This Marvel Comics character is the Herald of Galactus the Planet Eater, imbued with the "Power Cosmic". He is silver and rides a surfboard through space. Created by Jack Kirby in 1966, the Silver Surfer has a somewhat controversial origin as he first appeared in the Fantastic Four series (during the "Galactus Trilogy") and was thus assumed to have been co-created with series writer Stan Lee. However, Lee later admitted that Kirby added the character to the story on his own. Kirby felt that a being like Galactus should have a special herald to represent him. However, the Surfer's origin was invented by Lee (not Kirby) when the character got his own series.In the Trilogy, the Surfer finds Earth (despite Uatu The Watcher's attempt to hide it from him) and signals Galactus to come devour the planet. The Surfer is then knocked out by the Fantastic Four, but is nursed to health by their kind ally, Alicia Masters. This causes him to decide to protect Earth and joins the heroes in opposing his master. Galactus is then forced to swear not to try to eat the Earth when his own greatest weapon is pointed at him. However, Galactus punishes the Surfer by sealing him within Earth's atmosphere, unable to return to space. The Surfer then becomes a wandering hero. He also helped to found the superhero group The Defenders.The character proved popular enough to receive his own series (twice). In the first, it was revealed that he was originally Norrin Radd, a man from the planet Zenn-La. He became Galactus' herald in exchange for his sparing Zenn-La from being eaten. However, Galactus decided to seal away the Surfer's emotions after transforming him, to keep them from interfering with his mission, until Alicia reawakened them. In the second series, the Surfer was freed to return to space, where most of his new adventures took place.The Surfer is still popular and occasionally shows up in other Marvel series. He's something of a Purity Sue, due to his cosmic level of power and having a soul so pure that Mephisto, Marvel's stand-in for Satan, tried many times to corrupt him. He has become more worldly, Depending on the Writer.The Kirby/Lee conflict is lampshaded in the movie Crimson Tide where a fight breaks out in the galley among the men over which is the true Silver Surfer. The submarine's Executive Officer (Denzel Washington) chastises the enlisted man for getting in a fight over the issue, saying "Anyone who reads comic books knows that the Kirby Silver Surfer is the only true Silver Surfer." (The script was written by Quentin Tarantino, so this Shout-Out is hardly surprising.)A new comic series by Dan Slott launched in 2014. It starts when residents of the planet Impericon demand Surfer to save them from a being known as Never Queen. To ensure his cooperation they kidnap Dawn Greenwood - teenage girl from Earth whom Surfer never met in his life, but whose fate for some reason is entwined with his.
Besides Fantastic Four and his own comicbook line, the Surfer has appeared in:Film
Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer, which was supposedly an adaptation of the Galactus Trilogy.
Anti-Villain: Started off as this and it could be argued that he has returned to this state now that he is a herald of Galactus again.
Arch-Enemy: Thanos and Mephisto; at least, they come closest. Galactus is a debatable example too. All three are far, far more powerful than him though, so its not your standard Arch-Enemy situation and he rarely fights them directly or on his own, and would quickly lose if he tried.
Astral Projection: Usually comes into play when Surfer is facing off against Mephisto.
Badass Boast: Rare, but the Surfer has delivered a few over the years.
Silver Surfer: Your ability to manipulate power is formidable. That I will admit. But I AM power.
Recently Surfer has become fond of more deadpan trash talk to remind people that he's one of the strongest heroes in the universe.
Nova: Surfer! The Revengers are the enemies' big guns.
Silver Surfer: Interesting.
Surfer takes down the Revengers versions of Thor and Iron Man with one attack each.
Silver Surfer: When we next have a quiet moment, Richard Rider, we can discuss the definition of the term.
Bullying a Dragon: Because he looks inhuman (and possibly because he nearly let Galactus eat Earth), in the early days people kept trying to attack him, and generally insulting him. Apparently, the fact that he's a borderline Reality Warper (and EXTREMELY dangerous when angered) never occurred to them.
Cutting the Knot: This trope was responsible for finally freeing the Surfer from Earth permanently; Ben Grimm suggesting that the Surfer try leaving Earth without using his board. To the Surfer, the very thought of travelling without his board is so unthinkable that both he and Reed Richards were stunned that there was a simple solution to the exile all this time and neither of them ever realized it. To put it to the test, the Four transported the Surfer in their spacecraft off the planet with his board left back on the ground and they discovered that was indeed all they needed to do. As for the board, The Surfer simply remotely converted it to a mass of energy unaffected by the barrier and called it to him to be reassembled as the board back in space.
Deflector Shields: The Surfer can create energy shields to defend himself and his allies.
Forgot About His Powers: The Power Cosmic allows Silver Surfer to manipulate both matter and energy, time and space, and often times he simply chooses to solve a problem by hitting it with cosmic blasts. When someone like Doctor Doom stole his powers, he froze tropical islands, drained London of its power, resurrected dinosaurs, and killed the Fantastic Four (only to resurrect them on a whim).
Flying Brick: A strange example since he normally flies via his surfboard and while he is super strong, he doesn't engage in fisticuffs as often as other bricks.
Monster Modesty: Norrin ran around in silver underwear in his earlier appearances. He has now been reduced to Nonhumans Lack Attributes although the occasional artist might slap a pair of undies on every now and then.
My Significance Sense Is Tingling: With his Cosmic Awareness, the Surfer can sense major events throughout the galaxy just before they happen. On a smaller scale, the power has been used to find hidden doors, detect weaknesses in beings like Gladiator, and assist in guiding the Surfer though the galaxy.
The Needless: He doesn't require any sort of sustenance (such as air or food) in order to live.
Reality Warping: He doesn't use them that often, though, at least compared to his other powers.
Redemption Demotion: Averted. When he went from a villain to a hero, he continued to be quite powerful.
Scarily Competent Tracker: The Surfer's Cosmic Awareness allows him to detect powerful energy concentrations "anywhere in the cosmos." Combined with his Super Senses and ability to teleport to any dimension he has previously visited, it is almost impossible to hide from the Surfer.
Silver Surfer: Fools. Eyes that can track a single dust mote across the space ways will certainly have no difficulty tracing the path of a Troyjan battle cruiser.
Super Senses: In Incredible Hulk #415, the Surfer could "detect the whistling of a meteorite a thousand light years away." Using his "far ranging vision", the Surfer could see Thanos from "more than a light year away" in Infinity Gauntlet #3.
Super Speed: The Surfer searched the entire surface of the Earth in seconds in Silver Surfer Annual #5. In space he regular travels many times faster than the speed of light, too.
Super Strength: Even though he rarely uses his fists to fight, he is extremely strong and can additionally amp himself with the Power Cosmic. He once for example took down the Super Skrull with a single punch.
The Worf Effect: Like Galactus, a lot of his cameo/guest appearances often come down to this. Although he doesn't always lose, simply being able to smack around the Silver Surfer is enough to establish a threat.
Worthy Opponent: Thor, with whom he has clashed several times and still maintains a respectful relationship.
In the Darkseid/Galactus crossover, Surfer was so impressed by Orion's courage, he managed to delay the Black Racer long enough to allow Mother Box to prevent him from dying. In exchange, Orion saluted Silver Surfer and left, returning the compliment.