Silver Surfer

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My destiny still lies before me! And where it beckons — there shall soar the Silver Surfer!

The Silver Surfer is a fictional Marvel Comics superhero created by Jack Kirby. He first appeared in the comic book Fantastic Four #48 (March 1966). Originally an astronomer of Zenn-La named Norrin Radd, to save his homeworld from destruction he agreed to become the herald of Galactus, a being older than our universe who regularly feeds on the life-force of planets. He was then endowed with a small portion of the Power Cosmic by which he constantly draws energy from the Universe around him. Traveling at nearly limitless speeds upon a silvery board controlled by his thought, he sought out worlds suitable for Galactus to consume, until he was inspired to rebel against him to save the Earth.



Silver Surfer Volume 1


The Origin of the Silver Surfer!

Silver Surfer # 1 (August 1968), written by Stan Lee, drawn by John Buscema
  • In every part of the globe it is the same! Hatred, fear and unreasoning hostility have possessed men's hearts! But the Silver Surfer will have no part of it!
    • In exile on the Earth, p. 5
  • Those to whom no distant horizons beckon ... for whom no challenges remain ... though they have inherited a Universe ... they possess only empty sand!
    • As Norrin Radd, p. 7
  • My people have lost the spirit of high adventure ... the thrill of exploration ... the longing to see beyond the veil of knowledge!
    • As Norrin Radd, p. 8
  • Let my board and me again become as one! For I must leave this place of madness!
    • p. 12
  • Now, I ride the Eternal winds once more! And none shall ever be my master!
    • p. 16
  • Rather let me fail ... than never to have tried at all!
    • As Norrin Radd, on facing the menace to his home-world Zenn-La, p. 27
  • My fate is of little consequence ... if it can save the world that gave me birth! Mighty Galactus ... do but spare Zenn-La ... and I am yours.. to command!
    • Making a deal with Galactus, to spare Zenn-La, p. 31
  • Where soars the Silver Surfer.... There he must soar ... alone!
  • Time is long and fate is fickle ... My destiny still lies before me! And where it beckons — there shall soar the Silver Surfer!
    • p. 38

When Lands the Saucer!

Silver Surfer # 2, (October 1968) written by Stan Lee
  • Why... Why must I ever behold the loveliness of Shalla-Bal in every female face I see? Will I never be free of her haunting memory... of her deathless love?

The Power and The Prize!

Silver Surfer # 3, (December 1968) written by Stan Lee
  • Again you substitute force for understanding! Again you would destroy that which you cannot comprehend! ... From cradle to grave — your lives are rooted in senseless violence! Since power is your god — I'll show you power — such as you have never known!
    • p. 3
  • If die I must — let it be as I have lived — soaring swift and silent — striving for the right — no matter what the cost!
    • p. 34

The Good, The Bad, and The Uncanny!

Silver Surfer # 4, (February 1969) written by Stan Lee
  • Unlike the humans, who call you beast, there is no violence in your heart. No hint of avarice, no smoldering hate! Yet man, who has won dominion over all this world, is a stranger to peace — a prisoner, caught in the web of his own nameless fears.

Silver Surfer Volume 2

This was only a 1 issue run.
  • Even in failure there can be Nobility! But failing to try brings only shame!
    • p. 2
  • Others may battle with victory in sight — but the Surfer still strives when all hope is gone!
    • In attempting to save the Earth by battling Galactus, p. 8
  • To me my board! The time has come to test Galactus anew! To see if his barrier still holds! And if it does, to try again, and again, and again — until I am free!
    • p. 9
  • Wheels within wheels! I've been tricked, duped, manipulated! And the real enemy was never Galactus or Dr. Doom — it was — Mephisto, Lord of Evil!
    • p. 30
  • You, who once called the Surfer "fool" — did you think mere cackling demons could overcome the Power Cosmic? Though I am less than fallen god, still I am more than mortal!
    • p. 41
  • Laugh, Mephisto! Gloat while you may! The evil is yours — but the triumph is mine!
    • p. 46
  • Though the one I treasure most of all is forever denied me — though sentenced to endure earthly confinement as a bird endure its cage — still my heart is light. For I have been true to my destiny! I have bested a demon and brought new life to a world! I know not what tomorrow may bring — but today — the Surfer soars!
    • p 48

Silver Surfer Volume 3

  • You'll find my power comes from within.... and is a force to be reckoned with.
  • Obviously my best strategy is to wait, listen, and learn.
    • Contemplating how to deal with Thanos, in Issue # 35 "The Name is Thanos", written by Jim Starlin
  • Completely mad. But perhaps he did have a point. Sure, at the top of his head. Was that a joke?
    • Speaking to himself, after dealing with the Impossible Man in Issue # 36 " The Lesson"
  • Thanos is like no foe I have ever faced. Perhaps he operates on unheard of spectro levels. There it is!! Amazing. The technologies involved at operating at this level would tax even Galactus's scientific abilities. Yet Thanos roams here freely.
    • #37 "A Destructive Encounter"
  • All over the Universe! I can feel them! They're all dying! Billions upon billions of souls are blinking out of existence! ... Not one knew what struck them! Horrible! I could taste their dread and confusion!

The Origin of the Silver Surfer


Written by Larry Brody (February 7, 14 and 21)

Pity? Sorrow? You dare! What kind of monster are you to... to claim sorrow but refuse to help those in need? You have already broken your vow. Now you, who have witnessed the depredations of Galactus for eons, must tell us more! You WILL tell us more!
Norrin Radd: Watcher! If this world means so much to you, show yourself! I know you are there!
Watcher Prime: I feel great pity and sorrow for you all.
Norrin Radd: Pity? Sorrow? You dare! What kind of monster are you to... to claim sorrow but refuse to help those in need? You have already broken your vow. Now you, who have witnessed the depredations of Galactus for eons, must tell us more! You WILL tell us more!
Watcher Prime: For what purpose? Galactus cannot be swayed.
Norrin Radd: You must know something that can save our world. Tell me his secret. NOW!

Norrin Radd: Galactus. I am Norrin Radd of the planet, Zenn-La. I'm not here to beg nor ask for your mercy. Instead, I've come to give you an offer. I can help you! I can give you the one thing that even the great Galactus needs!
[Galactus chuckles]
Norrin Radd: Galactus, are you listening to me?
Galactus: Your presumptiousness amuses me, Norrin Radd of Zenn-La. How could one such as you help one such as I? I, who needs nothing, who desires nothing!
Norrin Radd: Great Galactus, do you not desire to survive?
Galactus: [Chuckles] The tiny mite grows even bolder. Tell me, what is it Galactus needs to survive?
Norrin Radd: Planets. An endless supply of planets to consume. Your constant search depletes you. And that date is coming when you will not find your next meal in time. It need not be so. Spare Zenn-La and I will serve you as a net serves a fisherman. Cast me out into the sea of space, and I will find the worlds you need!
Galactus: I am Galactus! My power is limitless! In all the universe, there is nothing I cannot do. Hmmm...yet, I grow so weary of the endless search.

Shalla-Bal: You have saved us, Norrin Radd. But the price...
Norrin Radd: It must be paid. And only I, of all those people on this world, can pay it.
Shalla-Bal: But how can anyone of Zenn-La serve Galactus? It is against all we stand for.
Norrin Radd: I know what we stand for.
Shalla-Bal: Then how can you help him destroy thousands of worlds?
Norrin Radd: You do not understand. I will guide him only to planets whose cores burst with energy yet which have no intelligent life. I will save countless civilizations. This is the true philosophy of Zenn-La.
Shalla-Bal: This is what you have longed for all your life. It truly is your chance to explore the stars. Use it well, my love. Use it wisely.

Galactus: To perform your task as my herald, Norrin Radd, you must become far more than merely a man. I bestow upon you a part of my own Power Cosmic. You shall absorb boundless strength from the cosmos itself. Needing no food to eat. Nor water to drink. Nor air to breathe. You shall be able to transmute the elements. And to heal others as well as yourself. Cosmic bolts of awesome power shall be yours to hurl. And neither the frigid cold of the deepest space or the blazing heat of the brightest star shall harm your shielded body. Most importantly, I shall give you the means to travel faster than the fastest starship. So you may soar to the ends of the universe and beyond. Norrin Radd exists no more. You are newborn my herald. Even your mind is a new page on which I shall write. ARISE!

Silver Surfer: [Points to Zenn-La] What of this planet, master?
Galactus: I gave a promise once to an honorable man. That planet is not for such as we.

Silver Surfer : Requiem (2007)

  • If sacred places are spared the ravages of war... then make all places sacred. And if the holy people are to be kept harmless from war... then make all peoples holy.

Heroes Reborn Universe

  • What have my actions brought...?
    • Spoken about the possible death of Rikki Barnes.
  • The Silver Surfer stands with humankind this day!
  • Drink deep, aged one. For even you must have a limit to the power cosmic you can absorb
    • Spoken to Galactus, both of them die shortly after.
  • All that you know is at an end.
    • To Doctor Doom, who had tried to convince the Surfer to become an ally.
  • I am not the destroyer.
    • Response to Sue Storm's question: "Why are you trying to destroy us?"
  • I will no longer serve. This is the end for us both.

Quotes about Silver Surfer

My conception of the Silver Surfer was a human being from space in that particular form. He came in when everybody began surfing — I read about it in the paper.
The kids in California were beginning to surf. I couldn’t do an ordinary teenager surfing so I drew a surfboard with a man from outer space on it. ~ Jack Kirby
  • My conception of the Silver Surfer was a human being from space in that particular form. He came in when everybody began surfing — I read about it in the paper.
    The kids in California were beginning to surf. I couldn’t do an ordinary teenager surfing so I drew a surfboard with a man from outer space on it.
  • Herald, prepare yourself!! Prepare to be ... REBORN!
    At the command of Galactus... you have fallen!! And now... at my command once again... I bid you... RISE!!
  • We were all into Marvel Comics, and the Silver Surfer seemed to be another fantastic singular image. We never got permission to use it. But we liked the image of a silver man, on a silver surfboard, scooting across the universe. It had mystical, mythical properties.... Very cosmic man.
  • That wasn't the title track of the album for quite a while. It was going to be called The Lord of Karma. It wasn't until we finished that track and added the jet noises that we realized that "Surfing" was the song that summed up the feeling of the whole album.
    The whole thing with putting the Silver Surfer on the cover was purely by accident. It came about because the product manager at the record label, Jim Kozlowski, used to be called the Silver Surfer when he was a DJ in Boston. When I delivered the album, he said, "This is a great title. We should put the Silver Surfer on the cover." I had no idea what he was talking about. I literally did not know anything about the comic book character.
    • Joe Satriani on the title-song of his album Surfing with the Alien in Guitar World Presents the 100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time (2002) edited by Jeff Kitts and Brad Tolinski, No. 30, of "The Hundred Greates Solos of All Time", p. 148.
  • Silver Surfer #1 is a comic worth examining closely. It has a lot of things colliding at once. It's the straw that broke the camel's back in Jack Kirby and Stan Lee's working relationship. The Silver Surfer series is possibly John Buscema's finest moment. It's Stan Lee's first big self-conscious stab at creating something ambitious and meaningful. It's also a good example of what Lee's writing is like when you subtract Kirby or Steve Ditko from the equation. There are some interesting narrative flourishes, but also a leaden storytelling instinct and deep misunderstanding of his own co-creations.
  • Stranger in a Strange Land is obviously a touchstone. Can you grok that? Stan Lee is doing his delightfully purple prose thing with "O'er" and "Seeker of truth." The setup in the Fantastic Four comic said that the Surfer was confined to roam the Earth, yearning for the freedom of celestial space and learning what it is to be human. It's a good setup, but it's not set in stone. Why NOT let him roam the universe. Why restrict him? It took until 1987 for that to happen with Marshall Rogers and Steve Engelhart's Silver Surfer relaunch. That was Engelhart's stated purpose, to get the Surfer into space where he belongs.
  • We also tried the Silver Surfer for the Dark Side of the Moon. I wanted to use the Silver Surfer because we liked him. I wanted to use him, literally, on one of those huge great rollers in Hawaii, a guy sprayed or body clad in silver. I thought it would be really cool; it would look like a comic character come to life...
  • Perhaps the purest expression of heroism in the face of adversity was Marvel's Silver Surfer. Created by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby in 1965, the Silver Surfer received his own title when Marvel expanded its line in 1968. The notion of a shiny silver being from another planet flying through the cosmos on a surfboard sounds ridiculous, but, in fact, this was an unusually humorless series. ... No matter where he goes or what he does to aid human civilization, he is repaid with fear and animosity. Yet, like a Christ figure sent to save the people of Earth, the Surfer bears his cross and endures his lonely obligation.
    • Bradford W. Wright in Comic Book Nation : The Transformation of Youth Culture in America (2003), p. 231.
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