Writer: Dan Jurgens
Artist: Tom Mandrake
Publisher: Marvel Comics
As the mysterious group planning to deal with the problem of Thor make their move, we see their first step is to lure Thor to a meeting, where nuclear bomb is set off. We then see the second attack involves a military style attack upon the city of Asgard, and with technology & weaponry provided by Dr. Doom, this assault squad looks to be having great success. Meanwhile an enraged Thor emerges out of the smoking crater.
On one hand it's great to see this story coming to a head, as the Asgard on Earth premise is nearing its year & a half stage, and I have to admit that I'm about ready for some new ideas to enter the picture. However, as we close in on what looks to be a very impressive big finish, with a full scale military assault being carried out on the city of Asgard, and an atomic bomb being used to attack Thor it's starting to become very difficult to ignore the fact that the events that are playing out in these pages are not seen in any other Marvel title. Given this issue has pieces of Asgard raining down on Manhattan, destroying a sizeable chunk of that city, I'm starting to get the uneasy feeling that us readers can expect a big temporal reset to take place in the near future, that will effectively prevent Thor from moving down this disastrous path, and the reason why the events playing out in Thor have been largely ignored in the other Marvel titles is because they have advance knowledge that this entire Asgard on Earth premise will be wiped out. Now this is simple conjecture on my part, and the crossover with Iron Man & the Avengers, would seem to suggest that this book is linked to the Marvel Universe proper, and is not playing out in a divergent timeline. However, this issue has events that are simply too big for the other books to pretend haven't happened.
As for the art I have to say I'm delighted by the idea of Tom Mandrake delivering an issue of Thor, as he's one of the few artist whose work is able to match the raw intensity & sense of power that John Romita Jr. brought to these pages, and he's also a pretty decent artist in his own right. This issue certainly has some wonderful visuals to offer up, such as the detonation of the nuclear device, and the final pages of this issue are also quite impressive, as how can one not love the sense of fury that will carry us into the next issue.
One can't deny that Dan Jurgens has certainly gotten this story into a new gear, as this issue has a sense of doom & gloom about it that makes for a highly engrossing reading experience. I mean how many issues can one point to in which our hero is standing at the heart of a nuclear explosion, or seeing the city of Asgard and the gods that dwell within it fall victim to a brutal, and surprisingly, highly effective military assault. Now I will concede that there might be some fans who will likely be upset by the rather poor showing by the gods of Asgard, but the element of surprise certainly counts for something, and with the help of technology provided by Dr. Doom, I have little trouble accepting the idea that the humans would be having such success. Plus, one can't help but be impressed by the idea that Thor managed to survive a direct blast from a nuclear bomb. I am a bit concerned though that this story has become far too grandiose for it to continue to be ignored by the rest of the Marvel Universe though.
What did you think of this book?
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