Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Franklin Richards is a fictional character in Marvel Comics' universe. Born in Fantastic Four Annual #6 (1968), Franklin is the young son of Mister Fantastic and the Invisible Woman of the Fantastic Four and the older brother of Valeria Richards. He is a mutant with such vast reality-manipulating powers that, for most of the 1990s, he was, along with Nate Grey, considered to be one of the two most powerful mutants ever born.
Franklin (named for his mother's father) was born a mutant, thanks to his parents' radiation-altered genes. He possessed reality manipulation powers on a level only limited by his imagination, though his powers were limited by his only being a child and thus having limited control over his powers. He was briefly affiliated with the child superhero team Power Pack, where he used the codename Tattletale.
In Fantastic Four #376 (May 1993), he was kidnapped by his time-traveling grandfather Nathaniel Richards , and replaced with his adult counterpart, Psi-Lord, who had been raised by Nathaniel in a dimension outside of time.
It was then revealed that in a possible future timeline, Franklin Richards would, with Rachel Summers, father a terrible time- and dimension-traveling supervillain named Hyperstorm . In Fantastic Four #413 (June 1996), Hyperstorm kidnapped Psi-Lord and replaced him with his child self.
This occurred immediately before the Onslaught Saga, in which Franklin's parents seemingly died. It was at this time that Franklin displayed his true power, single-handedly creating the "Heroes Reborn" pocket universe to contain the heroes who had "died" in that adventure. While his parents were away in the Heroes Reborn universe, Franklin lived with the teenage mutants called Generation X.
The Celestials recognized that Franklin represented the culmination of their genetic experiments, that he had power to rival even theirs. Franklin, with the assistance of Ashema, one of the Celestials, returned the "reborn" heroes to their home world and was reunited with his family.
Franklin's exact age is a point of dispute among fandom. Although the issue in which he was born was published in 1968, the character is plainly no older than ten years old even in currently published stories, and some stories suggets that he is much younger. The concept of "Marvel Time" places all Marvel Universe stories on a sliding time scale, so that the origins of characters like the Fantastic Four occurred a perpetual "ten years ago" (although the exact number of years varies in the telling). Franklin's reality manipulation powers are often used in theories among fandom to explain this phenomenon, as well as explaining away the inconsistencies in writers and artists in portraying Franklin's age.
In Fantastic Four Annual 1998, it was revealed that Franklin's middle name is Benjamin, making his full name Franklin Benjamin Richards. His middle name comes from Benjamin Grimm, the Thing. Franklin shares the same middle name as Peter Benjamin Parker, Spider-Man.
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