Days of Thunder – July1968 The Mighty Thor #154

“…To Wake the Mangog!”
Produced by: Smilin’ Stan Lee and Jolly Jack Kirby/ Vince Colletta Inker/ Artie Simek Letterer

Thor 154

While Thor is visiting Sif while she recuperates, he is visited by Hela, who believes that she has a claim to Thor after his fight with the Wrecker. Thor’s old frenemy, Harokin pops in to speak on Hela’s behalf, asking him to come lead the army of the undead in Valhalla. Thor is tempted, but declines, stating “The son of Odin fights for purpose– never pleasure!” This is a much bigger lie than anything Loki has ever said in this book. Having made her pitch, Hela departs.

Meanwhile, Ulik has discovered the long-lost Odin-Cave, also known as the Cave of Ages. This legendary site is filled with Enchanti-Stones, the seeds of Odin’s peerless power. It is also the prison of Mangog,the last member of an alien race so powerful that they once nearly destroyed Asgard. It says a lot about Ulik that rather than collect the stones, he frees the alien.

The Mangog, once freed has no interest in an alliance with Ulik and no notion of gratitude for his freedom. The Mangog is the enemy of all who live, with the sole goal of destroying Odin. Ulik escapes from the Mangog as soon as he is able.

Thor, unaware of the threat to Asgard is wandering around New York looking for Loki. He stops a team of thugs calling themselves Muggers Incorporated and exchanges strong words with a pack of hippies. The friendly counterculture youth take Thor’s long hair as a sign of kinship, a notion Thor rejects hard.

“’Tis not by dropping out– but by plunging in– into the maelstrom of life itself– that thou shalt find wisdom! There be causes to espouse!! There be battles to be won! There be glory and grandeur all about thee– if thou wilt but see! Aye, there be time enow for thee to disavow thy heritage– yea, thou mayest drop out fore’er once Hela herself hath come for thee! But, so long as life endures– thou must live it to the full! Else, thou be unworthy of the title– man!” Thor does not like hippies.

Loki, forbidden from fighting his brother, returns to Asgard to see what trouble he can cause, only to discover that there is already trouble aplenty. When Ulik freed the Mangog, he set off the Eternity Alarm, and so the forces of Asgard are preparing for the conflict that is surely at hand. Toag, Elder of the Supreme Council fills Loki in  on all of this and of one other detail: Odin now rests in his Odinsleep (otherwise known as the Sleep of Life, last seen in issue #118). With Odin unavailable and Thor busy pestering hippies, Loki takes the throne!

First Appearance: The Mangog, Toag Elder of the Supreme Council, Muggers Incorporated, The Enchanti-Stones, The Cave of Ages

The Mangog, comics, Days of Thunder, Thor, Doctor Donald Blake, Sif, Odin, Loki, Karnilla the Norn Queen, Balder, Ulik, Toag Elder of the Supreme Council, Muggers Incorporated, Hela, Harokin

Days of Thunder – June 1968 The Mighty Thor #153

“–But Dr. Blake Can Die!”
Another Star-Studded Spectacular by: Stan (The Man) Lee & Jack (King) Kirby/ Embellished by: Vince Colletta/ Lettered by: Artie Simek

Thor 153

Starting with this issue, the Inhumans backup feature has been dropped, leaving a full 20 pages of Thor. Maybe the change threw Stan for a loop, because this issue is an utter mess, barely held together through a patchwork web of No-Prizes.

So, okay, Loki has stolen Thor’s hammer. Karnilla reveals that he has somehow stolen some of her Norn Power. This combined with Loki’s own sorcery apparently gives Loki enough power to bypass Odin’s enchantment that would otherwise bar him from lifting Mjolnir.

Thor panics, believing himself about to turn back into Blake. It has been some time since he was under the effect of the hammer’s enchantment, and he has apparently forgotten that the sixty second rule only applies to him when he is on Earth.

Thor commands Karnilla to transport him to Loki so that he might face his brother and take back that which is his. Sif demands to accompany him. Karnilla agrees, stating “Thus does Karnilla achieve two ends with but a single spell! I now repay my debt to Thor– And in doing, I send him to a most certain death!”

Thor and Sif are sent straight to Loki, who has returned to Earth for some reason. One could conject that Loki wanted to lure Thor back to Midgard in order to force the sixty second change.   If so, his plan works:  Thor turns into Blake and his hammer turns into his walking stick within Loki’s hands.

Sif attacks Loki. Both Sif and Loki seem to be at their full godly strength, despite having been depowered by Odin in issue #147. It would seem that since the depowering of Sif, Balder and Loki was a punishment for the leaving of Asgard, when they were returned to Asgard by the Wrecker their powers were returned to them.

At any rate, Loki now has the full power of a son of Odin, adopted though he be. Thus valiantly as Sif fights, she is no match for Loki. Thor begs her not to fight, while Loki respects her warrior prowess, although that does not stop him from removing her from the fight by knocking her out cold with a mystic Norn blast.

Thor-as-Blake lunges at Loki. While he is unable to harm the evil god, he grabs his walking stick and manages to turn back into his natural godly self. Even with Loki’s stolen Norn power, he is no match for Thor, who manages to restrain the evil one.

Thor then discovers that Sif has been injured badly enough that she needs to be operated upon by a doctor with both amazing surgical skills and working knowledge of Norn magic. Fortunately, Blake seems to be free to do whatever the hell he wants with complete support of his peers in the medical community and so he is allowed to just show up at the hospital and operate of Sif.

A freed Loki attacks Blake in the middle of the surgery during a delicate juncture but a doctor named Carson blasts Loki with ether, which will knock out an Asgardian the same as a human.  This buy’s Blake the time he needs.  After the surgery, Blake shoos out the doctors and nurses of the operating room (along with comatose Sif) as Loki wakes up.

The two brothers start fighting yet again, smashing through the wall of the hospital into the streets of New York. Odin watches this battle from his Chamber of Visions, lamenting the brothers’ enmity. Furthermore, he has become aware of a threat to Asgard that he feels must be fought by all who pay him homage, and so he uses an Odin-Bolt to tear the two brothers apart, after which Loki vanishes into the unknown.

Meanwhile, Ulik has stopped his fall by grabbing onto a ledge within the crevice into which he had been falling. After pulling himself up, he finds himself in a mystic canyon filled with shining rocks, confounded by the strangeness of his environs.

First Appearance: Doctor Carson


Days of Thunder – May 1968 The Mighty Thor #152

“The Dilemma of Dr. Blake!”
Let Marveldom rejoice! That which awaits us hath been garnished in grandeur by Stan (The Man) Lee and Jack (King) Kirby/ Epically Embellished by: Vince Colletta/ Legibly Lettered by Sam Rosen

Thor 152

Even with reconstituted godhood, Thor is not a match for the Destroyer. Fortunately, Karnilla withdraws Sif’s essence , and it falls to the ground, lifeless. Thor turns the Destroyer over to the custody of the local constabulary. It is not clear if the Wrecker was arrested. A short time later, Odin comes to Midgard in human raiment and steals the Destroyer back.

Meanwhile, in the Norn Queen’s lair, Balder fights Ulik one-on-one, apparently after each changed clothes between issues. Sif wants to help but resists the urge, implicitly due to it not being honorable to double-team an enemy. As Balder and Ulik fight, Karnilla uses her magic to teleport Thor to the scene.

Thor has prior beef with Ulik and therefore Balder tags out allowing Thor to take the fight to Ulik. Since Thor started fighting the Wrecker in issue #148, there has been no break in the action, but there has sure been a lot of enemy-swapping, as Thor has moved from the Wrecker to the Destroyer to Ulik.

As Ulik and Thor fight, there is some really good characterization on the part of the Troll. He clearly takes pride in his savagery and seems to find Thor’s honor to be obscene from his Trollen vantage. “Honor is an empty vessel… and none but weaklings sip of it!” All of a sudden brutish Ulik is cast in a new light and carries with him a sort of reverse-nobility.

Thor throws Ulik down the bottomless Abyss of Shadows.

While Thor fought Ulik, Loki snuck back into the fray and has seemingly stolen Thor’s hammer! It is unclear how he got around the hammer’s newly restored enchantment, which should bar him from lifting it, but the hammer is gone and so is Loki!

As for the Trolls, it is unclear if they stayed under the command of Karnilla or if they returned to king Geirrodur.


Days of Thunder – April 1968 Avengers #51

“In the Clutches of the Collector!”
From the Sanctum Sanctorum of Smilin’ Stan Lee comes this Roy Thomas-John Buscema Two-Man Tour De Force!/ Inked and Embellished by: George Tuska/ Lettered and Relished by: Sam Rosen

Avengers 51

In the six months since Avengers Day, The Black Widow has disappeared, Hercules has returned to Olympus, Captain America has abruptly quit, and Quicksilver and The Scarlet Witch have re-joined the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants, although in her defense, the Scarlet Witch appeared to be suffering from a head injury when she re-joined.

Now, the three remaining core Avengers have been abducted by a villain named the Collector who wishes to own and imprison the Avengers for his collection. He has also captured Thor and fed him an Asgardian Obedience Potion, which compels Thor to obey all of the Collector’s commands.

The Collector commands Thor to bring him Iron Man, but Thor, eternally a letter of the law kind of guy, reasons that the easiest way to bring in Iron Man will be to kill him first. The two battle, and it is clear to all parties that Iron Man is simply no match for Thor, and that’s with Thor unaware of the fact that Iron Man has a damaged heart.

This conflict ends with the following bit of purple: “Then, amidst the shattered wreckage… as swirls of dust begin to clear… only one form stirs… that of Thor, the immortal who has become a murderous puppet… while the unmoving, battered figure of Iron Man can only lie in silence… and contemplate his own death–!”

Meanwhile the Avengers proper break free of the Collector and fight his Robotoid, while the Collector flees to a Sidereal Time-World. When the Collector exits our Time-World, Thor’s mind is freed so that he might help his fallen ally. He does so, and also helps the Avengers with the mop-up.

Afterward, Captain America calls the Avengers and asks if his friend The Panther can join. Anyone Cap vouches is good enough for the Avengers, and probably the fact that they are down to three members is also a factor in the vetting of The Panther. This is great news, because The Panther is best superhero of all time.

First Appearance:  The Collector

Days of Thunder – April 1968 The Incredible Hulk #102

“–This World Not His Own!”
Stan Lee Panoramically Presents This Pulse-Pounding Premiere by Gary Friedrich and Marie Severin/ Inked by: George Tuska/ Lettered by: Artie Simek

hulk 102

When last we left the Hulk, back when this magazine had a different name, he was plummeting to death in the form of Bruce Banner down a crevasse.  The title and and creative team of this book has changed, but at the start of this tale, Banner is still falling.

It just so happens that Asgardian exiles The Enchantress and the Executioner are at the bottom of this ravine.   When the Enchantress sees a human falling towards them, she uses her magic to catch him, on the theory that as a human, he may know something about Hercules, for whom she is still smitten.

Banner has no idea who Hercules is, pointing out that there are millions of humans on Earth and he doesn’t know them all. He soon Hulks out again, and starts fighting not only the exiles, but the troll army they have gathered. It is unclear if this army is the tattered remnants of those who fought and lost the Great Troll War, or if this is a different band of trolls.  Either way, they are a formidable-enough force to cause Hulk to run away.

The exiles are not concerned with Hulk at the moment, they are busy preparing to mount a major offensive against Asgard. While the villains prepare for their attack,  Hogun, Fandral, and Volstagg have made their way to Oldar the Oracle, who warns them of the battle to come.  Meanwhile, the Hulk wanders around catacombs snaking beneath Asgard.

The trolls attack and unlike previous troll attacks, the Enchantress uses her magic to tip things her way. At least, that’s the way things are going until the Hulk shows up and helps his Asgardian friends murder a ton of trolls while Enchantress and Executioner retreat, the Executioner being much more ready to retreat than the  the Enchantress. Afterward, Hulk predictably angers Odin and is exiled from Asgard.

First Appearance: Oldar the Oracle

Days of Thunder – April 1968 The Mighty Thor #151

“–To Rise Again!”
Powerfully presented in pulse-pounding panoramascope by: Stan (The Man) Lee and Jack (King) Kirby/ Embellished by: Vince Colletta/ Lettered by: Sam Rosen./ Inspired by: Asgard Eternal!

thor 151

Thor rushes to attack the Sf-controlled Destroyer. Sif cannot verbally communicate through the Destroyer, which has apparently lost vocal functionality, perhaps through damage, perhaps through the Norn Queen’s meddling. She tries to mime pacifism but Thor does not trust the Destroyer to not destroy. In fact, at a certain point the savage nature of the Destroyer overrides Sif’s will, and it begins to attack Thor, who is, of course, still depowered.

Thor cannot hold his own against the Destroyer and is badly battered. He cries out to his father, begging to be restored on behalf of Earth and Humanity. In Asgard, Ularic, Odin’s Royal Warlock, has replaced the missing Crystal of Eternal View, allowing Odin to watch Thor’s battle on Earth. He looks upon this begging with favor, interpreting it as humility. Deciding that Thor has learned his lesson, he restores Thor’s godhood,  allowing the newly-restored thunder   god to begin his battle in earnest.

Meanwhile, Loki and Karnilla the Norn Queen gloat to captured Balder.  Karnilla attempts to coerce him into her service, but her attempt is interrupted by the arrival of Ulik. In the aftermath of their war against Asgard, the Trolls have seemingly scattered , as we now have separate groups of trolls being led by Karnilla, the Enchantress, Geirrodur, and also presumably Seidring.  Geirrodur has sent Ulik to the Forest of the Norn to reclaim the loyalty of the trolls currently serving Karnilla.

Ulik has been buffed with powerful enchantments by the Troll Wizards of Geirrodur and he is ready to slay the Norn Queen. In the face of such a threat, Balder presses Karnilla into an agreement to free him and Sif in exchange for defeating Ulik. She agrees, and Balder takes on Ulik. Loki seems to have slipped away in the midst of this conflict.

Days of Thunder – March 1968 Tales to Astonish #101: The Incredible Hulk

The Incredible Hulk “Where Walk the Immortals”
Panoramically Produced by Stan Lee & Marie Severin/ Inking: Frank Giacoia/ Lettering Artie Simek

astonish 101

This is the final issue of the comic magazine Tales to Astonish to serve as a double-feature, one story starring Namor, the Sub-Mariner, and the other starring the giant green man-monster known as the Incredible Hulk. It is the Hulk story we turn our attention towards, as he once again becomes a catspaw for scheming Loki.

Loki of course, previously tried to use the Hulk to attack Thor, in what would lead to the formation of the Avengers. This time, his plan is to let the Hulk loose within the halls of  Asgard to distract Odin from the threats Thor is facing on Earth.

Naturally, Hulk first encounters vigilant Heimdall as he crosses the Rainbow Bridge. Heimdall attacks with his sword, the Sabre of Sorcery. The attack slows but does not stop the Hulk, who defeats Heimdall by slamming his fists on the bridge so hard that not only does the noise jar the glittering guardsman, but the bridge itself quakes, sending Heimdall tumbling.

Hulk next encounters the trio of grim Hogun, dashing Fandral, and voluminous Volstagg. He defeats the three of them, in part by tossing around their horses. During the course of the fight, the Asgardians realize that Hulk is not an aggressor but merely displaced.  Soon after, they manage to calm him down.

The three friends take the Hulk to seek the wisdom of Oldar the Oracle. This involves crossing a bottomless chasm. Hulk passes up the opportunity to share a saddle with Fandral insisting he can leap the chasm with nothing but the power of his legs. Midway across the chasm, Loki turns the Hulk into his mortal guise of Doctor Bruce Banner, which apparently stops his forward momentum.  He plummets into the void.

First Appearance: Sabre of Sorcery

Days of Thunder – March 1968 The Mighty Thor #150

“Even in Death–”
Presenting: A pictorial monument to the towering talents of: Stan (The Man) Lee and Jack (King) Kirby, creators of wonderment beyond mortal measure! Dazzlingly Delineated by: Vincent Colletta/ Lovingly Lettered by: Sam Rosen/ A living tribute to Marveldom assembled!

thor 150

As Thor lies on the cusp of death, his astral form encounters Hela, Goddess of Death. She beckons him to join her in the shining vales of Valhalla. He demurs, insisting that he must continue to fight the Wrecker.

Meanwhile,  in the Forest of the Norns Sif and Balder get separated and after fighting the Norn Queen’s troll guards, including Barbaric, the Troll Warrior God, they each are captured by the Norn Queen, who we learn is named Karnilla.

Karnilla approaches Sif in the guise of a friend. She shows the warrior goddess her love, lying dead on Midgard. Karnilla tells Sif that the only way to save Thor is to defeat the Wrecker. At this point she reveals that she has come into possession of the Destroyer, last seen in the hands of Odin, and offers to allow Sif to take control of the Destroyer, so that she might defeat the Wrecker.

Sif agrees to the bargain. Her consciousness enters the Destroyer, which the Norn Queen sends to Midgard. Once there, she makes short work of the Wrecker, shattering his crowbar, and blasting him with a force beam. He is quickly down for the count.

As Sif defeats the Wrecker, Thor’s astral form re-enters his body, bringing himself back to life. The Destroyer, which totally could talk the first time Thor encountered it, waves at him, mute. Thor won’t be fooled, he knows the Destroyer lives but to kill.  Never mind that it is a tool wielded by a user, created by his father and as far as he knows, still owned by Odin as well. The still-depowered, mortally-wounded Thor cries “To the death!!” as he charges his imagined foe.

First Appearance: Barbaric

Days of Thunder – February 1968 The Mighty Thor #149

“When Falls a Hero!”
Produced by Stan (The Man) Lee And Jack (King) Kirby (As if you didn’t know!) Embellishment: Vince Colletta/ Lettering: Sam Rosen

thor 149

Apparently all this time that Odin has been watching Thor from Earth, it has not been via some sort of godly Odinsight, but rather through a mystic crystal in Odin’s Chamber of Visions. Now, having been returned to Asgard by the Wrecker, Loki steals that crystal.

Balder and Sif head into the Forest of the Norns to find Loki and the crystal. Meanwhile, the Wrecker throws a building on Thor, killing him.

Days of Thunder – January 1968 The Mighty Thor #148

 “Let there Be… Chaos!”
Is there no limit to the thrills so lavishly bestowed upon us by… Stan (The Man) Lee and Jack (King) Kirby or to the awesome assistance of Vince Colletta, Inker, and Sam Rosen, Letterer?

thor 148

With his bolt, Odin’s has stripped Loki, Sif and Balder of their godly power just as he had previously done to Thor. After Odin chastises them, Loki scampers off. Sif wants to kick Loki’s ass but Thor doesn’t think it would be sporting.

Thor and his friends retreat to Doctor Blake’s office to discuss what to do next. They order some take out. Thor actually pays for his food with Blake’s money. The secret identity thing really isn’t working for Thor.

Meanwhile, Loki rents a seedy room, takes off his coat and helmet and tries to contact his old ally, the Norn Queen. He telepathically petitions her to grant him “power enow to vanquish all who oppose my will!”.  It is at this moment that a crowbar-wielding villain named the Wrecker bursts into Loki’s room.

The Wrecker is a talented criminal who prides himself on his ability to use a crowbar like a scalpel. He had spotted Loki in the window and judged him by his clothes to be a supervillain, and thus to probably have some loot.  As far as he is concerned, that is a compelling reason to knowck out Loki with his crowbar, before putting on Loki’s helmet, because who wouldn’t try on that helmet if it was just sitting there?

This is how the Norn Queen comes to imbue the Wrecker with great Asgardian power.  She mistakes the helmeted figure to be Loki.

When Loki comes to, the Wrecker returns the helmet before using his new power to zap the evil one back to Asgard.

Later, as Thor is trying to explain television to his friends, they catch a news bulletin showing that the Wrecker is rampaging through the city. The three warriors track him down but the villain uses his power to zap Sif and Balder back to Asgard as he did Loki. He wants to fight Thor one-on-one.

First Appearance: The Wrecker

Days of Thunder – December 1967 The Mighty Thor #147

“The Wrath of Odin!”
Another smashing super-spectacular by: Stan (The Man) Lee and Jack (King) Kirby/ Embellishment: Vince Colletta/ Lettering: Artie Simek

thor 147

Thor saves Princess Python and returns the Bull to its rightful place before turning himself over to the police. Princess Python, moved by Thor’s act of heroism, tells the police that Thor is an innocent dupe before escaping arrest with the rest of the Circus of Crime.

While Thor is being arrested and placed in lock up, his brother is being granted parole. Odin has decided that the time is right to release Loki from his imprisonment in Limbo.  Loki, now back in his original big horned helmet outfit, wastes no time, immediately heading straight to Earth to bail out his brother.  Er, in a villainous way.

Loki has disguised himself before freeing Thor, but it is not long before Thor sees through his brother’s deception, at which point Loki proceeds to beat the crap out of Thor. With Thor’s godly power removed, Loki is more than a match for him. Loki can, at long last, just wale on his hated brother. Just beat on him and beat on him and beat on him.

Loki has battered his brother into submission and it about to issue the death blow when Sif and Balder arrive to save Thor from Loki, despite Odin’s command that they leave Earth for Asgard.

None of this goes unwitnessed by Odin, who is apoplectic with rage. He can barely choke out his angry words: “What monumental kingly defiance is this??! First Thor– Then Lok– Now– I behold Balder– And fair Sif! Disobedience breeds anarchy– yet, they have chosen to disobey! No matter their motives– my punishment must be swift– and terrible! And by the power of yon bolt I hurl, so shall it be!”

Days of Thunder – November 1967 The Mighty Thor #146

“–If The Thunder Be Gone!”
A Stan (The Man) Lee and Jack (King) Kirby festival of fabulous Fantasy! Delineation: Vince Colletta/ Lettering: Artie Simek

thor 146

Thor makes his circus debut, wearing a cheap knockoff Thor costume supplied by the Ringmaster. They perform their show and Thor does okay. In the Audience, Thor spies Jane Foster on a date and he is gladdened to see that she has moved on.

After the show, the heist begins. It is like Ocean’s 11 but with a clown and a snake and a former Thunder God. The goal of the heist is a massive 20-ton statue of a golden bull, showcased in a local museum. Thor’s job is to lift it.

As the gang makes their getaway, some guards catch up with the crew and attempt to shoot the fleeing criminals. The gunshots somehow lift the hypnosis from Thor’s mind, but in his disorientation, he drops the bull, pinning Princess Python! As Thor wonders what do to, the guards charge into the room, guns blazing!

Days of Thunder – October 1967 The Mighty Thor #145 part 2

Tales of Asgard, Home of the Mighty Norse Gods “The End!”
Know Ye All.. Stan (The Man) Lee and Jack (King) Kirby have for thee alone, created yonder masterwork!/ Aided, most ably, by: Vincent Colletta, Embellisher/ Artie Simek, Letterer/ Thus Speaketh Forbush!

Thor 145

After Alibar gives Hogun the flag of his still-as-of-yet-unnamed people, finally do the heroes seize the palace of Mogul, only to discover that the villain has fled. They use Mogul’s mystic paraphanalia to discover the truth: he intends to use his vial of Spotted Plague to wipe out ever living person in Hogun’s unnamed Asiatic land.

By combining Hogun and Alibar’s respective mystic arts and channeling it through Mogul’s scrying crystal, the heroes are able to slay Mogul with a shattering bolt of Temporal Force. Apparently all this time, grim mace-wielding Hogun knew magic spells.

Thor, Hogun, Volstagg, and Fandral leave Zanadu as Alibar assumes the throne. As this story comes to a close, so too does this feature.

This is the last installment of Stan Lee and Jack Kirby’s Tales of Asgard, a feature so good that over time the main Thor feature began to resemble it more and more, eventually making Tales redundant.

One installment shy of fifty, we leave Tales of Asgard with the mystery of the cracked Odinsword sadly unresolved.  It will briefly be replaced by a Inhumans feature, which while outside the purview of Days of Thunder, is largely delightful.

First Appearance: Temporal Force

Days of Thunder – October 1967 The Mighty Thor #145

The Mighty Thor! “Abandoned On Earth!”
Produced by Marvel’s peerless purveyors of pandemonious  pageantry: Smilin’ Stan Lee and Jolly Jack Kirby/ Embellished by Valiant Vince Colletta/ Lettered by Swingin’ Sammy Rosen

Thor 145

Odin returns victorious from his cosmic battle, bringing with him Forsung’s corpse. He crushes the no-longer Living Talisman in his fist and gives a fiery speech:  “Death to the foes of Asgard! The Golden Realm shall e’er endure! I have spoken! Odin is the power supreme! Odin is the word.. and the way and the wonder! Let all who live now know them this… Odin is just! Odin is merciful!! And yet…
Odin is a vengeful liege.. Odin is an angry liege… Odin is now and forever supreme! And woe to him who strays from righteousness!… For the rage of the All-Father is truly eternal and his judgement is all-consuming!”

And with that he consigns the two remaining Enchanters to the Lost Limbo of Infinity Unending.  In these pages, Odin has been shown to be angry, many, many times. This is the first time we have seen him wrathful and it is magnificent to behold.

Odin now commands the Asgardians on Earth to return home. Balder and Sif comply but Thor begs to stay.

Thor picked the wrong time to back-talk Odin. His father grants his request but severs his connection to the power of Asgard.  Odin also disenchants Thor’s hammer. Without Mjolnir’s enchantment, Thor cannot fly, cannot command the storm, the hammer will not return to him, and he cannot transform into Doctor Blake.

Thor passes out from the shock of this change.  Later, he is awakened by Olsen the janitor who discovers him on the floor of Blake’s office.

Thor soon realizes he must make a new life for himself on Earth. He must find human clothes with which to blend in, and find a job.  Presumably, he will live in Blake’s home.

Stranded on Earth, naturally Thor decides to become a circus strong man performing under the stage name of “Thor”. Unfortunately for him, the circus he joins is the Circus of Crime.

Led by the Ringmaster who possesses a hypnotic top hat, the Circus of Crime also boast in their number the Gambino Twins, sinister acrobats; Princess Python, a deadly snake charmer; the Human Cannonball, a bulleteer; and The Crafty Clown, a clown who is crafty. They use their circus powers for criminality and they intend
to hypnotize Thor into helping them!

First Appearance: The Circus of Crime, The Ringmaster, The Gambino Twins, Princess Python, The Human Cannonball, The Crafty Clown

Days of Thunder – October 1967 The Avengers #45

“Blitzkrieg in Central Park!”
Stan Lee personally presents and polishes a Roy Thomas – Don Heck melee of matchless Marvel magnificence! Delineated by the proud pinpoint of Vince Colletta/ Lettered by the fumbling fingers of Sam Rosen

Avengers 45

Thor joins his fellow Avengers for Avenger Day, a celebration held in Central Park honoring the Avengers for their recent victory against the Mandarin. Thor attends reluctantly, grumbling, “Must the mighty Avengers be reduced to mere clowns– strutting and fretting for the benefit of mortals?” He makes an early departure, before the team can surprise Hercules by formally inviting him to join the team. (They had wanted to invite Black Widow as well, but she has decided to retire from superheroics.)
There is a footnote in this issue indicating that it take place before the events of Thor #145. That means that it and last month’s annual must take place shortly before the events of Thor #143.

Days of Thunder – September 1967 The Avengers King-Size Special #1

“The Monstrous Master Plan of the Mandarin!”
Stan Lee lovingly lords over a Roy Thomas – Don Heck landmark of literary luminescence! Inked by George Bell! Lettered by Artie Simek!

avengers king 1

Since we last checked in with the Avengers, Black Widow, a former red spy and girlfriend of Hawkeye,  has informally joined the team, as has Hercules, who has been banished to Earth for a period of one year. Also, the Wasp has inherited a fortune, The Scarlett Witch and and Quicksilver have gotten power boosts, and The Enchantress has fallen in love with Hercules.

This issue’s story is a sprawling superhero epic where Thor and Iron Man pitch in to help the Avengers fight a veritable army of supervillains: the Enchantress, the Executioner, the Living Laser, Power Man, the Swordsman, and Ultimo, led by a Yellow Peril mastermind named the Mandarin.

There are a bunch of fights on different fronts. There is a great bit where Thor dives for his hammer as his sixty-second window closes, turns into Blake mid-air, smashes into the ground, rolls, grabs his stick and, stamps it to the ground in one fluid motion.

The story culminates in a showdown on the Mandarin’s secret privately-owned space station, powered by a four-foot-tall diamond. There is a fight that ends with the Mandarin being sucked out into the vacuum of space. Afterward the Avengers decide to blow up the space station, despite noting that it might have been “the stepping-stone to the stars.” As they rocket home, Thor and Iron Man agree that they need to make an effort to involve themselves with the Avengers more often.

Days of Thunder – September 1967 The Mighty Thor #144 part 2

Tales of Asgard, Home of the Mighty Norse Gods “The Beginning of the End!”
By the Flaming Fury of Forbush, here by Grandeur, Freely Given… As Conceived and Created by: Stan (The Man) Lee and Jack (King) Kirby/ Embellished by: Vince Colletta/ Lettered by Sam Rosen

Thor and his friends continue to fight the unkillable hordes of Satan. As the demon riders regroup, the Asgardians are joined by Alibar the Vagabond. As the four heroes turn to face the horsemen they bellow “For Asgard!”, only to be met by an even louder reply of “For Satan!”

The two forces charge at each other but before they meet, all forty of Satan’s horsemen are taken out by a single blast of returning Volstagg’s recently acquired enchanted rod.

tales 144

Days of Thunder – September 1967 The Mighty Thor #144

The Mighty Thor! “This Battleground Earth!”
Conceived in grandeur and produced in majesty by: Stan (The Man) Lee and Jack (King) Kirby/ Embellished by: Vince Colletta/ Lettered by: Sam Rosen

Thor 144

Fight time! The Enchanters Magnir and Brona want to fight Thor without any interference, so they clear the area of mortals by releasing a ring of Demon Mist, something I assume kills all the humans. Then they separate Thor from his friends by lifting the ground upon which they stand into the sky.

With Thor isolated, so begins perhaps the toughest fight yet to transpire in the pages of The Mighty Thor.  The Enchanters, giant beings with great strength and greater magic, can transform themselves into energy or engulf themselves in smoke, they are strong and able warriors, and they outmatch Thor two-to-one.

It’s a glorious battle, with a lot of back and forth. At a key moment in the fight, Magnir catches Thor’s hammer mid-swing, wrests it from Thor’s hand, heats it with the heat of a million suns, and throws it back at Thor. That’s what Thor is dealing with. He stands his ground, but he is not winning.

While Thor fights these Enchanters, Forsung, the eldest of the three brothers, has come to Asgard itself to challenge Odin in ritual combat.

As the issuer of the challenge, Forsung proclaims that, “The victor’s prize shall be… the all-powerful Odin-Sword, which doth repose within yon vault!”
“But, know you, Forsung… When the Odin-Sword moves, it well may signal the end of the world!” replies Odin
“No Matter! Twill be the end of thy world… not mine!”

Those are the stakes. The nature of the battle is this: Both men shall clasp Odin’s Scepter of Power. Through it shall flow both combatant’s power, battering at the both of them. He who can hold on longest shall be the victor. In addition, for this battle Forsung shall forgo the use of his mystic talisman, while Odin shall withdraw the Power of All Asgardians, which is apparently a thing that he draws upon.

This cosmic battle of pure willpower engulfs the two combatants in a brilliant fireball of universe-shaking energy that propels them through the endless bounds of space. As they hurtle through the void, they smash through planets, and create new suns through the power of their divine energies. Theirs is a battle that transcends space, time and thought itself.

There is a side-effect of this cosmic battle.  When Odin and Forsung renounced their divine powers it severed the connection to the power of godhood for Thor and presumably all other Asgardians, and has done the equivalent to the Enchanters. Without their magics, the Enchanters are no longer able to keep Balder and Sif away from the fight and soon Brona and Magnir are defeated by the three Asgardian.  However, having lost their godhead, Thor, Sif, and Balder are trapped on Midgard.

First appearance: Demon Mist

Days of Thunder – August 1967 The Mighty Thor #143 part 2

Tales of Asgard, Home of the Mighty Norse Gods “To the Death!”

Thou too should be congratulated, for– Stan (The Man) Lee and Jack (King) Kirby Plus;  Bill Everett, Embellisher and: Artie Simek, Letterer  –have created yon saga just for thee!

While Thor, Fandrall, and Hogun fight Satan’s Forty Horsemen, Volstagg attempts to flirt Mogul’s location out of the warlord’s unnamed sister. In response to his flirting, she drops him down a trap door but he pulls her down with him. They end up in Mogul’s chamber of doom.

Together they travel across the Sea of Lizards and use an incredibly unsubtle enchanted rod of wondrous wizard power to fight Mutaurus, a Minotaur who had the gall to call Volstagg “fat.”

tales 143

First Appearance: Mogul’s Sister, Mutaurus

Days of Thunder – August 1967 The Mighty Thor #143

The Mighty Thor! “–And, Soon Shall Come: The Enchanters!”
Produced in Living Color by: Stan (The Man) Lee and Jack (King) Kirby/ Embellished by: Bill Everett/ Lettered by: Sam Rosen/ True Believers All!

thor 143

Thor had returned to Earth to sort out his life as Doctor Donald Blake, and yet, when this issue begins, we find Thor sitting alone in a soda shop. It seems as though Blake is a man with no friends that Thor does not like being.  One wonders what the point of Blake is.

Once again, Thor makes a point of not paying for his goods and services before returning to Blake’s practice where he does some doctoring.

Meanwhile in Ringsfjord, Sif and Balder encounter the Enchanters, three gigantic men named Magnir, Forsung, and Brona. Each is clad in crazy Kirby armor, with a strange face on the chest: The Living Talisman.

Sif again has to explain to Balder that she is actually a real warrior, not a woman playing dress up, “I say thee nay, my lord! Though I be woman born, my blade is true… my arm is swift!” How long is she going to have to justify her existence?

The Enchanters declare their intent to humble Odin.  They then  attack Sif and Balder with crafted warriors and with the ground itself. Eventually the heroes retreat using Sif’s power to bypass time and space, which is apparently a thing all goddesses have.

Balder and Sif travel to Midgard to find Thor. They are unable to find him by detecting his aura because he is in Blake form. Instead, they ask a passing police officer if he knows where Thor is and the officer tells them that Doctor Blake might know. They visit Blake and he reveals himself to them as Thor. Meanwhile, two of the Enchanters have followed the Asgardians to Earth.

Also, Balder is falling in love with Sif. Uh oh!

First Appearance: Magnir, Forsung, Brona, The Living Talisman

Days of Thunder – July 1967 The Mighty Thor #142 part 2

Tales of Asgard, Home of the Mighty Norse Gods “We Who are About to Die…!”

Face it, faithful one.. Stan (The Man) Lee and Jack (King) Kirby have done it again!  Aided by– Vince Colletta, Inker/ Artie Simek, Letterer

tales 142

Nothing really happens in this issue.  Mogul is delivered a vial of poison before he gets on his techno-magic carpet.  The act of serializing Tales of Asgard, has given the feature serious pacing issues.

Days of Thunder – July 1967 The Mighty Thor #142

The Mighty Thor! “The Scourge of the Super Skrull!”
A Modern, majestic Masterwork by Stan (The Man) Lee and Jack (King) Kirby/ Embellished by Vince Colletta/ Lettered by Artie Simek

Thor 141

The character of the Super-Skrull is a character that has previously been introduced in the pages of Fantastic Four, the worlds greatest comic magazine. The Skrulls are a a race of green shape-changing aliens from the Skrull Galaxy who have repeatedly clashed with the Fantastic Four in attempting to conquer the Earth. On one occasion, the Fantastic Four hypnotized some Skrulls into believing they were cows.  On another, the Skrulls murdered the father of two of the team’s members.  Most recently, the leader of the Skrulls has promised to stop trying to conquer Earth.

One of the Skrulls has been modified by Skrull science so as to possess the powers of all four members of the Fantastic Four, in addition to his normal shape-changing powers. This grants him the power of flight, super-strength, invisibility, spontaneous flame creation, and stretchiness.  It is he who is known as the Super-Skrull.  After twice being defeated by the Fantastic Four, he has returned to his people.

Still disembodied and exiled, but again self-aware, and for some reason now back in his classic garb, Loki is back to his old tricks. He finds the Super-Skrull, now banished to an unglamorous space patrol assignment, and uses his powers of suggestion to compel the Skrull to attack Thor as the beginning of a campaign to conquer Asgard itself.

The Super-Skrull fights Thor and loses. Thor uses Mjolnir to create an Anti-Force to fling the Super-Skrull away from Earth.

Meanwhile Balder and Sif make plans to visit the land of Ringsfjord to fight the deadly Enchanters. Balder tries to convince Sif to stay away from the danger, but Sif ain’t having it, asking it “Is my arm not skillful as any warrior? Is my eye not as keen? Is my courage any less true?” It is unfortunate that all the men around Sif have to be portrayed as sexist asses in order to elevate Sif.

First Appearance: Mjolnir’s Anti-Force

Days of Thunder – June 1967 The Mighty Thor #141 part 2

Tales of Asgard, Home of the Mighty Norse Gods “Alibar and the Forty Demons!”
Hail Ye All, This Stan Lee and Jack Kirby Commodious Creation! Inking: Vince Colletta/ Lettering Art Simek

Tales 141

The nature of the geography of Asgard has always been a little vague. Asgard is a city that connects to Earth via a rainbow bridge. The Aesir that live in Asgard can travel by foot or by horse to other lands. The implication is that Asgard is one city in a larger world that has a direct portal to our world. Somehow it doesn’t seem quite right or accurate to think of this world as a “planet”. At any rate, the unnamed section of the larger world of Asgard that Thor and his friends have found themselves in is weirdly Arabic except for where it is weirdly Mongolian.

Hogun and his friends have smashed their way into Xanadu, fighting off guards left and right as they search for Mogul. As they close in, Mogul uses his power of enchantment to turn one of his enemies, Alibar the Thief, into an elite guardsman.  Alibar is then forced to fight Hogun and friends.

Here’s the kicker, Mogul also summons Satan’s Forty Horsemen! Apparently Satan has a regiment of demonic riders of undead horses and Mogul has access to those dragoons. This naturally raises all sorts of questions about Satan. Also, while Vince Colletta is typically the weak link in these Thor stories, he inks the hell out of Satan’s Horsemen Forty.  Er, so to speak.


First Appearance: Alibar the Thief, Satan’s Forty Horsemen

Days of Thunder – June 1967 The Mighty Thor #141

The Mighty Thor! “The Wrath of Replicus”
A Dazzling Stan Lee and Jack Kirby Drama-In-Depth! Inked by: V. Colletta/ Lettered by: Art Simek

Thor 141

Slugger Sykes is a mob boss who has met a scientist named Chuda who will rent him a powerful android for crimes. This android, called Replicus, is set unto a crime spree, robbing banks and stealing the crown jewels.

Sykes is pleased with the results of this arrangement until he discovers that Chuda’s plan is to sell Replicuses to mob bosses all over the land, sowing fear and chaos. Sykes may be a criminal but when he discovers that Chuda is actually a foreign spy, he turns on Chuda. Although Sykes has pegged Chuda as a Red, he is actually from space and he pulls out the space weapons. In the ensuing fight, Chuda’s entire lair, including all those in it, is destroyed, leaving Replicus inert.

Thor was in this issue too. He fought Replicus for a while and Doctor Blake gave Sykes’ mother a house call.

First Appearance: Slugger Sykes, Chuda, Replicus

Days of Thunder – May 1967 The Mighty Thor #140 part 2

Tales of Asgard, Home of the Mighty Norse Gods “The Battle Begins!”
A Glory-Drenched Masterwork by Stan (The Man) Lee and Jack (King Kirby) Inking: Vince Collettta/ Lettering: Sam Rosen

thor 140

The boys fight the Jinni. The fight goes on for so long that the sun begins to set.  Sunsets just happen to be the one fatal weakness that has killed all the other Jinni before this one, the last of it’s kind. When the shadows strike the Jinni, it is turned to smoke and carried away never to return. Thor and his friends have successfully fought a creature into extinction.

Days of Thunder – May 1967 The Mighty Thor #140

The Mighty Thor! “The Growing Man!”
Conceived and created by the noblest collaborative combo in comicdom: Stan (The Man) Lee and Jack (King) Kirby/ Inking by: Vince Colletta/ Lettering by: Sam Rosen

thor 140

Fresh from his victory in the Great Troll War, the Warlord of Asgard is ready to return to Earth. Sif wants to accompany him but Thor gives her the brush off. He claims that his heroing on Earth is man’s work. Even after Sif shoots that down as a load of bull, he still insists on going by himself.

Thor has started to think about all that has gone on recently and he is a confused god. He really likes Sif but he remembers that he until very recently felt that way about Jane. He wonders if Odin altered his brain to make him move on from Jane to Sif or if Sif is really that awesome. It is very confusing to him. One thing is for sure, Doctor Donald Blake’s life has gone to shit. Thor decides that what is called for is to rebuild what he has let fall apart.

He returns to Earth and once again transforms into Doctor Blake. Apparently, he has physician friends and apparently they filled in during his absence. He tries to get his files in order, discussing his return with Olsen the janitor.

Meanwhile, archaeologists have discovered a living man who was the size of a doll when first found, but who has steadily grown larger and larger whenever he is touched by another person. He wakes and goes on a rampage, soon becoming the size of a small mountain.

This Growing Man is alarmed for he does not know his purpose. He seeks his master so that he can be told what his purpose is. This is a poignant and philosophical and undeveloped notion.

It turns out that the Growing Man is  a Stimuloid created by Kang the Conquerer and was hidden in Kang’s past to serve as a sleeper agent for attacking his enemies in the future. Unfortunately he was awoken too soon.  Kang has thus returned to the primitive 20th century so that he might re-shrink his weapon.

Thor tracks down the Stimuloid and oddly is able to recognize him as being one of Kang’s creations from the far future, which is odd since none of Thor’s past on-page interactions with Kang have involved Stimuloids. There are any number of ways Thor could have picked up this knowledge but it is still strange.

Thor fights Kang and the Stimuloid until they retreat to Kang’s time machine. Before they can escape, Thor throws Mjolnir (here spelled “Mjolnar”) so hard that it spins around the time machine at a speed greater than light, trapping the time machine in a Universal Infinity Vortex, causing a cataclysmic displacement trapping Kang and his Stimuloid beyond all time and place.

First Appearance: Stimuloids, The Universal Infinity Vortex, Olsen the Janitor

Days of Thunder – April 1967 The Mighty Thor #139 part 2

Tales of Asgard, Home of the Mighty Norse Gods “The Secret of the Mystic Mountain!”
A Stan Lee and Jack Kirby Rhapsodic Rabelasian Romp/ Inked by Vince Colletta/ Lettered by Art Simek

tales 139

Hogun and the gang go to where Wazir’s magic stick told them they would find the Mystic Mountain but are confounded to find nothing but desolate plains. Finally, Thor figures it out. They were looking for a normal sky-mountain, but not all mountains reach upward. Mogul’s mountain city of Zanadu is inside a reverse-mountain.

Zanadu is a city built in a giant hollow crystal stalactite over top of an even more giant underground cave. Thor and company are standing above this whole thing but now that they’ve figured it out they can start smashing their way downward with hammer and mace, which they do.

Once they have created an opening, they are met by Mogul’s genie slave, named Jinni Devil. Jinni is ready for a fight.

First Appearance: Zanadu

Days of Thunder – April 1967 The Mighty Thor #139

The Mighty Thor! “To Die Like a God!”
A Peerless, Pictorial Pageant, Painstakingly Produced with Perfectly Pardonable Pride by: Stan Lee and Jack Kirby/ Inked with the Prowess of Vice Colletta/ Lettered with the Pen-Points of Sam Rosen

thor 139

Thor, separated from his hammer, is desperately afraid of becoming Don Blake with no way to turn back into Thor. His solution is to, as Blake, throw himself in front of a train and hope that he would maybe appear in Valhalla as Thor. However, Sif has a less psychologically revealing plan. She simply removes Thor from Earth’s orbit. The sixty second rule only applies on Earth and once they leave under the power of Sif’s vaguely defined Goddess Magic, Thor will stay Thor no matter how hammerless he may stay.

Soon, the two of them storm the stronghold of the Trolls. Thor tries to send Sif away due to her womanliness and she tells him nuts to that. At long last we get to see Sif kick some serious ass alongside Thor.

Meanwhile, Ulik the Troll has used Orikal’s technology to create a duplicate of Thor’s hammer. Not only can he lift it, but he can hold Thor’s hammer also, which is most likely also a result of Orikal’s power. He does not hold it for long before Thor summons it to his person and then the two enemies have a hammer-fight.

The fighting leads the two enemies to the pit of fire where Orikal is being held. Ulik follows them, but in a twist, instead of fighting the Asgardians, he tries to kill the prisoner from another universe, as he is jealous of the favor King Geirrodur gives it.

Thor defeats Ulik and frees Orikal, who immediately departs. After Ulik goes down, Sif retrieves the hammer that is theoretically as powerful as Mjolnir but without the can-only-be-held-by-Thor limitation.

With Ulik defeated and Orikal freed, Thor gets Geirrodur to agree to surrender.

First Appearance: Duplicate Mjolnir

Days of Thunder – March 1967: The Mighty Thor #138 part 2

Tales of Asgard, Home of the Mighty Norse Gods “The Quest for the Mystic Mountain!”
A Stan Lee and Jack Kirby Super-Spectacular/ Inking: Vince Colletta/ Lettering: Sam Rosen

thor 138

Hogun and his friends head to the land of Hindi, seeking revenge on Mogul who resides on The Magic Mountain of Mogul. Their first step is to visit Wazir the Prophet, but guarding the prophet’s cave is a Cyclops named Ogur. To the Asgardian’s credit, they do try to talk their way past the mute monster but Ogur will have none of it.

After they beat Ogur into submission they get their audience with Wazir. Wazir gives them the knowledge they seek, not by using his words but by making them telepathically learn it by touching his magic staff.   After touching the staff, they now know the location of the Mystic Mountain

First Appearance: Ogur, Wazir

Days of Thunder – March 1967: The Mighty Thor #138

The Mighty Thor! “The Flames of Battle!”
Garnished With Grandeur by Stan (The Man) Lee and Jack (King) Kirby/ Inked by Vince (The Prince) Colletta/ Lettered by: Artie (The Smartie) Simek

thor 138

Thor has returned to Earth so that he might find the Lady Sif. Of course, all Immortals can detect each other due to their auras of free flowing electrons (last illustrated in issue #108), but once Thor is in the rough vicinity, he turns himself into Doctor Blake so as to travel in a less conspicuous fashion. Even in his human form, he can still detect Sif.

But as he approaches, The Trolls, who are hiding beneath the streets of New York, use their Molecular Disperser to pull Doctor Blake through the sidewalk into the ground, quickly separating him from his cane. However, Blake wastes no time in tricking a Troll into tapping it on the ground, initiating his Thor transformation.

Here, it is strongly implied that Blake needed to touch the cane as it hit the ground for the transformation to work, but of course no such contact was necessary in issue #105. Possibly this is enough of a corner case that Blake forgot the rules of transformation, especially plausible given how little he transforms these days. Or perhaps, once upon a time the transformation could be triggered by anyone but now that the wielder of the hammer has become truly more Thor than Blake, the switch can only be brought about by Thor/Blake’s own hand.

As Thor grabs his hammer he cries “To me, my enchanted mallet!! To thine avenging master, eternal Mjolnir!” This is the first time in these pages that Thor has referred to his hammer by name.

Meanwhile on Asgard, the Trolls are doing well in their war efforts, owed in no small part to the counsel of a mysterious advisor named Orikal. Orikal is a giant strange visitor from another universe held captive in volcanic flame by Geirrodur king of the trolls. Orikal posesses the Infinite Eye, which allows it to see all things in this world.  They pose such a threat that Odin fears for the fate of Asgard.

Thor beats on Ulik with Mjolnir. Thor is winning the fight but during a lull in the combat he sets down his hammer while he attempts to free Sif. This gives Ulik enough time to use a strange artifact called the Orb of Orikal.  The Orb ensnares Mjolnir, trapping it in within.

The strange sorcery of Orikal overrides the Uru magics of the hammer allowing Ulik and his troll bretheren to retreat via dimensional tunnel with Thor’s enchanted mallet. This leaves Thor on Earth with mere seconds before he will revert to Blake.

First appearance: Orikal, the Orb of Orikal, the name “Mjolnir”

Mostly James Bond and Thor Stuff