‘Cross the Rainbow Bridge of Asgard, where the booming Heavens roar, you’ll behold the breathless wonder, The God of Thunder, MIIIIIIIIIIIGHTY THOR!
Thanks to Stan Lee and Marvel Comics, a character from Norse mythology got an upgrade. to straight up superhero.
Due to his son’s enormous ego, Odin punished Thor by banishing him not only to Midgard, (Earth) but also confining him to the body of a partially crippled human doctor, Donald Blake. In the early days, Donald Blake had but to strike his cane on the ground and ZAP he was transformed into the son of Odin, the Thunder-god, The Mighty Thor. His cane became Mjolnir, Thor’s mystical hammer that could only be wielded by those worthy. Truth be told, though, the name is harder to pronounce than the hammer is to wield.
(By the way, according to Stan “The Man” Lee the proper pronunciation is Myol-near.)
Thor would eventually be able to shed the alter ego of Donald Blake, however throughout the years he would share the same space with a couple of other regular guys.
Aside from his amazing strength, power over thunder, and his very non-Norwegian Shakespearean English, Thor was an original Avenger, and along with Captain America and Iron Man is considered one of the Marvel’s big three when it comes to Earth’s Mightiest Heroes.
I jest a bit about the name of the hammer and the English, but Thor is a character that, in comics, has always intrigued me. He truly is a god among men. He fights with ferocity and honor, and he is a true and loyal friend. Watching Thor fight along side his companions in the Avengers is always interesting because he truly enjoys the interaction with them. Aside from Dr. Doom, however, there are very few earthbound villains that can truly give Thor a run for his money.
It’s as interesting as any other super hero story when The Son of Odin is pitted against Earth’s mightiest villains, but the thing that makes reading Thor so much fun is getting to know the world that he is from. Walking the mystical world of Asgard and meeting the gods and warriors that make Thor’s supporting cast shows us that not only is he revered on Earth, but the residents of Asgard fear and respect him as well.
I started reading Thor during Walt Simonson’s legendary run with the character, so that is my point of reference on all things Thor. I don’t know that anyone has really gotten their mind around the character the way that Simonson did. Somehow, he showed how ole Goldilocks was able to stay interesting here on Earth or across the Rainbow Bridge. Simonson sold me on the character.
He’s as visually interesting as his character is fun to enjoy, all of that coupled with some huge battles and great stories make it easy for Thor to crack my top ten.
A couple of my favorite Thor moments:
- In the Ultimate Marvel U., I had a great time with Thor’s godhood being doubted by those around him.
- Thor vs. Hulk. Any battle between the two, but my favorite was a tale told in issue nmber 385. In it, Thor not only battled the green behemoth to a virtual stalemate, but found himself battling his pride as well. Really good stuff.
- Thor vs. Juggernaut – In The Mighty Thor issues 411 and 412, Thor and Juggernaut tear it up fighting each other. In the end, Thor is forced to use his enchanted hammer to transport Juggernaut away from Earth. The cool part about this fight, though, is the moment when Thor, blasting away at Juggernaut with his hammer and all his power not only stops the unstoppable Cain Marko but begins to push him back. It was awesome.
Due to being out of comics lately, I haven’t been able to follow the exploits of Thor through his apparent death and rebirth as closely as I like, but he’s on my short list of books to get into as soon as possible.
Valiant, powerful, a true friend and compatriot in battle, The Mighty Thor is definitely one of my favorites.