The previous issue of Mighty Thor mostly focused on Volstagg taking care of kids in the middle of a war situation. It started off as hopeful and optimistic, but turned tragic when the kids were killed. The ending showed Volstagg picking up the ultimate Universe’s Mjolnir and becoming The War Thor. I was somewhere between excited to see what would become of this and nervous about what writer Jason Aaron is doing with Volstagg, a normally upbeat and optimistic character. Whatever you feel about it, this issue focuses mostly on him unleashing his newfound power.
Most of this issue takes place in Nidavellir, the realm of the dwarves. It’s under siege by The Queen of Cinder’s army of fiery monsters, and it looks like the dwarves are in trouble. Mountains are on fire. The fire monsters are attacking from both the ground and the air. And then a massive storm shows up, and The War Thor starts destroying the enemy. Whatever you think of Volstagg becoming such an angry Thor, the action scene is really epic. After the Enchantress and the king of trolls appear, Volstagg shows off some of the ultimate hammer’s unique qualities compared to the main universe’s hammer. Namely that it can deflect magical attacks. Besides the action, there’s a small moment updating us on what happening with Jane Foster after she collapsed at the end of the previous issue. Without spoilers, it feels like we’re building up to the end of Jane Foster’s run as Thor.
The art by Valerio Schiti is great. The opening page shows the dwarf realm covered in fire and lava, with tall mountains and smoke in the backgrounds. It’s very well detailed and sets the scene quickly. All of the action feels big, with massive storms and tornados in the backgrounds while Volstagg is blasting fiery monsters with lightning and smashing them with his hammer. The fury in his eyes perfectly demonstrates his mindset at the time. The Enchantress’s look of shock when the hammer deflects her magic attack ads in a touch of fear that works absolutely perfectly. The colouring by Veronica Gandini is also great. Despite the overly red look of the realm on fire, there’s a lot of colour variety thanks to the black clouds, the blue lighting and the Enchantress’s overall green look.
I get why someone may be nervous about Volstagg going full blown dark, but there’s a moment where he’s briefly separated from the hammer and he starts to snap to his old self. It suggests that the War persona is more from the hammer than it is from Volstagg himself. That may not ease everyone’s concerns, but is a neat extra angle. Either way this is a very intense, action focused issue. The fighting is awesome, but how you feel about the comic may depend on your thoughts regarding Volstagg becoming the War Thor. I enjoyed this comic, but I’m not sure whether to recommend it or not.