Written by Jason Aaron
Art by Chris Sprouse
Published by Marvel Comics
Release Date: July 29, 2015
The premise of Doom’s Battleworld, that being that Dr. Doom salvaged countless pieces of the Marvel omniverse and forged what remained into a single narrative space, is certainly novel in that is presents one of the few times so many pieces of Marvel history interact. In short: lots of things you’d never expect to happen totally happen. While Battleworld seems like it should be positively terrible on paper, the concept has provided some truly amazing ideas, with perhaps one of the best being the Thors series.
For starters, re-framing the ‘idea’ of Thor from ‘a singularly powerful warrior’ to ‘a group of powerful warriors’ is great and comparisons to the DC’s Green Lantern Corps series is not un-warranted. The ‘Thors’ police the domains of Doom’s various territories, thus acting as a warrior-police force. Aaron’s second issue of Thors moved beyond the premiere issue by immediately setting up the crux of the story: a Thor (Beta Ray Bill, now called Beta Ray Thor) was murdered and it is up to ‘Ultimate Thor’ (yes, the Thor from the Ultimate Universe) to solve the riddle behind the case’s one clue, a name. Jane Foster.
‘Ultimate’ Thor comes across a cavalcade of Thor-mythos homages: one of his partners is Thorg, the corpse of a hammer salesman named Donald Blake is a story piece, and ‘Ultimate’ Thor comes across another more familiar Thor. The inter-mixing of Thor elements makes Thors #2 a great comic because it honors different Thor elements (like Jane’s multiverse history) and it also plays with the idea of ‘what’ Thor is. Is is one person? If the essence of Thor can be summed up into one character, which Thor is it? Thors #2 puts forth some great questions to Thor-fans, all while providing a great detective story as the set-up. The last page also sets up Thors #3 to continue the trend.
Chris Sprouse continues to grant each Thor a unique look, some of whom carry over unique traits from their respective comics. Kirby-Thor ‘looks’ just like Thor once did, while the ‘Odinson/Unworthy’ Thor is artistically depicted with his trademark garb and weaponry. Sprouse’s work on this comic’s atmosphere should also be praised. The solemn halls of Valhalla’s Mead Hall in Manhattan is appropriately dark with low-lit candles while the backroom of a Roxxon building serves as a fittingly creepy grave for one famous Thor character. One I had not expected and whom I hope Aaron re-visits again in some way. On Battleworld, anything is possible, but it is Sprouse’s art which makes it work. His handle on two Thors coming to blows and speaking to each other is also masterfully tackled. Thanks to his great panel consistency with the two Thor’s placement, nobody should ever be lost when ‘Ultimate’ Thor trades blows with another Thor who I was happy to see return.
The second and third page splash is a great one. Check out the detail Sprouse put into the different Thors present, both there and then on pages four and five. Great art for a great comic.
The Verdict: 9.0/10