Writers: Michael Avon Oeming with Daniel Berman
Artist: Andrea DiVito
Publisher: Marvel Comics
An exposition heavy issue that I'm sure will be far more enjoyable to the reader who has taken the time to familiarize themselves with Asgardian mythology. However, to be perfectly honest I found this issue to be a bit of a chore to make my way through, as while there are some interesting ideas in this issue from the explanation of the dragon and the eagle that reside in Yggdrsil, the World Tree, and Thor is called upon to make a pretty major sacrifice that should make his upcoming quest all the more harrowing, my main problem with this issue is that there's a few too many moment where the story is bogged down by longwinded speeches that seem like they are saying a great deal but in the end they don't really contain much in the way of insight.
I also have that I have to question the idea that Ragnarok is a never ending cycle, as it robs the event of its impact if ones enters knowing that it's a constantly resetting event that will forever continue to circle back. However, I will saw that there is something engaging about the idea that when this story ends we'll be given an all new Thor, as if nothing else the character could use a serious shake up. However, I do have to saw I'm annoyed by the dismissive way that this arc has knocked off several characters, as Balder, two-thirds of the Warriors Three, and most annoyingly Valkyrie (from the Defenders) have been summarily killed off, and their deaths seem to serve little to no purpose, as they were all killed off panel, and not really doing anything overly heroic, which makes their death feel a bit empty. Still, I will say that it's great to see Beta-Ray Bill is back playing an active role in the action.
Andrea DiVito has a highly detailed style that lends itself quite nicely to the big impact moments of this issue, as the issue opens with a great sequence where we see Beta-Ray Bill puts on a display of power that should give his enemies reason to be nervous. There's also some lovely establishing shots as we see Thor travels to Hildstalf, to seek out the wisdom of the Well of Mimir, and the opening shot of Yggdrasil was also pretty impressive. The sequence where Thor makes his sacrifice to gain the wisdom from the well is nicely disturbing, as we don't really get a good look at what's he's done until he throws it into the well.
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