“How do I fly? I can fly with this thing, right? Wait. I’ve seen Thor do this before. You… whip it around really fast like this, right? Then you throw it as hard as you can and just… hang on.”
If Thor #1 was all about setting the scene for the new series, Thor #2 is all about introducing the new Goddess of Thunder. That much is clear from the first page, which shows her learning to fly with Thor’s hammer, Mjolnir. It’s a gripping opening scene, with the new superhero’s sense of childlike awe and heroic duty both shining through.
This is a constant throughout issue #2. The issue doesn’t tell us who Thor is, in terms of a civilian identity – that’s a card I think the creators will hold onto for a little while, yet – but it tells us who she is, as a person.
This comes through wonderfully in the contrast between Thor’s spoken words and her inner monologue, which runs throughout. In picking up Mjolnir, Thor took on the mantle of the hammer’s former owner in full – not just in a name and a costume, but in the way she talks, too. She has a noble, Asgardian style of speech – “Nay, no time for questions. Midgard is in peril. I must away.”
Her thoughts, on the other hand, are decidedly human in their delivery. “Oh, man. Oh, wow. Quick, say something badass,” she thinks to herself, after dishing out a dose of pain to a Frost Giant who saw her as a meal. Through these vastly different styles of speech, we get to see both sides of Thor – the kickass superhero, and the regular Jane Doe who finds herself suddenly transformed into kickass superhero – side by side, in every panel. It makes her both awe-inspiring and down to Earth, a character you can simultaneously relate to and look up to.
Speaking of being kickass, Thor makes it clear that she’s every bit as powerful as her predecessor. The story sees her caught in the crossfire in a fight between the Frost Giants and Roxxon Corp, neither of whom are particularly friendly. Her status as a “scrawny little girl” comes into question often, and every time, she proves her worth to wield Mjolnir. It’s good to see that Marvel haven’t simply gender-swapped the character to get headlines and left it at that, but are using the opportunity to challenge the way women are viewed in comics.
Dautermann’s art underlines Aaron’s script expertly, and just as with the writing, both the playful and determined sides of Thor come through in the art. One of my favourite panels in the issue is a full-page spread of her flying for the first time, grinning from ear to ear, reacting to a newfound ability to fly just as you’d expect from any regular human. My other favourite is the polar opposite – Thor, hovering above a pile of defeated Frost Giants, with a look of fierce determination on her face
“And the name isn’t wench!” she bellows. “I am… the Goddess of Thunder!”