We’ve all seen the story where we go inside people’s dreams to learn more about their personalities. Comics, short stories, novels, movies, plays — it’s a familiar trope, and honestly a slightly tired one. With that in mind, “Silver Surfer” #5 takes that tired idea and gives it a little kick in the pants, as Dan Slott, Michael Allred and Laura Allred turn it into something fun.
When Slott quickly reveals that this is all part of the old Marvel bad guy Nightmare’s powers and that they’re in the dream world, you’ll probably groan a bit. And sure enough, as you’d expect, it quickly turns into a journey through various characters’ dreams and nightmares, as we learn more about them. Very familiar, right? But Slott brings a nice sense of humor to the proceedings, and he continues to make Dawn Greenwood a character whose presence is welcomed rather than feared. She has a great attitude, one that takes in the insanity even as she questions some elements within it. For something as far-reaching and crazy as “Silver Surfer” can be, it’s a good character trait to have for the other half of your main cast.
Dr. Strange and Hulk’s presence in the comic is very supporting cast; they’re essentially there to give the story the initial nudge needed to move everything forward, but Slott wisely keeps them at arm’s length. It’s not their title, and it’s almost a relief for a guest star to not take over the comic that they’re shown up in. That said, the rapport between those two, as well as them and the Silver Surfer, makes me hope for an eventual return of the three of them together. (Or for that matter, a new “Defenders” title by Slott.) It’s a little silly and goofy, and that’s exactly what makes “Silver Surfer” #5’s story work.
Some of that sense of fun comes from Michael and Laura Allred’s art here, which continues to look clean and iconic as ever. Where else can you find a book where one panel is a serious moment of Dr. Strange and the Hulk fighting monsters with huge tentacles, and then the next is a woman with the Eye of Agamotto grafted to her forehead trying to stare at it and going cross-eyed with a disgusted look on her face? Michael Allred draws some of the quieter moments here quite well, like Dawn being pulled through the mirror even as she reaches out towards her sister, for instance. And likewise, watching Dawn’s father have everything washed away by the tide is a little moment but it still holds an emotional punch thanks to how well Michael Allred draws those choppy waves, or how Laura Allred’s colors give them such a deep blue that you can get lost in its depths.
“Silver Surfer” #5 is a good looking book, and it completes the opening story arc with the Surfer and Dawn fully paired up and ready for adventures. With a fun story and great art, what’s not to like? I’m looking forward to the title going full steam ahead now that the opening sequence has been completed. All in all, a nice beginning.