Look the eff out, kids! The Invincible Super-Blog has reached its second month of publication!
So it's now February, and since that's the month that Hallmark has dedicated to Valentine's Day, I thought I'd try a different strategy for the next few weeks and talk about the things I love. So what do I love?
I love poetry. And a glass of scotch. And of course, my friend Baxter here.
But most of all, I love Walt Simonson's Thor.
Wait... Did I just say most of all? Uh, heh heh, I meant, of course, that MOST of all I love Melanie. That's definitely what I meant to say. Crazy keyboard!
But back to Simonson.
I've said before that I like the DC heroes in general better than Marvel's, but Marvel books always have the best moments. You know, the ones that stick with you forever. The Masters of Evil ripping up Captain America's only photograph of his mother. Wolverine getting up and going: "You've had your chance--now it's my turn!" Spider-Man lifting up the wreckage. Hell, I was leafing through the Essential Super-Villain Team-Up and saw a man pulling off his mask and saying "Now and forever... I am Adolf Hitler!" I don't know what that story was about, but man! I'll never forget that.
Those are the kind of moments that make Marvel what it is. You could talk about them all day. But if you did, you'd spend a lot of your time talking about the Simonson's Thor. He crams in more of The Explodo than anyone else in the industry, and he pulls it off flawlessly. Let's take a look at the big ones:
DOOM! (#337) - It's the third page of the run, and it sets the whole epic story in motion. It's a full-page shot of a giant making a sword out of a dead star. And the sound "reverberates through a billion billion worlds." That's like eighteen zeroes. Eighteen!
SKARTHEIM! Where Even A God May Die! (#338) - Odin makes his own son fight Beta Ray Bill to the death to see who's worthy of being Thor! Sweet Mother of Mystery!
Thor, Odin, and Loki vs. Surtur! (#352) - I got excited in the first Simonson trade when Thor hit someone so hard it made a three-syllable sound effec. But man, when Surtur feels the full power of Odin, it's four- SHRARUKKAARAKKK! That's so hard it knocked me out of my chair.
"Look you, Loki, to the sky!" (#359) - Thor's hammer Mjolnir (literal translation: "that which smashes") must return to his hand when thrown. So what happens when he grabs Loki's head while it's flying back? I get frigg'n excited, that's what.
Skurge Holds the Bridge (#362) - Quite possibly my favorite page ever. "They sing no songs in Hel, nor do they celebrate heroes, for silent is that dismal realm, and cheerless. But the story of Gjallerbru and the god who defended it is whispered across the nine worlds, and when a new arrival asks about the one to whom even Hela bows her head, the answer is always the same: He stood alone at Gjallerbru... and that is answer enough."
Thor Turns Into A Frog (#364) - Self explanitory.
And finally, the grandfather of them all...
Balder Takes Up The Sword (#344) - Holy Cats. I'd heard Scott and Chad talk about this one for months, so I thought I was prepared for it. But even though they'd told me all about how Balder went to Hel and had to fight every man he'd ever killed, and how when he got out, he didn't walk, but swam in an ocean of blood, and then swore off the sword forever, I still didn't think it was a a big deal that he was going to take it up again. But when he does, and faces countless thousands at the cost of his own soul... Man.
Walt Simonson is absolutely incredible, and it's not just for the moments. His storytelling is so amazing in the way it shifts from one scene to the next, always at the height of suspense, building tension for issue after issue. There's three trades out of his Thor run, which is almost all of it. They're worth every penny and available at your local shop. And Thor's not all he's got on his resume, either--check out Manhunter and Orion for starters.
I can say in all honesty, Simonson's a hero of mine. He's changed the way I think about comics, and if you haven't read it, stop wasting time on blogs and get to it!