how fast can silver surfer fly
If he's going his fastest? Then it's not a matter of how fast he wants to go. It's a matter of when he wants to be at his destination.
To be less obtuse: Silver Surfer occasionally messes with time, and can I THINK (don't know for sure) can travel past light speeds, or even teleport. So basically, if he decides to go somewhere, barring outside interference with his powers directly, then he's going to be there, whenever he wants to be there.
but who is faster surfer or flash
Honestly? About the same. Both characters are fast enough to travel time/dimension travel. Both have done so routinely over the years. I know it's not a popular opinion...but I don't care. I see them as about the same in terms straight line and combat/reaction speed. The same scrutiny Flash fans apply to the Silver Surfer's speed feats can also be applied to the Flash's speed feats.
Bottom line? They are about the same.
I recently re-read the entire run of the Silver Surfer, because I was debating this very topic a few months ago. The simple answer: he is faster than fast. What I mean by that is he is faster than is humanly quantifiable because when a character can travel so fast that they can control time, either moving the clock back...or moving it forward on sheer speed? That's ridiculously fast. However, the time for confession has come. In the past, I made assertions indicating that certain speed feats for the Silver Surfer were not related to hyperspace. And my confession now is NOT a guarantee of absolute accuracy. However, those feats that were debated did not indicate hyperspace anywhere.
What I failed to remember about hyperspace was this: it was invented by science fiction authors who wanted to lend credence to the idea that space craft could travel faster than the speed of light. How else could those ships travel such fantastically enormous distances without being able to move faster than light? In line with Einstein's Theory of Relativity, some author's also surmised that FTL speeds would make it impossible for the folks inside the space craft to interact with one another in real time...hence, the beauty of hyperspace, which not only would allow for faster than light travel but people on the craft could interact in real time as if the craft were not moving faster than the speed of light, and also, with little to no time dilation when they returned to normal space. Many question when the term hyperspace was used with reference to the Silver Surfer. It was his first appearance in Fantastic Four 48 (1966):
Many believe the term hyperspace to have first been used during John Byrne's one-shot, Silver Surfer from 1982:
Some on these forums some have asserted that the use of hyperspace with regard to the Silver Surfer was not regularly used until the mid 90's. Unfortunately, those folks are about to proven wrong. As the scans above clearly indicate, Stan and Jack were familiar with the term hyperspace when the character first appeared, as was John Byrne. When Stan decided to do a book featuring the Silver Surfer, the term "hyperspace" is strangely absent. However, many will remember that Norrin Radd's conscience and sense of humanity were awakened by Alicia Masters. The Surfer valiantly fought against his seemingly omnipotent master Galactus...unsuccessfully. In reprisal for his rebellion against his master, Galactus took away one of Norrin's greatest loves: roaming the endless cosmos and learning about the universe around him first hand, by removing his "space-time" powers:
How are we to understand the use of the term "space-time" powers? This would be a reference to the Surfer's ability to utilize hyperspace to travel even faster and further than he would be able to in normal space. Taking away his ability to enter hyperspace (hyperspace being a parallel dimension to ours) then would confine him to the vicinity of the earth with the people he fought so valiantly for. However, many may recall that in 1968, Stan decided it was time to unleash the Silver Surfer in his own mag. This he did with the great John Buscema illustrating. Many may also recall a particular issue, issue 6 to be exact, where the Surfer manages to figure out a way out of his little confinement. How? While hyperspace decidedly removes one from that current plane of existence, so does time travel. When a character can control time...essentially...control the hands of a clock while the world around him is frozen in THAT time line...that is fast. Below, the Silver Surfer does it on sheer speed alone:
So while hyperspace may have been the Surfer's preferred method of space travel, he is clearly not limited to light speed travel in hyperspace only. Not one time is the term hyperspace mentioned in the Silver Surfer's first run. However, the first run ended in 1970 after only 18 issues. It was not until 1987 that Steve Englehart was selected to helm the second run of the Silver Surfer. Clearly, Mr. Englehart had hyperspace in mind when he showcased the Silver Surfer's speed. Obviously, there will be discrepancies not only from writer to writer, but even by the same writer as evidenced below from Silver Surfer 2 (second volume):
During Englehart's run, there are numerous other references to hyperspace, including Silver Surfer 9, 15, 19 and 31. However, Silver Surfer Annuals 1, 2 and 3 all make references to hyperspace as well (3 however was written by Jim Starlin and Ron Marz). However, the only definition IN CONTINUITY of how the Silver Surfer enters hyperspace is in Englehart's reference to hyperspace in Annual 2 (written in 1989) which appears to be the opposite of what is indicated above:
This notion is later substantiated by Silver Surfer Annual 3, where Galactus (the narrator) explains the Surfer has the option of travelling in normal space and even hyperspace:
By issue 34, the team of Jim Starlin and Ron Lim (THE BEST SILVER SURFER ARTIST!) began their collaboration. Now, it's possible I missed, but to recollection, there is not one mention of hyperspace by Jim Starlin. It was Jim Starlin who wrote the Infinity Gauntlet. Adam Warlock in a last ditch effort to take away the gauntlet from Thanos, employs distraction with the other heroes. Finally, Captain America stands alone against Thanos. However, poised for action, over a light year away, is the Silver Surfer. Thanos raises his fist to strike Cap and....
Breathtaking speed (and reaction time to boot) by the Silver Surfer. Obviously, this could not have taken place in hyperspace. Hyperspace would effectively have put the Surfer in another dimension in relation to his target, Thanos, making a faster than light speed blitz irrelevant. In only a moment's time, Norrin Radd travels over a light year, just missing his mark, presumably at tens of millions of times the speed of light.
Right around this time, in issue 51, the Surfer tries to reason with Nova, Frankie Ray, to leave her service to Galactus. Unable to convince her with a "frontal assault", he appeals to her to "help" him, indicating he "needs" her help to go somewhere:
The final result?
Thereafter, Nova decides to leave her service to Galactus. And all without the use of hyperspace. Previously to this event, but after Silver Surfer 6, in Mighty Thor 193, the Surfer successfully traveled time in order to dispense with the mega threat, Durok, again on sheer speed.
However, fast forward in time now to issue 107 of the Silver Surfer and we find 3 references to hyperspace. In issue 109, with Legacy in tow, the Surfer decides to double time it from the Andurian galaxy to Galactus' Worldship in breathtaking fashion, albeit...hyperspace and a direct reference to "warp speed", an obvious reference to hyperspace. However, in issue 129, The Silver Surfer and Alicia Masters are buffeted in time by a "chronal wave"...all the way back to 1947. However, it was not until issue 131 that the Surfer and Alicia return to the present once more. However, they are able to interact with one another in "real time" despite the obviously staggering speeds required to time travel. How did they do it? Hyperspace, which would allow interaction in real time. Take note of Silver Surfer 15 and compare to issue 131, although hyperspace is not mentioned:
Above, the FF appear to be aware of their surroundings from hyperspace...in issue 131, Alicia and Norrin are able to converse with one another in real time despite the astronomical speed needed to achieve time travel. However, in Silver Surfer Annual 8, Thor and the Surfer battle Millenius. To get there, they must leave their "dimensional plane" and do so in only moments, and without the benefit of hyperspace:
Now some will refer to the appearance of the light that the two time travelers disappear into as an obvious reference to hyperspace. However, if one exceeds light speed alone, not to mention the speeds required to travel time, the average human would be incapable of perceiving this and they would apparently "disappear" from sight. Therefore, the supposed "portal of light" they are disappearing into is really just them disappearing from the human eye to follow. You will notice in the scan above, this apparent "disappearance" happens twice. One only needs to enter hyperspace once. The above are depictions of the characters disappearing from the human eye's ability to follow.
To sum up: the Surfer is outrageously fast. Only two or three characters may be faster to my mind: Makkari, The Runner and Zoom (Hunter Zolomon).
The Silver Surfer is capable of achieving faster than light speeds and even speeds fast enough to travel time on sheer speed alone. Hyperspace is only an option to get there even faster.
@malevolent1: Wow. Pretty good. Good catch on Fantastic Four 48. I think a lot of people miss that. One thing I have to disagree on though: the notion about the Surfer's "space-time powers" being linked to hyperspace is actually not the way I read it. In issue 1, vol2, it's theorized (with Fantastic Four there) that without the board, the Surfer could actually pass through the barrier. Leaving his board behind, the FF took him past the barrier with no problems and he simply recreates his board...and he's free.
Other than that, I agree with you. He is fast enough to move from one point in time to the next. I think what most people miss is that is also a reaction feat in and of itself.
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