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Quote1 My journey is ended! This planet shall sustain me until it has been drained of all elemental life! So speaks Galactus! Quote2
Galactus (Galan)

Appearing in "The Coming of Galactus!"

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Synopsis for "The Coming of Galactus!"

Brief Summary:
Maximus fires his Atmo-Gun with the intent to destroy the human race. However, the gun fails and Maximus resorts to creating a negative zone around the Great Refuge that separates the Inhumans from the rest of the world. The Fantastic Four escape and head back to the Baxter Building. There they are visited by the Watcher who warns them of the coming of Galactus. The Watcher tried to hide the Earth from his herald, the Silver Surfer, but was unsuccessful. The Surfer arrives and summons his master.

Fantastic Four Vol 1 48 001

Detailed Summary:
Maximus fires his Atmo-Gun. While the vibrations produced by the weapon proves ineffective against Inhumans, it has the potential to wreak havoc against normal human beings. The ground of the Great Refuge trembles from the power of the weapon and everyone is thrown about. Maximus cackles with glee as he envisions the deaths of millions of helpless humans.

For all of his mad genius, however, Maximus' plan fails. Aside from a few massive ground tremors, humanity is perfectly safe. Gorgon and Karnak make a move to apprehend Maximus, but he darts past them and heads towards his Atmo-Gun. He reverses the polarity of the weapon, creating a null field of negative energy to slowly encapsulate the Great Refuge. Reed knows that there is nothing they can do to counter the effects of a complete negative zone. Reed, Sue and Ben race to escape from the city, but Johnny wants to stay behind. He doesn't want to leave Crystal. Crystal wants to remain with Johnny as well, but the rest of her family draw her back. Ben scoops Johnny up and manages to get outside of the null field barrier just as it completely seals the Great Refuge off from the rest of the world. Everyone feels Johnny's sorrow, and he is convinced that he will never see Crystal again. The team boards their private charter and returns to the United States.

Meanwhile in the depths of outer space, a sleek, shining being known as the Silver Surfer streaks through the cosmos atop a metallic surfboard. While soaring through the Andromeda Galaxy, he draws the attention of the Skrulls. The Skrulls know that wherever the Silver Surfer appears, his master, Galactus, cannot be far behind. Terrified, the Skrulls do everything they can to conceal their world from the Surfer's perceptions.

In New York, the Fantastic Four arrive home to witness a most startling spectacle. The entire skyline appears as if it had caught on fire. The Human Torch flies through the city canyons to get a closer look, but panicking New Yorkers begin to suspect that the Torch may actually be responsible for the strange phenomena. The FF return to the Baxter Building and Reed sequesters himself inside of his laboratory to analyze the situation. The flames in the sky dissipate giving way to an unending field of space debris.

The powerful being known as the Watcher appears inside of Reed's laboratory. He explains that he is responsible for the atmospheric disturbances, for he has been attempting to conceal Earth's existence from the attention of the Silver Surfer. He further explains that the Surfer is the advance scout of Galactus, a powerful cosmic being that consumes the elemental energies of entire worlds, leaving them as little more than dried, lifeless husks.

The Surfer meanwhile, investigates the debris field, and finds Earth hidden beneath it. He flies to the roof of the Baxter Building and sends out a cosmic signal for Galactus. The FF race to the top of the building, and the Thing rams into the Surfer knocking him off the edge. The Surfer is no longer a major concern however. In the sky above, Galactus' planet devouring world ship, Taa II, appears in the skies above Manhattan. The giant Galactus exits the ship and declares his intention to consume the entire world.


  • The Great Refuge's proper name is Attilan, as revealed in Thor #146.
  • The Inhumans create a new Atmo-Gun and threaten to use it on humanity years later in Fantastic Four: Atlantis Rising #1.
  • Black Bolt's inability to speak here is revealed in Fantastic Four #59, his voice is highly destructive and can level a mountain with a whisper. These powers were explained in greater detail in Thor #148.
  • The negative zone barrier that Maximus erects around the Great Refuge is not to be confused with the inter-dimensional reality also called the Negative Zone, first seen in Fantastic Four #51.
  • Inhumans Special #1 expands on events that occurred after the Fantastic Four were expelled from Attilan by the Negative Zone barrier. Maximus is driven even more insane when the Seeker's weapon is reflected through Black Bolt's tuning fork into Maximus' mind. The Seeker is also slain by Gorgon to avenge the death of his father.
  • The Silver Surfer's origins are revealed in Silver Surfer #1, which explain that he is really Norrin Radd from the planet Zenn-La. In order to save his own planet from Galactus, he agreed to become his herald.
  • While the Skrull seen on page 8 is not named, one must infer that it is Skrull Emperor Dorrek VII as he is referred to as 'my lord' and it is stated that this is the Skrull homeworld, which we saw him leading in Fantastic Four #37
  • The narrative of the story claims that the Skrulls seen here are on their homeworld. The Skrull homeworld of Skrullos was revealed to have been abandoned centuries ago in New Avengers #40. More accurately the Skrulls here are on Tarnax IV the Skrull throneworld that has been their home for over 10 million years. This is a mistake by Bendis.
  • Both the Watcher and the Skrulls know of Galactus and the Silver Surfer.
  • It is implied by the Skrulls that the Silver Surfer (Norrin Radd) has been Galactus' herald for a long time. "Have you not studied your cosmic history?"
  • The "Blackout Screen" used here by the Skrulls to shield their throneworld from Galactus fails them many years later in Fantastic Four #257.
  • This is the first time that the Watcher openly violates his oath of non-interference. This has been the case since the Watchers accidentally caused the mass extinction of the Prosilicans when they provided them with nuclear technology, as seen in Tales of Suspense #53 and expanded upon in Original Sin #0.
  • The origins of Galactus were first revealed in Thor #169, he was originally a man named Galan the last survivor of the previous universe. After the Big Bang, the energies created transformed him into Galactus. Fantastic Four #262 revealed that Galactus consumes worlds out of a necessity for universal balance. The reasoning is ambiguous, at least in the Earth-616 universe.
  • The portions of this story that pertain to Galactus are retold from a different perspective in Marvels #3.
  • This is not the first time Galactus has attempted to consume the Earth. S.H.I.E.L.D. #1 reveals that Galactus has visited the Earth as early as the Renaissance era, and was turned back by Leonardo da Vinci and his Brotherhood of the Shield.

Chronology Notes[]

Events occur behind the scenes in this story that affect the chronology of the following characters:
Mister Fantastic:

Invisible Girl:

Human Torch:



Silver Surfer:


  • Some of the plotlines used in this issue were adapted for the 2007 feature film, Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer.
  • This storyline was also adapted in the "Galactus" episode of the 1966 Fantastic Four animated series.
  • This storyline was also adapted for the two-part "The Silver Surfer and the Coming of Galactus" episode of the 1996 Fantastic Four animated series.

See Also

Recommended Reading

Links and References