8.20.2013

Thor: God of Thunder #11 [Kamak's Corner]

By Contributing Writer Brian Kamak


Thor: God of Thunder #11 (Marvel): This issue marks the conclusion of the “Godbomb” storyline by Jason Aaron and Esad Ribic. Now, those of you that know me know that I have a Garth Ennis-like distaste for protagonists that don capes and tights. With that being said, Thor: God of Thunder is the definitive best title on comic book shop shelves everywhere. This is not my opinion; it’s based on scientific research I made up in my head. 

Riding my bike to the local comic shop early Saturday mornings with my sister and my childhood friend Adam Gertler (see Food Network) were some of my fondest memories growing up in the early 90’s. That was the era that the shop owner surreptitiously stuck free copies of books in our little brown bags. Among those free books, there was always a copy of Thor. In case you’re not reading between the lines, Thor was so bad then that owners had to literally give away back issues to make space for quality product. This was not the masterfully written book I anticipate every month now, but rather a Thor written in a foreign dialogue I could never understand. I was informed by the proprietor of Yesteryear Comics that Thor became enjoyable to read once J. Michael Straczynski put an end to all that “thoust I yelleth” blabbering.
It’s impossible for me to determine if Thor: God of Thunder’s art or writing is better. They’re inextricably linked like this medium optimally should be. But, let’s play the game. It seems like Jason Aaron and Esad Ribic are in competition to constantly out-do each other on every issue. However, I’m going to favor Ribic because he brilliantly executed a custom cover for me at this year’s SDCC (I’ll favor Aaron if he can work me in as a cameo). I managed to witness the master at work firsthand. He moved with surgical precision and (ignore the grainy camera phone quality) completed the cover you see above in less than 15 minutes(!), and then executed a second pencil sketch in under 30 seconds. Ribic is a true master of the craft. His art captures all of the physical characteristics, whether it’s Thor or just an extra that’s crucified in the background.  Thor is drawn as he should be, with a larger-than-life, pro wrestler-like physique that is, dare I say it, BELIEVABLE! All of this flattery might lead you to believe that I have a man-crush on Esad… screw you, I do!  My compliments also go out to Ive Svorcina’s coloring, which is also perfectly executed, providing the perfect hues that set the tone without flaw.

I don’t know how Jason Aaron (Scalped, thank you Justin!) does it, but in all 11 issues of this run, I’ve never been disappointed or ever felt as though I could put this book down without finishing it. Issue #11 is no exception. It serves as an end to the Gorr storyline, and I hate to see this arc come to a finale. Aaron has created such a memorable antagonist in the God Butcher, one who we can relate to thanks to issue six’s origin story. Gorr’s drive is based on his extreme hatred of Gods, stemming from his feelings of “God Abandonment.” I’m not a religious zealot, but I do feel that everyone in their own personal life has wrestled with the age-old question: does God exist and, if so, why would such a deity allow such terrible things to happen in this world? It’s this premise that makes Gorr more human than villain. Aaron seamlessly unites the young Mjolnir-less Thor, with the modern Avenger Thor, along with the future’s God of Gods Thor. These three Thors unite to create the most outrageous team-up that works brilliantly. Their mission is to stop Gorr’s invention, the “Godbomb.” The Godbomb is a weapon that spans all time and space to eradicate the universe of all gods. If someone just came up and told me this premise, I’d be a huge skeptic. However, this premise does not just work, it’s a masterpiece.
I don’t want to give away how this story plays out. What I want you to do is go out and lay down your hard-earned greenbacks for every issue in this series. If you are not completely satisfied, please call me a douchebag in the comments section and tell Justin how much you hate reading my reviews. However, if you do enjoy reading Thor: God of Thunder, then some show love, the kind of love I have for Esad Ribic! Thor: God of Thunder #11 is a Grade A+ book from a Grade A+ series from Grade A+ creators. Grade A+.

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