One of the noblest and most tormented cosmic entities in the universe, the Silver Surfer treasures freedom above all else, but has often sacrificed his liberty for the greater good. He was born Norrin Radd on the planet Zenn-La, part of an extremely long-lived and technologically advanced humanoid race which had created a worldwide utopia devoid of crime, disease, hunger, poverty, and want of any kind. Norrin's mother Elmar, ill-suited to this stifling environment, eventually killed herself. Urged on by his atypically ambitious father Jartran, Norrin was raised as a grimly intellectual youth, encouraged to seek knowledge, advancement, and achievement rather than the aimless hedonism which had come to dominate Zenn-Lavian society. However, a disgraced Jartran would later commit suicide himself after he was accused of idea theft (though not before he had taken a new lover and fathered another son, Fennan, unknown to Norrin). Despite his lifelong love, Shalla-Bal, Norrin grew into a restless soul who longed for challenge and struggle, immersing himself in histories of Zenn-La's adventurous ancient past.