Monday, August 20, 2018

Thor #4 Review - Marvel Monday

Thor #4 Review

Writer: Jason Aaron
Art Team: Mike Del Mundo, Marco D'Alfonso
Marvel Comics
Release Date: August 15, 2018
Cover Price: $3.99

It's Hel to Look At

With Dan Slott now off the Amazing Spider-Man, Jason Aaron currently appears to be the longest tenured writer on a big 2 title.  Having read all of his previous Thor work I jumped to review the book now that I finally know what I'm speaking about having read and understood all the history coming into this.  However something has happened since the Marvel Fresh Start relaunch of the title and it no longer possesses that magic it once had. With that being said Im keeping an open mind so lets see if issue four is the magic number that gets things back on track here going forward.

Last issue's cliffhanger was a bombshell reveal. Thanos, of all people, crashed the wedding that was to unite opposing sides of Hel's army against the Queen on Sindr. Coming into this I was expecting big things, so my hopes were high after last issue, despite not enjoying it a ton. However it's all quickly brushed under the rug when Thanos basically comes to say he "doesn't give a crap", and has better things to worry about, leaving Hela in a fury, as battle unfolds around everyone that continues to be difficult to interpret artistically.

So we finally have the big battle that's been setup for three issues, where there are a few big surprises mixed in, but they come so fast, and are over with before we really get a chance to appreciate them before moving onto another, it all comes off kind of hallow and not much really sticks. Thor gets a new helmet for a few panels, Thori has a crisis of conscience for about two panels, the Valkyries come and help Thor's side in battle (I guess). Between the art and it all just coming and going so fast it comes off difficult to follow and rings empty.

Really about the only thing that really sticks here is the surprise character who takes Balder's place at the alter, for reasons I'm not entirely clear on to be honest, resulting in at least some consequences for the arc. However this iteration of the series, despite each book only being normally sized, feels like it takes forever for me to get through an issue, and I cant quite determine why that is other than I'm not enjoying what I'm reading more than I am.

The issue concludes with Thor bringing some resolution to the battle of Hel, before getting sent back with his Earth boat full of trinkets to where this all started, minus Loki,  ready for their next battle.  There is also get a brief moment setting up the future of this series, and while there were a few enjoyable moments and reveals throughout, this series and the events playing out just doesn't have the same mojo that Aaron's previous iterations of Thor possessed.

Overall, the Marvel Fresh Start relaunch of Thor continues to be a rather dull and boring adventure, with too many characters each issue bogging down events and scenes, which ends up with things taking too long to develop, before resulting in slow and uninteresting reveals. I know Aaron has it in him to provide better but I wonder if he's coming up empty to keep providing fresh ideas into a title he's spearheaded for so long.

This is not a title I come to enjoying the art after the first three issues, and this issue actually looks worse than the previous issues, and it's still done by the same creative team this series started with.  The action continues to be hard to follow, the colors continue to hurt my eyes, and if it isn't a Weirdworld type of title I don't know what title I would recommend this team get moved to going forward. It's a very unquie indy type of of art, its much to stylistic to be a month to month feature for a main Marvel superhero title.

Bits and Pieces

While I enjoyed a few of the moments this issue, all the developments come at a hectic and fast pace then end before they get a chance to be appreciated, leaving the book feeling like too much time was spent developing threats, with little to no pay off by issues end, obviously with the exception of one big last swerve at the end. One of Marvel most consistent titles seems to be taking a dip, and with the art continuing to be muddy and un-enjoyable, this isn't a title I'd recommend to anyone but the biggest Thor fans right now. 


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