Writer Roger Langridge
Art Chris Samnee
Colors Matthew Wilson
Format 22 Pages of Story and Art
Price Point $2.99
I love when a book is exactly what I expected and even exceeds my expectations. Thor The Mighty Avenger #1 was a beautiful book.
This book hits all the right bases. Number one it does not have what I would call generic super hero artwork. Chris Samnee has a great touch to his style that I would call somewhere between Darwyn Cooke and Mike Mignola. It is a light lined work when needed, spots blacks well, it has great page designs and the book flows with the greatest of ease. Chris conveys the story so well that with his expressions and body language that the dialogue and captions are almost superfluous. The action scenes are great; the quiet moments work well all in all a fantastic job by the artist. I have enjoyed Chris work on The Mighty and Area 10, but this certainly ranks up there as some of his best work.
I would be remiss if I did not talk about the colorist because a botched coloring job can kill a book and considering this is a super hero title, colorist Matthew Wilson did a bang up job. He keeps a muted tone, but does not go too dark as to make this book into a noir style. All the bright super hero colors are here at times but toned down. His work enhances Chris’ work and allows it shine. Again I’m not a colorist and know little about the process, but muting the tones and still getting it right I would think would be hard. Allowing the artwork to show through is probably harder then covering artist’s mistakes. This collaboration worked to perfection.
The story itself by Roger Langridge was also a winner. For lack of a better characterization this is an indie version of Thor. It reads so well and conveys so much that it truly was a breath of fresh air for a super hero book. The story starts simply with Jane Foster awakening to a storm and looking out her window seeing a Rainbow Bridge. The next morning at her job at the museum she finds out she is being offered the job as a department head as the prior person just recently disappeared and he was an expert on Nordic history.
A man dressed as Thor shows up at the museum using a walking stick to pound on a display case. Jane runs out and helps to quiet what is assumed to be a bum. The guards escort him out of the museum. Later Jane encounters Thor again and helps him to the museum after he has fought Mr. Hyde at Volstaff’s bar. Thor breaks open an urn and is now in full Nordic god mode.
There is a lot more then this brief synopsis and there are tons of many too perfect coincidences that I’m sure will be explained as the series progress. In fact those little story elements appear to be planting seeds for what I hope is a long run for this series.
What this issue did perfectly was evoke the classic Thor from his early beginnings and yet maintain a modern tone. We are already invested in at least Jane Foster and Thor and have a passing interest in Jane’s ex-boy friend and Mr. Hyde. Another bonus, it was a new Marvel #1 for only $3 and since it is a new Thor and a new continuity we did not need 15 pages of eight point font type explaining the history of the character.
Overall Grade A – Thor The Mighty Avenger – A modern age intelligent classic the evokes all of the charm of the silver age.