Johnny Storm is the younger brother of Susan Storm a.k.a. The Invisible Woman and is also one of the founding members of The Fantastic Four. He is known as a fiery hot-head and can burst into flames whenever he chooses. He is the youngest member of his team was only 16 when he acquired his powers. Although he has gained a reputation of being a charismatic adventurer, his character has a lot more history and depth. So here are some facts about the Human Torch that everyone needs to know.
Johnny Storm, a.k.a. The Human Torch was created by writer Stan Lee and artist Jack Kirby. He debuted in 1961 in the Marvel comics The Fantastic Four #1.
Johnny Storm always looked at his older sister, Susan Storm, as a parent figure ever since their mother passed away in a car accident and their father went to prison after choosing alcohol over his children. When Susan decided to go on a space adventure with her boyfriend, Reed Richards, Johnny begged to go along his sister. Their spaceship crashed and they were bombarded with cosmic rays which gave Johnny the powers to convert his body to a superheated plasma state and summon fire to his liking.
Android Human Torch
The title of Human Torch is associated with Johnny Storm but only a few people know that Johnny Storm is a reinvention of an older version of The Human Torch. This version was called the Android Human Torch and was created by writer/artist Carl Burgos in 1939.
He was created accidentally by Professor Phineas Horton while he was experimenting with a realistic human android. His android burst into flames but much to his surprise, did not burn his own body. The android gradually learned to control his powers and started using them to fight injustices. He later joined the NYPD by the name of Jim Hammond and was indistinguishable from human beings. He was as vulnerable as humans and could even be drugged or rendered unconscious by gas.
As his name implies, he is literally a human torch and can burst into flames according to his liking. His body can convert itself into superheated plasma at extreme temperatures. He has gained a lot more control over his powers and can make objects out of fires, like ropes and fireballs.
When his body is converted into flames, he is no more in the solid-state and becomes lighter than air. This makes him able to fly by combustion at the speed of 50 miles per hour.
He is even able to use this heat to deliberately burn toxins out of his body, which has saved him more than once after being poisoned.
Johnny Storm is commonly known by his famous name, The Human Torch; but he has a list of additional nicknames as well, including The Matchstick, Blaze, Hot-head and The Firebug.
He is hot-headed
In contrast to his sister, Johnny is known to be impulsive and impetuous in making decisions. He has left The Fantastic Four team multiple times after having a whimsical argument with one of his team members but he always returns after his head cools down.
Apart from being hot-headed, he is also a brave and resourceful member of The Fantastic Four and always has their back. Due to his impeccable powers, he has saved his team single-handedly on multiple occasions.
In the beginning, Johnny could not control his flames and often ended up burning things around him. As he gained control over his power, he has learned that he can use his fire to generate a big burst of flames killing entire armies in their wake. This burst is known to be equivalent to an exploding sun and is rumored to be around 1 million degrees Fahrenheit. With this huge blast, he can release more energy than a nuclear bomb.
Johnny Storm has had many love interests due to his charismatic personality. Two of these love interests changed into serious relationships and lasted much longer than others.
Frankie Raye had pyrophobia (the fear of fire) which was implanted in her mind by her late step-father Phineas Horton, who was the creator of the android human torch. He did this to make her ignorant of her powers which were quite similar to Johnny’s. After learning about her powers, Johnny taught her to control them and they grew close to each other. Johnny was left devastated when she left Earth after becoming the new Herald of the planet-devouring Galactus.
Alicia Masters was one of Ben’s ex-girlfriends. Johnny married Alicia after they fell in love but it was later revealed that Alicia was actually Lyja the Lazerfist, an undercover Skrull operative sent to destroy The Fantastic Four. However, she betrayed her Skrull masters after actually falling in love with Johnny.
Herald of Galactus
Galactus, the devourer of Worlds, was one of the biggest threats to The Fantastic Four. When it was dreaded that The Invisible Woman may be attacked by aliens who were afraid that Galactus would use her, Reed switched her powers with Johnny to save her life and for a brief while, Johnny went by the name of Invisible Boy. Johnny was abducted by Galactus and became his new herald. He later betrayed Galactus and with the help of Quasar and Reed, took away his powers.
Death by Annihulus
During a time when Susan and Reed were busy elsewhere, an army of insectoid soldiers was unleashed onto the Earth by a portal opened by Annihulus from the Negative Zone. When Ben and Johnny found out that the portal could only be closed from the inside, Ben volunteered to go inside but Johnny pushed him away at the last instant and was trapped in the N-zone. He executed his iconic Nova blast to kill a large number of insectoid soldiers but Annihulus survived and tortured Johnny to open the portal again. Johnny refused and was killed and resurrected by Annihulus three times. Eventually, Johnny managed to escape the N-zone and return to Earth.
Almost became Ghost rider
Ghost rider, the demon Zarathos, is known to choose a host of his liking to ride the flaming bike covered in hellfire and give the death stare to the people who deserve it. Over the years, many hosts have taken up the title of the Ghost rider but only a few know that Zarathos once almost made Johnny his new host. Johnny barely escaped this with the help of archaeologist Max Parrish.
This Human torch information is sometimes forgotten by even the best of Marvel fans. Hope this helped refresh the history behind one of the most fan-favorite characters in the Marvel universe.