Written by: Donny Cates
Art by: Nic Klein
*SPOILERS FOR ISSUE #1 AND MINOR SPOILERS FOR ISSUE #2
THE BLACK WINTER AND THE DEVOURER KING! Before him lies the Black Winter; behind, a trail of death wrought by his own hand. The God of Thunder hurtles through the cosmos, searching for the power to save Asgard and all existence. But no power in the heavens can save a god — a king — from his bloody duty.
The latest Thor series got to an epic start with its first issue, which you can read my review for here, and issue two kept that streak going strong. If you are reading this, I am assuming you have already read issue number one. If you have not, please be warned that this review will contain spoilers for issue one.
As revealed in issue one, a force known as The Black Winter, The Star Plague that destroyed Galactus’ original universe is now coming to destroy the current Marvel Universe. After crashing into Asgard, Galactus informed Thor, who had recently become the new King and All Father of Asgard, that he could defeat The Black Winter if The Devourer of Worlds succeeded in consuming five specific planets with unique and rare powers that would increase his power. With this knowledge, Thor insisted on accompanying Galactus in his search for these worlds so that the thunder god could ferry the citizens of these planets to safety before their worlds are destroyed. Galactus agreed and imbued Thor with the Power Cosmic, transforming him into his new herald, The Herald of Thunder. This transformation changed Thor’s appearance and restored his previously lost arm and eye.
In this latest issue, Galactus and Thor journey to find the five planets in time before The Black Winter’s arrival into their universe. The main theme of this issue is Thor’s conflict between his morals as a God-King and hero who protects the lives and homes of others and the knowledge that if these worlds are not sacrificed to Galactus, The Black Winter will destroy the entire universe and all who dwell in it. Though the story has only just begun, I have really enjoyed this series so far. I have always been a massive fan of Thor and his fantastical adventures as well as Marvel’s space epics. The writer, Donny Cates, has a great handle on what makes Thor who he is, especially when it comes to The God of Thunder’s character, morals, and manner of speaking.
The Black Winter is also a fascinating threat. Galactus being the only survivor of his original universe has been such a prominent aspect of the character’s history that I am surprised that it has taken this long to explore what the actual cause of his universe’s death was. I am curious to see what the true nature of this Star Plague is. Does it have a self-aware intelligence? Is it no different than a natural disaster like a hurricane that contains no malice in its destruction? Or could it be more like a virus that simply kills and consumes based on nothing more than a natural instinct to survive? We will have to see. With this force being a universe wide menace, it be interesting to see what other players from Marvel’s roster of characters will become involved.
There was one attention-grabbing scene in the opening of the issue that showed The Black Winter consuming a very familiar looking universe. It makes me wonder if this was just a one off Easter Egg or if it will actually play a role in the story to come. If it is simply a small wink to fans, then that is fine, but if it is something more, then it could be a major game changer, but I am not going to give up my hopes on it being the latter with it more than likely being the former.
As I mentioned in my review for the first issue, this issue has fantastic artwork by Nic Klein. His art perfectly captures the action, emotion, and conflict that was written by Cates. Cates and Klein are one of the best teams I have ever seen work on a Thor book and considering how long I have been reading the journeys of Asgard’s greatest champion, that is saying something. I am not sure how long their run on this series will be, but I shall enjoy every minute of it while it lasts.
Overall, this was a great second issue of this fantastic fantasy space epic. Like in my review for issue one, I once again recommend this series. It has been a very fun, large scale fantasy/space adventure thus far. If those are the kind of stories that you love, then you will love this book as well.
Continuing the fantastic storytelling and artwork from the first issue, this was a great continuation of this fun fantasy space epic. If fantasy/space epics are the kind of stories that you love, then you will love this book as well.