Silver Surfer #97-100
Issue(s): Silver Surfer #97, Silver Surfer #98, Silver Surfer #99, Silver Surfer #100
I own physical copies of issues #97 and #99 but i'm covering the other two issues from my GIT PDFs to avoid being completely incoherent. We're still starting somewhat in the middle of a story, though: the previous arc had the Silver Surfer going into Earth's Subterranea where they found Nova, which is surprising because she's supposed to be dead.
At the start of this issue, Nova wakes up and she and the Surfer depart from the Fantastic Four. Nova leads the Surfer to a legendary treasure hoard, and wonders if it "tempts" him. It unsurprisingly does not.
And it's weird that "Nova" would even think it would, and i say that fully aware of who Nova really is (the story titles and the fact that this culminates in issue #100 kind of give it away).
But Terrax shows up seeking the treasure as well, and they get into a fight. The Surfer turns the treasure into sand...
...which of course is Terrax's plaything.
But the Surfer retains the upper hand throughout the fight. In the end, Terrax praises the Surfer for living by a code, even if it's not the sort of code Terrax approves of.
Issue #98 opens with Champion confronting Thanos over the theft of his Infinity Gem.
Thanos barely lifts a finger to send him away.
Thanos' blast sends Champion hurtling through space, and he crashes into Nova and the Silver Surfer, who are still arguing about the treasure. Champion's path continues into a (lifeless) planet, which he destroys. The Surfer investigates, and learns that the Champion has a pair of (familiar-looking?) power bracelets.
The Surfer is outraged to learn that Champion massacred the entire race of people who gave him the bracelets. But Nova convinces the Surfer that there's no point in fighting Champion, since he can't bring back the dead people. Nova also lets slip that Drax the Destroyer now holds the Power Gem. So Champion goes racing off after Drax, and the Surfer has to follow.
The Surfer is surprised that Nova hangs back during the fight. But she does go and get Drax, who stomps Champion.
Nova then tempts Surfer with the bracelets.
But the Surfer instead destroys them.
The next temptation is lust. Nova sets herself up as a hostage to space pirates, and after the Surfer rescues her they get to romance. It's more earnest declarations of love than lust from the Surfer, but in the end he finds out he's been touching tongues with Mephisto.
Having seemingly gained his soul, Mephisto takes the Surfer to Hell...
...and torments him, in part by using the souls of his dead parents. The Surfer eventually breaks free and attacks Mephisto, seemingly killing him and freeing his parents, but at the cost of his vow to never take a life.
The Surfer decides to go to Shalla Bal for solace, but we see at the end that she's with someone that she calls "my love".
The first three issues of this are really nice. Marz does well when playing with existing cosmic characters (as opposed to creating Morg and Tyrant and the like), and Jim Hall's art is nice. The final issue goes like just about all Surfer/Mephisto confrontations and it's a bit boring, especially since it's a double-sized issue. But it's certainly an interesting twist to have the Surfer fail this time. Tom Grindberg's idiosyncrasies are at least appropriate in Mephisto's Hell where reality is a state of mind.
Quality Rating: B-
Chronological Placement Considerations: Continues more or less directly from the previous arc. The MCP have the FF here between Fantastic Four #388-389. The Surfer's next appearance should be next issue, when he arrives on Zenn-La.
Continuity Insert? N
My Reprint: N/A
Inbound References (1): showAnt-Man (Scott Lang), Champion, Drax the Destroyer, Fennan Radd, Human Torch, Invisible Woman, Mephisto, Shalla Bal, Silver Surfer, Terrax, Thanos, Thing
I don't know why Terrax would say he controlled the earth before he was empowered by Galactus. I'm pretty sure that's completely untrue.
Posted by: Andrew | January 19, 2018 4:42 PM
It's completely true, man - check his origin: http://www.supermegamonkey.net/chronocomic/entries/fantastic_four_206-214.shtml
Posted by: BU | January 19, 2018 6:21 PM
I just read Fantastic Four 211, and it's somewhat contradictory. The FF first fight Tyros' war-men, who are said to be robots both by Reed and in narration. Then they fight Tyros himself, and he doesn't use any kind of earth power, he just fires beams from his hand. But when they beat him, a guy runs in and says that's caused the war-men to break apart, because "it was his power that gave them life."
Posted by: Mortificator | January 19, 2018 7:25 PM
"And it's weird that "Nova" would even think it would, and i say that fully aware of who Nova really is"- I think that was Mephisto running a long con. He offered the Surfer a couple of temptations that he knew the Surfer would resist in order to set up for the final one (breaking his vow to never kill again).
Posted by: Michael | January 19, 2018 7:59 PM
I just realized that both Daredevil and the Silver Surfer have made out with Mephisto. Anyone else in the Marvel universe have the "honor" of doing that?
Posted by: Ben Herman | January 20, 2018 6:44 PM
Posted by: AF | January 20, 2018 7:14 PM
So at this point in the timeline, Reed Richards is dead, Nova is still dead really, and Mephisto has just been killed in another title. Nowadays, of course, all 3 are just fine. Comics.
Posted by: Dave77 | February 2, 2018 8:28 PM
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