It might be just two issues into Dan Slott and Michael Allred's "Silver Surfer," but it already feels like a real winner. In short, Slott and Allred are bringing all of the strangeness that you need to make a "Silver Surfer" comic feel far-reaching and cosmic, but at the same time still find a way to make it just grounded enough to help readers relate to it.
With the former, Slott has worked in a lot of big new crazy ideas right off the bat. The Marvel Universe's outer space areas range from the familiar to the bonkers, and the Silver Surfer works best in the latter. Fighting the Kree or the Skrulls feels more like a job for the Avengers; here, the Silver Surfer is going up against the Never Queen to try and defend the impossible massive space city known as the Impericon. It feels instantly different and -- dare I say it -- alien, even as Slott provides the prerequisite twists and surprises along the way as we learn more about the Never Queen's motives to destroy the Impericon.
At the same time, though, Slott has a bit of down-to-Earth mentality in the form of Dawn Greenwood, the young woman who never wanted to leave Anchor Bay, Massachusetts, only to get whisked into the Impericon and held ransom to make the Silver Surfer help its residents. Dawn's not a damsel in distress, though, which is a relief. She might be someone who wants to stay in her hometown for all of her life, but she's smart and quick on her feet, and she's definitely not a shrinking violet. We saw those traits both in the first issue and in flashbacks at the start of "Silver Surfer" #2, but it's still fun to watch her unleash her brain against the Impericon. And when you add in the strange connection she has to the Silver Surfer, it adds in an almost dreamlike quality to both her and the overarching story. I like the fairy tale aspect of them, a match where neither side even knows that the other exists. It's a nice touch.
It almost goes without saying that "Silver Surfer" #2 looks fantastic thanks to the Allreds. Michael Allred's pencils and inks are as clean and crisp as you could hope, here. Dawn and Eve's performance in a production of Snow White as children is a riot thanks to the way that he draws them, with Eve seething while Dawn mugs for the audience. There's nothing like an elementary school stomping off the stage with her hands in little balls, while her twin sister continues to wave in an adorable manner. The adult Dawn looks great, too; she's got the strong fashion sense that I expect from all characters drawn by Allred, and she's adorable without needing to look model-fantastic or unrealistic.
The aliens in "Silver Surfer" #2 also are strong under Allred's direction. Mr. Plorp might be a big green mass, but at the same time Allred makes him look, well, sweet. The aliens that deliver the food could have just been featureless robots, but instead their costumes are intricate and eye-catching; Allred makes sure to take care that nothing is taken for granted here. Add in Laura Allred's always great colors -- they're bright and vibrant without ever being distracting -- and you end up with a fantastic looking comic.
"Silver Surfer" #2 was a thoroughly fun comic. I haven't regularly read a "Silver Surfer" comic in ages, but thanks to Slott and Allred, that's about to change. Definitely good stuff and worth your time to check out for yourself.