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Thor Annual #10: Review

Jan 1982
Alan Zelenetz, Bob Hall

Story Name:

A Time To Die

Review & Comments

5 stars

Thor Annual #10 Review by (March 16, 2015)
Co-plotted by editor Mark Gruenwald. A team of inkers worked on the issue: Rick Bryant, Joe Rubinstein, Andy Mushynsky, Al Gordon, Kevin Dzuban.

Thor Annual #10 Review by (March 16, 2015)
Comments: I’ve always loved this issue. In fact, I remember buying this in the back-issue bin when I was a kid. If you love mythology of various cultures, which I assume many readers of Thor do, then there is a lot to enjoy here. I actually re-read it several times before writing this review, just to take my time with it. Getting a clear Marvel Universe explanation of the origin of the gods (and elder gods) was great, and seeing Thor team up with the gods from different pantheons was just as fun now as it was when I was 10 (or however old I was) when I read it for the first time. Some of the other gods were more effective in some ways than Thor with Mjolnir, so it was nice to see Thor truly among his equals. Unfortunately, Thor stories like this, with a dozen gods from other pantheons, are rare. Oh, and I can’t neglect to mention that there is a map of Asgard in the back of this issue. There have been similar maps since, but this was one of the first times something like that was published. My only real complaint about this issue is Thor’s face on the cover art!


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Thor Annual #10 Synopsis by Seahammer

At the dawn of time, a sentient life force called the Demiurge manifested in Earth’s biosphere.  The Demiurge created the Elder Gods (Gaea, Chthon, Set, and others), who populated the Earth in its infancy.  They began to wage war against each other, which Gaea feared would destroy the primordial life just begin to form in the oceans.  Gaea summoned the Demiurge, and with it conceived Atum, “the first of the new generation of gods.”  With the power of the sun, Atum transformed into the Demogorge, the God-Eater, and purged the Earth of the warring Elder Gods by absorbing their energy and forms.  Only a few, like Chthon, escaped.  When his task was complete, the Demogorge shed the godly energies he had absorbed and merged with the Sun.  When human beings came into existence, their collective consciousness tapped into the leftover “godstuff” and created the current pantheons.  In modern times, the Agardians are holding a funeral for Nanna, who died saving Balder (THOR #306).  At the end of the ceremony, Odin notices that Hela is not present, and comments that she has never missed a funeral before.

            Meanwhile, Hela is revealed to be in Hades, where she has been summoned to a council of seven death-gods, who want to combine their various realms.  Each death-god can only collect souls of people who believed in their pantheon, and belief in these various pantheons has dwindled over the millennia.  Hela is the only god who is against the merger, stating that she has grown used to the quiet of her realm.  She reminds the council that there may by dangerous side effects to uniting their realms, but since she is the only detractor, Hela eventually agrees.  When the seven death gods perform a ritual to combine their realms, the Demogorge is released again.  Not knowing who or what it is, Seth attacks the monster and is quickly absorbed into the massive beast’s form.  Each god the Demogorge absorbs manifests itself as a growth on the body of the beast.  As Hela and Ereshkigal flee the Demogorge, Hunin, Odin’s raven, observes the battle and reports back to Odin.

            When Odin sees what has been unleashed in the now-merged Nexus of the Netherworlds, he performs a sacred ritual at Yggdrasil to communicate with the chief gods of other pantheons of Earth.  Each pantheon sends their greatest champion, who all happen to be sun or storm gods, to try to take down the Demogorge.  They arrive just as Ereshkigal is absorbed by the Demogorge.  Hela just has time to warn Thor of the danger before she, too, is absorbed.  Thor hurls Mjolnir, but it merely bounces off the God-Eater.  The champion gods mount an attack, with the sun gods (Horus, Apollo, and Tawa) attacking directly, while the storm gods (Thor, Indra, Shango, and Quetzlcoatl) attack from above.  The sun gods are ineffective, and Horus is absorbed.  Apollo plays his magical lyre, which sooths the Demogorge momentarily, but the music is drowned out by thunder when the storm gods attack.  Shango’s blade finally injures the Demogorge, but it is not enough.  Soon, all but Thor are absorbed by the Demogorge.

            Realizing that he cannot physically defeat the Demogorge, Thor dives headfirst into the monster’s grasp and is absorbed.  As his form moves through the Demogorge’s digestive tract, Thor fights back and begins tearing at the monster’s flesh from the inside.  Eventually, the Demogorge is wounded enough to take notice, and his consciousness speaks to Thor.  The Demogorge acknowledges that if Thor is able to resist its power, then it must not be time for him or his kind to be purged.  The Demogorge releases all of the gods he has consumed, once again merges with the Sun as Atum, and reveals that he will return when the time of this generation of gods comes to an end. 

            The death gods once again propose joining their realms, since now they can prepare for the Demogorge if it comes again, but the sun and storm gods threaten to stop them.  As the gods return to their various realms, Hela tells Thor that she fears Odin’s wrath.  Hela and Thor return to Asgard, where Thor vouches for Hela.  Odin welcomes Hela and gives her his blessing, inviting her to walk in Asgard’s gardens before returning to her desolate realm.


Preview Pages
Click sample interior pages to enlarge them:

Bob Hall
Rick Bryant
George Roussos
Bob Hall (Cover Penciler)
Joe Rubinstein (Cover Inker)
? (Cover Colorist)


Listed in Alphabetical Order.


(Balder the Brave)


Plus: Apollo.

> Thor Annual: Book info and issue index

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