Despite the massive success of the MCU’s Infinity War and End Game, was there a part of you that was disappointed that the Silver Surfer could not be part of it due to movie rights? They leaned heavily on Captain Marvel (Carol Danvers) to fill the cosmic hero role. However, any comic fan familiar with the source material is aware of how important the Silver Surfer is to the Infinity Gauntlet storyline. Also, I cannot think of another individual hero to have clashed with Thanos as much as the Surfer has. Radd and Thanos have a unique relationship forged through rivalry, respect, and a certain level of understanding one another.
After Thanos was defeated and stripped of the Infinity Gauntlet, each of the gems were split up across the cosmos with each gem being protected by a different member of the Infinity Watch. Rather than Thanos being killed (twice) like he was in the MCU, Thanos was entrusted to be the guardian of the Reality Gem. It was believed that now that he had learned the true power of the gems, that he had learned his lesson and would never try to assemble the gauntlet again.
We start off Silver Surfer: Rebirth with the Surfer finding himself helping Genis-Veil, the son of Mar-Vell (the original Captain Marvel), save a Kree ship from being engulfed by a black hole. As soon as they begin to celebrate their success, the Surfer crashes into a new reality and finds himself alongside the presumably dead Mar-Vell.
They find themselves fighting in a war against a Skrull Armada that should not be taking place. Although the Surfer, recognizes this as madness, he has little choice but to fight until Mar-Vell is slain before him by none other than Thanos. Although our first thought would be that Thanos is likely behind all of the confusion and is directly attacking Mar-Vell and the Silver Surfer for nefarious reasons, we instead find out that Thanos is more in tune with the nature of this disruption in reality. He is simply removing any distractions from the Surfer’s attention while seeking his aid. Surely Surfer will take the Mad Titan on his word, right?
Ultimately, we learn that Thanos seeks the Surfer’s help because he does trust him. It is also important to note that throughout this series, we never see Thanos lie. He can still be violent on a whim and remarkably blunt, but he is honest and seems to value honesty in others. This is a trait that did carry over to the MCU when Thanos became agitated at Gamora lying to her “father” about her knowledge of the location of the Soul Gem, “I never taught you to lie. That’s why you are so bad at it.”
Also, at this point in the story it is still unclear if Thanos’s motivation for retrieving the stolen Reality Gem is one of vengeance for someone daring to steal from him in the first place, or if he truly wants to do what is right and save the universe from the trouble he once caused. I don’t want to spoil that revelation, so please read this amazing tale to find out.
This tale also reintroduces a terrifying villain that I had known very little about prior to reading this story. The final battle between this new partnership and the reality wielding despot, plays with the limits of the imaginable. The dialogue between the Mad Titan and this new threat is a lot of fun as well. The chemistry formed between characters in this miniseries alone makes it worth the read. It only makes me want more team ups between the Silver Surfer and Thanos.
Finally, as with many of Marvel’s miniseries, Silver Surfer: Rebirth sets up the new series, Genis-Vell: Captain Marvel Vol 1. The first issue came out this past July.
However, whether you plan on reading Genis-Vell’s new series or not, Silver Surfer: Rebirth is worth your attention all on its own. This is true whether you are fan of the Silver Surfer, Thanos, cosmic tales, or just great artwork and writing. The Surfer has always been one of my favorite characters. I am always thrilled when he makes an appearance and love that those appearances are generally when the stakes are highest. Two examples include the original Infinity Gauntlet story and his recent role in delivering the Captain Universe Force to Eddie Brock to defeat Knull in the King in Black. I can only hope that more of you share in this passion for the surveyor of the space ways. Maybe then Marvel will give us more Silver Surfer and I can have the pleasure of writing about him again.