Thor – the god of thunder, member of the Avengers, son of Odin and prince of Asgard, is deemed unworthy of wielding the mighty hammer Mjolnir. Rising out of the downward spiral of his unworthiness, a new warrior emerges to become worthy of wielding the hammer – and she becomes the new Thor.
So what does this mean for the Thor that we’ve known all our lives? He’s still here, but a mystery woman is taking on the heavy title of Thor in one of the biggest and most controversial changes the Marvel universe has ever seen.
If you’re unfamiliar with Thor or wondering why this would be such a big deal, it’s because the very identity of someone we know as Thor is literally changing. He’s considered one of the “A-list” Marvel characters, going back decades into the Marvel vaults. For some fans, merely changing his outfit would be enough to throw a fit over, let alone making Thor a woman.
Thankfully, the book stands on its own as a great story with what will surely be one bad ass warrior. Writer Jason Aaron makes it very clear, that this is not some female version of Thor in an alternative universe, but the one and only:
“This is not She-Thor. This is not Lady Thor. This is not Thorita. This is THOR. This is the THOR of the Marvel Universe. But it’s unlike any Thor we’ve ever seen before.”
In the premiere issue of Thor, the focus is actually not on the new Thor, but on the unworthy Odinson (the former Thor) and his parents, Odin and Freyja. We don’t see the new Thor until the very end in an awesome full page panel reveal.
What I loved most about this issue is how artist Russell Dauterman portrays Thor in all his vulnerability and helplessness upon being deemed unworthy of lifting his hammer. He’s still a huge, chiseled man built like a god, but in nearly every scene he’s hunched over, head down, laying on the floor or being coddled by his mother, Freyja. It’s a portrayal of Thor that we’re not used to seeing, compared to his brute strength and raw power. For the first time in my life, I thought I could kick Thor’s ass.
The most interesting conflict in this issue, however, is between his parents. Odin comes back home after a self-imposed exile, ready to take over as ruler again, but his wife and current All-Mother and ruler of Asgard, isn’t quite sure that’s the best idea for their people and isn’t so eager to give up her rule. I found it hilarious seeing Odin flip out and rage over everything, with the stern, and cool demeanor of Freyja acting like a true leader, all while their son is in the middle of an existential crisis of sorts. I can’t wait to see how that dynamic plays out.
I found this premiere issue for a new series to be exactly what it needed to. It set the scene and tone for what’s to come, presented a lot of conflict, and left a lot of mystery to be solved, including the identity of the new Thor. Not once did I feel like the female Thor was a gimmick, as it all feels very natural and expected that the new Thor should be a woman, considering Freyja’s rule as the All-Mother and protector of her people.
After the last panel, I wanted to read more, and can definitely recommend this series to anyone who wants to jump right into the beginning of what I’m sure will be a fun ride.
Does this get Shortboxed?
Since it’s just the first issue, this one is a “wait and see.” It has a lot of potential to be a really great series, and if it stands up to the hype surrounding it, then it could find a way into my shortbox.
Where to get it
Thor #1 came out last Wednesday, October 1, and should be readily available at your local comic book store, or you can read the digital comic on your computer or tablet by purchasing it through the Marvel Digital Comic Shop for $3.99. Future issues in the ongoing series will be released monthly.
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