In 2020 I want to do something different, we review Inhumans comics all the time on the Podcast but miss so much else when sharing with you guys. So, in 2020 I want to challenge myself to review different books every week – this might prove too difficult, time consuming or just unmanageable, but other people manage it so I will try my best.
This week, Thor #1 by Don Cates, Nik Klein, Matthew Wilson and Joe Sabino hit the shelves, like Mjolnir against stone – it smashed it.
I’ve been a huge fan of Don Cates since Cosmic Ghost Rider, we’ve grumbled about his handling about Death of Inhumans on the Podcast of course but that’s by the by now – we’ve moved on. But other than a blip along the way, he’s a superb writer and just has the coolest ideas when it comes to Cosmic Marvel – which as you may know are the books I adore.
Cates had a lot to live up to, Jason Aaron being on the book for 7 years meant that everything he crafted came to an end after War of the Realms. I do highly recommending going back and re-reading all of his run by the way, it’s so well crafted and does an awful lot for our God of Thunder and introduced Jane Foster as Thor – then as Valkyrie. I digress, coming off of Aaron’s run I got the feeling that Cates was and is going to have to do something completely different. Whew boy. It’s different.
Asgard is rebuilt, not in the “traditional” manner, no gold, no huge grandeur – but a humble Asgard. Stone and wood is all Thor Odinson chose to rebuild out of, I think looking back on Aaron’s run it’s a testament to everything Thor has gone through in the past 7 years, being Worthy, then Unworthy, then finding an ex is the new Thor as well as all the other stuff inbetween it seems that the humble nature of Asgard is appropriate.
But upon Thor’s return to Asgard it appears nothing ever goes to plan.
Thor seemingly following his father from Aaron’s last issue (Thor #16, 2018) where Odin himself was unable to make his speech, Thor is interuppted snow and a surprise guest. In true cosmic style, it’s Galactus. Originally introduced in the pages of the Fantastic Four he literally crash lands into Asgard, not to destroy of feed upon it but to request help from Thor himself.
A new cosmic menace, one only Galactus has seen before in the Universe before, the “Star Plague” or “Black Winter” (the end of the Universe basically) – he requests aid and subsequently passes out. Asgard, counting the fallen and rebuilding once again.
But Thor starts with an idea.. An idea to bring together some remarkable people…
That’s right, the former Herald’s of Galactus. They gather together and it is the Silver Surfer, Norrin Radd appearing ghostlike through a wall and entirely black, not silver who explains what the Star Plague actually is – this is following the events of Silver Surfer: Black (also written by Cates).
The next few pages are what everyone has come for, the big surprise at the end. I loved it, Thor and the Herald’s all approach Galactus. It becomes understood that Galactus has looked upon the plague and seen the embodiment of his death. Thor. But not at that time, not on Asgard.
Galactus himself endows Thor with power, he becomes the Herald of Thunder.
Holy shit guys, at this point I had already bought and paid for every subsequent issue of this book. It really is that good, of course my favourite kind of stories are those of the cosmic kind, and Cates seems to be exactly the kind of writer I enjoy and I am really so happy that he’s at Marvel.
The art too is superb, Nik Klein and Matthew Wilson do an all together amazing job on this book, admittedly I was never particularly a fan of Del Mundo on Thor, absolutely nothing on his art as it’s beautiful, it’s just not my thing. I think the creative team on this book is going to absolutely rock and it matches the story that Cates is telling.
This book leaves me wanting more, as is with the majority of Cates’ writing. It really is a new beginning for Thor and it’s the story that I’ve really been craving since Ragnarok came out in cinemas – a real fun cosmic story. I am so looking forward to #2 and beyond.
Catch you next week!