MBTI: The Fantastic Four

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Everybody’s favorite family in comics make up the perfect example of the four temperaments in a way that’s so well established, it’s not a wonder they’ve been around as long as they have.

I’m not a huge fan but the way this comes together is too good a chance to resist. These are the comic characters, by the way. Not those awful movies. Though I’m not sure how much changed in the translation, I just know that the movies sucked.

Although this one is funny-

Anyway…

Invisible Woman- Idealist: ENFJ

invisible

The stitching that holds the family together, her ability to become invisible and create barriers in any shape she ‘sees’ fit (get it?) is simultaneously her defense and offense. Sue Storm Richards is the only thing that keeps Ben Grimm from killing her brother in many cases. ESFJ was my initial thought but her way of understanding her husband’s need to disappear for days at a time while also knowing when to bring him back down to earth seems more ENFJ.

ESFJ may have left Reed a long time ago for someone who would at least make an attempt to reach out while ENFJ follows Richards to the Negative Zone to say “WE’RE HAVING DINNER AS A FAMILY!” ESFJ would say what they want while ENFJ says why they want it.

While creativity is not strictly an “N” trait, the various ways her invisible barriers have been put to use are examples of someone whose mind isn’t necessarily focused on only the concrete. Heck, it can’t be if she’s even going to use her ability.

Instant art!

Instant art!

Her tendency to stray from home and allow (more or less) for Namor to flirt with her may have her come across as a more promiscuous type but regardless of how many times Namor has put the moves on her, she always goes back to ol’ Stretcho, knowing where home is. This follows suit with ENFJs being thought of as the “perfect spouse.” Caring and protective, yet deep and adventurous.

Ahh...marriage!

Ahh…marriage!

But at the same time, Sue takes her role as a parent very seriously, as ENFJs are said to do. They take care of what their kid’s need on a day-to-day basis while also placing emphasis on values and morals they believe to be righteous as well. And it’s a good thing Sue does it because Reed would’ve probably forgotten about the kids and left them to starve had he been a single parent.

The Human Torch- Artisan: ESFP

flame

There’s really nothing else for Johnny Storm to be. You could enter the “hot-head” pun anywhere in his description. ESTP seems the next choice but he’s not nearly as composed as the ESTP asserts themselves.

Johnny goes anywhere, does whatever he wants, gets the girl (for a night), and is off, flaming-on to whatever catches his interest next. In fact, The Human Torch may be the best example of ESFP in comics, as most ESFPs in fiction don’t normally take the lead role due to their aversion to the finer things in life which don’t usually create a protagonist, but the comedic sidekick.

"I'm on fire! Someone take me seriously!"

“I’m on fire! Someone take me seriously!”

Johnny Storm doesn’t really take much seriously and he really doesn’t have to- he’s part of a billionaire family. He’s not the stereotypical lazy rich kid as much he has the “the world is mine!” stance. He gets serious occasionally, but that’s “occasionally” over a fifty-year time span. When his family is threatened he tends to sober up of course and with a power like his, everybody feels the wrath.

This is exemplified in reality by the way ESFPs have a way of seething whatever emotion it is their feeling outward to everyone around them. They don’t need to say anything- you can just sense it and it rubs off on you like dirt.

...Except Iceman.

Except Iceman. He’s too…cool.

Storm’s Extraverted Sensing is obvious in his act-before-thinking approach to everything. If he wants to have fun, he goes all out. If he wants people to know he’s mad, he doesn’t hesitate to raise his voice. This function is something I don’t possess myself so to understand it, I just imagine acting on something as soon as it’s popped in my mind.

Ever had a random, strangely violent thought of just slapping your friend as they’re talking or something much worse? When I think of what would happen if I actually did it, the idea of going through with it is my way to get an idea of Se. Consequences Shmonsequences! They’re something to deal with later.

Mr. Fantastic- Rational: INTP

You could never win against him in basketball.

You could never win against him in basketball. Or Slaps.

It’s only fitting that an INTP would get the bizarre power of being able to bend and stretch any part of their body at will. Strange and cool at the same time, but would you want that power? The life of an INTP. Notice that Reed Richards isn’t the leader of a superhero type per se, but a family of intergalactic explorers that get caught up in a bigger, violent picture than they mean to. An INTP may not want to be governing at work but leading his family through chaos in another dimension? Sure.

Richard’s way of creating the most brilliant inventions mankind has ever seen (heck, their own outfits are insane) yet having a hard time remembering he has to take care of his family due to his over-involvement in whatever he’s studying at the time is something of an INTP trademark. “I just created a vaccine that will permanently cure cancer!…but my wife is leaving me because I’ve been neglecting her for the last six years….”

"There may be enough to go around but YOU CAN'T HAVE IT!"

“There may be enough to go around but YOU CAN’T HAVE IT!”

Such is the curse of the INTP! His way of thinking often leaves family members in the dust as well, as he goes out of his way to explain things the others know nothing about, in terms they can’t understand.

Reed’s way of living also seems to be an INTP dream. His money simply comes from his inventions; his success a byproduct of his ideas rather than being born into it or having a “get rich quick” scheme. Richard’s place in the Marvel Universe seems similar to the INTP’s place in our universe- A walking punchline of nerdiness but with a mind the world couldn’t do without.

Reed is also my first taste of “real” genius. It’s not necessarily so realistic that he’s a master of just about every science but that his love of all things scientific leaves his brain little room to remember things like picking up his son from school. It wasn’t a “cool” weakness like how Batman is too mysterious but he genuinely annoys his family with his absent mindedness.

mrfantastic

The Thing- Guardian: ESFJ

the thing

The Muscle of the team, Ben Grimm is also the Heart. Possibly the mascot of the team and one of the strongest character’s in the Marvel Universe, Grimm’s attitude and mindset reflect the male ESFJ mindset in spades.

The nicest guy you can think of, who isn’t trying to sell you something and doesn’t have an insincere bone in their body? Probably an ESFJ. The soldier that comes home from base camp looking like a marine but still acting as goofy and nice as he did in high school? ESFJ! Grimm is a great example too, as he does bounce back and forth between cooking dinner for the family and his favorite time-

thingvr

Would the ESFP Johnny Storm mess with The Thing if Ben were an INTJ? Nah. Or even an ESTJ, whose tempers are maybe the worst of all 16 types? They might not be such a great family if Ben decided to squeeze Johnny’s head until it popped under his giant hand (imagine that for a second. Just take a moment).

If Ben weren’t an ESFJ, I’m not sure he would have been as forgiving for all the crap Reed has put him through, aside from turning him into his monstrous self in the first place. But as horrifying a name and appearance as he has, Ben still retains his gruff likability.

Grimm’s dynamic with each individual team member creates a unique pairing that usually just isn’t as fun between the others. Sort of a Wolverine or Venom effect; as soon as you pair those guys with just about anybody, it’s a cool match up.

He made team-ups with girls cool when I was 8 and girls were NOT COOL.

He made team-ups with girls cool when I was 8 and girls were NOT COOL.

In fact, while Bruce Banner at one point admitted that if The Thing were to ever really let loose, he’d be one of the only people to nearly match The Hulk in strength. Yet Reed and Sue have no problem with Ben looking after the kids.

And whenever the idea of a Thing/Wolverine grudge match is brought up, people usually go with Wolverine. Why? Two reasons. Number one- people are biased and Wolverine is the Marvel Golden Child these days.

gay wolverine

wolverine-gay

MM.

MM.

And reason number two is that The Thing doesn’t let himself go all out on an enemy because he knows what he could do if he lost control. He’s not the 5’3 scrapper/murderer Wolverine is, he’s a family man that does what he does because he has to, not because he likes it. Messing with an ESFJ is only fun for so long because they’re such nice people your guilt won’t allow you to go as far as you thought you would.

Except those big, fat controlling ESFJ moms. So annoying, man. I just wanna…push them down a big hill or something…

It’s like, “Hey, lady- I’m not YOUR kid! Leave me alone!”

Y’know? Gah…

"YES, I will have your daughter home by 8:30, now PLEASE leave us alone!"

“Stop following us! I swear I’ll have her home by 8:30!”

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