Once upon a time, 57 years ago and 62 years before the dawn of the MCU, comic book artist Jack Kirby needed to fill some pages.
Having recently read about a jazzy new trend called “surfing,” Kirby drew a guy on a surfboard. Then, realizing the limits that surfing puts on storytelling, he made it a space surfboard. This is the actual story of how the Silver Surfer came to be.
Today, human adults – the same kind of human adults that were actively working to put a man on the moon 57 years ago – are furiously and passionately arguing about the Silver Surfer’s swimsuit area. Rumor has it that the character will see a marked difference upon debuting in the MCU, with media outlets reporting on other media outlets’ reports that the Herald of Galactus will, in this latest incarnation, be a girl.
Setting aside the fact that, at a medical level, no woman could ever be the Silver Surfer since the cold vacuum of space would instantly asphyxiate all of their life-sustaining cooties, let’s ask ourselves: Who could play a lady Silver Surfer? And how fast can we get both halves of Twitter to self-immolate if we say “RuPaul?”
Image via Warner Bros.
This isn’t meant to sound alarmist, but the word on the street is that Gal Gadot might be out of a job. It’s not anything official, mostly just a combination of gossip rag conjecture, the implosion of the DCEU, and the fact that her last theatrically released movie with a Certified Fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes was Ralph Breaks the Internet in 2018.
All of which is to say that if Marvel wanted to send a few lifeboats over to the wreck of the Snyderverse and bring a few stoic-faced talents over to its own sinking ship, Gadot wouldn’t be a bad place to start. Seasoned, enthusiastic, and with a fluidity of motion that begs to be shoved into a onesie covered in ping pong balls and captured digitally for all time, she’d be an attention-grabbing addition to the MCU.
Image via Marvel Studios/20th Century Studios
There is, from time to time, a solid case to be made for the argument that the MCU is trolling us. They’ll fire unique directors, clothesline their own stories, and rehire recognizable actors to play new, high-profile roles.
They’ve pulled from Fox’s Fantastic Four movies before. If Chris Evans can make the jump from Johnny Storm to Captain America, then Jessica Alba can go from Invisible Woman to Herald of Galactus. For one thing, she already knows how to surf. For another, by making Sin City: A Dame to Kill For, she’s already helped to destroy one comic book world. Bonus points if they dub her voice with Lawrence Fishburne a couple of weeks before the movie comes out. Even more bonus points if she gets a scene where she makes Tim Story cry.
Image via Marvel Studios
Picture in your mind’s eye the office of Kevin Feige. Scattered across his desk are dozens of printouts of internet articles stemming from that late-2023 Variety piece about how Marvel might be ready to pay whatever they have to in order to bring back the original six Avengers. Among the clippings and printer paper are older, more weathered copies of articles about Scarlett Johansson’s lawsuit alleging that she was cheated out of residuals by Disney. Feige stares into the middle distance, absentmindedly throwing Mjolnir across the room and catching it when it comes back.
In the hall, we hear a phone ringing, and the faint sound of a personal assistant answering. Kevin’s intercom buzzes.“Mister Feige?” his assistant says. “Scarlett Johansson on line one.” Without moving his gaze an inch, Feige lifts the receiver and then hangs it back up. He throws Mjolnir again. Again, he catches it.
Ring ring. Buzz. Muffled speech. The intercom buzzes. “Mister Feige, it’s Scarl…” He hangs up again before she can finish the sentence. Lost in thought, he throws the hammer, and it returns with a low hum.
Ring ring. Buzz. “Mister Feige, she says that she’s willing to discuss her return to the MCU if you’re ready to apologize. I think we should hear her out, sir,” she adds hurriedly just before Feige drops the receiver again. “She says people are starting to figure out that Colin Jost isn’t very funny, and she’s willing to do anything.”
For the first time in hours, Feige’s eyes shift. He moves a pile of printouts to reveal a solitary article, claiming that the MCU’s new Silver Surfer will probably be female. “Anything?” Feige says, intrigued. “Even mocap?”
Image via Apple TV Plus
If you don’t think Brie Larson could play a socially removed, nigh-omnipotent, otherworldly force struggling with her desire to usher in the death of all mankind, then you haven’t been watching Lessons in Chemistry.