ss01.gif (99950 bytes)Silver Surfer #1, Vol. 1
Published by Marvel Comics

August, 1968

"The Origin of the Silver Surfer"

Writer: Stan Lee
Penciling: John Buscema
Inks: Joe Sinnott
Letters: Sam Rosen

Original Price: $0.25
Current Value: $450.00

History Behind Issue: The Silver Surfer, who first appeared less than two years later, was hot among readers. After several guest appearances in a variety of titles, it as time for him to get his own title. Marvel chose to make the Silver Surfer's new title twice as large as their regular issues, thus making the cost twice as much. One of the turn-offs readers had against the title.

Plot: The Silver Surfer is trapped on a world which he cannot understand, and a world which does not understand him. Because he betrayed his master, Galactus, the Silver Surfer is imprisoned on Earth by a barrier set by Galactus, keeping the Surfer within Earth’s atmosphere. As a spacecraft falls from the sky into the sea, the Silver Surfer soars down to rescue the astronaut. But when he saves the astronaut, the government say he is responsible for the spacecraft’s destruction and attacks him with aircrafts. The Surfer is fast enough to escape the jets attacking him, without having to destroy them. He wishes the Earth was more peaceful like Zenn-La. He recalls his last days on Zenn-La. The people of Zenn-La had learned everything they could. No longer was there war on Zenn-La. No longer was there crime, war, or illness. But with all of the knowledge they found, they became lazy. No longer did they seek more knowledge or learn new things. And no longer did they have a purpose. A young man named Norrin Radd did, however. He visited the Museum of Antiquity to witness the past of his home planet. Using the Mental Transportation Element, he viewed the past of Zenn-La from the dawn of time. He witnessed the ten thousand centuries of warfare and then the hundred centuries which followed of knowledge and learning. It is there that he viewed the space exploration age of the past. Norrin was fascinated with space exploration and wished, he too could explore the vastness of space. As the Silver Surfer recalls these events, he soars over the Antarctic region. There he is attacked by Yetis, savage snow dwelling monsters known to man as the legendary Abominable Snowmen. The Silver Surfer escapes, not wanting to harm the creatures, for they do what they do only because they distrust man, not understanding them. The Silver Surfer sees that the humans, too, are like the Yeti. They distrust that which they do not understand. And the Surfer, trapped on Earth, has no place to call home for wherever he goes, he is feared. The Silver Surfer remembers his recent encounters with the Hulk and Dr. Doom. Everyone who he helps, betrays him; he cannot trust any man on the face of the Earth. The Surfer then remembers his final day with his truelove Shalla-Bal, when Galactus came. Zenn-La was powerless. They forgot how to fight, they tried to use their ultimate weapon, but it would not harm Galactus. They had lost hope. But one man, Norrin Radd, volunteered to defend his planet. Norrin Radd had a spacecraft quickly constructed with the mental constructor He traveled to the enemy’s ship. There he found Galactus, Devourer of Worlds, whose name is heard throughout the cosmos. Norrin pled for Galactus to spare his planet for it had human life on it. But Galactus, though not wanting to destroy human lives, had no choice. He must drain the energy of Zenn-La in order to survive. Maybe, if he had a herald, he could spare the planet. Norrin Radd offered to be his herald, thus he was transformed into the Silver Surfer! With the Power Cosmic he would find new worlds for Galactus to feast on. Then, the Silver Surfer remembered that day when he found Earth and he betrayed Galactus, so humanity could survive. That same humanity now hates and fears the Silver Surfer

Comments: Stan Lee does an excellent job, as always, of writing the Silver Surfer. John Buscema also does a great job, as one of the best Silver Surfer pencilers ever. It’s hard to say what could be added to a comic book classic, but if I could add one thing, it would be for more interactions with other characters of Zenn-La.

Buy it at Amazon.Com! Buy the The Essential Silver Surfer, reprinting Silver Surfer Vol. 1 #1-18 for only $10.39 (you save 31%!)  Written by Stan Lee!  Art by John Buscema and Jack Kirby!  Featuring 528 pages of comic continuity, including stories of the Origin of the Silver Surfer, the Silver Surfer vs. Mephisto, the Silver Surfer vs. Thor, and appearances by Spider-Man and more! For more information, check out other reviews of comics reprinted in this tradepaperback.
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Written by James Pedrick


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