Silver Surfer #3
Writers: Dan Slott and Mike Allred
Artist: Mike Allred
Colorist: Laura Allred
Letterer: VC’s Clayton Cowles
A review by John Dubrawa
I know that comic solicitations should be taken as gospel as much as a movie trailer selling you “the best movie of the decade, maybe even ever!” but the word around Silver Surfer’s big 50th anniversary was that it was going to be status-quo changing. In this case, there’s some truth to the marketing because the final moments of Silver Surfer #3 deliver a huge gut-punch. Right to the feels. However, what’s even more surprising is how much I actually care about what ultimately happens, what leads up to it all, and how I’m now counting the minutes until the next issue. This in the wake of a Marvel event that literally ENDED UNIVERSES and I couldn’t have cared less. Silver Surfer makes me care about what’s happening and what’s to come, even with a jaded “seen-it-all-before” mentality. That’s how good this series has been, and continues to be each month.
Storytellers Dan Slott and Michael Allred could have easily allowed the Surfer an issue of peace and quiet for his big 50th anniversary spectacular, but they opt instead for a continuation of their ongoing saga that literally puts Norrin between his former home world of Zenn-La and his new home of Earth. Appearances by a stable of familiar heroes threaten to make this issue feel like a dreaded Marvel event, but wisely Slott and Allred maintain their personal ‘cosmic-but-grounded’ approach to the series.
Norrin finds himself at an impasse between two worlds he doesn’t feel connected to (the very Earthlings he attempts to save in this issue jeer him from the sidelines) yet surrounded by women that he has absolutely shared a connected with (Shalla Bal, Dawn Greenwood, and Alicia Masters). If this all sounds real emotional and not at all expected from an end-of-the-world-as-we-know-it plot, that’s because Silver Surfer #3 is both of those things, and it’s why the decision the character makes at the end of the issue earns its importance, which can’t be said for a lot of others of its ilk in the comic book world.
Of course, the art from Michael Allred and colors from Laura Allred manage to keep the proceedings at their utmost emotional height but with an injection of fun into it all. As always, the facial expressions on Dawn gives that character her personality, which runs the full gamut in this issue as she learns more about the Surfer’s past than perhaps she wanted to know while dealing with the thought of her entire planet ending (again). The Allreds are able to get that same range of emotion out of the Surfer as well, lending a lot to the payoff at the end. There’s barely any wasted space throughout the book as the art crawls toward the edge of each panel and sometimes even fills the entire page. A two-page spread toward the back half of the book showcases not only the Allred’s ability to render the Avengers beautifully (they really should be on a She-Hulk book already!) but also how they are able to use every inch of the page to capture the action. This is the kind of book that’s worth every penny, from story to art.
Buy It! Although this is a continuation of—in many ways—everything that Slott and Allred have been doing since the beginning, I’m confident in saying that any reader can pick this issue up and still feel the emotional weight of the Surfer’s dilemma as his two worlds come together right before his very eyes. It seems almost impossible for a comic nowadays to still carry that feeling of, “I have to know what happens next!” but when it comes to a book doing the impossible, look no further than Silver Surfer.