As a ladygeek and loyal Thor fan, I’m ecstatic about today’s revelation on “The View.” Thor, in the comic books, will be a woman.
How Is This Possible?
In older comic book canon, it is established that whoever holds Mjolnir (the hammer) actually becomes Thor. Jane Foster once held the hammer of Thor and became Thordis – but this was only in an alternative universe. In canon comic books, human Dr. Donald Blake is the one who embodies Thor. This time it seems that the usual (male) Thor is not worthy, so a woman picks up the hammer and does the job properly. Yes: This is Thor, and this is a woman.
What Does This Mean For Thor Fans?
Thor obviously already has a fair amount of lady fans (like me). He’s powerful and amazing – and this deliberate character change shows what female Marvel fans already know about the company and the direction it’s heading. A woman and a man are equally capable to doing the job of a superhero. Plus, the existing Thor movies are feminist, with Thor and his ego frequently deferring to the expertise of Sif and Jane.
The manner of this announcement was also significant – a deliberate female audience. Thor in her female form got her own debut. She did not have to share the spotlight with hundreds of other reveals at the upcoming San Diego Comic Con.
What Does This Mean For Me As A Fan?
I’m all for this move and I’m excited about it. Instead of wanting to just be in admiration of Thor…suddenly I want to be Thor. Although I am a fan of Thor comics, I choose to spend my fandom budget on convention attendance and Marvel movies. If I had money left over, it would go to MCU merchandise.
With this new development, I fully intend to subscribe to each and every Thor comic. Marvel has now transformed me from the devout MCU fan and occasional back-issue reader to the Thor collector.
Critics over at The Verge (in comments) are not happy about this change. Some claim that Marvel is doing this to make money.
Gender equality is a wonderful cause, but it seems pretty apparent that Marvel is also going after my demographic and our spending power. At first, some of the feminism might have felt subversive to a male audience – but I remember coming out of the first Thor movie realizing that Thor walked around all shirtless and Jane didn’t even show cleavage (atypical for a comic book movie). This spurned my interest in the entire genre. Marvel made it clear that there was a place for people like me, and here I am waiting to spend money on this.
There are also a ton of parents out there hoping to raise their kids by providing them with brands that focus on gender equality.
So yes – they want to make money on this – and they should.