Writer: Jason Aaron, Artist & Cover: Esad Ribic, Colorist: Ive Svorcina, Letters: VC’s Joe Sabino.
Once upon a time, dystopian and apocalyptic sci-fi dramas were highly entertaining to me: Blade Runner, Mad Max, The Walking Dead. But after being bombarded by so. many. of. them… they get kinda old and beat you down and make you feel hopeless. King Thor’s premise of a time far in the future when all but a few gods are gone, the universe is dying, and Loki now possesses the Annhilablade and has become a Necrogod determined to put the universe out of its misery will no-doubt be very interesting and stimulating to many, but I found the entire idea and execution extremely depressing. Don’t get me wrong, it’s very well-conceived and written and beautifully illustrated and colored, but…damn. Hasn’t Thor been through enough in his comics the last few years? Losing his hammer, his arm, his worthiness. Now we discover he will follow in his father’s footsteps and be a one-eyed elder god fighting in yet another Ragnarok-type, universe-ending battle, this time against his brother.
Other than Loki, the only family and other gods with King Thor are his three granddaughters, the Ladies of Thunder. As they banter about different “death smells”, they search Omnipotence City to hopefully find a remaining god-librarian that can provide them with the knowledge to defeat Loki. Ironic that it may be up to a nerd-god to save the universe.
Meanwhile, King Thor and Loki battle for the entire issue, with Thor getting a lot worse than he gave. Not only do they inflict physical pain on each other, but emotional as well. Esad Ribic is as solid as ever and he creates battle scenes that are all very painful to watch.
Colorist Ive Svorcina uses a color palette that oozes “depressing apocalypse” and is the chief mood manipulator before you even read a word.
Whether King Thor will survive until the next issue is a good question: I have my doubts. But then, this story doesn’t make one feel optimistic about anything.
King Thor #1 is on sale September 11, 2019.