The new Thor sees Jason Aaron take one of Marvel’s most recognizable characters in a very new direction. Not only is Thor a new person, this person is a whole new gender. This bold direction is an interesting move since the Thor character is very front and center in their cinematic universe. It may be a big headline grab to try and move issues off the shelf. They may just be trying to do something new and fresh to tell an interesting story. Whatever the reason the real question is does it work?
Issue one’s opening pages give us a look at a familiar foe, the Frost Giants. The title page clues us into Odin returning from a self-imposed exile, and his wife Freyja, who was ruling in his absence, does not wish to relinquish her rule. Their son Thor has been deemed unworthy by the hammer Mjolnir. Aaron’s script weaves together three storylines. First we have the subtle beginnings of a possible conflict between Odin and Freyja. Odin has an immense ego and pride in himself. He come’s back guns blazing confident he can rule the kingdom, help Thor, and set things right. The other is a conflict between Thor and Mjolnir. Thor is rendered helpless without his hammer. He almost pines after it. Oh yes also there are frost giants attacking earth. Thor eventually leaves Mjolnir on the moon so that he can try to help earth. This leads to the climax of the issue and ultimately ends with the new Thor that is shown on the cover appearing on the last page.
The art in the book is great. The male Thor art really captures the depression of him becoming unworthy. He still has his magnificence in stature, but also looks broken. The art also perfectly gets across Odin’s stubborn pride and anger, and Freyja stoicism and calm. The emotion of the character art really adds to the story. The lettering difference between regular people and Asgardians is a very cool touch. The stand out panel in the issue for me is the panel that shows the lettering on Mjolnir changes from “If He be worthy…” to “If She be worthy…”
Overall I love the story so far. It has a few interesting set ups for future issues. I love the art. The characters really come alive in the panels. The issue ends with me really wanting to see what the new “Goddess of Thunder” has to offer. My biased “smash the patriarchy” rating would be a 5, but my honest rating is a 4/5 for the first offing in a new exciting direction for Thor.
***First Issue Spoiler Alert!***
Thor number one ended with Malekeith The Accursed seemingly introducing the male Thor to his demise. Malekeith was on a quest to find an item, and he is killing to find it. Back on the moon an unknown woman is able to lift the legendary hammer, Mjolnir, and thus become “The Goddess of Thunder”. We are left with a few questions. We have the tiff between Odin and Freyja and how that is going to turn out. What is Malekeith looking for? Can anyone stop him and the Frost Giants? Most importantly who now wields Mjolnir and what can she do?
Issue two we get our first glimpse of the new Thor in action. The struggle between a broken Thor and his need to reclaim his former glory and weapon is replaced with the struggle of a new Thor to figure out exactly what it means to have this power and how to use it. This struggle is amuzingly played out between thought bubbles of a woman who is unsure of everything and the very confidant and sure Asgardian speak of Thor. The conversation between her thoughts and her speak really comes across great with the difference in normal person lettering in her thoughts and the Asgardian lettering of spoken word.
In the ensuing battle between Thor and the Frost Giants we are introduced to a couple new characters and have a couple of the questions from the first issue answered. The art again does a very good job of capturing the characters emotions and adding to the story. The Frost Giants look great. My favorite panel in this issue is when we see Thor battle the Frost Giants’ “Mutts”.
Thor #2 has a wonderful blend of seriousness and comedy. The inner conversations of Thor are both entertaining and also show a need for this Thor to become more comfortable with her new found powers. The action panels are great. It did a great job of making the new Thor’s task look very formidable. I’m really looking forward to issue three.
My Rating 4.5/5