This issue is my first grab of this title, and I can’t wait to get my hands on more of them! When you see the wondrous world that ‘Big’ John Buscema creates just in the first couple of pages, you’ll be awestruck. He can really make you believe that you’ve exited your body, and entered another world. His uncanny ability to capture characters, especially when they’re in an emotional distress, coupled with his great use of anatomy, is what made him so very special.
In this story, the Surfer is trying to further understand the human race, and that’s something that has proved most difficult for him since his former master, Galactus, banished him to Earth. After witnessing a cop trying to help a suicide attempt on a bridge, the Surfer dresses up like Dick Tracy to “blend in’, and assess mankind down among the people! He hangs out in South America for a while, but realizes that a militaristic group has taken control of the area, and will kill anything they deem untrustworthy. In a subplot, out in space (but nearing Earth), the beloved of the Silver Surfer, the beautiful Shalla Bal, is a passenger aboard the ship of Yarro Gort, and he means to embarrass the Surfer, and take Shalla Bal for his own!
A good story with powerful art! Buscema was such a master at anatomy, and facial expressions specifically. He really knew how to get everything out of a character in pain, or that was suffering. The back-up story is one I own in a couple of different formats, but it’s still very cool. Jim Starlin gives us “The Terrible Trial of Adam Warlock” (Strange Tales #180, 1975), and the whole cast is here for the ride! Pip the Troll, Gamora, and the Universal Church of Truth! Other creators include – Dan Adkins (inker – SS story), Sam Rosen (letters – SS story), Stan Lee (writer – SS story), Tom Orzechowski (letters – Warlock story), Alan Weiss (inker), Len Wein (editor), and Danny Fingeroth (reprint editor)!