The beauty of the comic book universe is that it is almost infinite. You could spend the rest of your life trying to read every comic, and you wouldn’t be able to. That means there are lots of comic book “masterpieces” that may go unrecognized as such for decades. Or at least until it’s brought back to the public attention.
Fantastic Four #48 seems to be an almost guaranteed investment. It’s got Stan Lee and Jack Kirby teaming up for maybe the most defining moment of the Marvel Universe. It spawned cosmic tales and beings with powers far beyond the Human Torch or The Thing. It was earth-shattering.
If you can’t afford a nice FF #48 or FF #49, you aren’t alone. But that doesn’t mean you have to miss the boat when the other big purple man arrives on the big screen and reaffirms his place as the ultimate bad guy in the Marvel canon. You can make solid speculation and invest in one of the coolest Silver Surfer comics ever made.
Silver Surfer #1 1988. This comic was only a part of a two-issue series and you may have never heard of it, but it’s a big deal. Written by Stan Lee. Penciled and colored by Moebius (aka Jean Giraud). By ’88, Stan the Man was selective in what he was writing for Marvel. We’re fortunate he put pen to paper for this moving story.
Moebius, on the other hand, wasn’t well known in the U.S. He’s responsible for the birth of Heavy Metal comics (an American offshoot of the French Métal hurlant and Blueberry, but he had never worked with a mainstream American comic company until this two-issue series. Jean met Stan while in the U.S. and Mr. Lee recommended they work on a comic together. This is that very comic.
Another fun fact. This is Moebius’ ONLY comic created for Marvel. He’s illustrated a few covers for Marvel, but never another full-length comic. (I’ll be talking about these covers in the coming weeks.)
This is it. The only one.
The story of “Parable” takes place in the near future when Galactus returns. It’s a moving portrayal of characters clearly dear to Stan’s heart. And the art is astounding. An 80s pastel color palette is matched with soft linework and the Man in Silver has never looked better. It doesn’t read as a dated 80s comic, but rather as a timeless work of art.
No matter how future films use Galactus and the Surfer (assuming they use them), this comic will surge. The cosmic characters are popular and the story is a beautiful collaboration between two masters.
Better yet, there isn’t a ton of these graded. CGC shows only 99 9.8s in the registry. And the most recent sale went for $130. Not bad. If the book becomes popular, you can be sure there’s going to be more graded. But I think this is an example of a comic that’s been under the radar for so long now, there might not be that many left.
Even if you disregard the film buzz, this book is a masterpiece. Shouldn’t we be investing in these kinds of rare collaborations? These masterpieces of the medium? These silver surfing strokes of genius?
Galactus says yes.