ADVANCED REVIEW: ‘Thor Annual,’ Issue #1

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Thor Annual #1 - But Why Tho

Thor Annual #1 is published by Marvel Comics, written by Aaron Kuder and Jed Mackay, art by Aaron Kuder and Juan Ferreyra, inks by Aaron Kuder and Cam Smith, colors by Chris O’Halloran, with letters by Joe Caramagna and Joe Sabino. On this day, the War of the Realms ended. To commemorate the momentous occasion, the Elves of Alfheim have gathered the mightiest warriors from across the ten realms to feast and celebrate peace between the realms. But someone has sinister plans for this party and its guest of honor. Plus, Fury is brought face to face with his captor.

With the breakneck pace that universe-threatening events occur in comic books, it’s easy to lose track of things. And that seems to be just as true for the heroes that occupy the worlds readers enjoy as the readers themselves. Rarely do we see the characters take time to celebrate past achievements. Happily, Thor Annual #1 takes some time to show a party of unique magnificence celebrating the end of one of the largest conflicts the Marvel Universe has ever seen. At least till the inevitable party crasher rains on the celebration.

The aspect of Thor Annual #1‘s main narrative that stands out the most is how strongly the entire creative team goes for the mood of each part of the story. Writer Kuder does a great job writing in the jovial feeling of the celebration’s participants while all is going as planned. When the turn happens, Kuder goes all-in on the dark and terrible as Thor is pitted against the most unlikely of challengers.

This push for the polar opposites of the emotional spectrum is further reflected in the art. During the celebration, Kuder’s lines are light, which, combined with O’Holloran’s extremely soft pastel color palette, brings a truly magical air to the book’s party. When things go south, the lines become more prominent and the colors slide almost panel by panel into the darkness reflected in the narration.

Rounding out the presentation for Thor Annual #1‘s main story is Sabino’s letters. Delivering quality work on both dialogue, as well as sound effects, Sabino keeps the story clear and easy to follow.

The secondary story here sees Fury struggling with the effects of the substances head been given in the last Inifinite Destinies story. As writer Mackay delivers his captor classic super-villain style monologue, artist Ferreyra goes all-out to deliver some of the trippiest representations of a character’s hallucinations I’ve seen since Greg Capulo made his art do 360s in the classic Batman: The Court of Owls storyline.

And with this fantastic, yet mildly confusing, visual layout utilized by Ferreyra I have to give a huge shout-out to letterer Caramagna for managing to thread the story along with the art in a way that both augmented the weirdness of the moment, while still guiding the reader along. A masterwork of lettering for sure.

As with other entries in the Infinite Destinies series, Thor Annual #1 delivers entertainment, though with little connection to the other books, save for the Fury backup story.

Thor Annual #1 is available July 21st wherever comics are sold.

Thor Annual #1
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TL;DR

As with other entries in the Infinite Destinies series, Thor Annual #1 delivers entertainment, though with little connection to the other books, save for the Fury backup story.