This is a 241 special…FF and Evil Villain.
Ed Brubaker does a solid job giving us an origin story of our favourite Latverian megalomaniac. The art is decent, and definitely focuses on Victor and his transformation to Doctor (funny enough, he never actually earned that degree, because he was booted after the experiment which left his face (and psyche) scarred).
Victor encounters a lot of tragedy in his early years, his mother dabbled in the dark arts, and it cost her her life and soul; his father died saving Victor while they were on the run from the evil Baron in Latveria.
Then, he ends up in the US, at the same school as Reed Richards and Ben Grimm, and also works as a weapon/tech guy for the military. Funny enough, he thinks Reed sabotaged his work, much like Reed thinks Victor sabotaged his own work in Ulitmate FF. That being said, FF doesn’t feature in this at all.
There’s Doom’s love for his mother, and his obsession with saving her from Hell, but the only other thing approaching love is for Valeria, another girl who grew up with him. Even that ends up in heartbreak…and makes me wonder why Reed and Sue’s daughter shares her name with Doom’s only love….? (If anyone knows, clue me in!)
So there’s the inevitable building of the suit to keep himself safe from the power of the Devil’s touch (which is what scarred his face apparently) and the robots, and so forth…there’s more about his conquering people, working tirelessly, and learning to master all.
Eventually we get to how he takes Latveria and becomes ruler, and there’s a twist at the end, as the narration has all been to a reporter who wants to profile him, but the revelation leaves us to wonder…was that the real story? Or just another decoy?
It was solid, 3.5, but I just didn’t connect with it enough to rank it higher than that, and the art didn’t blow me away…but the writing was good, though you can see how Brubaker has grown since nearly 10 yrs ago on this…