For several months we have been receiving word from Marvel about several DRASTIC changes taking place throughout the Marvel Universe. Everything from the aging of Captain America, to Iron-Man’s supposed turn to the dark side. However, none has been more so controversial than that of the announcement of Thor’s gender swap.
Yes, the Asgardian god of thunder is falling to the power of transformation, and has been announced to become a Woman in October of this year. Marvel made this announcement several months ago, but left VERY little information for us to chew on as to WHY he was suddenly getting a much larger breast plate. The only information we WERE given was that this was THOR, not LADY THOR, or Madame Thor, but she will be referred to as THOR. She is not a replacement, or a substitute, or side character, but THOR. So everyone continued to wonder, WHO IS THIS PERSON? HOW ARE THEY BECOMING THOR? WHY?
Well, we received our first clue during the last issue of the Original Sin event title. In Original Sin, Nick Fury whispered a secret given to him when he stole the Watcher’s eye into Thor’s ear. Ever since then Thor has NOT been able to lift the hammer. And this is EXACTLY where THOR #1 starts us off from, albeit several WEEKS of attempting to lift the Hammer had passed before we received this issue…
On the moon, and in the shadow of the city of Asgardia, the gods of the Norse pantheon sit and watch as Thor continues to struggle as he attempts to lift his mighty hammer Mjolnir. Odin arrives, apparently after being away on a cosmic vacation, (it wasn’t fully explained, but it’d probably well known to regular readers of Thor) and berates the situation his son finds himself in. He even goes as far as to blame his wife, as she had been in charge of Asgardia acting as ALLMOTHER for some time. However, when none of the heroes 3, Sif, or even Odin himself can lift the hammer, they find the situation rather dire.
Even though he had originally cast the spell which only allows the worthy to hold Mjolnir, Odin himself cannot lift the uru hammer. More infighting amongst the gods continues as Thor makes his leave of them. He finally decides that if he cannot wield Mjolnir, he will fight with another weapon. In this case, he proceeds to the Hall of Weapons and retrieves Jarnbjorn, an axe designed and enchanted to kill CELESTIAL gods. In fact the axe has done so quite recently in the pages of Uncanny Avengers.
Just as well, Thor’s help is required more now than ever. Word of his fall from grace has seeped across the 9 realms, and all manner of creature, including FROST GIANTS, and the dark elf Malekith. These creatures have begun invading earth by way of the deep ocean floor, and plan to make their way to the surface shortly.
Yeah…Thor aint having ANY of that, and so he takes to the scene, but sadly, even with the power of Jarnbjorn, Thor is far to weak without his hammer to take on an army of Frost Giants. the power of the TRUE god of thunder is needed. And so, upon the moon, a shadowed figure reaches for the hammer, and takes it in hand. the scripture upon the hammer suddenly changes. Where it once read:
“If he be worthy, shall posses the power of Thor.”
“If SHE be worthy, shall posses the power of Thor”
AND THUS SHE-THOR IS BORN! Honestly, this issue seems very rushed in spaces, and feels unpolished in terms of story. Odin’s long term disappearance is mentioned but NOT explained to new readers, which I am SURE this book was designed to draw in. Malekith suddenly appearing alongside the frost giants seems somewhat jarring and unexplained as well.
But honestly, the reveal of Thor was quite a shock to me. They make it QUITE obvious as to WHO the new wielder is, but keep it JUST out of reach for the slower readers. I feel this transfer of power will make for an interesting Asgardian family dynamic in upcoming stories, but I am also disappointed in the initial presentation of the premise. This also puts the Original Sin event into a certain perspective. While the event acted as a way to kick-start a few stories in other titles, such as the introduction of SILK in Spider-man, and the discovery of Deadpool’s daughter, I feel the end-game was just to bring us here. The initiate Thor’s fall from grace and deliver us a female counterpart to take his place until the next Thor film comes out.
If you want to ride the hype train, be my guest. However, unless this story shapes up in the next issue, I plan on getting off at the next stop.