10 Powers Silver Surfer Never Used In Fantastic Four"s Live-Action History

  • Silver Surfer's powers go beyond what was shown in Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer, with abilities like super strength and healing factor.
  • Silver Surfer can travel faster than light, control elements, and manipulate matter - showcased in Marvel comics over the years.
  • The MCU's Silver Surfer, played by Julia Garner, will likely have more time to showcase a wider range of powers in upcoming projects.
The Silver Surfer will be joining the MCU in The Fantastic Four, which means Marvel has a chance to show off some of the character’s powers that didn’t make it into the Surfer’s last live-action appearance. Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer definitely had its work cut out for it in terms of showing the full extent of the Silver Surfer’s abilities, so it’s no surprise that it wasn’t able to show everything. The Silver Surfer has a wide range of abilities granted by the Power Cosmic.
Though the original Fantastic Four franchise was able to show some of these, it would be hard to squeeze them all into a single movie. Luckily, Julia Garner’s Silver Surfer will likely have more time to develop. After all, she likely won’t just be in The Fantastic Four movie, but also other upcoming MCU projects too. This will allow her to show off more powers than could fit into just one movie.
Related How The Fantastic Four Movie Can Finally Fix A Major MCU Phase 4 Cliffhanger The MCU's Silver Surfer is not the one that most are familiar with, but it gives Marvel the chance to continue an unresolved Phase 4 story. 10 The Silver Surfer Has Super Strength Powerful Enough To Crush Diamonds This Power Was Demonstrated In Silver Surfer #39 (1990) Close In Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer, Norrin Radd didn’t show off too much of his super strength. Most of the powers he uses in the movie have to do with his board or are a sort of energy projection that isn’t fully described, but he doesn’t throw many punches. In the comics, the Silver Surfer has substantial super strength and engages in a mixture of hand-to-hand combat and using his other powers to fight.
One of the best examples of just how strong Silver Surfer is in Marvel Comics comes from Silver Surfer #39 by Alan Grant and James Sherman. Near the end of the issue, Silver Surfer finds a bag of diamonds and other gems which he then crushes with his bare hands and turns into a fine dust. This barely seems to take any effort either, showing just how powerful he can be without even trying.
9 Silver Surfer Can Travel Faster Than The Speed Of Light This Power Is Demonstrated In Silver Surfer Annual #2 (1989) Close It could be argued that, because the Silver Surfer travels between planets in the movie, Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer at least implies that he can travel faster than the speed of light. However, his actual ability to do so is never illustrated on screen, though he does travel at high speeds. The movie also seems to pick and choose how fast they want him to be, since he is caught by the Human Torch at one point, who is traveling far slower than the speed of light.
At various times in Marvel Comics, the Silver Surfer is shown traveling faster than the speed of light. This is how he can traverse the universe as a Herald of Galactus, or travel between planets once he becomes a hero. In Silver Surfer Annual #2 by Steve Englehart, Ron Lim, Keith Williams, and Tom Vincent, one of the book’s stories describes how all of Silver Surfer’s powers work. When explaining Silver Surfer’s speed, the book makes it clear that he travels faster than light, and enters hyperspace to travel between planets.
8 The Silver Surfer Never Gets Tired Or Even Sweats This Power Is Demonstrated In Silver Surfer Annual #2 (1989) Close Once The Fantastic Four begin to work with Norrin Radd in Rise of the Silver Surfer, there is a scene where they have to break him out of a US Army facility. During this scene, Norrin needs to be carried by Mister Fantastic, since he has suffered torture at the hands of the Army. Though this seems to make sense, anyone familiar with Silver Surfer’s super stamina would know it isn’t really true to the character.
Marvel Comics explained, also in Silver Surfer Annual #2, that the Silver Surfer doesn’t get tired. He doesn’t even need to sleep - instead, he simply enters a sort of trance while flying on his board between planets that helps him recharge his energy. He also doesn’t show any signs of physically weakening, and won’t even break a sweat no matter how hard he pushes himself.
7 The Silver Surfer Has A Powerful Healing Factor This Power Was Demonstrated In Defenders #1 (2012) Close Although Norrin Radd is tortured off-screen in Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer, he never really shows any physical signs of injury. This means that he doesn’t get to show off his incredible healing factor from Marvel Comics. That said, he does demonstrate his ability to heal others several times in the movie, by healing both Victor von Doom and Sue Storm.
Just like Silver Surfer brings Sue Storm back from the dead in Rise of the Silver Surfer, he can also bring himself back from death. Once, the Silver Surfer even lets himself get eaten by birds so that he can experience death, knowing that he will come back to life. In Defenders #4, by Matt Fraction, Terry Dodson, Rachel Dodson, and Sonia Oback, the Silver Surfer even shows he can reassemble himself from the tiniest pieces of his body after being scattered. In the issue, he does this to experience what it is like to become falling snow.
6 Silver Surfer Is Immortal And Has Survived For Billions Of Years This Power Was Demonstrated In Silver Surfer #14 (2017) Close The Silver Surfer’s previous live-action appearance didn’t dive too deep into his history, so it’s hard to know how long he has been around for. Rise of the Silver Surfer actually gave very little background on Norrin Rad, except for the fact that he was once in love with someone, and became Galactus’ herald to protect his planet. How long he’s been doing this for isn’t really explored, nor is the idea of how old he is.
Pinning down the Silver Surfer’s exact age in Marvel Comics can be a little tricky, and it seems to vary from writer to writer. However, Silver Surfer #14 by Dan Slott, Michael Allred, and Laura Allred made it clear that the Silver Surfer has the potential to live forever. The issue demonstrates this by showing the Surfer traveling back to the beginning of the universe and waiting for billions of years for time to catch back up to his present.
5 Silver Surfer Can Absorb Energy Instead Of Eating This Power Was Demonstrated In Fantastic Four #49 (1966) Close It’s not too uncommon for a movie not to show characters eating or drinking. Within most movies, a viewer can safely assume that, unless a character is in some dire situation, they are likely eating and drinking normally off-screen. However, it is a bit of a shame that Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer didn’t show the unique way that the Silver Surfer eats food.
Instead of eating the typical way, the Silver Surfer can absorb energy directly from food. In his second appearance in Marvel Comics, Fantastic Four #49 by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby, the Silver Surfer is served food by Alicia Masters. The Surfer tells Alicia that he can convert the food into raw energy and absorb it, saving him from having to actually eat and digest the food. This is somewhat similar to the way that Galactus absorbs the life energy from planets, which makes sense since they both use the Power Cosmic.
4 Even The Soul Stone Can't Take Out The Silver Surfer This Power Was Demonstrated In Silver Surfer #16 (1988) Close Because Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer didn’t take place within any sort of shared universe, audiences didn’t get to see how the Silver Surfer would stack up against other Marvel Comics characters. This is why it’s so exciting that the Silver Surfer will be joining the MCU soon, as moviegoers will get to see just how strong the Surfer really is.
One of the most impressive displays of the Silver Surfer’s strength was his ability to withstand an attack by one of the Infinity Stones. In Silver Surfer #16 by Steve Englehart, Ron Lim, Joe Rubinstein, and Tom Vincent, the Surfer goes up against the In-Betweener who is using the Soul Stone - known at the time as the Soul Gem. In the issue, the Soul Stone easily takes both Sue Storm and Reed Richards’ souls, but it has no effect against the Silver Surfer, showing that the Power Cosmic he uses is even stronger than an Infinity Stone.
3 Silver Surfer Can See Light Years Away This Power Is Demonstrated In Silver Surfer Annual #2 (1989) Close Some superpowers can be a little difficult to demonstrate in a movie. Comics often have the benefit of putting explanatory text boxes inside a panel to tell readers what they’re looking at, which is something that usually feels a little too cheesy in a movie. Because of this, Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer didn’t have a good way of showing the Silver Surfer’s subtler powers, like his enhanced sense of sight.
All of the Silver Surfer’s senses in Marvel Comics are enhanced by the Power Cosmic. This allows him to see great distances, some things he can even see from light-years away. Silver Surfer Annual #2 also revealed that the Silver Surfer can see things that fall outside of the normal spectrum of visual light such as heat or even a being’s life force energy.
2 Silver Surfer's Molecule Manipulation Can Change The States Of Matter This Power Was Demonstrated In Defenders #1 (2012) Close Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer hinted at some of the Silver Surfer’s ability to manipulate matter, but the movie didn’t explore the full depths of these abilities. While it showed that the Surfer could pass through solid objects, the movie never really delved too deep into how this was possible. It was left up to the audience’s imagination whether he was simply able to make himself intangible, or if there was something else going on.
Marvel Comics is much more explicit about the Silver Surfer’s ability to manipulate matter. The Silver Surfer can manipulate the actual molecules within a substance, allowing him to change what state of matter something exists in. This means turning solids into liquids, liquids into gases, or doing the same in reverse. The Surfer can do this to himself, as seen in the movie, or in Defenders #1 when he turns himself into snow. The Surfer can also change the state of objects other than himself.
1 Silver Surfer Can Control The Elements These Abilities Are Demonstrated Across Several Issues Of Fantastic Four And Silver Surfer Close The best word to describe the previous live-action Silver Surfer’s powers is nondescript. A lot of times, it felt like the movie just had him doing things because it fit into the script. This had the effect of somewhat flattening his range of abilities and making it seem like his abilities were just a nebulous type of power that could do whatever the story needed at a given time. Some of the powers that were replaced by this more generic energy projection style of power was the Silver Surfer’s ability to control elements.
The Silver Surfer’s power to manipulate the elements is demonstrated across a variety of different issues in Marvel Comics. Silver Surfer #14 by Stan Lee, John Buscema, and Dan Adkins showed the Surfer’s ability to raise the temperature of an object until it starts on fire. Fantastic Four #60 by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby showed that the Surfer's board could control wind and create a tornado, and Fantastic Four #72 showed the Surfer controlling water as well. It will be interesting to see how many of Silver Surfer’s powers are shown in The Fantastic Four and future MCU projects.
The Fantastic Four (2025)
Director Matt Shakman Release Date July 25, 2025 Cast Pedro Pascal , Vanessa Kirby , Ebon Moss-Bachrach , Joseph Quinn Franchise(s) Marvel Cinematic Universe


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