THE FANTASTIC FOUR
Like pieces of a puzzle, they just seem to fit. Their interconnectedness and symmetry worked even before they got shot into space and became avatars of the four elements. Two lovers, two old pals, two siblings, two opposites destined to be great friends. Then, zam! Crazy super-powers happen, making them completely unique, with hurdles and dramas no outsider could possibly understand.. like any other family.
Lee and Kirby hit it on the head. Like a family, a whole community could develop around them. The pieces just fell into place as Marvel grew. All the lady super heroes could look to Sue for advice. Similarly, all the brainy heroes turned to Reed. Ben could drink beer and play poker with all the tough guys. Johnny could hot-shot around and connect with the young heroes. The whole social network of the Marvel Universe is basically mapped on a flow-chart to the FF’s door.
So, yes, there have been a couple changes in the cast of the FF over the years, but a family should be able to grow and shrink without losing its function. Through all the cosmic twists and turns, the FF still fulfills its fundamental purpose: to be the Marvel Universe’s elemental building block.