Friday, June 14, 2013

From Shadows to Red Carpets

Name This Marvel Villain??

One of the Dark Elves who was banished by Odin, as well as a one-time ally of Loki and an errand boy for Surtur, Malekith the Accursed was sent by the fire demon to retrieve the Casket of Ancient Winters in order to release its contents--a freezing maelstrom that would not only affect Earth, but would also play a vital part in freeing Surtur from his imprisonment.

Malekith has his abilities as a Dark Elf (instantaneous transportation, blending with shadows, etc.)--but he mainly relies on a level of trickery and deception that would give Loki a run for his money, as well as commanding hordes of beasts as well as his brethren to do his bidding. Once he's in tow, he's easily enough dealt with by the gods--but you'd be amazed how many issues it takes to get to that point.

Malekith also has the distinction of being the catalyst who puts the events in motion which lead to Odin's death (well, as dead as you can be in a Marvel comic), in the final battle with Surtur--since it was Malekith who shattered the casket, thereby turning the portal imprisoning Surtur to brittle ice and allowing the demon to destroy it. The battle between Surtur and Odin is certainly worthy of its own post at another time, since I'm sure Odin wouldn't want his glory overshadowed by an annoyance like Malekith.

And speaking of this evil elf, he finds his ability to conceal himself within shadows of little use against a god who can summon lightning:

Once Malekith manages to shatter the Casket, his true role in this story is finished, and Thor prepares to deliver him back to Odin for judgment. But the damage has been done, particularly to Earth:

Since I'm sure almost all of us are broiling right now in this summer heat, you've probably guessed that Thor (with some help) was able to seal the wintry storms within the Casket again. In the meantime, Odin kicked Malekith's elvish butt down to the nearest dungeon:

Then came Odin's subsequent death, followed by the impending coronation of Balder the Brave as Asgard's king. But not if Kurse had anything to say about it:

Yet even though Kurse had snapped the neck of his victim, Thor believes all is not what it seems, since Kurse single-mindedly pursued not Balder's death but another's. And since Thor knew of a particular Dark Elf who specialized in deception, Thor ordered Balder's squire to touch the body with a sword--made with iron, the bane of Dark Elves:

Despite the evidence of our eyes, though, Malekith would be back among the living again in future appearances in Thor as well as one or two other titles. He'll also be moving up in stature when he makes his feature film debut in the next Thor film, Thor: The Dark World.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

He's back?! I hadn't even thought about this guy for...well, quite some years. Now that I think about it, he was a pretty cool villain, couched in Norse mythology and very diabolical looking. I'm not sure about the film version, though. We'll have to see...