Tag Archives: Karnilla the Norn Queen

Days of Thunder – August 1976 The Mighty Thor #250

“If Asgard Should Perish…!”
Journey beyond the imagination with… Len Wein, Writer/Editor * John Buscema, Illustrator * Tony DeZuniga, Embellisher * John Costanza, Letterer * Glynis Wein, Colorist/ We promise you won’t regret it!

Thor 250

Some time after Igron was imprisoned by Odin, he encountered the Mangog.   Long believed dead, the once-massive Mangog had dwindled to the size of a rodent, but even after his connection to the rage that fueled him was severed, it turns out that the Mangog is hate personified and simply cannot be destroyed. However, without the original rage that drove him, the Mangog has redirected that hate and rage at Odin and at Asgard.

Igron and the Mangog quickly formed an alliance. Igron used his magic to siphon some strength from all the inhabitants of Asgard.  He then poured that strength into the Mangog, thus restoring some of what the Mangog once was. It was this, and not the absence of Odin that caused the strange lethargy in Asgard in issue #240.  After Igron rejuvenates the Mangog, the two spend some time together scheming.

Time passes.  Igron is spying on Odin when he witnesses Odin teleport away from Earth after having his memory restored.  Igron quickly realizes that wherever Odin teleported to, it was not Asgard.  He does not know what became of Odin but he recognizes an opportunity.  He disguises the Mangog as Odin, and so begins the Mangog’s masquerade. Over time, the Mangog steadily gains strength as he absorbs the worship of the people of Asgard.

That brings us to the present.  The Mangog defeats Thor and has him chained before the gates of the city as a warning. What follows is a full-out insurrection, as Sif and her allies challenge the being they believe to be Odin. In the fight that follows, the Mangog easily defeats those who challenge him. However, this isn’t playing well with the masses and Igron cautions the Mangog to reign it in. The Mangog scoffs at this, and kills Igron. Upon the sorcerer’s death, his illusion is shattered and “Odin”’s true identity is revealed to the people of Asgard.  .

Thor frees himself as all turn against the Mangog. He redeclares his love for the Lady Sif as he takes the fight to the Mangog. Unmasked, the Mangog has decided to revert to type and pull the Odinsword, however without the belief of the people of Asgard to give him power,  he fades away once more. Presumably he survives as a tiny Mangog.

 

Days of Thunder – July 1976 The Mighty Thor #249

“The Throne and the Fury!”
Len Wein, Writer/Editor/ John Buscema, Illustrator/ Tony DeZuniga, Embellisher/ Glynis Wein, Colorist/ Joe Rosen, Letterer/ Marv Wolfman, Face in the Crowd

Thor 249

Those who would stand against Odin make their plans.  While they do, the Vizier has a gift for Jane Foster. He passes the sword that once belonged to Lady Sif. However, when Jane takes hold of it, she finds it seething with power. In pain, she slams the hilt of it against the wall, and finds herself bathed in light. hen it fades, it is not Nurse Jane Foster of Earth that stands before the Vizier, but Lady Sif herself!

The Vizier theorizes that both women now exist within a single form and that in Asgard, Sif is the dominant person. Unfortunately, they have more pressing matters that preclude exploring this matter at the moment.  Thor, the Vizier and a reluctant Balder will venture to the Forest of the Norns to parlay with Karnilla the Norn Queen, while the rest of their band try to rally support for their cause.

Balder does not want to see the Norn Queen, for he loves her still although their love can never be. Nonetheless, they need petition her for aid, for her power may be the only power in the Realm Eternal strong enough to breach Odin’s mystic defenses. Upon reaching the Norn Queen, she is cruel and distant. Balder begs her not to hold her anger toward him against his people. In response she strikes him, decrying “Thou dost presume too much, Asgardian to even think the omnipotent Norn queen would ever deign to feel affection for one such as thee!” After that bit of theater, she is convinced to reluctantly join their cause.

Returning to Asgard, Thor and his allies head straight to Odin’s throne room. Karnilla alone does not have strength enough to break Odin’s barrier, but by combining her power with the power of Thor harnessed through Mjolnir, they rip open the doors.

Thor enters alone to find Odin on his throne, which is, in turn, on top of the Odinsword, which has been moved, safe within its hilt, to his throne room. His intent is clear: If anyone challenges his rule, he will unsheathe the sword and bring about the end of the world!  Having played his trump card, the All-Father reveals the truth: He is not Odin at all, but in actuality the fearsome Mangog!

 

Days of Thunder – March 1969 The Mighty Thor #162

“Galactus is Born!”
A Smilin’ Stan Lee and Jolly Jack Kirby Production/ Embellishment: Vince Colletta/ Lettering: Sam Rosen

Thor 162

Now safe from Galactus, a grateful Ego hurls Thor and the Recorder through the vacuum of space back to Rigel. As they travel, the Recorder points out that while Galactus might spare Ego, he is still out in space, free to destroy worlds. It’s a real muddy trousers situation for Thor.

Back on Rigel, the High Commissioner wants to deactivate the Recorder to more easily access his memory banks. Thor comes to his friend’s defense, persuading the High Commissioner that the Recorder has a soul and cannot be so easily decommissioned.

After saying his farewells to his Rigelian comrades, Thor returns to Asgard.  He meets Odin in his Astro-Chamber along with other Asgardians, including Hogun, Volstagg and Fandral. They discuss the present threat that Galactus poses and they research the devourer’s origins.

They learn that Galactus was birthed in an Icuba-Cell at the climax of a terrible space war. The losing side released him out of desperation, but Galactus turned against them and began feeding off of all living energy, destroying the planet.

After this conference, one of Odin’s counselors pulls aside Thor with news. In Thor’s absence, Sif left for Earth before disappearing ominously.  Upon hearing this, Thor travels to Earth to find his mate and fight by her side.

Meanwhile, Balder has found himself plagued by visions of Karnilla the Norn Queen. He has fallen under the spell of love, although with Karnilla that is probably literally true. For one as pure as Balder to feel this way about a sworn enemy of Asgard is pure agony. His only hope for distraction is to seek out Thor and fight him.

 

Days of Thunder – October 1968 The Mighty Thor #157

“Behind Him… Ragnarok!”
Now let’s see whether even Stan Lee & Jack Kirby Aided by Vince Colletta and Sam Rosen can get us out of this one!

thor 157

While craven Loki flees, the combined forces of Asgard regroup and come together to stave off the threat of the Mangog. This includes Balder, who has rejected the advances of a love-struck Karnilla and freed a group of Asgardian prisoners from her clutches. The Recorder is present, but he merely observes.

The Mangog presses closer and closer to the Odinword until finally he holds its hilt in his grasp. As he at long last reaches his goal, he screams “Now let Ragnarok fall!!” He would have his people’s revenge at the cost of the universe itself!

But all is not lost! The power of Thor’s storm has awakened Odin from his Odinsleep! As the All-Father stands before the Mangog he reveals the dark truth. The Mangog is not a creation of the slain alien invaders. No, the Mangog IS that alien race. Long ago, Odin used the full might of his terrible power to combine all the many billions of lives of that people into a single being, who became nothing but the embodiment of their rage.  He then locked that being in a cage.   Now, in order to prevent Ragnarok, Odin breaks the spell, claiming that this race has now served their penance.   Thus the threat of the Mangog ends.

 

Days of Thunder – September 1968 The Mighty Thor #156

“The Hammer and the Holocaust”
Stan (The Man) Lee and Jack (King) Kirby have created yon epic enchantment just for thee! Embellished by: Vince Colletta/ Lettered by: Sam Rosen

Thor 156

This is the second issue of Thor titled “The Hammer and the Holocaust”. It does not appear to be a reference to anything.  Presumably Stan just liked the phrase.

Thor fights the Mangog with all the power he has, including the power of the storm. He pours so much lightning into the area that the ground turns molten. He batters the beast with blinding rain and pounding wind, but he only slows his foe, he cannot stop it.

Meanwhile the Colonizers have sent the Recorder to Asgard to bear witness to these events, which may be the end of all things.

 

Days of Thunder – August 1968 The Mighty Thor #155

“Now Ends the Universe!”
Immortalized by: Smilin’ Stan Lee and Jolly Jack Kirby/ Embellishment: Vince Colletta Lettering: Artie Simek

Thor 155

As the danger of Mangog has increased, and as the skies of Midgard fill with storms, Thor and Sif are able to sense the coming Ragnarok. Thor uses Mjolnir to increase the rate of Sif’s healing and they return to Asgard.

The world-end of Ragnarok is apparently one that encompasses not only Asgard, but also Earth and Rigel, where the Colonizers can also sense the impending doom. The Recorder returns to the Black Galaxy to see if Ego is the cause, but finds nothing unusual in the Black Galaxy, at least by the standards of normalcy at work within the Black Galaxy. Somehow Ego avoided the fate of being eaten by Galactus as would have seemed to have been his fate in issue #134.

On Asgard, Loki finds Fandral, Hogun, and Volstagg and commands them to seek out and destroy the Mangog. They do not show Loki respect, but they do obey him and depart for what Loki hopes will be a death sentence.

Thor and Sif arrive in the Throne Room of Asgard, where Thor challenges Loki’s right to rule. However, the Law Eternal is on Loki’s side. Thor does not have the authority to take control from his brother.

Mangog is walking straight toward Asgard, fighting Storm Giants and Asgardians, shrugging off all attacks, including that of an Odinian Force Arrow, which appears to be a breath-propelled rocket. Either Mangog got turned around and is lost or he came out of the Odin-Cave far away from Ulik’s entry point because it is not the Forest of the Norns through which he travels.

Mangog is the creation of a long dead alien race, engineered to have the strength of a billion billion beings by a race of aliens who wished to invade Asgard. For this act, Odin killed every last one of this unnamed race and trapped the Mangog in the Cave of Ages. As revenge for Odin’s genocide, the Mangog seeks to unsheathe the Odinsword and thus end the universe.

Regarding the mechanics of the Odinsword, in this issue Thor claims that in the instant the sword is pulled, the universe is to be destroyed, however based on other comments made in this issue, it would seem that what he means is that the process of Ragnarok that culminates in the end of the universe begins at the moment of removal.

In the face of universal doom, Thor rides out to confront the Mangog, leaving Sif to guard Asgard. Along the way he finds what is left of crushed Asgardian forces.  Eventually, he finds his three friends who had been sent to fight the Mangog, trapped beneath rubble. Before he can free them, the Mangog attacks!

First Appearance: The Odinian Force Arrow

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 buys 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 – 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