Sunday, March 2, 2014

Comic Review: Thor: God of Thunder Volume 2

    The second volume of Thor completes the God Butcher story arc (see my review of the first volume here).  It doesn’t mean all that much when I say Thor is the best thing Marvel is putting out right now.  But it is.  And they’ve managed to do a lot to make me give a crap about a character I never thought much of.  In fact, I would say this is almost for Thor what Kurt Busiek’s run on Conan a decade or so back was; getting to the root of the concept and getting it right.

    This volume stumble briefly at the beginning with the origin of the God Butcher.  It’s not interesting, and makes the villain somehow less complex.  It’s too trite, too cliché.  That said, once that chapter is done, and we get back to the story of Thor from three ages being thrust together to battle a madman bent on destroying all the gods that ever were or will be, things get cracking again.

    By the end of the volume, I was a bit frustrated by aspects of the post-climax resolution.  But co-Dork Brad assures me it isn’t the Planet Hulk/Marvel 1602 ending it looks like.  We’ll see.  I’m sure interested in continuing if the quality remains.  The art is gorgeous and the handling of Thor at three very different points in his exceptionally long life is fascinating.  I hope Aaron and Ribic continue on the line, which as I said is by far the best thing I’ve seen from Marvel in I don’t even know how long.  They’re a writer/artist team akin to Busiek and Nord (actually, Ribic is more consistently good than Nord).

    My complaint from the review of the first volume remains.  Marvel charging $25. for this very, very thin book is a crime.  I don’t know what’s up with Marvel recently, but their prices seem a)random and b) insane.  Both volumes collected together in one hard cover volume MIGHT warrant a $25. price tag.  And now the soft cover for volume 1 is out and it’s…that’s right, $20.  F you, Marvel.  F you.  The more I see prices like this the more I’ll be hitting the library or borrowing it from friends.  I’d love to have Thor on my shelf.  It’s absolutely the kind of book I’d own, read again, and suggest to others.  But at these prices, I’m not recommending buying it to anyone.

Thor: God of Thunder Volume 2: Godbomb
Author: Jason Aaron
Artist: Esad Ribic and Butch Guice
Publisher: Marvel Comics
ISBN: 978-0-7851-6843-0


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