I've never read a lot of Silver Surfer or been engaged with him as a character. Not 100% sure why, but I'm aware of a lot of his backstory elements since his presence permeates many storylines. The reason I picked up Silver Surfer Black? When I asked for recommendations for my pull list, two of the guys at my local shop said it's a must read.
This Wednesday, I picked up the final book of 5 in the run of Silver Surfer Black which is written by Donny Cates and Tradd Moore with Moore also doing the art with Dave Stewart on colors. I will say, this run of Silver Surfer Black has made me much more interested in diving into past runs of Silver Surfer to see if the character work on him is always this compelling.
The series starts with our Silver protagonist being thrown into a black hole (apparently with the Guardians of the Galaxy) and it is his fight to escape. In this final book, we see Norrin using the final elements of his powers to defeat Knull the god of the Symbiotes. From what I can take away without attempting to spoil everything, we see the eventual rebirth of the Surfer as a different cosmic entity. And if Cates et. al are bringing us a different run of Surfer in the future, I'll definitely pick it up.
There are two elements of this book (let alone the entire run) that have blown me away. The first is the art and color work. Moore and Stewart have definitely taken us on quite the psychedelic journey to get to the Surfer's last stand. The first page of the book (after the title page) is hands down the pinnacle of the rest of the art/color work in the rest of the run. This page uses a broad color palette and is the post-structuralists dream, as we see the Surfer morphing through different forms. The 8 panel spread after the Geico ad I've become all too familiar with continues the journey in both color and morphing through what feels like 4-5 different artistic genres. At times, the art distracted me rom keeping tabs on the story, but not in a negative way. I wanted to explore each panel for every potential nook and cranny of creativity, that it drew me in to imagine Norrin's experience as he is preparing for his battle with Knull.
After the first three pages, we are off to the races and I honestly could have read a trade-length book just to consume all of the imagery of the Surfer's potential last hurrah. I clearly don't know how to talk about art (outside of describing renaissance paintings) but this shit was amazing.
I really want to buy the trades of this so I can have a "coffee table" book of Moore and Stewart's fantastic technicolor journey, for it is the only canvass that could really carry Cates' and Moore's new twist and turns for the Surfer. I am interested in finding more of whatever this trio takes on alone or in tandem, because it was pure ecstasy, and I am sad that this run is over.
The journey of a 30-something father of three who's trying to break into the world of reviewing comics after a loooooong hiatus...