Greetings from the Odinson,
A Look at Comics History: Part 10 of 10 – Thor and Galactus
The Odinson wrote the names of ten different odd couples on Post-its, threw them in my winged helmet, and each week for the last 2 months I pulled one at random and discussed the Comic Book History of these characters.
From Spider-Man and the X-Men to Superman and Booster Gold, GI Joe and Transformers to the DC Universe and Masters of the Universe the Odinson explored the rich and unique shared histories of these beloved characters and franchises. We looked at the Incredible Hulk’s tumultuous friendships/rivalries with Doctor Strange and the Sub-Mariner. We crossed paths with Image Comics’ longest running super heroes, Spawn and Savage Dragon. We took a look at the complicated history between Superman and Captain Marvel. And, we explored the unofficial partnership of Spider-Man and Daredevil.
This week, I conclude this series on Comics’ greatest odd couples with the Norse god of the thunder and the Devourer of Worlds.
Mighty Thor is the scion of Asgard, wielder of the invincible hammer, Mjolnir, lord of thunder and lightning, and protector of the realm of Midgard! Feared throughout the cosmos, there is a force of nature known by many names not dared spoken out loud whose coming signals the end. This titan is power incarnate, death, the destroyer of worlds. Behold, Galactus!
Cosmic Origins – ‘Twas in the pages of Thor #168-169 that comic fans very first witnessed the mind-blowing origin of Galactus. Thus, the son of Odin saw the beginning of Galan’s journey, and as we shall soon see, he is there for that journey’s end.
Herald Boss Fights – Like in any video game worth its salt, the Mighty Thor has ran the gauntlet of many Boss Fights earning him the right to challenge the Ultimate Boss himself. In this instance, these Boss Fights come in the form of the Heralds (or former Heralds) of Galactus, immensely powerful beings that have been endowed with the Power Cosmic by Galactus himself.
Silver Surfer #4 not only sports one of the Odinson’s All-Time favorite covers, but it also features the very first, and arguably best, battle between Thor and the greatest Herald of Galactus, the Silver Surfer. Thor has battled against and fought beside Firelord many times. For a time, the Destroyer, one of Thor’s most dangerous adversaries, served as a herald of Galactus. In Thor #305, the mechanical Air-Walker that replaced the original faced the might of Thor and was found wanting. And, while trapped on the Heroes Reborn Earth, Thor smites Terrax with a blow so mighty that the Herald, and the machine that helps Galactus consume the energies of a planet, is destroyed.
Not to be outdone, Galactus has had his fair share of encounters with Thor’s supporting cast. In the distant future, Galactus has a fantastic conflict with Thor’s buddy Hercules. Also, Thor’s Oath-Brother Beta Ray Bill once made it his quest to destroy Galactus and in doing so became quite a nuisance for the Devourer and his heralds.
Battles that Shook the Pillars of Heaven – With Thor being one of the strongest heroes in all of comics and Galactus being one of the most powerful threats, thou can imagine that battles between them are an awesome sight to behold.
Thor #160-162 sees the mighty thunder god get caught in the middle of a cosmic dispute between Galactus and Ego the Living Planet! This is a battle where Thor unleashes his most powerful attack, the Spirit Bomb (just kidding)…I mean the Godblast, an attack so powerful that it is used only against the most powerful of foes like Galactus, Magog, and the Celestials! In Thor #225-228, Thor and Hercules this time join forces with Galactus to battle against Ego the Living Planet.
In the pages of Fantastic Four #243, there is a single panel that forever solidifies the son of Odin as a legit Goodfella and a true force of power to be reckoned with even amongst the most powerful cosmic entities in the Marvel U. When the FF and Avengers unite to meet the coming threat of Galactus, the mighty Thor fearlessly leaps into the fray and delivers a blow so powerful that it knocks the Devourer on his backside, something a young Odinson never thought was possible up to this point. In Marvel Super Heroes Secret Wars #9, when Galactus plans to win the Beyonder’s contest by consuming Battleworld, Thor, alongside the rest of the displaced Marvel heroes, mounts an all-out assault to stop him.
In The Devourer, when Galactus returns to Earth, once again Thor alongside the Avengers, Fantastic Four, and the Silver Surfer rise up to turn him away (more or less). And, when Galactus arrives in Asgard to collect the Galactus Seed, Thor, side-by-side with the All-Father Odin himself, steps forth to oppose the titan in a truly delicious, earth-shaking battle.
In Another World… – Even in alternate realities, Thor and Galan just cannot seem to get along. In Heroes Reunited, Thor is among the coalition of heroes that assemble to face the Devourer of Worlds to prevent him from consuming the Heroes Reborn Earth. In Cataclysm, when Galactus threatens the Ultimate Universe, in the end, Thor makes the ultimate sacrifice to plunge himself and the cosmic titan through a portal and save his world.
In the world of MC2, during the Last Planet Standing campaign, Thor and the mighty armies of Valhalla attempt to stop Galactus from destroying Asgard. They fail. On the world of Marvel Zombies, Thor is among the throng of zombiefied heroes that overpower and devourer the Devourer of Worlds. And, in another crazy alternate timeline, we learn what would happen when the question – What if Thor Was a Herald of Galactus? – is answered.
This is actually a question that has also been addressed recently in the mainstream Marvel Universe.
Herald of Thunder – During the senses-shattering Devourer King quest, The Lord of Asgard agrees to become the Herald of Galactus in order to face down the Black Winter, a foreboding threat to the entire galaxy! This is a god of thunder empowered with the Odinforce and the Power Cosmic, perhaps the most powerful incarnation of Thor we have ever seen. Maybe even more powerful than regal King Thor.
In the End… – Many millennia into the future, long past the Marvel Age of Heroes, when the time of Earth’s Mightiest Heroes, Marvel’s First Family, the Children of the Atom, and your friendly neighborhood web-slinger are all but the faintest and most distant memories, when planet Earth is not but a barren husk of its former glory, the Devourer of Worlds returns to finally consume the one planet in all the cosmos that has routinely evaded and resisted his incomparable power and everlasting hunger. Only one thing stands in his way, the All-Father – King Thor.
The majestic Lord of Asgard has a soft spot in his heart for the realm of Midgard and nobody, not even Galactus will ever harm it, even if he must give his last breath to defend it. What follows is a bone-crunching, moon-shattering, universe-shaking clash of titans that can barely be contained within the pages of the issues it plays out in.
In the end, one shall stand, one shall fall, and this epic showdown plays out in the tale – The Last Days of Midgard.
Thor and Galactus have a truly epic history worthy of the greatest myths and legends of old, and any time these two titans share the same page, the readers know they are in for a good time.
Thus, concludes the Odinson’s 10-part series on exploring the greatest odd couples in comics and their shared histories.
This is Odinson bidding thee farewell
NOTE: Be sure to check out my new book – Autumn Dawn: A Glen Haven Tale. Available in Paperback, on Kindle, and Audiobook