Thor #8 Review: The Female Thor Unmasked


Say this about Jason Aaron: he knows how to drag a mystery out until the very, very last second.

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The mystery in question is the identity of the current Thor, which has been central to the story Aaron and artist Russell Dauterman have been telling in the ongoing series of the same name since it was launched. And even though the female wielding Mjolnir was leaked online earlier this week, causing Marvel to simply own it, the fact that the reveal happens on the very last page of Thor #8, one that effectively ends this volume, means that you can simply sit back and enjoy the ride.

It’s a fun one, too, since Thor Odinson has gathered all of the names on his list of suspects (or at least the super-powered ones) to aid the new Thor against the Destroyer. The enchanted Asgardian battlesuit is being controlled by Odin’s brother at the behest of the All-Father in a misguided attempt to teach both Thor and his wife Feyja a lesson, and a huge battle takes up a big chunk of this issue as a result.

That set-up gives Dauterman the chance to draw the biggest fight of the series to date, and that’s saying something considering the tussles Thor had with the Frost Giants in earlier issues. I love how his panel layouts are more traditional during quieter moments and then get increasingly chaotic as things start popping off, and he certainly makes the action visceral despite the fact that gods are involved. Also, if you’ve ever said, “I wish I could see Dauterman draw [insert favorite Marvel character here],” you have a decent shot at seeing that here.

Aaron also shows a deft hand at writing the other female heroes even in cameo parts — Jessica Drew, for instance, is right on the money — and he gives us a sympathetic Odinson to boot. There’s even the promise that the unresolved gender war between the rulers of Asgard is far from over. The best Thor runs of the past have always made the Asgardians more human and relatable while maintaining their grandeur, and this arc has succeeded on that count.

After this … well, Aaron reveals in the letter column that ending the series here was always the plan thanks to Secret Wars. The female Thor looks set to be a major player in that event, and our Free Comic Book Day glimpse of the future shows her still wielding Mjolnir, so consider Thor #8 not a goodbye, but a farewell for now.


The battle is joined as we get a voiceover from Thor, whoever she is. Odin seems to be lost in thought as his brother Cul controls the Destroyer. Various members of Odinson’s all-female warrior brigade comment on the new Thor during the fight, including Karnilla, Sif, Spider-Woman and Captain Marvel.

Odinson still wants to know who Thor really is, while Freyja takes matters into her own capable hands, stabbing the Destroyer in the face with her sword.

Odinson tries to hack off the Destroyer’s arm to keep it from strangling Freyja, but Odin orders Cul to call off the Destroyer, realizing that his wife has already succeeded in making him look like the bad guy. Freyja comments that Thor has made an enemy of Odin, and thus cannot risk setting foot in Asgardia.

As the various women return to their homes, Thor and Odinson are left to have a long-delayed heart-to-heart. Odinson thinks he’s got it figured out because S.H.I.E.L.D. agent Roz Solomon is the only name left on his list, and he promises to reveal what Nick Fury whispered to him to make him unworthy of Mjolnir if Thor will just come clean. Imagine his surprise, then (and Dauterman does a great job of having him stare with mouth open in surprise for four straight panels), when Roz shows up, taking Thor to task for ruining her undercover work on Roxxon Island.

Thor leaves Roz and Odinson to talk while we check in with Freyja and Malekith, seeing plot threads which could be picked back up after Secret Wars. Finally, we see Thor hurl the hammer away, and she changes back to Jane Foster, telling us that she’ll continue to be Thor even though it is worsening her already poor health.

Favorite Moment: I’ve already mentioned it: Odinson going from smugly self-assurance to total shock when Roz shows up. Well-played by both writer and artist.

Final Thought: I’m glad that Marvel doesn’t seem to be in a hurry to restore Odinson to the hammer (or Steve Rogers to the shield, for that matter), as I feel like we’re only just getting to know this Thor. With one arc down, it’s safe to say this wasn’t merely a sales-boosting gimmick, but a story worth telling. I’m just not ready for it to end yet.

Next: Five others who have wielded Mjolnir

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