Marvel Zombies #3

Issue Date: 
April 2006
Story Title: 

Robert Kirkman (writer), Sean Phillips (pencils), June Chung (colors), VC’s Randy Gentile (letters), Tom Valente (production), Nicole Wiley Boose & John Barber (assistant editors), Ralph Macchio (editor), Joe Quesada (editor-in-chief), Dan Buckley (publisher)
SPECIAL THANKS TO: Arthur Suydam & Todd McFarlane (cover)

Brief Description: 

All of the infected rush into action and attack the Silver Surfer, not caring who he is or what his message is. The Surfer tries to defend himself, but eventually the infected overpower him. During the devastating battle, some of the infected die and Wolverine loses an arm. Still, the Hulk feeds on the Surfer’s head and some others eat the remains of his body, but there isn’t enough for everyone. The ones that did get to eat from the Surfer notice that his cosmic powers have now flown into their bodies. They decide to test them out on the infected who don’t have the special powers, and eat most of them. A few moments later, Galactus arrives! He explains he wants to devour the entire planet, but first wants to know what happened to his missing herald. The infected explain that they ate him, and are still hungry. They start to attack Galactus. At the same time, the Wasp’s head has helped the uninfected Black Panther escape from Giant-Man’s torment lab. As he scouts the destroyed city, he suddenly is asked where Magneto is. T’Challa isn’t aware of what happened to the now deceased mutant leader, but finds himself surrounded by none other than… the Acolytes!

Full Summary: 

The former, now Infected heroes all rush into action against the Silver Surfer, ready to eat him. Iron Man shouts that he gets first bite. The Surfer defends himself using his powers, claiming that it’s useless to resist and that the fate of the infected is inevitable. He adds that the Infected should even be honored to provide the world devourer with the sustenance he needs, and the Surfer sees them as lesser beings. He claims that the fighting won’t accomplish anything.

Iron Man doesn’t believe that, and he teams-up with Nova and the Vulture to grab him tight. Stark starts biting into the Surfer’s board. He admits that, in all of his travels, he has never witnessed such creatures like the Infected. He manages to throw Iron Man away from him, who jokes that the Surfer was lucky until now. More infected attack the Surfer, but he manages to hold them back using his powers, explaining that he has seen what the Infected have done to their world and believes they should long for their horrible conditions to end.

Thor attacks the Surfer’s board using his hammer, and the impact causes the Surfer to lose balance and fall down. Colonel America leads a group of infected towards the Surfer, not wanting to give him a chance to regroup. The battle goes on, with the Surfer desperately trying to defend himself. The Colonel shouts that whoever kills their lunch gets double rations. The Falcon is glad to hear that and flies into action, but the Surfer hits him with his powers instead.

Wolverine is ready for his turn and joins the battle. Logan slashes the Surfer’s body using his powers, but the Surfer’s hard body causes the flesh on Logan’s arm to burn apart! He can’t think of what he’d rather have right now: a healing factor strong enough to fight decomposition, or Adamantium ligaments to hold his bones together. He snikts his burned arm off his body, though thinks it’s a shame he has to loose it. The Surfer blasts a half of Iron Man’s body apart and he falls near Logan’s feet. Tony asks Logan to quickly toss him into the fray again, suspecting he’s got enough juice left for one last repulsor blast and wants to give the Surfer everything he’s got. Logan does as told and gives Tony his very own “Fastball Special” blast-off.

As the battle continues, the Surfer kills a few other heroes, including Gambit and Speedball. Lurking in a nearby alley, Giant-Man is devastated by the battle and is glad he took his time coming back from his lab. He leaves, thinking he’ll wait around until the end of this ordeal and refuses to join the fight. Banner can feel the hunger taking over again and thinks he may be of use in the fight. Spider-Man explains that Banner has to thank his pipedream for keeping him together, and hopes that Bruce will recover. He notices that it’s barely hanging on in Banner’s partly ripped-open body and mentions it’s just getting in the way.

Spider-Man takes a closer look to his leg, which still hasn’t healed so he decides he’s better off without it, and rips it off his body! Spidey hears a growl and looks around, noticing that Banner has transformed into the Hulk again! Spidey asks the Hulk if he’s okay, but he growls that he isn’t, because he is hungry. Spidey jokes that the Hulk can join the club, because he is hungry as well.

Meanwhile, the Black Widow, Black Bolt and the Beast hold the Surfer tight. Beast claims that the Surfer can’t hold out forever and that they will wear him down eventually. The Hulk rushes through everyone and pushes them aside, shouting that the Surfer belongs to him and that he is both the strongest and hungriest there is. He grabs the Surfer and prepares to eat him, but the Surfer gets up again and blasts the Hulk into his face! He jumps back on this board and tries to escape. The Infected quickly go after him.

The Colonel refuses to let the Surfer get away and throws his shield at him, reminding everyone that they’ve already lost too many to let the Surfer escape now. Nova promises that the Surfer won’t go anywhere, at least not until he gets payback. Wolverine hopes that there will probably be enough payback to go around, as he’s aiming for the Surfer’s heart! The Hulk, with a ruined face, gets himself back together and attacks the Surfer on his own, wanting to eat the guy all by himself. The Hulk promises that he’ll make the Surfer regret what he has done to his face. The Hulk moves closer to the Surfer’s body, and bites his head off!

The rest of the Surfer’s body falls down, and Colonel America is confidant that they’ve defeated him and that it’s feeding time. Wolverine thinks they’ve just got to peel back the candy coating, and adds that the tender morsels are inside the body. Spider-Man refuses to miss this feast and tries to run over there, but he gets hold back by Stark, who suggests a lift so he can have some lunch as well. However, Spidey refuses to do that, as that’ll mean he’ll get less to eat.

Giant-Man arrives and suggests that he’ll give both Spider-Man and Iron Man a lift all by himself. Spider-Man wants to know where Hank was all this time, since he didn’t see him during the battle. Hank tells the webslinger to shut up or else he’ll skip the lift. The Infected all start fighting amongst themselves who gets to eat from the Surfer. But Hank intervenes and orders everyone they’ve got to learn how to share. He picks up the Surfer and runs away with them.

While a group of infected follow Giant-Man, Hercules notices that the Hulk has collapsed and decides to investigate the mystery. He opens the unconscious’ Hulk’s mouth, and takes a closer look inside. He notices that the Hulk didn’t swallow the Surfer and that his head is still inside it, so someone can help him get it out. Nova sarcastically smiles at the good news. Hulk wakes up again and has overheard the discussion, and kills Hercules for it. Nova claims that they were only kidding and that the Hulk can have the head. Hulk runs away, shouting that he’s still hungry and wants more meat. As he shouts, part of the Surfer’s cosmic energy comes out of the Hulk’s mouth.

Giant-Man mentions to the Hulk that there’s nothing left to eat, as he and some other Infected already ate him. The Hulk is disappointed to hear that, since he wanted more. Beast angrily defends that he and most of the others didn’t get a piece to eat and is angry that nobody shared with them. The Colonel points his finger at Beast and tells him to shut up, reminding Hank that he would have done the same thing if he was in there place.

Suddenly, a blast comes from the Colonel’s hand and he kills Beast! It looks like that through eating the Surfer, they’ve all gotten a share of his cosmic powers. Giant-Man experiences the same thing and wants to see how this new power can help them get the whiney infected get extra crispy.

Elsewhere, the Black Panther has escaped from Hank’s lab and tries to escape together with Janet’s head. The Panther, almost without breath and badly injured, feels still woozy from the sedatives Hank gave him, but feels confident that he’ll make it, because he has to. Janet suggests that she gets a bite from T’Challa since she helped him escape. T’Challa tells Janet to shut up, as this is already hard enough as it is. Janet promises she won’t infect T’Challa, she just wants a little bite. T’Challa again begs Janet to just stop her whining. He continues his walk through the destroyed city.

The Panther can’t believe that this is what they are left with. This is the world as it is today. He says that, if the entire world is as ravaged as this city, he prays he never has to lay eyes on Wakanda. He couldn’t bear to see his homeland destroyed. Janet again begs to just have a taste. T’Challa explains to Janet that she has to stop her whining at once, because he refuses to feed her. It’s every disturbing to him that she would even ask him to do it. He threatens that if Janet doesn’t stop right now, he’ll just have to leave her behind.

Janet defends that the Panther doesn’t know what it’s like to be infected. She needs to feed as she without it, she can’t think straight. The hungrier she gets, the more the hunger seems to consume her. It’s hard to explain the craving and the need, as she aches to taste T’Challa’s flesh. She’s starving for it because she is in pain. The Panther thinks that this is madness. He only sees a severed head! Janet doesn’t even have a body. He believes that this sickness has consumed her and is keeping her alive somehow. But he knows that this hunger is all just inside her mind. He knows she can’t digest everything, as she doesn’t have a body. There is nowhere for the food to go. He wonders why this is all happening and why all this can’t be just a bad dream.

Suddenly, a voice angrily asks the Panther where their leader is. They want to know where Magneto has gone. The Panther turns around, and finds himself surrounded by the Acolytes! The Panther claims he has no idea where Magneto is. Cortez recognizes that the Panther is human, and… alive. He’s surprised to discover that fact.

Meanwhile, Giant-Man has eaten Thor and most other Infected, and thinks they’ve got one thing settled now: the dead taste horrible no matter how much you cook them. Luke thinks that’s a shame, as that leaves them with nothing else to eat. Stark notices that, thanks to the power he took from the Surfer, he can fly again, even without his propulsion boots on. He believes that everyone who has eaten from the Surfer should now be able to fly. He suggests that they use this newfound power to scout the world for more food, believing there’ve got to be some survivors out there.

Wolverine aggress with that. He adds that the best part is that now they won’t have to share them with anyone. The Colonel explains that it looks like they might have wiped these guys out too soon, as they could have used some help. Giant-Man doesn’t understand what the Colonel is talking about. The Colonel points Giant-Man to look right in front of him.

Galactus has arrived! Galactus explains to everyone that they better prepare to be devoured in his name, as their lives have to end so that he can live on. Although Galactus’ hunger is at its peak, he wants to pause for a moment and learn where his Herald has gone. When Giant-Man explains that they’ve eaten him, Galactus doesn’t believe his ears. The remaining Infected activate their cosmic powers, and inform Galactus that they are still hungry!

Characters Involved: 

Silver Surfer (uninfected Herald of Galactus)
Galactus (uninfected planet devourer)

Cargill, Fabian Cortez, Scanner, unclear members (all uninfected Acolytes)

Black Panther (uninfected human)

Archangel, Beast, Gambit, Storm, Wolverine (all infected X-Men)

Black Widow, Colonel America, Falcon, Giant-Man, Hercules, the Hulk, Iron Man, Luke Cage, Thor, Wasp (all infected Avengers)

Black Bolt, Captain Marvel, Crystal, Ghost Rider, Iron Fist, Moon Knight, Namor, Nova, Speedball (other infected heroes)

the Vulture (infected villain)

Story Notes: 

The cover is an homage to Incredible Hulk (2nd series) #340, though it has now the actual Wolverine and Hulk replaced by their Infected versions. Todd McFarlane gets credited in this issue because he drew the cover for Incredible Hulk (2nd series) #340.

Magneto got eaten by the infected in Marvel Zombies #1.

With this issue, due to the fact that most Infected have been eaten by the ones who feasted upon the Silver Surfer, the only surviving heroes are Colonel America, Giant-Man, the Hulk, Iron Man, Luke Cage, Spider-Man, the Wasp’s head and Wolverine.

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