Issue(s): Thor #386
Thor is ready to head back out to Midgard immediately, but the Warriors Three convince him to stick around for a while and go on a random quest with a six pack of ale.
Meanwhile, the Vizier tells Balder that the fact that the Rainbow Bridge is broken is causing instability in Asgard, and we see that the Egyptian god Seth has a spy in Asgard, who conveys that information back to her master.
Being a god of death, Seth rewards his spy by killing her.
Thor and the Warriors actually do find a monster on their quest...
...and Thor follows it through one of the dimensional rifts to the land of Avalon, where he's confronted by Leir, the Celtic god of lightning.
The monster that Thor was chasing eventually shows up, and Leir apologizes for his attack, and then Thor returns to Asgard.
Thor is next seen back in his old costume, with his "battle armor" strapped to his back. He asks Balder's leave to return to Earth.
But thanks to the problems with the bridge, Asgard is no longer in alignment with Midgard, so Thor winds up floating in space.
Quality Rating: C+
Chronological Placement Considerations: Despite his concern about air, i'm content to allow Thor to float in space for a while before the beginning of next issue. Obviously he shouldn't appear in other books in between, though.
Continuity Insert? N
My Reprint: N/A
I actually missed this issue when it first came out. Didn't officially start the DeFalco run until the Celestial arc, which I believe starts next issue. I loved the run. It was the first title that I actually collected instead of just picking up a book here and there when I could. Keep in mind I had only read a couple of Simonson issues at this time and all I knew of Kirby was what I got snippets of in Marvel Saga. I recognize the flaws in the run more now, but it still remains a good read to me. At least until DeFalco fumbles the Masterson Thor story.
Posted by: Robert | April 20, 2014 10:11 PM
Was Thor's armor destroyed in the battle with Leir? I see he's not wearing it at the end of the issue, and I know he stops using it pretty early in DeFalco's run, though it think some later covers have him wearing it.
I wonder if it's significant that Thor's new look (and Iron Man's new color scheme--and Spidey's black costume, come to think of it) gets dumped so soon after Shooter's out the door. The MU is partially but speedily converting back to classic configuration.
Posted by: Walter Lawson | April 22, 2014 1:47 AM
Walter, you can't really see it in the scan above but Thor is carrying the battle armor on his back. You can see the strap around his chest there. The armor would be destroyed in the next storyline during his battle against the Celestials. If I'm not mistaken it returns later on but I don't recall if they gave an explanation then or if they just forgot they destroyed it. We'll see when fnord gets there, I guess.
Posted by: Robert | April 22, 2014 3:50 AM
I've added some scans with the new & old armor. Thanks guys.
I agree about the reversion that happens under DeFalco. We'll look at that as we get further into that era.
Posted by: fnord12 | April 22, 2014 7:33 AM
According to Sean Howe, Shooter was going to meet with Michelinie and Layton about changing Tony's armor the day he was fired. So obviously, the change to Tony's armor was being considered before Shooter was fired.
Posted by: Michael | April 22, 2014 7:49 AM
Things do tend to go around in circles though eventually considering that Thor eventually got the beard back at least; heck that's part of his definite look these days. As iconic as it can be, clean-shaven Thor does seem rather silly at times thinking things over.
Posted by: Ataru320 | April 22, 2014 8:43 AM
Noooo! Not the beard! At least Ultimate and movie Thors seem to keep them.
Posted by: david banes | April 22, 2014 8:14 PM
Consider that Thor, Captain America, Iron Man, Hulk, and Spider-Man all had significantly different looks and color schemes to their classic looks around the 1986-1987 period. (There's even a fine Marvel Age Cover by Ron Frenz and Joe Sinnott showing this line-up) Then, consider 1986 was the height of the comic press and industry pressuring Marvel to give credit to Jack Kirby, who had a hand in all but one of those character's appearance and design. I suspect it's highly possible that, anticipating any kind of mainstream attention- the Siegel & Shuster story occurred only a decade before this- Shooter may have wanted these characters to look as radically different as possible from how they were perceived in the public, so he could say "look, they look different from when Kirby did them." This is only a theory but I think it has some weight. Secondly, I'm not complaining- I loved these looks and equate them to my childhood, when Iron Man was red and silver and the Hulk was grey. Good stuff, and I loved the DeFalco/Frenz/Sinnott run quite a bit. Still do.
Posted by: William Byron | April 27, 2014 2:28 PM
I'm not sure. It could be that, or simply the idea that these characters should be given new looks for the 1980s.
Posted by: ChrisKafka | April 27, 2014 4:44 PM
Didn't Shooter also want to replace the original Kirby-created characters with new versions? Kill off Captain America; replace him with an investment banker - get rid of Tony Stark, give the armor to someone else, etc? I think William Byron is really on to something - what better way to defend against any possible Kirby litigation or copyright claim than by being able to say those Kirby-created characters aren't being used anymore?
Posted by: Zeilstern | May 2, 2014 7:18 PM
We discussed that previously in the comments here:
Posted by: Michael | May 2, 2014 7:52 PM
The fact that Shooter put the kibosh on DeMatteis' story where Cap would be killed and replaced by Black Crow in Cap 300 would imply that Shooter wasn't really planning that stuff.
Posted by: S | May 2, 2014 11:02 PM
Urban legends and conspiracy theories die hard.
Posted by: Robert | May 3, 2014 12:27 AM
Fun game for the DeFalco/Frenz Thor run: See how many fight scenes are resolved by having Thor suddenly decide to give a speech about how he fights for justice and honor and Asgard.
Posted by: Omar Karindu | October 25, 2015 3:27 PM
I'm the William Byron who wrote that over two years ago and I've been re-reading 86-87 over the past week and yeah, it's been hitting me again- it just doesn't feel like a "these characters should be updated for the 90s" thing, really. In some ways, it almost seems unheralded and just happens organically (which, to me, would support an Editor subtly instructing people to change the visuals of said character). I've got to say it makes a lot of logical sense, even if I'm very fond (in the sentimental sense) of this era of the Marvel Universe and revisiting these posts over the past couple weeks (when I'm out of town on business and killing a lot of time at a hotel) have been really enjoyable, the second time around.
Posted by: Wis | December 25, 2016 2:09 AM
I wonder if Thor's disfigurement healed thanks to his natural, superhuman healing abilities, thanks to his body being destroyed and restored in recent events (that's actually what I believe), or the scars really weren't that bad, yet he felt disfigured because of his eccessive ego or something.
Posted by: KombatGod | March 1, 2017 1:13 PM
@KombatGod- I always assumed that when Hela restored Thor in issue 382, she healed his face- her dialogue is "ALL thy wounds made whole".
Posted by: Michael | March 1, 2017 7:58 PM
Yeah, that's what I think too. Who knows, maybe they purposelly let him get butchered to have an excuse to heal him and get rid of the beard.
Posted by: KombatGod | March 13, 2017 6:13 PM
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