My wife came into the living room, her face scrunched in a way that I knew that something had truly displeased her.
“Why is Thor a woman now?”
I grinned as I leaned in, this wasn’t normal consternation, this was nerd consternation. “Well someone new has the hammer, so now they wield the power of Thor.”
“But they’re calling her Thor. She’s not Thor. Is she Loki’s half-brother, now? Is she Odin’s daughter?”
“Well no, it’s not like Thor changed into a woman, which they’ve done before. It’s like he’s a guy who happens to have the same name as someone famous.” I paused, parsing it to make sure my hastily-assembled nerd logic held. “He’s still Thor; he’s just not THOR.”
She leveled a calculating glance. “Well why don’t they call her something else? Why is this new girl THOR?”
“They still need a Thor, but he’s not worthy, so they got someone new.”
“Hmm.” She turned heel and left the room as suddenly as she came in, my role as household Marvel oracle fulfilled.
Yes, as you’ve likely heard by now, Marvel is wading into the “strong-women superhero” headliner pool in a big way by recasting one of their big three heroes as a new female character. Personally, I couldn’t be happier.
Gender politics aside, a fall from grace always makes a good story. As does a character who obtains new and possibly overwhelming power. What’s unfortunate is that, without more details to go on from Marvel, the gender politics became the story. And not everyone is happy. Maybe not “blood in the streets” nerd rage, but definitely “clenched fist, silently shaken at the screen.” I am hoping that, once we get more hints at what precipitates Thor’s fall, the knee-jerk “Y THOR WMN NOW? NO R34D!” crowd will pipe down a little bit. I want this to be more than just a headline-grabbing stunt. I want there to be a female thunder god that can go toe-to-toe with the biggest and baddest in the Marvel universe and not blink an eye. But I want there to be a reason why it has to be her and not someone else.
Jason Aaron, the series’ writer, seems to have the right frame of mind about things by making it clear that this isn’t just “She-Thor” or “Thorita” or some other ridiculous 2-issue stand in. There’s no qualifier in her name. She wields the mighty Mjolnir, she’s THOR.
And woe-betide any scruffy, deposed god sporting an Asgard-punk arm and god-killing axe that tries to get it back.
4 thoughts on “Don’t Call Her Thorita: New Female Thor to Wield the Hammer”
I like the idea of a strong stand-alone female Marvel superhero, but I can’t help but think this is a lazy way to go about it. If you want a compelling stand-alone female super-hero, create one. Regardless of whether you put a “she” in front of the name, it’s still a female version of a male super-hero. People will think of her as the female Thor—not simply as Thor. Thus she will be unlike truly original female super-heroes like Wonder Woman. You don’t think of Wonder Woman as “the female Wonder Woman.” The character is and has always been superlatively female and it goes without saying.
I would be a lot more excited if Marvel had announced the creation of a brand new stand-alone female super-hero with powers to rival the greatest in the Marvel universe. I would be excited if they were featuring this new character prominently in her own book and putting her at the center of a major new story ark. That would be worth applauding. Female Thor feels like a publicity stunt.
Not happy. She needs her own name. Is this going to bleed all over the movies too?
I like it. It takes Thor as more a position than a person, but so be it. I find it annoying that people will accept a litany of BS in the comic worlds (I mean, I don’t even know where to begin) but “OMG, Thor is now a woman” is some major catastrophe. Oh yeah, we can have storywarps that twist characters and timelines into pretzels, we have deus ex machina everywhere and we have literally dozens of examples of characters played by different people… “But this? This is beyond the pale!” I call bullsomethingorother.
I never did follow Marvel anything, but the basic premise here seems tacky. Why is it necessary to take Thor out of the picture and give his power and hammer to some woman? I guess I just wonder what the real motivation is. Is it really so impossible to come up with a new character with it’s owns strengths and weaknesses that you have to “steal” power and strength from someone else to give it to her?
The man here becomes unworthy so the woman takes the hammer? That seems questionably biased, as though there is an undercurrent of a shift in thinking rather than simply an interesting twist.
I don’t understand it, but then it won’t make much difference to me either way. Still, perhaps whatever storylines Marvel writes are too -narrow- to accommodate male AND female superheroes/godly figures. It seems bizarre, to me at least, to pull new characters out of a hat without backstory (at least none that’s been mentioned in several articles referencing this news), etc, but perhaps that’s just the Marvel way.
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