Thor #16 Review

by Charles Martin on August 28, 2019

Thor #16 Review
Writer: Jason Aaron
Artist: Mike del Mundo
Colourists: Mike del Mundo & Marco D'Alfonso
Letterer/Producer: Joe Sabino
Publisher: Marvel Comics

Thor #16 delivers a sweeping coda to the War of the Realms, touching base with just about every Asgardian character. 

It's time for Thor's coronation party, and the man himself is conspicuously absent. The story doesn't make any real mystery about Thor's whereabouts; he's getting on with the business of all-fathering, lending a charitable, godly hand wherever it's needed. The more insightful members of his supporting cast figure this out on their own.

Even though his page time is sharply limited, it's not hard to extract marvellous, meaningful conclusions about Thor. He's shown completing three different missions of mercy. Two are on Earth. The final one, though, takes him to Svartaflheim. 

It's a powerful demonstration that while the Odinson will always love Midgard, his new throne governs a larger kingdom, and All-Father Thor understands that.

This issue's wide-ranging Asgardian survey touches plenty of other characters, and everyone who gets lines gets a little slice of greatness. The biggest share, I think, belongs to Odin.

The old All-Father doesn't get his chance to make a big speech about his son. Instead, he shares his thoughts only with his wife, and that intimate setting lends Odin's words far more weight than they would have if they were bellowed into a crowd. 

Jason Aaron's singularly epic vision for Thor has gifted us with huge developments for many characters, and this issue reminds us that Odin is one of the foremost. His road has been a painful one; he's been in the wrong a lot, practically an antagonist at some points. 

Here at the end, Odin circles back to the same conclusions he drew in Thor #10. He has been surpassed by his son. While Odin was initially bitter and self-destructive about that, now his pride in Thor is earnest and touching. 

It's quite a destination to reach, and this is just one of the final steps in Mr. Aaron's Thor journey that feels breathtakingly right.

The trip the script takes us on is illustrated by one last serving of Mike del Mundo's Thor art. His style has always been an acquired taste, and readers who bristle at his painterly preference for powerful moods over fiddly details won't find any last-minute tonal shifts here.

It is particularly well-suited, though, to a brisk and far-roving script like this one. The vibrant life in the art sells the spectacular scope and makes even this (almost) conflict-free epilogue feel tense. The colours collaborate seamlessly, tending toward monochrome development of individual panels but embracing a full spectrum as the story winds through its many different setpieces.

Thor #16 is a warm, satisfying sendoff to Thor's vast supporting cast, offering a few peeks at the man himself in the course of surveying his friends and family. The art is vibrant and varied and the script is eager to supply exquisite insights - particularly when it comes to giving Odin closure.

Our Score:


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Charles Martin's picture
While Odin's moment was the Big One for me, don't doubt there's lots of love to go around. Young Thor, for instance, gets a shorter but equally-powerful finale.