Thor (#7 – 8, 2015) – Jason Aaron

3 out of 5

Okay, guilty of stepping into this one partway because I got confused which Thor title I was buying in the back-issue bins, seeing as how Jason Aaron has taken the title through… four? title changes by now.  So maybe that middle start is why this was sort of underwhelming, or maybe because I’d already seen the results of what this issue was building up to.  Maybe there was also the Marvel / DC malaise of having read issues after this and realizing that the story has been harping on the same plot (Dario Agger’s wacky Roxxon proxy-for-big-business plans!) for a while, i.e. nothing much ever really gets resolved in these hero books.  But I think mostly its because this is the tail end of a ‘reveal’ story – telling us who’s under Thor’s helmet – and besides already knowing the answer, stories of this nature tend not to hold up because everything is geared toward a fake out or a delay, hijacking any actual narrative.  To Jason’s credit, he stuffs the issue with a fun escalating battle with The Destroyer – even Odin’s pissed at not knowing who wields Mjolnir – and I do like his take on Rosalind Solomon.  The non-Thor behind the mask also washes away some of the mugging and masculine indulgences of the previous Thor series, making the generally lighter tone a successful fit.

Russel Dauterman’s art is already established as fantastic, and he again gets to show off his slick action choreography / paneling here.  Reading this back to back with his current issues, it seems his inking style may have tweaked a bit for the better; the issues after this have a slightly finer line.  And Matthew Wilson similarly proves to be an amazing color match.  While I love the paelette he’s settled on for Mighty Thor, which manages to be very bright and varied whole not over-bearing, as man-Thor is still in the story here, he appears to bring in some of the colder notes from his stories and it works well.

Fairly standard issues that maybe lack impact after the fact, but well effected and entertaining.