The Surfer and the Spider!
Writer: Stan Lee
Pencils: John Buscema
Inks: Dan Adkins
Lettering: Sam Rosen
Originally published: March 1970
The Flame and the Fury!
Story: Stan Lee
Illustration: John Buscema
Embellishment: Dan Adkins
Lettering: Sam Rosen
Originally published: April 1970
Love the artwork. The Silver Surfer usually looks pretty badass.
After a collision with a meteor, the Silver Surfer is injured and putting about New York City when he has a run-in with none other than Spider-Man. They get off on the wrong foot, as is wont to happen, and start to fight on a roof. The Surfer is basically just trying to recover, but Spider-Man keeps it up. This always seems to happen to Spidey when he’s around other heroes.
Eventually the military gets called in to deal with the situation. In the confusion, a little kid gets stuck on the Surfer’s board as it flies around the city. When the Surfer risks his own life to save the kid, everybody learns an important lesson.
In the next issue the Surfer realizes that humans hate all that is different from them, and decides to clothe himself like the natives so as to blend in and avoid their attacks. The plan doesn’t entirely work though, since he’s still silver and carrying / flying on a huge silver surfboard.
The Surfer goes to visit his friends the Fantastic Four and, through another misunderstanding, they end up fighting. Spidey just appears in a flashback in this issue.
The theme of these issues is mankind’s rashness and penchant for violence over reason (and the Surfer falling into the same trap). They really hammer it in, but I didn’t really get tired of it or anything. It’s a true enough point that I don’t usually mind when people make it. This issue really read like an old 50s sci-fi to me, like some of the Asimov shorts or radio shows like X Minus One and Dimension X. I thoroughly enjoyed it.
There’s a great line in here (italics mine):
They long for peace, yet gird for war! They search for love, yet harbor hate! If man is sane…then the universe itself is steeped in madness!
How awesome is that?