Saturday, December 11, 2010

Thor The Mighty Avenger #7

I have to take some of the heat for Thor The Mighty Avenger being canceled.

When the first issue came out, I didn't buy it. (You can't buy everything.)

But then my friends started telling me how good it was. By the time the fourth issue came out, I decided to take the plunge and pick up all four issues (my comics shop still had copies on the shelf - good for me, bad for the title).

I was glad I caught onto the comic - it was (and is) an absolute delight. A fresh, fun look at the Marvel version of Thor, it washed away all the past continuity and recast the basic concept.

That's not easy to do - the Ultimate series is littered with the bodies of comics titles that creative teams decided to "improve." (They didn't.)

But writer Roger Langridge has been clever about what he kept and what he discarded. He kept the basics of the mythology, while jettisoning the concept of the alter ego, Dr. Don Blake. He kept the sweet romance between Thor and Jane, put Thor (and the reader) in the dark about why Thor has been sent to Earth, and shows the Thunder God being a down-to-Earth hero of the people, doing the right thing because it's the right thing to do.

It's funny, touching and just plain fun to watch Thor discover this new world and fall in love with Jane Foster.

The art is a perfect match for the series - Chris Samnee has a fresh, original style that evokes the feel of a Kirby and a Ditko without aping their styles - but it has that classic comics aura around it. This is an artist to watch.

Sadly, we'll have to watch him elsewhere, because the powers that be have decided next issue is the last for this series. Perhaps the sales will spike or the chorus of fans will make themselves heard, and we'll see more of this excellent version of Thor.

Here's hoping!

Grade: A


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