Friday, October 22, 2010

(EDIT: Just noticed Beta Ray Bill has the wrong number of fingers in that panel.)

We mentioned "Blood and Thunder a while back; the nine-part crossover between Thor, Warlock and the Infinity Watch, the Warlock Chronicles, and Silver Surfer. (Another EDIT: It was a thirteen-part crossover! Probably could've been done in nine...) I too had forgotten there was a time when Marvel thought the market would support two Warlock books: I don't think they were bad necessarily, but still. Anyway, Silver Surfer happened to be the only one of the lot I was reading at the time, so I ended up with parts two and six, and it would be years before I randomly happened to pick up any of the other issues. So, today we're looking at "Friends and Foes" from Silver Surfer #86, written by Ron Marz, guest pencils by Andy Smith, inks by Bill Anderson.

Beta Ray Bill had told the Surfer than Thor had gone mad, but he doesn't really believe it until he finds Thor beating the stuffing out of Bill. Intervening, the Surfer and Bill knock Thor down for a moment, and Bill explains Thor must have "the Warrior's Madness." Or Asgardian Alzheimer's. Even though Thor's obviously crazy as hell, Bill doesn't want to let the cat out of the bag to Odin, since Thor would then be banished from Asgard. Which doesn't seem like the best care plan...maybe not the worst, either, though.

They watch Thor talk to his imaginary girlfriend, the Valkyrie. (In black, not the one we know from the Defenders and such.) She stands by her man, encouraging Thor to kill the betrayers, and he gets his second wind. Bill takes a shot meant for the Surfer and is knocked out, and the Surfer is forced to fight without his board, as he uses it to try and get Bill clear of the battle. Sif takes Bill to safety (and is inexplicably brown-haired here, as opposed to her usual black; and is wearing another terrible costume...) and the Surfer is able to fight back, but takes a smashing blow.

Before Thor can finish him, he is faced with Adam Warlock and Pip the Troll. Pip has a cowboy hat and western outfit, for some reason.

While it's basically a chapter in the story, it's not as bad as I had thought it was going to be; although the Surfer doesn't really get a lot to do. And it pales in comparison to to the classic Stan Lee and John Buscema Surfer/Thor battle in Silver Surfer #4. Well, tough not to, there. Drat, I had another Andy Smith/Silver Surfer issue I was going to look at, but haven't got back yet. It'll keep.


CalvinPitt said...

Did Thanos get drafted into this? I have this vague memory of a comic where he and the Surfer took on Thor and this Valkyrie. Well, Thanos fought Thor, and the Surfer took on the Valkyrie, which can't be right if she;s imaginary.

googum said...

Yes! Thanos throws his hand in, since having a crazy Thor tearing around doesn't help him out any. Since I'm missing parts too, this is an educated guess, but the Valkyrie may use an Infinity Gem or something to become a real girl, or at least rough up the Surfer.

Hmm. What an odd storyline.

Justin Garrett Blum said...

Adam Warlock is probably responsible for me reading comics. Back in the early 90s when I began getting interested, INFINITY GAUNTLET was like a gateway drug, and WARLOCK AND THE INFINITY WATCH became the first regular series I ever collected. I bought up all that stuff, though I wasn't terribly interested in anything else. Strangely, I never really collected SILVER SURFER, so I missed this. But I do remember the Thanos vs Odin fight in WatIW. That was one of the more awesome things I've ever read.

plainwater said...

Huh, I got into comics the exact same way Justin describes. Now I'm wondering how many people of my generation got into comics through the Infinity Gauntlet. And if the answer is a lot, I wonder if that's why Marvel and DC seem to do so many big universe-shattering crossovers (which, maybe ironically, I avoid at all costs).

Justin Garrett Blum said...

Yeah, these days I also avoid crossover events like the plague. Mostly, I just loved the concept of the Infinity Gauntlet, and it's difficult for me to name another major company-wide event that I've actually enjoyed. I did like DC's 52, I suppose.