“Beware! If this be… Ragnarok!”
Story & Art by Stan (The Man) Lee and Big John Buscema/ J. Verpoorten, embellishing/ Artie Simek, lettering/ Note to bibliophile: Prologue & Epilogue by Gerry Conway, writer * John Buscema, artist
The bulk of this special 200th issue is a retelling of the Ragnarok story originally told in issues #127 and #128. The action is much the same as in those issues, although this telling makes it clear that Balder, Hogun and Volstagg will fight in the final battle. Although Stan Lee scripted both tellings, this is a markedly inferior version, lacking the poetry of the original.
There is also a bookend to this story, featuring the Norns: Klothos, Laecius, and the third one not-yet-named, but probably named “Atropos”. From the World’s End, the three hags use the Twilight Well as a scrying pool to watch Pluto’s invasion of Asgard. They are concerned that Pluto is about to kill Thor and disrupt his destiny, which is to fight and die at the time of Ragnarok. To ensure that Ragnarok unfolds as it should, Klothos sends a bolt of comic energy to shatter Pluto’s axe before it strikes the killing blow against Thor.
Tales of Asgard, Home of the Mighty Norse Gods “Aftermath!”
Script: Stan Lee/ Pencilling: Jack Kirby/ Delineation: Vince Colletta/ Lettering S. Rosen
Volla, the prophetess continues her prophesy.
9. The remaining Asgardians, including Thor, battle the unspeakably huge Midgard Serpent.
10. So great is the battle against the serpent that Asgard is torn asunder, “shaking the foundations of infinity itself.”
11. All are dead. All is silent.
12. At last, Surtur, unable to live when all others have died, sears everything with his great sword in a final act of fury, reducing Asgard to a cinder.
13. Eons later life returns and a new race of young gods emerges to build a new civilization.
Having completed her prophecy, the assembled gods stand in humble silence. Unable to bear it, Loki sneers at the prophesy, claiming it shall never come to pass. Odin rebukes his son and tells Loki that he shall himself be the cause of Ragnarok.
Tales of Asgard, Home of the Mighty Gods The Meaning of… “Ragnarok!”
Script: Stan Lee/ Pencilling: Jack Kirby/ Delineation: Vince Colletta/ Lettering: Artie Simek/ We have spoken!!
The crew of the Odinship have returned home to Asgard. They listen to Volla the Prophetess foretell Ragnarok that is to come.
Here is what will happen:
1. An everlasting frost storm will cover the land.
2. As imminent doom approaches, brother turns against brother.
3. Some Asgardians buckle under the pressure and join the forces of evil in an ultimate act of betrayal. They will be led by Loki.
4. To defend Asgard from this assault, the Asgardians will shatter Bifrost, forever destroying the road to Earth.
5. Heimdell will be felled as he sounds the alarm one final time.
6. Odin will lead the final charge. Amongst his followers include Thor and Fandral.
7. Thor and Loki battle one final time as their world is consumed.
8. At last shall appear the Midgard Serpent, the ultimate destroyer.
First Appearance: Volla the Prophetess, The Midgard Serpent