The Most Unusual of the First Wave of Marvel Heroes
(review of the Dr. Strange story only)
I was never a big fan of Steve Ditko. I knew he was renowned as the first artist of Spider-Man, but I always thought he was one of the worst Spider-Man artists. I found his renderings of Spider-Man lacking in anatomical detail and his compositions in general to be flat, two-dimensional, uninteresting.
But then I discovered Dr. Strange and realized that this is where Ditko's heart was really at. Take 'The Origin of Dr. Strange' from Strange Tales 115. The panels in this story look like they were done by a completely different artist from the one in the early issues of The Amazing Spider-Man. Using shading in his inks, Steve Ditko not only adds depth to these panels, he even creates a film noir mood lighting in many of them.
Dr. Strange's origin is actually a pretty good tale as it sets up not only an interesting science vs. magic dichotomy (more so than even Thor), and because it doesn't have Dr. Strange actually defeating any villains - merely setting him up for future conflict. And, perhaps most interesting of all, Dr. Strange himself isn't a particularly likeable character and there is no love interest.
If you want to read some early Marvel stories that are about as different as possible from the Fantastic Four, I'd recommend checking out the early appearances of Dr. Strange.