Thor #7 Review

by Nick Devonald on September 16, 2020

Writer: Donny Cates
Artist: Aaron Kuder
Colours: Matt Wilson
Letters: VC’s Joe Sabino

Since Donny Cates has taken the reigns of Thor he’s teased the reader with the knowledge that Mjolnir has been getting heavier for Thor. Now he’s exploring exactly what that means with this issue, the first in the two-part Hammerfall story-arc. It’s an excellent issue, and has throw backs to a number of previous Thor stories, plenty of little nods and references for long time fans to appreciate whilst being subtle enough not to alienate newer readers. While the reader might not get any answers yet to what is going on with Mjolnir it’s nice to explore it a little more, and to find out that Cates isn’t just retreading old ground here.

The other focus of the story is on Thor meeting with Beta Ray Bill. Bill has been a staple of Cates cosmic work, featuring heavily in both Death of the Inhumans and Guardians of the galaxy. It’s clear that Cates has big plans for the character and having a lot of fun with him. Speaking of Cates run on Inhumans and Guardians, it’s clear that seeds have been sown from there which are beginning to sprout now in his run on Thor. It’ll be interesting to see how it develops. One of the joys of reading Cates’ comics are the way that he plans stories out far in advance, with tiny bits of foreshadowing which have greater implications on re-reading.

Another great staple of Cates’ work is the way he takes a story which at first glance appears to have been done before, but then puts a new spin on it and surprises readers by taking the story in a completely different direction. Thor has lost his hammer in the past, but this isn’t simply a repeat of that storyline. It’s still too early to tell where the Mjolnir storyline will take the reader but it’s clear it’ll be in a new and different direction to anything which has come before.

For this storyline the artistic reigns have been passed over to guest artist Aaron Kuder, who’s taking over the art duties until Nic Klein returns in #9. He does a great job of recreating Klein’s new version of Asgard, complete with Galactus armour, but it’s the scene’s between Thor and Bill which really stand out. Both without their armour, talking as equals, he captures their expressions really well. And considering Bill’s face looks like a horse that’s talent indeed.

We’re still joined by regular colour artist Matt Wilson, which helps to make this issue feel consistent with the other comics in this run. His rainbow bridge always stands out in particular, but it’s seening Wilson work with a different artist that really highlights how important his colours are to the series, and they continue to be excellent here.

Donny Cates knows just how long to tease readers before giving them answers, and he’s timed that to perfection here by exploring Mjolnir’s new problems. Filled with plenty of references to previous Thor stories it’s sure to delight long time fans without alienating newer readers. It’s nice to see Beta Ray Bill having a larger role. Guest artist Aaron Kuder does a fantastic job with the art in Kleins absence. Another excellent issue in an extraordinary run.

Our Score:


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