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Journey Into Mystery #123: Review

Dec 1965
Stan Lee, Jack Kirby

Story Name:

While a Universe Trembles!

Review & Comments

5 stars

Journey Into Mystery #123 Review by (February 4, 2013)
Review: One story ends and another begins in a typical Lee-Kirby mad rush of adrenaline and excitement. The wise Odin allows Loki and Absorbing Man to defeat themselves while Thor gets antsy. Meanwhile, the villain for the next three issues arrives—a super-shaman with the Norn Stone lost several issues ago. Ooo-eee-ooo-ah-ah! While self-contained stories may be more reader-friendly, one can’t beat this breathless serial style for sheer fun!

Comments: 1. First appearance of the Demon who will only been seen in this three-issue arc. 2. Most of the regular characters from this series are not seen in this installment, including Loki, Hogun, and Fandral.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Journey Into Mystery #123 Synopsis by Arcturus Jackson

Granting his promise to Harris Hobbs, Thor creates a vortex that whisks him and the reporter to Asgard. Hobbs is stunned by the grandeur of the city but Thor is more concerned by the absence of Heimdall from his post at the Rainbow Bridge. Entering the city they find the streets empty. Soon they are met by the remnants of the imperial guard who tell Thor about the invasion by the powerful Absorbing Man (last issue). Suddenly Thor is startled by the flash from a cosmic bolt and so hurries to the throne room of Odin, with Harris Hobbs following discreetly behind, to see the Absorbing Man, now made of cosmic energy, hurl Odin’s blast back at him. But the All-Father cannot be harmed by his own powers and so uses his Scepter of Supremacy to swallow the cosmic fury and he responds by creating a cyclone to assault his foe; the Absorbing Man transforms into the cyclone energy and destroys the palace….

Meanwhile in a central Asian nation, Communist invaders are out to kill the native witch doctor to complete their control over the local tribe. Their quarry comes upon the Norn Stone lost by Thor (in issue #120) and it endows him with the power to take on his enemies, catching their bullets in his bare hands and hurling them back. Once the Commies have fled the newly-superpowered witch doctor dreams of world conquest….

As Thor begs Odin to retreat to safety so he may battle the Absorbing Man, the All-Father declines. The villain absorbs the marble of the hall and grows into a massive stone giant. Loki arrives and demands the Scepter from Odin, and the All-Father hands it over, counseling Thor to stay his hand. The Absorbing Man demands the Scepter from Loki, claiming to be the more powerful, and the two fight over it. Discovering they are unable to release the rod, Odin makes them weightless and hurls them out into the depths of space for as long as he pleases. The guard hails Odin who praises his son’s courage in not fighting when he was ordered not to. At his point, the Thunder God remembers Harris Hobbs and locates the hapless reporter among the wreckage, his camera smashed to bits. Odin orders Thor to return the mortal to Earth and Thor complies….

In Asia, the witch doctor uses the power of the Norn Stone to devastate an entire walled village and, adopting the title Demon, he commands the villagers to be the first to join his army of conquest….

Returning to Earth, Harris Hobbs has his memory of Asgard erased by Thor—so that he suspects Thor of lying about the visit but the Thunder God assures him that his dreams will know the truth….

Story #2

The Jaws of the Dragon! (Tales of Asgard series)

Writer: Stan Lee. Penciler: Jack Kirby. Inker: Vince Colletta. Colorist: ?. Letterer: Art Simek.

Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Odin watches from Asgard as the ship of heroes enters the Pillars of Utgard, concerned for the fate of his heroes. The crew is near panic as the head of the stone dragon rises from the sea between the pillars and the maelstrom is carrying the ship directly into the gaping jaws. Thor swings his mighty hammer preparing to strike but at that moment the mighty blast of Balder upon the giant horn causes the Utgard Dragon to explode into fragments….

Jack Kirby
Vince Colletta
Jack Kirby (Cover Penciler)
Vince Colletta (Cover Inker)
Stan Goldberg (Cover Colorist)
Letterer: Art Simek.


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Absorbing Man
Absorbing Man

(Crusher Creel)

(Balder the Brave)

(Loki Laufeyson)


Plus: Demon, Harris Hobbs.

> Journey Into Mystery: Book info and issue index

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