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Thor Visionaries - Walter Simonson, Vol. 3 Paperback – July 8, 2009

4.0 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 1 and up
  • Grade Level: Preschool and up
  • Paperback: 232 pages
  • Publisher: Marvel; New edition (July 8, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0785131914
  • ISBN-13: 978-0785131915
  • Product Dimensions: 6.8 x 0.5 x 10.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #206,434 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Format: Paperback
Walt Simonson's famous Thor run is currently collected in 5 trade paperbacks; he writes & draws the 1st three, and then mostly just writes the last two. My favorite volumes are the 1st three, but the entire run is really well done.

Highlights here for me...
*Issue 363- Beyonder & Kurse! Thor returns to earth and accidentally stumbles into Kurse, the Beyonder, Power Pack, and Beta Ray Bill. I love the characterizations and content of this issue all the way through, and it ends by setting up a rather famous storyline.
*Issues 364 to 366- Thor Frog! It's a 3-part story I thought I'd never see. A certain helpless Frog needs to return to Asgard to prevent someone else from taking his throne. The challenge is doing it in this rather limited physical state. Has to be seen to be believed!
*Issue 367- The new beard of Thor. Thor gets a new look as Asgard gets a new king. Simonson's last regular pencils on the series; Sal Buscema is the regular penciler starting with the next issue.

Volume 3 features Simonson's beautiful artwork at its most refined state to date. Because the previous editions of volumes 2 & 3 in this series are currently hard to find, they tend to be expensive. If you can get a good price, I *highly* recommend these. They're some of Marvel's best comics from the exciting mid-eighties, and they're made with super-slick & sturdy, premium paper. I even prefer their cover designs(!). Current editions, like this item I'm reviewing here, use a lighter & cheaper, though still good quality grade of paper.
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I am a big fan of Walter Simonson but had never read his run on Thor because I didn't start collecting comics until after it was over (and well, I think I was in elementary school during that time as well, so Archie was more my thing). But I remember hearing a lot of great things about it and in my book, you can never go wrong with his artwork. In this third Marvel Visionaries: Walter Simonson: The Mighty Thor collection, which covers issues 360-369 of The Mighty Thor, He is the artist for most of the book; Sal Buscema takes over on issues 368 and 369. The stories are uneven by this third volume. It starts off well with Thor leading warriors into Hel to retake mortal souls that Hela had stolen, starts petering out with three issues about Thor being turned into a frog that are only so-so, and ends with the Simonson-written, Buscema-drawn issues that are pretty much expendable. One nitpicky complaint and a very minor spoiler alert: much is made of Thor's face being scarred by Hela's touch, but we never see the damage except in shadow, unless the shadow is black scar tissue or something. And the horrific mutilation is covered up when Thor decides to grow a beard. The whole facial scarring was made much ado about, and then the beard is mentioned often. Did we need all that just to allow Thor to grow facial hair? Final opinion: the third volume is not essential to appreciating Simonson's run on The Mighty Thor. Buy the first two volumes and you will have a satisfying enough ending to the main storyline of Surtur versus the Asgardians.
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