Tag Archives: Karnilla

Days of Thunder – January 1978 The Mighty Thor #267

“Once More, To Midgard!
Len Wein, Writer/Editor * Walt Simonson & Tony DeZuniga, Artists/Illustrators * Glynis Wein, Colorist * Joe Rosen, Letterer

Thor 267

With Odin returned to the Throne, it is a time for regrouping. The Recorder returns to the Colonizers, and Karnilla likewise departs. Loki is put on trial and as punishment, Odin strips him of his memories and of his godhood, sending Loki to live on Midgard as he once did with his other son. Kroda, Magrat and Snaykar remain free.  Odin tasks the Warriors Three with tracking them down.

Thor desires to return to Earth.  He discusses the matter with Sif, who has found a snazzy new outfit. He tells her that he wishes to go to Midgard without her. Says he, “Though the heart of Thor is ever thine, the spirit of Don Blake cries out for release, and I must heed its call alone!” As Thor has no interest in being Don Blake, it can be assumed that the part of him that is Blake is literally crying out for release from within his psychic prison.
Sif gives Thor his space, but the matter of Jane Foster is not discussed. If Sif stays of Asgard, it would seem Jane is doomed to non-existence, and were she to return to Earth, it would be the Lady Sif who was denied a life. What amount of responsibility to Jane does Sif carry? Also, Thor wasted no time in getting romantic with Jane when Sif seemed dead, now that she is back, Thor claims she has his heart. None of these matters is discussed.

Does Jane have any friends, any family? No one was seen to visit her in the hospital when she was dying. Presumably she had a job before leaving on the Odin Quest. Are there people on Earth searching for her, presuming her dead?

Thor returns to Earth, shocked to discover that he has been gone for over a year. Blake had just started up a new practice last time he was on Earth. That practice’s office has been bulldozed in his absence. Blake has no close friends. His girlfriend is trapped in another woman’s body in another plane of existence. Blake takes a moment to contemplate if existing still makes sense.

Blake decides to start a new chapter of his life. He visits his old college mentor, Dr. Jacob Wallaby, looking for work. He tells Wallaby that he needs something that he can drop at a moments notice for an indefinite length of time. Wallaby agrees to set Blake up with some unpaid work at a free clinic. He comments, “I’ve never quite understood you, my boy! Your skill as a surgeon surpasses any other I’ve ever seen, yet I’ve always had the feeling mere medicine wasn’t enough for you…”

Before they can discuss it further, a schmuck calling himself “Damocles” and some other thugs attack the hospital they are at, stealing some synthetic cobalt. Blake departs, changes into Thor and gives chase. Damocles escapes, intending to build a Cobalt Cannon.

First Appearance: Damocles, Dr. Jacob Wallaby

 

Days of Thunder – December 1977 The Mighty Thor #266

“…So Falls the Realm Eternal!”
Len Wein, Writer/Editor * Walt Simonson & Tony DeZuniga, Artists/Illustrators * Glynis Wein, Colorist * Joe Rosen, Letterer

Thor 266

When Karnilla realizes that Balder’s spirit is powering the Destroyer, she wastes no time in teleporting to the location of Balder’s body, which she steals away from the Trickster God. She takes the body to the Destroyer, intending to remove Balder’s essence from the Destroyer and put it back where it belongs.

Unfortunately, Loki follows Karnilla, and in the battle that ensues, the Norn Queen is knocked unconscious. The part of the Destroyer that is Balder senses this, and turns its attention away from thrashing Thor with Kzippa particles in order to attack Loki. Panicked, Loki returns the essence of Balder to its body.

Loki, then intends to enter the Destroyer himself, but before he can, Thor enters it. The Thor-powered Destroyer is about to kill Loki when Odin arrives, and commands the Destroyer to kneel before him. The part of the Destroyer that is Thor hears and yields.

While most of the cast had been fighting the Destroyer, the Warriors Three followed the team of Kroda, Magrat and Snaykar to the secret cavern where Loki had hidden Odin. They defeat the villains, and free the All-Father from the Mists of Morpheus that Loki had been using to indefinitely prolong the Odinsleep. Once freed of the mists, Odin awoke and was thus able to end the Destroyer fight and reassume his rulership of Asgard. Odin frees Thor’s spirit from the Destroyer and father and son embrace.

Days of Thunder – November 1977 The Mighty Thor #265

“When Falls the God of Thunder…!”
Len Wein, Writer/Editor * Walt Simonson, Illustrator * Glynis Wein, Colorist * Joe Rosen, Letterer * Welcome Back All, Joe Sinnott, Guest Embellisher

Thor 265

Thor fights the Destroyer, which Loki stole from Galactus. Even with most of his friends pitching in, he is no match for his foe. Hildegarde remains conspicuously absent from the action.

Meanwhile, Karnilla, riding a dragon, is denied entrance to Asgard by a pair of guardsmen named Brolthar and Enok, so she turns them into toads and enters the city. She attempts to assist Thor but when her magic strikes the Destroyer, she realizes the truth: The Destroyer’s current host is none other than Balder!

First Appearance: Brolthar, Enok

Days of Thunder – October 1977 The Mighty Thor #264

“Thou Shalt Have No Other Gods Before Me!”
Len Wein, Writer/Editor * Walt Simonson & Tony DeZuniga, Artists/Illustrators * Glynis Wein, Colorist * Joe Rosen, Letterer

Thor 264

Loki has grabbed the throne of Asgard yet again, and this time he backs up his grab with a well-forged legal document from a cask bearing the Odin-Seal. The scroll within the cask states that in the case of Odin’s incapacitation, whichever of Odin’s sons can first sit on the Throne shall rule the realm. Given that both Thor and Loki have repeatedly been banished from Asgard, and given that Odin enters the Odinsleep once a year, on top of his tendency to mysteriously disappear, one would think he would have established a clear, well-known rule of succession by now.

Instead, we have Loki, apparently the rightful ruler of Asgard. This time, he has surrounded himself with lackeys. In addition to the reluctant support of the Enchantress and the Executioner (both of whom, one would think would still be sore about Loki’s role in their initial banishment) he has also enlisted the aid of his old friends Kroda the Duelist and Magrat the Schemer and brought Snaykar the Skulker into the fold.

Loki bids his brother and friends to depart from his presence. Thor and his friends do, and split into two teams. The Warriors Three are tasked with protecting Odin, while Thor, Sif and the Recorder search for Balder.

The Warriors Three find Odin missing from his bedchambers. They follow the trail left by his abductors, which leads them to Executioner and the Enchantress, deep within the bowels of Asgard, near the Troll-built generators that power the city. They fight.  Due to subtle manipulation on the part of Loki, the Enchantress and the Executioner plummet to their seeming death at the end of the fight.

Thor, Sif and the Recorder have been told that Balder left Asgard with Karnilla, accompanying her back to her domain.  They head out that way,  and hve to fight their way past a pair of Storm Giants to get there.  Sif is oddly frightened of one of them, but Thor kills them.

When they arrive at the home of the Norn Queen, Karnilla claims not to know what became of Balder. Thor believes Karnilla when it comes to matters of Balder.

It turns out that Loki has used his magic to erase the Norn Queen’s memory of Balder’s capture and her defeat, that Loki has been manipulating the memories of all the people of Asgard, that Balder is locked in the dungeons of Asgard, and that it wasn’t really Thor that attacked Balder.

Thor returns to Loki, full of bluster. Loki simply vanishes.  The Destroyer appear before Thor.

 

Days of Thunder – August 1977 The Mighty Thor #262

“Even an Immortal Can Die!”
Len Wein, Writer/Editor * Walt Simonson & Tony DeZuniga, Illustrators/ Glynis Wein, Colorist/ Joe Rosen, Letterer

Thor 262

The Soul-Survivors’ world is known as Templeworld. Their enclosed planet, orbiting a star that emits darkness, is powered by an engine that converts the divinity of a god into energy. The people of Templeworld sucked dry their original god long ago, and have powered their world through a long succession of now-dead shanghaied gods. The space graveyard that the Starjammer passed through is the aftermath of this grizzly business.

Odin is the current source of power for these people. The imprisoned Asgardians are tended to by a pair of Soul-Survivors, K’rll and N’gll, and they are already preparing to replace Odin with the three new Immortals they have captured, for the All Father is near death.

Odin dies, and his oddly-familiar final words to Thor are “forgive them, my son for they know not what they do.” His father’s death fills Thor with the Warrior’s Madness.  He shatters his restraints as his friends arrive to free him. Sif and Fandral are loosed in no time, and sensing the shifting tide, K’rll takes the remaining Odin-Force that has been harvested from the All-Father and gives it a corporeal form, with which to kill Thor.

Meanwhile, back on Asgard, Thor sucker punches Balder and Karnilla and knocks them both out.

Days of Thunder – July 1977 The Mighty Thor #261

“The Wall Around the World!”
Len Wein, Writer/Editor/ Walt Simonson & Ernie Chan, Illustrators Supreme/ Glynis Wein, Colorist/ Annette Kaweki Letterer

Thor 261

Thor and company breach what turns out to be a wall that surrounds a planet. The planet seems to be covered by a city that has a sprawl that  covers the entire world. Soon, they are attacked by armored foes.

During the fight, Thor discovers that Mjolnir will no longer return to his hands by itself. Before this can be explored, Thor, Sif, and Fandral are captured. Their captors identify themselves as the Soul-Survivors and indicate their intent to worship their prisoners. The Soul-Survivors are beautifully-rendered androgynous beings that speak in lower-case letters.

Meanwhile, on Asgard, Thor berates Balder, telling him that the Executioner and Enchantress that he and Karnilla defeated were mere illusions, illusions that have now disappeared. Karnilla is suspicious: She knows those were not illusions. Nonetheless, she follows as Thor leads them back to the city gates so that they might face their true foe.

Elsewhere, a hooded figure who dresses like Loki divides his attention between observing the events on Asgard and the events on the Doomsday Star, content that all is going according to plan.

maybe loki

First Appearance: The Soul-Survivors

Days of Thunder – June 1977 The Mighty Thor #260

“The Vicious and the Valiant”
Len Wein, Writer/Editor * Tony DeZuniga, Embellisher * Glynis W. Colorist * J Costanza, Letterer * Proudly Present Walt Simonson Illustrator, In the immortal words of Irving Forbush, Effendi– So be it!!

thor 260

The Recorder plugs himself into Bird of Prey – rechristened “The Phoenix of Freedom”, and is able to produce a map to the Doomsday Star. Meanwhile, the Warriors Three rip the weapons out of the Bird of Prey and retrofit the Starjammer.

In Asgard, Balder sneaks into the camp of the Enchantress’ army, to learn more about them. He soon discovers that the “army” is nothing more than a bunch of magically animated suits of armor. The Enchantress and Executioner find him within their camp, leading to a brawl. During the fight, the Enchantress refers to having a master, which is very unlike her. Also, Balder destroys the Executioner’s battleaxe.

At any rate, Karnilla joins in the fight, and the invaders are defeated. Afterward, Thor seemingly reveals himself to Balder, displeased with his friend.

Meanwhile, Thor captains the Starjammer through a giant space graveyard of giant cosmic creatures and eventually they reach the Doomsday Star, which does indeed radiate darkness. Orbiting the star is a giant, planet-sized fortress.

 

Days of Thunder – April 1977 The Mighty Thor #258

“If the Stars be Made of Stone!”
Len Wein: Writer/Editor * John Buscema & Tony DeZuniga: Illustrators * Glynis Wein, Colorist * Joe Rosen, Letterer

Thor 258

The Grey Gargoyle is now the leader of a band of space pirates who deal in the slave trade. Their ship is named the Bird of Prey. They capture the crew of the Starjammer and enslave them.

On Asgard, the leaders of the army surrounding the city present themselves at the gates. It is the Enchantress and the Executioner!

 

Days of Thunder – March 1977 The Mighty Thor #257

“Death, Thou Shalt Die!”
Len Wein, Writer/Editor/ John Buscema & Tony DeZuniga, Illustrators Extraordinaire/ Glynis Wein, Colorist/ Condoy, Letter

thor 257

Thor and company fight Sporr, who is a huge blobby monster with tentacles. Thor senses that there is something off with the creature during the fight, but it attacked Sif so he ignores that instinct and murders the beast.

Thor finds a horrified Sif. Surprise, surprise, Spoor wasn’t picking off the weak and defenseless, but rather was escorting them to a secret paradise. Also, it was the last of its kind.

Meanwhile, on Asgard, a very large army has amassed around the city. Balder, with Karnilla at his side, prepares for attack. The names whispered last issue are still unknown.

Elsewhere, there is a ship full of space pirates, including one named Fee-Lon and one named Balzor, approaching a new target. The ships captain: The Grey Gargoyle!

First Appearance: Fee-Lon, Balzor

 

Days of Thunder – February 1977 The Mighty Thor #256

“Lurker in the Dark!”

Len Wein, Writer/Editor * John Bscema, Illustrator * Tony DeZuniga, Embellisher * Glynis Wein, Colorist * John Costanza, Letterer

Thor 256

The crew of the Starjammer gains a new member when the Recorder arrives to joins the party. The Colonizers of Rigel have become aware of Thor’s quest, and they have sent his old android compatriot to observe and to assist.

Later, they find a giant Worldship drifting without power. The recorder’s Sensitizers detect two distinct life forms types aboard the ship. The crew decide to enter the ship, to ask if the inhabitants might know the location of the Doomsday Star.  This is their plan to find Odin.

Upon entering, they are attacked by automated Securitrons. They fend off the robots, but Sif is injured in the melee. They meet up with some of the inhabitants of the Worldship, the name of which they learn is “Levianon”, including their First Citizen, Relstor, and a young man named Darnak.

The inhabitants explain to Thor and his friends that they are under siege by a massive tentacle monster known as Sporr. Earlier this day, the beast claimed the life of young Darnak’s grandfather. Relstor hopes that Thor and his friends will attack the beast, but Thor, concerned with finding the Doomsday Star, does not consider it to be his fight to fight. While they discuss the matter, Sif woozily wanders away and is grabbed by Sporr. Now it is Thor’s fight.

Back on Asgard, Karnilla is not-so-subtly priming Balder to take the vacant throne when Brokarr, the guard of the Northern gates of Asgard rushes in, badly injured. He dies with the names of his two assassins on his lips. The reader is not privy to their names (but can probably guess). The name that Balder the Brave heard shake him to his core. According to Balder, “if what he spoke was true, then his words were the death sentence for all of Asgard!”

First Appearance: Levianon, Relstor, Darnak, Sporr, Brokarr

Days of Thunder – January 1977 The Mighty Thor #255

“Lo, The Quest Begins!”
Len Wein: Writer/Editor * Tony DeZuniga: Illustrator * Glynis Wein: Colorist * Watanabe, Letterer

Thor 255

Thor returns to Asgard without the Ruby Eye. When the Vizier summons Mimir so that Thor may report  his failure, Mimir tells Thor that his task was a test, not a price. Thor has passed the test, and  proved himself worthy of the knowledge that Mimir now imparts:

To find Odin, Thor must seek the Doomsday Star, which seems to be a legendary star that shines darkness instead of light. Mimir departs without telling Thor how to find this fabled star.

Thor, Sif and the Warriors Three decide to set out in the Starjammer seeking the Doomsday Star. They head out into the vastness of space blindly, trusting that fate will point them in the right direction. Balder stays behind to safeguard the throne of Asgard, Karnilla staying at his side. Hildegarde is oddly absent.

As they journey through the stars, they find themselves seeking shelter from a meteor swarm by landing on a large asteroid. On the asteroid they find the Stone Men from Saturn, the same invasion party that came to Earth all those many years ago. When the fled Earth, they crashed onto this asteroid, and have been trapped ever since.

The Saturnians attack the Asgardians, hoping to steal their Starjammer, but are sorely outclassed. The Asgardians defeat their attackers and retreat to the Starjammer, while the damage caused by the fight causes the asteroid to crumble, presumably taking the Stone Men with them.

 

Days of Thunder – October 1976 The Mighty Thor #252

“A Dragon at the Gates!”
Len Wein, Writer/Editor/ John Bsucema & Tony DeZuniga, Illustrators/ Glynis Wein, Colorist/ Joe Rosen, Letterer

Thor 252

Thor tries to find his father by again seeking the aid of Mimir. Unlike last time,  Mimir now demands very specific payment for his services: The Cyclopean Ruby Eye of the Dragon Guardian of of Realm Below.

Thor finds the task dishonorable, but decides he has little choice. He journeys down into the Realm Below, adjacent to the territory of the Trolls and eventually finds the Dragon of the Ruby Eye. However, before he can fight the dragon, he discovers that his old foe Ulik has come here at the exact same time, seeking the exact same item.

Ulik claims that the survival of the Troll Empire itself depends on the procurement of the eye. Neither warrior is willing to forfeit the Eye, and so they fight each other for it. Ulik wins the fight, tossing Thor off a cliff into a lake of fire!

Days of Thunder – September 1976 The Mighty Thor #251

“To Hela and Back”
Len Wein, Writer/Editor/ John Buscema & tony DeZuniga, Illustrators/ Glynis Wein, Colorsist/ Pat Condoy, Letterer

Thor 251

Sif, while happy to be alive, is afraid that she is a mere consolation prize to Thor, forever second in his heart to Jane. Thor does his best to explain to her that having two women that he loves combined into one is kind of awesome.

Karnilla has been sticking around Asgard, for unspecified reasons. This makes Balder both pleased and incredibly uncomfortable.

After days of searching, the Vizier cannot find Odin anywhere in the known universe. He suspects that Odin may be in Valhalla. He travels there, by himself, and encounters his old frenemy, Harokin. Harokin can’t pass up the opportunity to wrassle with Thor and forces Thor into a fight he does not want.

Eventually, Hela arrives and informs Thor that Odin is not in her land. She then allows Thor to depart.

Days of Thunder – October 1973 The Mighty Thor #216

“Where Chaos Rules!”
Gerry Conway, Scripter/ John Buscema & Jim Mooney, Artists Extraordinaire/ John Costanza, letterer/ George Roussos, colorist/ Roy Thomas, Editor

Thor 216

The crystalline group consciousness that is known as Xorr has transformed itself into a giant humanoid being intent on absorbing the universe and remaking the cosmos as Xorr sees fit. Out of love for Sif who remains trapped within the Xorr, Thor is not only prepared to allow the being to do this, but he stands before the creature as its protector.

When Xorr speaks, there are quotation marks around his dialogue, a detail traditionally omitted from comic book storytelling. It serves to makes Xorr more offputting.

While Thor’s allies are prepared to stand back and not interfere, Mercurio and the Gramosians are not so accommodating. They attack Thor so that they might stop Xorr from his rampage, and also so they might harness Xorr’s power to save their world.

Xorr absorbs energy from a variety of cosmic sources as Thor and Mercurio battle. Eventually, Mercurio convinces Thor to stop being a jerk and they combine their powers in order to free Sif and Karnilla. While Thor and Mercurio work things out, Odin nudges Xorr into a supernova, which shatters the crystal form of the creature. Mercurio collects the shards of Xorr, with which he can somehow save his world from vaguely defined doom.  He and Thor part as friends.

Meanwhile on Earth, Balder has regained his sanity. It is unclear what lifted that cloud from his mind, just as it remains unclear precisely what he had been doing on Asgard, and what it was that  drove him mad. Seeking to face that which caused him harm, Balder takes Volstagg with him as he swings his magic sword to return them to Asgard, never mind that they are both banished from that land.

 

Days of Thunder – September 1973 The Mighty Thor #215

“The God in the Jewel”
Gerry Conway, Scripter * John Buscema & Jim Mooney, Artists Exemplar * John Costanza, letterer/ Stan G., colorist * Roy Thomas, Editor

Thor 215

Six million years ago, there was a world named Xorr. The inhabitants of that planet were the progenitors of many other humanoid races, including the Humans, Skrulls, and Kree. The people of Xorr, when faced with their sun going nova, created a shield of nuclear force around their planet. In the millions of years that have followed, the force shield has shrunk and the planet, its inhabitants and the nuclear shield have fused to become the crimson crystal that now houses Sif and Karnilla.

The people of Xorr hold the miners of the Dark Nebula in their thrall and are now absorbing the immense power possessed by Sif, the Asgardian and Karnilla, the sorceress. When Thor’s people and Mercurio’s people agree to team up against this new threat, the miners Quellor, Rothgar and Kagg combine the crystal with their mining colony to create an ad hoc spaceship. Thor and company gives chase in the Asgardian starjammer, along with their Gramosian allies.

They catch up with the ship and form a boarding party. They overpower the miners but the giant crystal, once a planet, now a spaceship, transforms itself again, becoming a giant crystalline person, roughly human in shape, with Sif and Karnilla still trapped within.

As the people of Xorr become a single crystalline entity, it warns Thor that if it is to be in any way harmed, that harm will mean the death of Sif!

 

Days of Thunder – August 1973 The Mighty Thor #214

“Into the Dark Nebula!”
Gerry Conway, scripter/ Sal Buscema, artist/ Jim Mooney, inker/ John Costanza, letterer/ P. Goldberg, colorist/ Roy Thomas, Editor

Thor 214

Before heading into the Dark Nebula, Thor swings by Asgard to  drop off most of the population.  A few stay on the ship:  In addition to to his exiled friends, Heimdall and Odin accompany Thor on this quest. The previous matter of Thor and his friends defying Odin and being exiled from Asgard is not addressed.

Thor and company soon stumble into a violent conflict where the stakes and and motivations are unclear. One of the combatants in this fracas is Mercurio, the Four-Dimensional Man. Previously believed to have been killed by Thor in issue #208, it is revealed that  Mercurio did not die, but instead exploded into another dimension. In that dimension, he passed through a giant red crystal which returned him to his people on planet Gramos.

That enormous jewel was a Dimensional Transporter, existing simultaneously in many dimensions all at once. Now, raiders from Gramos have come to the mines of the Dark Nebula seeking to harness the power of the jewel in an attempt to save their dimension from the still-unexplained threat that may destroy it.

Also in the mix are three humanoid miners from Orion Base, Quellor, Rothgar, and Kagg. It is unclear what their role is at the moment, but they seem to be untrustworthy, and also seem to know more about the jewel then they have revealed.

In the midst of this melee between miners, Gramosians, and Asgardians there is an eruption as the massive jewel breaks through the surface of the ground. Trapped within it are Sif and Karnilla. Before any action can be taken, an unseen voice claims that it will use the life force of Sif and Karnilla to “dominate this portion of the cosmic all”!

First Appearance: Quellor, Rothgar, Kagg

 

Days of Thunder – January 1973 The Mighty Thor #207

“Firesword”

Gerry Conway script * John Buscema art * Vinnie Colletta inks * Denise Vladimer letterer * Glynis Wein color * M. Severin good works * Roy Thomas editor

Thor 207

Gerry Conway, Steve Englehart, Len Wein and Glynis Wein are  real-life comic book creators who, like Tom Fagan, have fictional analogs that have occasionally graced the pages of both Marvel Comics and its distinguished competition. Recently, these fictionalized friends have had a series of misadventures spanning multiple unrelated comics and multiple decidedly unrelated comic publishers before eventually arriving in Rutland in order to attend the annual Super Hero Halloween Parade.

Thor also arrives in Rutland, along with Sif and Hildegarde. It is not clear why he brought his friends, for as soon as they find the Absorbing Man, Thor insists that he be allowed to fight the villain by himself. Sif balks at this but Hildegarde physically restrains her because “the God of Thunder must ever be obeyed.”

Thor and Creel fight and at one point Thor is pinned to the ground and separated from his hammer. Unlike all the many other time that this sort of thing has happened, this time Thor calls the true, secret name of Mjolnir, which apparently is not “Mjolnir”.  The powerful magic of the true name summons the hammer to his hands. It seems odd that he had never done this in the past, but perhaps learning the truth about his dual nature back in issue #159 has returned knowledge to Thor that had previously been lost.

It is also revealed in an off-handed caption that Mjolnir was forged in the furnace of Geirrodur. It is unknown how Odin came to possess this powerful Trollen weapon before passing it on to his son.

Thor and Creel’s fight ends abruptly when Creel ends up landing in a body of water, which he finds himself unable to resist absorbing.  This seems to be fatal.  As soon as Creel dissipates, Loki makes himself known to Thor.

Loki attacks Thor, brandishing a flaming sword powered by the life force of the participants of the Rutland Halloween parade.  He has also turned Satan and Diablo into bigger, more unpleasant dogs.  Loki and Thor fight.

While the brothers do battle, Sif and Hildegarde watch from afar until Karnilla appears before them. Karnilla offers to help Thor if   Sif’s will afterward help Karnilla in finding Balder. Sif, who got screwed pretty badly last time she made such a deal with Karnilla, initially refuses, but relents when Loki seems on the cusp of victory.

Having struck her bargain, Karnilla magically summons a thunder storm. Thor uses the power of the storm to turn the tide of battle. It ends with Thor striking Loki with a bolt of lightning. This bolt leaves Loki blinded. Panicked, Loki stumbles away, falling off of a cliff.

Thor returns to Hildegarde, discovering that Sif has departed with Karnilla. There are tears in Hildegarde’s eyes, for in her heart she knows that they will never see Sif again. Why she would feel this way is unknown.

First Appearance: Credit for the colorist

Days of Thunder – December 1972 The Mighty Thor #206

“Rebirth!”
Gerry Conway, scripter * John Buscema, artist * V. Colletta, inker # John Costanza, letterer * Roy Thomas editor

Thor 206

Several years ago, Odin banished Crusher Creel, the Absorbing Man, into the void, discorporating him into outer space. Some time after that, he passed through a comet and absorbed the form of the comet. He was then able to somehow use his force of will to move  his comet form straight toward planet Earth. This eventually allowed him to walk free on the planet once more, but before he could track down Thor for revenge, he got drawn into a fight with  the Hulk. This fight culminated with a mountain falling on him, and seemingly killing him. He has not been seen for the past two years.

Now, the mountain that had trapped the Absorbing Man is struck by a meteorite, freeing the villain. Once freed, Creel is drawn to New York by a voice in his head that gives him headaches and tells him to find and kill Thor. Before he can find his enemy, he stumbles upon Sif and Hildegarde, who have been exploring New York. Their eyes blaze with excitement at the prospect of random battle. It has been days since they have gotten into a good fight.

After donning armor and taking up arms, the warriors rush to challenge Creel. Sif seems to have picked up some new armor on Earth. While they fight Creel, Thor is informed by Jarvis, the Avengers’ butler, that Creel is causing a ruckus. Thor is so eager to fight him that he can’t be bothered with a door, smashing through a closed window of Avengers Mansion.

When Thor arrives, Sif and Hildegarde have been knocked about, allowing him to tag in. They fight, and the voice in Creel’s head compels him to retreat to a creepy house in Rutland, Vermont, with the intent of luring Thor into a trap. The house belongs to Tom Fagan. Tom Fagan is the organizer of an annual superhero themed Halloween parade that has been repeatedly featured in the stories of Marvel Comics, as well as those of DC comics, and also he was a real person and the parade a real thing. He owns two dogs, Satan, and Diablo.  At the moment, Loki has entranced him and is occupying his house.

Meanwhile, on Asgard Karnilla and the Vizier continue to hang out. They gossip about Odin, who the Vizier fears has gone mad. Odin has taken the defiance of Thor and his friends very poorly.  He has forbade that they be mentioned by name, while demanding that all his remaining subjects swear fealty to him day and night.

 

Days of Thunder – November 1972 The Mighty Thor #205

“A World Gone Mad!”
Stan Lee Presents: Gerry Conway, scripter & John Buscema, artist/ Vinnie Colletta, Inker/ John Costanza, Letterer/ Roy Thomas, editor

Thor 205

Thor fights Mephisto. Mephisto calls upon evil dead people, including Blackbeard, Attilla the Hun, and Adolph Hitler. Thor defeats all comers.

 

Days of Thunder – October 1972 The Mighty Thor #204

“Exiled on Earth!”
Stan Lee presents: Gerry Conway, scripter/ John Buscema, penciler/ Jim Mooney, finished art/ Shelly Leferman, letterer/ Roy Thomas, editor

Thor 204

Thor is super-pissed at Odin for manipulating him like a chesspiece. When Thor expresses his outrage, Odin responds by exiling his son to Earth. In response, all of the assembled Asgardians choose to stand with Thor. And so Sif, Balder, Fandral, Hogun, and Hildegarde share in Thor’s exile. Tana Nile and Silas Grant aren’t banished, but they are trapped on Earth. Volstagg is missing in action. Heimdall and Kamorr miss the drama, and return home unaware of what has transpired.

Thor takes his displaced companions to Avengers Mansion, where the Avengers are headquartered. Thor offers them temporary residency in the Mansion, until something more permanent can be arranged.

Sif and Thor, or rather Sif and Blake, go to check in on Blake’s practice, only to discover that the door has been barred. They meet with the new owner of the building, Karl Sarron. Blake explains to his new landlord that he has paid the rent months in advance, and Sarron tells him that he has no record of any such arrangement. However, if Blake can provide proof of his rent arrangement, it will, of course, be honored.

While Blake deals with his rent dispute, his friends attempt to unwind and to familiarize themselves with their new environs. As they go off in separate groups, one by one, they are captured by unknown dark forces.

After it has claimed their friends, Thor and Sif find themselves swallowed by malevolent darkness. They follow the path that lies before them, and eventually they discover themselves to be in the presence of Mephisto, surrounded by their blank-faced comrades!

First Appearance: Karl Sarron

 

Days of Thunder – September 1972 The Mighty Thor #203

“They Walk Like Gods!”
Stan Lee presents: Gerry Conway, scripter John Buscema, Artist/ Vince Colletta: inker/ John Costanza: Letterer/ Roy Thomas: editor

Thor 203

While Thor and friends continue to fight Ego-Prime. Heimdal and Kamorr collect two more seemingly random humans: Chi Lo, a Japanese farmer, and Carter Dyam, an Israeli soldier. Also, the man named “Jackson Kimbal” in the previous issue is now being called “Jason Kimbal”. Perhaps, Heimdal got his name wrong initially, and has been corrected off-panel.

Karnilla barges in on Odin, demanding to know what is going on with Balder. The Vizier trails behind her, stopping in horror when he discovers that Odin has been playing “the Game”. It is unclear what the significance of “the Game” is.

On Earth, all of the fighting against Ego-Prime has been ineffectual. He unleashes his power upon the planet, ready to create his Planetary Flesh Mound. However, at the last moment, all of his power is siphoned away until he fades into nothingness. While Thor and his friends were powerless to stop the villain, the power of Ego-Prime has been captured by the three mortals assembled by Heimdal. They stand before our heroes, newly transformed into gods.

Odin reveals himself before Thor and the others, revealing that all of his actions as of late have all been part of a byzantine, seemingly stupid plan designed to culminate with the creation of these three new gods, the start of a new race of gods that will “breathe fresh fire into the furnace of the cosmic all!”

Also, in this issue Ego-Prime calls Thor’s hammer “trice-dammed”. Setting aside the fact that he surely meant “thrice-damned,” this is stronger language than one would expect to be permissible by the Comics Code Authority.

First Appearance: Chi Lo, Carter Dyam

 

Days of Thunder – August 1972 The Mighty Thor #202

“–And None Dare Stand ‘Gainst Ego-Prime!”
Stan Lee Presents: A Gerry Conway, John Buscema Mini-Marvel Masterpiece! Aided and Abetted by: Vinnie Colletta, inker and Artie Simek, Letterer

Thor 202

The combined force of Sif, Tana Nile, Hildegarde, Silas Grant, Thor, Balder, Fandral, Hogun, and Volstagg stand together against Ego-Prime as it transforms from a crystalline rock monster into a hundred-foot-tall, purple-bearded humanoid. Ego-Prime, in his new form, reveals his ultimate intent: He wants to use his power of growth and change to cause humanity to multiply so rapidly that they blanket the earth in a swarming pile of flesh. He will then fuse those wriggling mountains of humanity into a single peaceful entity. The combined heroes stand in opposition to this scheme.

Elsewhere on Earth, Heimdall and Kamorr seek and find a young black man named Jackson Kimbal and help him get out of some trouble with some loan sharks.

Meanwhile, Karnilla appears to have reached an uneasy peace with Odin after all of the events of recent days.  She and the Vizir discuss their fears that Odin has sent their friends to their deaths.  Elsewhere, Odin literally plays chess with himself using a chessboard full of pieces sculpted like our cast.

Thor Chess

It has not been made clear how those who were on Blackworld ended up on Earth. Perhaps the most likely explanation would be that it was an act of Odin,  and that somehow moving his pieces on his chessboard mystically moved the flesh-and-blood analogues to another location.

First Appearance: Jackson Kimbal

 

Days of Thunder – July 1972 The Mighty Thor #201

“Resurrection!”
Stan Lee editor presents: A Gerry Conway (script) * John Buscema (Layouts) Marvel Masterwork! Jim Mooney (finished art) * Artie Simek (lettering)

thor 201

The third Norn’s name is, indeed, Atropos.

The implication has been there since their introduction, but now that they have been given the names of the Greek Fates, it is all but established that within the Marvel cosmology, the Norse Norn and the Greek Fates are one and the same.

The Norn continue to watch what the various Asgardians are up to, and continue to watch the proceeds non-linearly. One week prior to Pluto’s invasion of Asgard, A longship arrives in Brooklyn, carrying Heimdall, along with a diminutive ally named Kamorr the Small. Apparently between Heimdall’s fight with Thor in issue #193 and Asgard’s departure from the universe, Odin sent Heimdall to Earth on a quest alongside this dwarf. Heimdall weaves an enchantment that gives them the appearance of local garb.

While the battle between The Asgardians and the Underworlders rages on, Karnilla does what she can to stop this fighting, for the sake of her beloved Balder. However, it is not she who saves the day, but rather Hela, who chooses to end the stalemate between herself and Pluto by restoring life to Odin.

With Odin’s life restored, Pluto retreats from Asgard, but not before seemingly sending Fandral, Hogun, and Volstagg to the Netherworld. However, Odin redirected Pluto’s action, and sent the warriors to Earth, a land that is very strange to these three.

Upon hearing of the dislocation of his friends, Thor asks his father for leave to retrieve them from Earth. Balder asks Karnilla for permission to accompany his friend to Earth, which she icily grants: “It appears I’ve no hold on thee… if ever I had.” As soon as Balder and Thor leaves, she begins to cry.

Odin begins to hint at a plan that the lettercolumn has been hinting at for some time. Apparently, sending the trio to Earth and Sif to Blackworld, and who knows what other random Odin bullshit, has all been part of of some overly complicated plot on his part, but at this time he can say no more.

On Blackworld, as our heroes retreat from Ego-Prime, Tana Nile reveals how Ego-Prime came to be. It seems that the Colonizers were in dire need of a planet “of the Earth type” for some unspecified reason, but none were available to them.

The Grand Comissioner’s solution was elegant in its simplicity: Tana Nile went to the Black Galaxy where she harvested a small chunk of Ego, the Living Planet.  She dumped this chunk on Blackworld, which at the time was a world of cavepeople. She pumped a bunch of energy into the Ego sample to see what would happen. The hope was that the unique properties of a living bio-verse would terraform the planet. Instead, she accidentally created a monster obsessed with sculpting Blackworld into a mirror image of Earth for some reason.

Now, Blackworld superficially resembles modern day 1972 Earth, but its inhabitants are modified cavepeople, unable to control their violent and destructive urges. And so it comes to pass that the city that Sif and company have found themselves in gets nuked off of the map.

An instant later, Sif, Hildegarde, Tana Nile, Silas Grant, and Ego Prime all materialize on Earth, right before Thor and Balder, who have just caught up with Fandral, Hogun, and Volstagg. No explanation is given how or why.

First Appearance: Kamorr the Small

 

Days of Thunder – May 1972 The Mighty Thor #199

“If this be Death..!”

Stan Lee, editor/ Gerry Conway, writer/ John Buscema, artist/ Vinnie Colletta, inker/ Sam Rosen, letterer

Thor 199

While Asgard hurtles back toward the universe, Kartag takes his leave, returning to the World’s End. Soon after he departs, Hela arrives. Thor refuses to release Odin to her custody, and before the matter can be settled, Pluto, lord of the Netherworld arrives in a longboat full of what appear to be Mutates. He also wants to claim Odin as a prize. This leads to a battle, with Hela joining the forces of Asgard against Pluto and his minions.

Balder, who has apparently been in Asgard along with Karnilla ever since it left the universe, cannot help but join the fray. He is badly wounded for his troubles, and Karnilla once again uses magic to save Balder. As he rises, he prepares to re-enter the battlefield.

Karnilla forbids him to fight and risk death. When he speaks of the dishonor it would be to stay his hand, she releases him, commanding him never to return to her. Such is the depth of her love of Balder.

On Blackworld, “he” has been revealed to be some sort of crystalline hulk, and so Tana Nile at last fills in Sif and company on the nature of “him.” This powerful fiend, who keeps shifting the nature of Blackworld, is Ego Prime, a small offshoot of Ego, the Living Planet. It is unclear why he is named “Prime” when the Living Planet is the primary Ego. He seems to be shaping Blackworld to resemble present-day 1972 Earth. Why he is doing this, remains to be seen.

On Asgard, Pluto fights Thor one-on-one and he bests the thunder god. He stand over Thor, prepared to kill the Asgardian with a final blow of his Axe!

First Appearance (full): Ego Prime

 

Days of Thunder – December 1971 The Mighty Thor #194

“This Fatal Fury!”
Stan Lee, Editor/ Gerry Conway, Writer/ John and Sal Buscema, Artists/ Artie Simek, Letterer

Thor 194

While fighting Storm Giants, Thor drops his hammer for 60 seconds, at which point he turns into Blake and slips through one of the giant’s fingers, before grabbing the hammer and reverting. This is a puzzler,  since the sixty second rule was incontrovertibly established in issue #139 as not applying when Thor is not on Earth. It has been hinted at  in more recent issues (specifically in issues #159, #185, and #186) that the Earthbound clause no longer applies, and now it seems there is no wriggling out of it. Thor changed into Blake while on Asgard.

Clearly the enchantment that ties Thor and his Blake persona together has been altered. The most likely scenario seems to be that when Odin stripped Thor of his hammer’s enchantment in issue #145 and later re-enchanted it in issue #151 the re-enchanting was a fresh enchantment, subtly different than the initial one. A second theory would be that after Thor learned the truth of his relationship with Blake that this somehow changed the rules for turning into him.

At any rate, things come to a head. Thor fights some Storm Giants. Sif cries some more. The trio joins the fray. Balder and Karnilla kiss before Balder has to ruin the moment. And Loki’s hand is beginning to hurt.

Finally, Thor and Loki battle one-on-one. The Odin-Ring would seem to put Loki physically on par with his brother, but instead, as they fight, he begins to suffer so much pain that he pulls the ring off of his finger and tosses it away, shrieking “My soul– My soul burns!”

A freshly awakened Odin reclaims the ring, for only he can wear the ring for any length of time. He banishes Loki and all seems well in Asgard. However, the dust has not had time to settle before the Vizier rushes in, panicked.

The Vizier takes Odin to the Cosmic Well, which shows the All-Father the  exact location where he banished Loki, in his haste. Loki is laughing darkly for unknown reasons. Upon seeing where he sent his son, Odin proclaims that “when Loki wakes that buried foe… the foundations of a universe will crumble!… Odin hath damned Asgard – – Hath damned us all!”

Days of Thunder – November 1971 The Mighty Thor #193

“What Power Unleashed?”
Stan Lee, Overseer Supreme/ Gerry Conway, Scripter Superb/ John and Sal Buscema, Artists Admirable/ Artie Simek, Letterer Legible

Thor 193

Not only is this the first issue with Gerry Conway taking over as scripter, but it is a weird overlength issue, with what was clearly supposed to be the first fourteen pages of the next issue tacked onto the book, perhaps as part of a scheme to hide the fact that the price of the book was going up by a nickle, perhaps because no Thor title shipped with an October date.

At any rate, Balder has caught the attention of the Silver Surfer. Since the last time Thor has encountered this shiny asshole, he has remained stuck on Earth and has completely written off the human race as being basically worthless. For this reason, the Surfer is less than inclined to help Balder, whom he does not remember.

Balder gets carried away in petitioning the Surfer for aide and says of Thor “For whom I would give my life!” Karnilla is super-pissed by that, for Balder’s life is not his to give. She lashes out in anger and mortally wounds Balder (She probably forgot that he is mortal on Earth.). She instantly regrets her actions, but has the Surfer to deal with. She demands respect but the Surfer informs her that he “Bows to no female.”

The Silver Surfer is a dick. Satan likely doesn’t want his soul because his soul is pure, he wants his soul because fuck that guy. At any rate, something in Balder and Karnilla’s melodramatics has convinced the Surfer to aid Thor, whom he also does not remember.

Meanwhile, on Asgard, Loki has resumed being super-creepy and has decided to force Sif to be his bride. This is unpleasant in every way imaginable, but does allow Loki to get a good dig in on Thor regarding the fact that he has continued to put off marrying Sif. It is worth pointing out that Thor has at this point been with Sif for longer than he had pined after Jane Foster, whom he was willing to renounce godhood in order to wed.

The Surfer finds Thor and tags in, taking over the stalemated battle with Durok. This frees Thor to return to Asgard. When he returns, he finds Heimdal who must fight Thor at Loki’s command. Thor knocks Heimdal off of the rainbow bridge, causing him to plummet, re-raising questions about the nature of the rainbow bridge.

Thor jumps down after Heimdal and somehow manages to loop back upward onto the bridge, saving his friend.  This suggests that the laws of physics are very strange on and near Bifrost.   He then proceeds onward, fighting his way past Storm Giants. He explicitly kills one named Kaggor the Tall, setting a new bloodthirstier tone for the book.

At last he finds Sif, attended by some random Asgardian women, wearing some stupid skimpy bridal get-up. Their reunion is cut short by Loki, who sends another wave of storm giants against Thor.

Meanwhile, The Surfer and Durok fight until the Surfer decides to pull Durok into the far future of Earth, some point past a time when mankind has wiped itself out. Time travel is apparently a thing that the Silver Surfer can do with nothing more than his board. He deposits Durok in this wasteland future, scoffs at the grisly fate of humanity, and presumably returns to present-day Earth.

First appearance: female Asgardian background characters, Kaggor the Tall

 

Days of Thunder – September 1971 The Mighty Thor #192

“Conflagration!”
Story by: Stan Lee/ Illustration by: John Buscema/ Embellishment by: Sam Grainger/ Lettering by: Artie Simek/ Costumes by: Forbush’s Funky Fashion Factory

Thor 192

Sif resumes weeping.

Thor battles Durok on Earth, which is  a rough stalemate with a lot of collateral damage. Thor does what he can to minimize the harm and to hypnotize the bystanders into forgetting anything had ever happened.

Meanwhile, on Asgard, Balder begs Karnilla for permission to go to Earth. He promises to not strike a blow in Thor’s defense. Curious, Karnilla agrees. Once they arrive, Balder uses his sword to magically summon the Silver Surfer!

It is here, mid-story, that Stan Lee steps away from scripting duties of Thor.   And so the first era of The Mighty Thor draws to a close.

 

Days of Thunder – August 1971 The Mighty Thor #191

“A Time of Evil!”
Story by Stan Lee/ Art by John Buscema/Embellishment by Joe Sinnott/ Lettering by Sam Rosen So be it!

Thor 191

Thor, with his aching hammer, really wants to attack Loki, despite the fact that his brother wears the Odin-ring. When his father reminds him that they cannot raise a hand against Loki, Thor calls Odin a coward. For this, Odin magically removes Thor’s mouth.  When Odin immediately calms down and reverses the process, it is clear that he removed the entire interior space of the mouth, not just the exterior lip part. The art makes it super-weird.

Thor Mouth

Odin cannot be bothered with yet another case of Loki stealing his throne, and so he shrugs the whole thing off and heads to the Odinsleep. After he leaves, Thor and Sif immediately attack Loki. Loki, who’s powers are increased by the Odin-Ring, playfully fights back.

Eventually, Loki summons Fandral, Hogun and Volstagg to fight alongside Thor and Sif, just to make things more fun. After singlehandedly defeating all five of his enemies, he commands Karnilla to use her magic to create a man more powerful than any that have come before. She complies, but the form she creates is lifeless.

Loki then uses the Odin-Ring to fill the brute, who he names “Durok, the Demolisher”, to life. Although Durok is granted life, he is not granted speech, nor a soul. Once he animates this being, Loki sends him to Earth so that he might slay everything that lives. Naturally, Thor gives chase.

First Appearance: Durok the Demolisher

Days of Thunder – July 1971 The Mighty Thor #190

“–And so, to Die!”
Stan Lee, Author and John Buscema, Illustrator now exceed their former triumphs, aided and abetted by Joe Sinnott, Embellisher and Sam Rosen, Letterer

Thor 190

As Hela prepares to claim Thor, Balder sleeps fitfully, for he has given his fealty and his heart to one who is an enemy of Asgard. He is awakened by Karnilla, who has come to warn her beloved that Hela has found Thor.

Balder races to Odin with Karnilla at his side. He begs Odin to intervene and Odin finds he cannot stand back and allow his son to die. Odin travels to Earth and slays Hela to protect his son.

Killing Hela has put an end to death.  On Earth, Thor witnesses the dire effects. Amongst these effects: insects begin to multiply rapidly and “The population explosion, without the safety valve of death causes the teeming multitudes to fight for every inch of living space!”  This happens immediately.

Thor tells Odin that this cannot stand, and with tears in his eyes, Odin resurrects Hela. As Hela begins to drain the life from Thor, Odin brings Sif to her beloved’s side where she again weeps openly. Sif petitions the Death Goddess to take her in Thor’s place, a perfect mirror of Sif’s first appearance way back in issue #102.

As before, this selfless act so moves Hela that she decides to spare Thor. Now it is her time to cry as she proclaims that while she has never known love, she now understands what it means.

As Thor, Sif, and Odin return to Asgard, Thor asks his father if this turn of events had been his plan all along, and Odin harshly refuses to answer. “I am the way! I am the light! And none may share my Odinthoughts!”

The short time in which Odin was away from Asgard was long enough for Loki to again gain control of the Odin- Ring and thus the kingdom.  After this turn of events, it becomes unclear if Karnilla told Balder of Thor’s plight out of love or out of a scheme to get Odin out of Asgard. Either way, Heimdall, Hogun, and Fandral have already been exiled while Loki is served by Trolls and the Norns (including Balder).

The heroes are powerless to act against Loki while he wears the ring. Thor cries “My hammer aches for vengeance,” but his hammer is denied release.

 

Days of Thunder – June 1971 The Mighty Thor #189

“The Icy touch of Death!”
Scripted in sparkling splendor, by: Stan Lee/ Drawn in dazzling drama, by: John Buscema/ Embellished with exotic elan, by: Joe Sinnott/ Lettered with a scratchy penpoint by: Sam Rosen

Thor 189

All of Thor’s friends freak out over the notion that Hela is going to come for him. Sif, who has become very emotional since Buscema took over, weeps openly. Odin tells Thor to hide on Earth in the guise of Blake while Odin thinks his Odinthoughts.

Balder returns once again to Karnilla, in order to beg her aid in protecting Thor against Hela. Karnilla cares nothing about Thor, he is a son of Asgard and Balder is the only Asgardian for whom she cares. Balder confesses that he loves her in turn, but that as long as she is Asgard’s foe, she remains his as well.

Karnilla, the Norn Queen, gives Balder a cold-hearted offer. If Balder will swear fealty to her, if he will renounce Odin, she will help Balder save Thor from the threat that is Hela. Balder, a swirling mass of conflicting emotions, agrees to the deal.

Balder at last swears his loyalty to Karnilla, who has loved him all these many months and so she honors their deal by immediately feeding Balder poison. This sends him to the Realm of Death, where he is able to confront Loki, who had been in the process of selling out his brother to Hela.

Not able to defeat Loki on his best day, Balder is no threat at all to the evil prince, for his Odin-Blade has lost its enchantment now that Balder has turned his back on his one-time liege. However, the fight between Balder and Loki bores Hela, and so so she teleports them back to Asgard.

In Asgard, Loki flees while Balder goes to Odin to tell him what has transpired. Odin already knows what Balder has done and he forgives him, for Balder acted out of love for the All-Father’s son.

Hela has learned from Loki that Thor is on Earth, and so she travels there in the coolest mortal garb any Asgardian has ever been depicted as wearing: A long green coat and a giant papakha. She searches for Thor, which of course should be no trouble for an Asgardian, but she is confounded by a series of illusions created by Odin.

Hela 3

 

Finally, she strikes upon a solution: She will just murder a bunch of people until Thor shows himself. Sure enough, that does the trick. Thor comes to her and he has no choice but to yield.

First appearance: Odinthoughts