Invisible? Yes. Fantastic, Yes. But a Member of the Tribe...?

By Gabriel Sanders

Published August 19, 2005, issue of August 19, 2005.
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A few weeks ago, the Forward noted with some sadness that the movie version of the “Fantastic Four” had stripped one of its characters — Ben Grimm, aka “The Thing” (Michael Chiklis) — of his Jewish past. Repeated viewings of the film, however, have shown that there may be some glimmer of Jewishness to the movie, after all. In one of the blockbuster’s closing scenes, as the no-nonsense Reed Richards (Ioan Gruffudd) finally manages to do the right thing and propose to longtime love interest Sue Storm, aka “The Invisible Woman” (Jessica Alba), astute viewers have noticed a Star of David pendant around the sultry actress’s neck. The implications are almost too much to bear: If Sue Storm is Jewish, then brother Johnny Storm, aka “The Human Torch” (Chris Evans), likely would be so, as well.

Alas, that scenario seems to have been too good to be true. David Gorder, an associate producer on the film who has seen the necklace, said that it was more of a “diamond star cluster” than a Star of David. “Sue Storm is not Jewish in the comics,” Gorder wrote in an e-mail to the Shmooze, “and therefore would not wear a Star of David on screen. The filmmakers usually steer clear of using religious symbols on comic book characters, especially if it is not a part of the character’s look.”

But there is still hope. Gorder has offered to pull the necklace from storage and examine it more closely. Stay tuned to the Shmooze, your number-one source for comic book-related Jewish cinema news.

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