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Thor #361: Review

Nov 1985
Walt Simonson, Walt Simonson

Story Name:

The Quick and the Dead!

Review & Comments

5 stars

Thor #361 Review by (January 21, 2014)
Review: An amazing issue with Thor battling Hela and not winning a clean victory. Plus, Nanna stands as a shining example of self-sacrifice in the name of love. But where Walt Simonson goes above and beyond the call of duty is in providing Skurge the Executioner—normally just a big tough baddie—with complex characterization! Seems he’s bitter over his love of Amora the Enchantress being rejected so he is hoping to drown his disappointment by pursuing a warrior’s life! Man, and we always thought he was just a dumb bruiser!

Comments: Part two of three parts. Balder’s wife Nanna appeared and died in THOR 305-306.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Thor #361 Synopsis by Peter Silvestro

On their journey to Hel, Thor and the Einherjar first encounter Garm the Hel-Hound, guardian of the entrance; the giant dog allows them to enter the Cave of Darkness. Thor lights the way with Mjolnir and they emerge at Gjallerbru, the covered bridge that marks the boundary of Hel. The silent guardian Modgud allows them through. On the other side however, Hel appears as an idyllic pastoral scene where the warriors are met by departed loved ones. Skurge is surprised to see Amora waiting for him, and Balder is reunited with his late wife Nanna and Thor finds Sif ready to submit to him….

Subplots all in one place: Frigga oversees the rebuilding of Asgard in time for the Althing where a new ruler will be chosen. Sif announces her plans to leave the Golden Realm forever. Volstagg arrives home with presents from Midgard for his children.

Thor knows at once this compliant creature cannot be the proud lady Sif. He breaks the spell and Sif stands revealed as Hela, Goddess of Death. Thor’s hammer then shows that the land is an illusion: the deceased loved ones are leading the warriors over the edge of a cliff. Thor challenges Hela to a wrestling match for the mortal souls stolen from Midgard. The Thunder God dons armored gauntlets and a cloth hood to protect him from his opponent’s deadly touch. In the vicious fight, Hela rips Thor across the face causing him to age but he manages to seize her cloak, which makes half her body die and decay. Thor threatens to destroy the cloak unless she agrees to let his company go; she is forced to comply as her cloak is her power. Thor speaks to Nanna who explains that she tried to betray Balder because otherwise he would insist on remaining with her in Hel; the Thunder God marvels at such love. As the Einherjar depart with the rescued souls, Thor returns Hela’s cloak—and she knows their quest is not yet over…

Preview Pages
Click sample interior pages to enlarge them:

Walt Simonson
Walt Simonson
Walt Simonson (Cover Penciler)
Walt Simonson (Cover Inker)
? (Cover Colorist)


Listed in Alphabetical Order.


(Balder the Brave)



(Goddess of Death)

Warriors Three
Warriors Three

(Fandral, Hogun, Volstagg)

Plus: Harokin.

> Thor: Book info and issue index

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