"Nothing happens without a reason, Reed. You taught me that. Well the reason we survived that crash and got these powers is clear to me, and I'm going to act on it."Susan Storm is a former researcher and current member of the superhero team the Fantastic Four. She is also the girlfriend and fiance of the team's leader, Reed Richards, as well as the older sister of the Human Torch. Born to a military doctor named Franklin Storm, Susan was an Army brat, moving from state to state semi-regularly and never really settling down in any one location for very long. Despite this, Susan proved to be a socially well-adjusted child, and showed a natural compassion for people and animals, probably inherited from her father's study of medicine. She also developed a natural scientific curiosity of the world around her. When she was just shy of 11 years old, her younger brother Johnny was born, and the two did form a strong sibling bond.
She eventually graduated from Empire State University with a degree in Physics, attending the school for a Masters degree in the same. It was here that she first met Reed Richards, someone who despite being the same age as her, had already amassed a couple of college degrees and was hailed as a child prodigy. There was an instant attraction between Reed and Sue, but Reed's meticulous nature made romance a somewhat difficult affair. Sue also became friends with Reed's lab partner and roommate, Victor von Doom. She assisted the two on their project concerning interdimensional and interstellar travel, and was present at the accident that seemingly cost Victor his life. Despite this loss, Sue remained close to Reed, and eventually became his research assistant, with the two striking up an on-again, off-again romance for over a decade (with Sue occasionally joking with Reed about inventing something useful like a flying car.)
Eventually Reed had come up with a mission plan for studying the interactions of cosmic particles in the Van Allen belts surrounding the Earth in a spacecraft of his own design. While he initially got funding for the mission from the government, a Presidential election and a new Congress threatened the mission with budget cuts to NASA. In desperation, Reed decided to conduct the mission himself, with Sue joining him on the crew. Also filling out the crew would be Sue's younger brother Johnny, who was interning for them at the time, and Reed's childhood friend Ben Grimm, who would act as the mission's pilot. While the launch and initial stages of the mission went off without a hitch, a chain of events eventually threw the ship off course and forced the crew to be exposed to exotic particles and cosmic radiation. The ship eventually crash landed back in Florida, with the four being retrieved from the Everglades by the US Air Force. Upon reaching New York, Sue discovered that she, along with her friends, had been mutated by the cosmic radiation. She had gained the power to turn herself invisible (and as she later learned, also to project force fields around people.)
Before the four could come to grips with their new powers (Ben especially, having transformed into the rock-skinned Thing), a hostage crisis in a bank shut down the airport. Wanting to save lives, Reed Sue and Johnny took on the criminals and apprehended them. The media instantly turned the three into celebrities, calling them the Terrific Three. The group returned to Reed's home in the Baxter Building, attempting to figure out what had happened to them. However they quickly leaped back into action, with the three taking on three Inhumans (Medusa, Gorgon and Crystal) who were attempting to rob a bank. Their powers countered by those of the Inhumans, the three were in trouble until Ben came to their rescue, resulting in Crystal's capture and saving the day once again. Sue however was uncomfortable with their newfound celebrity, and shared Ben's desire, at least at first, to figure out what was wrong with them and see if it could be reversed.
Some time later (after learning of Crystal's sudden escape from jail), the four were approached by two other Inhumans, Black Bolt and Maximus. Through his brother, Black Bolt informs the four not to interfere in the matters of the royal family of the Inhumans again, knocking Ben down with a single blow for good measure. Despite this warning, the four travel to Central Park to stop the three Inhumans from accosting civilians, only for Thing to suddenly have his mind taken over and begin attacking the other members of the team, Sue barely able to build a forcefield strong enough to stop Ben's assault on Reed. With Black Bolt and Maximus' arrival again, the other Inhumans depart, leaving the four blamed for the damage to the park and officially placed under quarantine at the Baxter Building. Eventually though the team is informed of what is going on by the Inhuman Crystal, who informs them that Maximus is working with a man called the Puppet Master on a plan to ultimately usurp control of Attilan from Black Bolt and declare war on Earth. The team escape their jailers, utilizing the flying car that Reed reveals to Sue, and despite the attempt at mind controlling the Thing yet again, the team manage to defeat Maximus and the Puppet Master, standing tall together as a family and as celebrity heroes, the Fantastic Four.
Despite Susan and Reed's relationship being "on-again", Reed kept Sue and the rest of the team in the dark on his plans concerning the final protocols for Bruce Banner, put in place through consultation with Tony Stark, Dr. Strange and others. The Fantastic Four would continue to improve their arsenal during this time, renovating the Baxter Building to become Four Freedoms Plaza and eventually agreeing to sign the Avengers Protocol, placing them directly under the pervue of SHIELD, specifically in accordance with SHIELD agent Maria Hill. Shortly after receiving the go-ahead to take out the "super-villain" Mole Man, the Fantastic Four were next assigned to travel to Sokovia, cleaning up their with humanitarian work following the Ultron Incident. There Susan and the team were invited to neighboring Latveria to meet with the reclusive dictator of the country, known only as Doom. Eventually it became clear that Doom was in reality Victor von Doom, who had somehow survived the explosion in graduate school and had taken over his native country. Despite Victor's smooth talk towards Susan, the Four agreed to stay the night in his castle and take a tour of the country the following morning. However overnight, Susan, Johnny and Reed were kidnapped and replaced with Life Model Decoys.
Eventually Susan and the rest of the team were rescued from their captivity by SHIELD agent Maria Hill, who had accompanied the group on their initial trip to Castle Doom. Once they confronted Doom in his lab, they discovered that the despot had seemingly done the impossible, curing Ben Grimm of his transformation as the Thing. Ben tried to defend Doom due to his actions for him, causing the rest of the team to try and leave in disgust. However, they were again captured, with Susan being placed in a prison where she constantly had to project forcefields to protect herself from being crushed by pneumatic presses. Eventually she was set free by Hill and Johnny, and the group went after Doom, who intended to use the cosmic radiation taken from Ben's body to give himself god-like powers. After Ben transformed back into the Thing, the four were able to united and defeat Doom, forcing him to launch himself into orbit to evade capture. The four were once again unified together as a team, with Reed proposing marriage to Susan shortly thereafter.
However, these relationships would again be strained by Reed's actions, as revealed in World War Hulk. Setting aside Reed's actions for the moment, Susan tried to take out the Warbound Clan with the rest of the Fantastic Four, only to be captured by the Warbound and imprisoned on their ship. The four were eventually freed by Nick Fury, She-Hulk and Iron Man, taking on the Hulk directly, and eventually defeating Bruce Banner after a hard fought battle. In the aftermath, the relationship between Sue and Reed appears to be in tact, but strained.
Powers & Abilities
- Invisibility: As her namesake would suggest, Sue's primary power is to bend light around her or others to render objects invisible to human sight. The full extent of this invisibility extends into the Infrared spectrum, as she has been shown to be able to hide a person's thermal signature from heat-scanning equipment. She can use this ability at will and can extend it to others around her.
- Forcefield Projection: By a similar token, Sue can bend light into a semi-solid barrier to block incoming projectiles or energy blasts. These force fields are incredibly strong, and have been shown to withstand full force blows from The Hulk (though while causing great strain on Sue in the process). Like her invisibility, these force fields can be projected to encompass her and several other individuals at once.
Sue is naturally reluctant to fight, and focuses more on protecting herself and others than she does trying to engage opponents in combat (though she certainly should not be underestimated). Also forces that collide with her forcefields seem to transfer some of the impact to her, as heavy blows against them will cause her to feel greater strain in maintaining them. While her forcefields have yet to be completely shattered, they have caused such great strain to her that she has collapsed temporarily from the impact.
Sue Storm appears in the following films in the Earth-11584 continuity. In all cases she is portrayed by actress Katheryn Winnick.
- The Fantastic Four (2014)
- Captain America: Civil War (2016)
- Fantastic Four: Doomsday (2016)
- World War Hulk (2017)