Jason Aaron’s writing on Thor: God of Thunder has been some of the best of his career. The plots he’s written are tense and sprinkled with top-notch humor. Thor has rarely been a more relatable character than under Aaron. Even Aaron’s “filler” issues rank among my top picks of a given week.
But I’m starting to think that the real MVP of this book is Esad Ribic.
When Ribic is drawing the worlds of God of Thunder this book just sings. Every location is drawn in the grandest manner. It gives this book a truly epic feel that befits a story of gods.
That epic feel is just as true of any individual scene Ribic draws whether it is a fight with frost giants, an underwater sub battle, or even the Alaskan press conference of a smug CEO.
Despite all of the other fantastic artists that have contributed to this title, an issue of God of Thunder doesn’t really feel like an issue of God of Thunder unless it’s illustrated by Ribic.
This issue kicks off “The Last Days of Midgard” storyline that pits the present day Thor against ecological issues including global warming and the polluting companies perpetuating the damage to our planet.
At first it might not sound like the most compelling story for a Thor comic. But it is Thor’s job to protect Earth. Thor doesn’t want the planet that he has chosen to protect to wind up like so many of the other dead planets he has visited.
It’s a really unique take on Thor’s role as protector and when coupled with the flashforward to Old King Thor touring the dead Earth of the future, it puts the stakes into a real perspective.
Teaming up with Thor is rookie S.H.I.E.L.D. Agent Roz Solomon. She’s a great partner and potential love interest for Thor. Solomon is fiercely independent and just the right amount of stubborn. In other words, she can more than hold her own with Thor. It reminds me a lot of the terrific dynamic between Superman and Lana Lang in Greg Pak’s current run on Action Comics and I get the feeling that in a few issues time this dynamic will rival that one.
The plot from Jason Aaron is great as usual and the issue is elevated by the return of Esad Ribic. If you had jumped off of this story when “God Bomb” ended, now is the perfect time to come back.
Jason Aaron (W), Esad Ribic (A) • Marvel Comics, $3.99, February 12, 2014