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Monday, October 14, 2013 

Dan Slott's writing a superhero whose power is anathema to his politics

Slott, along with Mike Allred, is writing a new volume of the Silver Surfer, the cosmic superhero who fires energy bolts from his hands. In the interview, he says he was first introduced to the Surfer while reading some Fantastic Four comics owned by his cousin:
...he thought I'd like the super hero stuff and the first comics he ever let me read were "The Galactus Trilogy." So that was my introduction to the Marvel Universe and I've always had this love for the Surfer. He's really the first Marvel character I was introduced to.

Years later when I was in college I wrote and drew my own super hero strip for the school paper. It was "The Adventures of the Nuke Surfer," who lived in a post-apocalyptic world and surfed off the after blasts of nuclear explosions. It was so clear to anybody though that what I was really drawing and writing about was the Silver Surfer in a radiation suit [Laughs]. It was clear from all the poses and shots.
Now ain't that something. Slott has a beef against the 2nd Amendment, yet he loves the Silver Surfer, whose powers are very much like what he dislikes. We must truly be missing something here.

But let's not be surprised if that's exactly why Slott will try to inject his poor leftist politics into the mess he's preparing, which will spin out of another crossover:
Then, one of the things we do at Marvel when we have our creative summits is that we look at what the big event of the year is and one of the things that's always on the agenda is what new titles can be spun out of the event? This year's event is "Infinity," which is a very cosmic sci-fi Marvel Universe story. So they were looking at what kind of cosmic books they could spin out of it and at the top of their agenda was the Silver Surfer. They thought it would be a good time to do a "Silver Surfer" book.
Not if it's reason for being stems entirely from a company wide crossover, instead of being launched on its own stand-alone terms. I think there have been quite a few series in the past decade or two whose launch was based more on crossovers (Young Avengers and the newer book for Ms. Marvel come to mind), and weren't sold on the quality of the writing.

Slott then proceeds to tell that:
Nothing that anyone was pitching for Surfer was really sticking and the day after the retreat I was talking with [Marvel executive editor] Tom Brevoort about stuff that happened there. I asked him what he thought about the Surfer pitches and we started talking about them. Then he asked me, "How would you do it?" I was just talking with Tom. I wasn't pitching the book. So I said, "If I was doing it I would do it like this." Then Tom went, "I talked to someone during one of the breaks and told them they should pitch the book just like the way you said."
Sounds like he's shy to let us know just what that "way" is. Ultra-liberal, maybe? He's not saying, but with his belief system, it could be. And what a giggle he induces by saying nothing's stuck, all the while surely realizing that his setups are unlikely to either. He then says:
When you look at the sci-fi section of the Marvel U you've got what Brian [Bendis] is doing with "Guardians of the Galaxy" and what Jeph [Loeb], Zeb [Wells] and Gerry [Duggan] have done and are doing with "Nova." Those books are science fiction, but there's a level to it that grounds it. They're akin to modern day "Battlestar Galactica" or the J.J. Abrams "Star Trek." There's very much a modern day, hard core, sci-fi feel to what these guys are doing.
Nope, there's a very politically correct, sleazy fanfiction feeling to what they're doing. Loeb, much like Bendis, is a very overrated writer who descended into vapid storytelling in the past decade, most of which amounted to pointless nostalgia (like an overlong Batman story he wrote in 2003), and I've long come to realize his tales aren't worth the paper they're printed on either.

If Slott really doesn't like the 2nd Amendment, he shouldn't be writing Norrin Radd's adventures. But now that he's chosen to take that path, it'll be interesting to see how his politics (and Allred's) play into his writing, and there's every chance he plans on doing that. Will he turn the Surfer into a hand-wringer who can't bring himself to help alien colonies in distress from Galactus and other enemy alien empires? Or who decides he won't be zapping any villains with his power cosmic bolt generations ever again? But if Norrin will still use the MO he used in the 60s till the 90s, then Slott is supporting what he's against, suggesting money is the only thing speaking louder than his political views.

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It wouldn't surprise me if the first storyline involved a dying Galactus switching bodies with Silver Surfer, in order to become the "Superior Surfer." I wouldn't put it past a hack like Slott.

So let's see here... the Surfer is gaining a female companion and they're traveling the universe together... so in other words, Slott is ripping off Doctor Who. How "original," Slott.

OMG this book sounds like a complete trainwreck. Carrying along an Earth girl? WTF for? Is this supposed to be a HERBIE the robot sort-of character??

I give the book a year, tops. The original Guardians of the Galaxy didn't last very long, I surmise b/c the issues were way too psychadelic/trippy -- and not enough hard scifi (like the team's adventures in other titles were, like in The Defenders). Based on what Slott said, sounds like his Surfer book will be much of the same stuff.

Check that -- I don't think the original Guardians actually had their own book via title. I think they appeared in Marvel Premiere.

Yeah, I don't see lasting much longer than that, either. It's being launched as a part of some lame crossover, and it'll probably be mired in that stuff, without any room to grow on its own.

afaik, the original Guardians did not have their own self-titled comic. They first appeared in Marvel Super Heroes #18 in 1969. And the Silver Surfer's first self-titled solo comic was also in the late 1960's. It was cancelled for low sales. It, too, was too psychadelic/trippy, and had too much talk and not enough action to appeal to younger fans.

I suppose I could wax profoundly into this, but I'd rather quote Homer Simpson:

"Boring!"

And bring back the female Nova or Frankie Raye and problem solved. Surfer's too cool for regular earth chicks and we don't need more Doctor Who references, okay?

Back in the 90's, that was awesome and that was real geek chic to know. But then, thanks to BBC America, now everyone and their cat are Doctor Who experts, even though, a decade prior, they didn't know who the hell he was.

Sorry, but that frosts my cookies. As for Slott taking on the Surfer, well, it could be worse? Heh.

I love Doctor Who, and I kind of hope that the BBC sues Marvel for plagarism. Ha. That would be ironic, considering how Marvel UK used to publish Doctor Who comics.

I used to watch Third and Fourth Doctor serials on PBS with my dad in the 1990s. The 2005 revival is what really hooked me on the show

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