With the start of a new year and a new decade, Marvel released a new rendition of their classic superhero and avenger, Thor. Donny Cates’ Thor 2020 is the start of a new series that will see our now retired hero as the king of Asgard fight against the bringer of the end, The Black Winter.
The series offers a very solid foundation for the beginning of a story with its vast world-building and somber tone. Thor isn’t someone that can rest easy not being the hero he once was. He now has to look over the people of Asgard as their new king and with that great authority comes a loy of restraints. Because of this, this rendition of Thor is far from happy as we see him struggle with the grief and sadness that comes with the realization that he cannot be the same man he was before.
Within this issue we see him change and decide to take up the mantle to fight The Black Winter that Galactus forewarns him about. Assembling a space avengers squad, Thor then sets out to find and destroy this threat before it can wreak havoc across the universe.
While this issue is splendid in its quality art and helmed by Donny Cates who is arguably the best writer for Marvel currently, the beginning of this series already presents a flaw of moving rather slow. The majority of this issue is spent on world-building rather than advancing the story. While the vast amount of world-building serves a purpose to establish the foundation of this series it also draws away from hard story-telling and dialogue to advance it. For a longer than usual issue, there isn’t that much story if we boil down to it. Thor sits upon the throne as the new king and then must give a speech to the citizens as an inauguration for becoming the new king. Before he can do that he is interrupted by Galactus crashing down to Asgard and forewarning him about the looming threat. From there Thor assembles his team and Galactus then transforms him thus shaping Thor back into his prime years. This is the story up to this point where everything takes place in Asgard. Most of the panels are filled with world-building in place of dialogue or action.
Despite having a limited about of story in its first issue, there is a lot of promise for Thor 2020 going forward. Now that the world-building has been established there is more room for the story in the following issues. With Donny Cates as a great writer paired with Nic Klein as the fantastic artist for this series, Thor 2020 is sure to be one of the best series this year has to offer.