Tuesday, November 25, 2014

This Old Hammer


As a comics reader, some of the most thrilling stories I can remember involve the God of Thunder, Thor, charging into battle with his invincible hammer, mighty Mjolnir, raised in defiance. And no matter how insurmountable the odds--no matter how seemingly hopeless things seemed--the hammer of Thor would... would...


WAIT a minute! What gives here?
How's Thor supposed to beat back his foes with a stick?


Which leads us to a shattering new


Marvel Trivia Question



How many times has Thor's hammer bought the farm?



It turns out Mjolnir isn't so invincible as we were led to believe. But in all fairness, it's taken some pretty powerful forces to either damage or destroy Thor's hammer. And it stands to reason that the Destroyer, Odin's all-powerful armored bruiser, would be one of those forces:



(Of course, the notion of the Destroyer being "all-powerful" would turn out to be another exaggeration, though that's another story.)

I don't know if you've ever seen a Thunder God try to fly with a busted hammer, but Thor is probably glad that Hercules isn't around to mock the result.  I couldn't help giving a chuckle, myself:



So how does Thor plan to repair an enchanted hammer? He heads to Pittsburgh, of course. Though I have to believe that the steel capital of the world would be a little short on uru metal:





(Aside from Thor charging into battle, Thor rubbing elbows with ordinary mortals like these guys is such a kick to read.  Look at these guys.  This little visit made their day.)

Then there was the time when Thor wanted to crack open the noggin of a Celestial, and paid the price:





Later, when the crisis has passed, the Celestials, represented by a Thor simulacrum (because they don't generally socialize with gnat-sized bipeds as a rule), decided to restore his hammer to him:



After the events of Onslaught, a powerful foe named Perrikus invades Asgard and presents a difficult challenge for Thor. Not to mention his hammer:



(Jeez, and that was while Perrikus was weakened.)


Thor is far from the steel mills of Pittsburgh, and it's doubtful the Celestials would give a rat's behind about an Asgardian conflict--so how will he repair his hammer this time? Would you believe--will power??


How's that for pulling one out of the hat.


Of course, if any situation is going to lead to Mjolnir's destruction, it's probably going to be Ragnarok. And the moment comes when the Fenris wolf, Ulik, Thor, and the oversized Hyrm all collide with their respective weapons in one strike:






I've no idea why these weapons would challenge Mjolnir any more than Thor's countless prior conflicts with the weapons of storm giants, armies en masse, or, for that matter, Ulik. And just wait 'til you see who Thor taps for the repair job:





Strange bedfellows, to be sure.

Finally, there came a time when Thor battled against his grandfather, Bor--a god of immense power and stamina. With Thor now possessing some of the Odin-power, you can imagine the repercussions of a simultaneous strike between the two:





Thor would prevail against Bor; and later, he would seek out the Master of the Mystic Arts to help him repair his hammer. But even for Dr. Strange, such a task has its complications:




I'm glad they shelved the will power solution, because this is far more interesting (though Thor's buddies in Pittsburgh will probably feel slighted):





That probably covers all the bases, though I think there was some teaser following the "Fear Itself" storyline that showed Mjolnir in pieces.  Playing this card more than twice was really overkill, given the rep that Mjolnir has and how it's so closely associated with Thor's fighting spirit and indomitable will.  Remember the days when Thor's all-powerful foes would be aghast at how powerfully Mjolnir struck them? That kind of shattering made for much more impressive reading.

3 comments:

Colin Jones said...

Bought the farm ? - I intend to start using that phrase immediately and confuse people :)

Anonymous said...

If Thor throws his hammer and grabs fast as it hurtles through the air, is he really flying or just along for the ride? I mean, who's really doing the work here? Thor? Mjolnir? Come on, man.

The Prowler (if you're not the lead dog the view never changes).

Comicsfan said...

Well, Prowler, if you look at it another way, that hammer isn't going anywhere until Thor throws it--so maybe we can chalk up the workload to quid pro quo, eh?

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