Friday, July 27, 2018

We saw X-Men #-1 about seven years back, and we haven't even looked at another one of those since? Well, better late, and so on and so forth. From 1997, Silver Surfer #-1, "Abduction" Written by J.M. DeMatteis, pencils by Ron Garney, inks by Bob Wiacek.

The -1 issues were for Marvel's Flashback event, featuring stories set before the events of Fantastic Four #1. Today's book was a favorite, although later issues wouldn't live up to the promise. And this opens up with a soul-searing soliloquy from the master of memorable monologues, Stan Lee himself! Just like X-Men #-1 he's here as a narrator, but also a participant, as he tries to warn us: he just now remembers his abduction! Among others--including nurse Henrietta Lee--Stan had been taken by grey-looking aliens. Chatty even if possibly terrified, Stan explains to Henrietta what's happening, then tries to sell the aliens on a mini-series; before they return Stan and the others to earth. All except Henrietta: in her, they had found what they wanted...

Meanwhile, the Silver Surfer still served as herald to Galactus, finding worlds for his master to drain the energy from. As seen a few times in his history, at this point Galactus was still altering the Surfer's mind, to make him a more tractable servant. Or companion: even though he is the master, it's obvious he admires and cares for the Surfer, very much. Still, Galactus sends the Surfer to investigate a mysterious, possibly familiar, energy surge. The Surfer, disturbingly, also seems to almost remember them, as he finds an energy that seems to alter itself to whatever an observer perceived it as. (That phenomenon may seem familiar to Galactus and the Surfer, since we've seen something like that with Galactus himself!) Onboard the "ship," the Surfer finds the greys experimenting on Henrietta: they command him to leave, but his long-buried conscience compels him to save her. The greys mentally strike out, trying to force him to forget them. (Predating Doctor Who's Silence by some years!)

Henrietta is saved, but blinded by the experience. The Surfer's first impulse, is that he would like to see her 'earth,' but he must return to his master. Using his power cosmic to send her home, the Surfer notes the energy disturbance was now completely gone, and seemingly forgets it; as did Stan, until now. Has the memory returned, for a reason...? Next month, the Surfer and Alicia Masters were still trapped in 1947; it would be a good four months before this plotline would return, but I don't recall it living up to this issue.

1 comment:

Dale Bagwell said...

Hmm, damn if this doesn't sound like a pretty good read.
I didn't care for Garney's early work, despite buying some issues from Waid/Garney's first run on Captain America, but looking back I guess I can appreciate a little more in Surfer. I think his art's better now then it was then, so there's that.

Creatures that pre-date the Silence? Wow.