't actually consult with us to figure out what the right plan is. I dealt the right plan. If I was in, involved in it would be, we're gonna send these, just these four people. If you're really truly deciding to invade this grow planet. You probably had a lot more than four people, but

Edward: Well, they were trying to invade though, they were trying to create peace. They were, they were creating peace. They're not, they weren't, you're not gonna invade a planet with four people, but maybe traveling through subspace in these spaceships. We probably don't have the technology to send battalions. We don't have the technology to send warships and stuff with us. We have this technology to send four people, and so we sent the four people that we thought could handle it, and they did.

Michael: Well, they didn't consult me and you and I aren't doing interview this. I'm offended on behalf of the rest of the earth, number one. But number two, I would say this, if they consulted with the Avengers, they could have had access to giant man's technology, shrunk them, everybody down, shrunk down, all like the ships and the planes and all the soldiers and stuff, and then gone there instead of letting Reed Richards go off in some kind of, Cowboy Justice Mission to, to grab the scroll that had killed Sue storm's, father, and then incidentally negotiate peace, which is I think, which is what I think happened. I'd rather have had an authorized military action by the world, or at least the majority of the world, it's something that, at at least smacks of democracy or democratic approach to these things because there's the consequences will be felt not just by America, but by the entire world. And then actually start thinking about using the technology that we know exists in a proper military application in a military way.

Edward: I lo I love the idea of giant man shrinking down the US military into ants and sending the whole whole army over there. And hopefully growing them when they get to the other side. Otherwise, Having a bunch of ants fighting that this girls made have been a problem. But, I think it be hard, but the risk with that now is now you're risking a real war. Right? If we go and actually invade their planet with thousands and thousands or hundreds of thousands of soldiers, that risks escalating the war, and instead of escalating, we sent four people who they went in, they had a polite conversation with the emperor explained the miscommunication, explained that we were a people's too, and that we shouldn't be invaded. And if they did invade, we would hit back hard. And they were able to prevent intergalactic war.

Michael: But that's my discomfort. They sent the fantastic floor who clearly had a bone to pick with the scrolls and were looking for a tray. They were trying to get them the person or the, the scroll that had killed, one of their fathers. I don't think that's how typical diplomacy works. It's not like we send over emissaries to like Russia. We don't send like the son or daughter of somebody who's killed by a bunch of Russian spies or soldiers. They might have a bit of too much skin in the game for that. They might not be objective when they're negotiating the peace treaty, I think would, I'd rather send somebody over that ha could be a little more objective and uh, and.

Edward: Yeah, fair enough. Can negotiate properly. Sometimes you go to war with the army. You have not the army that you dream of, right? Like we had the Fantastic four who were able to go and do this. They had the technology to get over there. They had the diplomatic skills to do it. And did they have some conflicts of interest? Sure. . But, but, but, but they, they, they worked around those conflicts of interest and they saw, they saved the day. They saved the planet. They saved potentially the galaxy. They may have saved the universe, and I think we should give them some credit.

Michael: Well. . Okay. Tell you what, let's just, at the risk of making this ad hominem, you sound like a typical business person saying, sure, there's some conflict of interest. is, did we, did we break the law? Did we do something that was totally in our own self-interest? Guilty is charged, and I'm saying as a lawyer, it's a conflict of interest. Hold on a second. That poisons the whole, in that the whole analytical approach, these things. So again, I work for businesses, I work for business people. I think they're all great. I don't wanna hurt my. Business structure, but come on, Eddie .

Super Serious 616 Presents: WHAT IF... Marvel was real
What If Marvel was Real?
What if... the Marvel Universe was real?
In 1961 the Fantastic Four revealed themselves to the world and everything changed. Mike and Ed discuss the in-universe implications of super powers, aliens, monsters and more. From how Avenger Insurance will pay for Thor's property damage to why Spider-man needs a new PR agency, its comic books discussions in a whole new way.
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