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  1. #1696
    Moderator Frontier's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Daniel22 View Post
    I think it's good that we can both read the same thing and have different takeaways as to what's important and why. To me it says that the story didn't overly explain or put forth one "right" way to read it. We can both make good cases for our viewpoints and they're both totally valid. I also think it's inevitable that a story with such huge abstract concepts that lack one singular definition (worthiness, the role of gods and religion, selfless acts existing or not, how much past actions define us, and a slew of others) is going to read many different ways depending on how you feel about those things.
    Fair enough. One person's inconsistency is another person's layers .

  2. #1697
    The Great Bull Del torro's Avatar
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    What do up with Aaron using villains like Ulik and Absorbing man to represent fans that question the sense of people taking thors name since it's not a mantle.
    And then showing them having their faces bashed in.
    Hmm, makes you think.

  3. #1698
    Astonishing Member phantom1592's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Frontier View Post
    I really don't think a crass, violent, and carousing Thor is how he would act with humans. At least the way Aaron depicted it. Because he does come off more like Hercules.

    Like, there were some stories in "The Trial of Thor" trade that I think captured how Thor would interact with early humans in a more in-character way.

    I don't see how "hero worship" comes into it. On-page if Thor is acting as a hero for altruistic reasons, then people's response to him shouldn't matter. Obviously with Aaron's Young Thor he acts in a way where he gets all this praise and love without really earning or caring about it but he's the exception compared to most depictions of Thor who care and value Midgard more readily because they're much more compassionate and noble.

    And, really, from the sound of it how Young Thor acted really didn't have anything to do with the moral of the story anyways. It's just an Aaron protagonist being an Aaron protagonist.

    I dunno. I think Thor is a hero because he's a hero and not because he cared about being worshiped. Because he wants to help people, defend the worlds he loves, and is a good person. So it's not a lie because it's not a lie .

    Maybe in the abstract Aaron was getting into how people see or look at Thor but at the core I don't think that (or human worshipers) had anything to do with the story.
    Considering Thor was Banished to Earth for being arrogant and needing to learn Humilty… I can easily accept terrible behavior from a young Thor.

    Modern Thor however has learned his lessons and is a hero-born son of Asgard. he should not be falling into behavior I can tolerate with a 'young' Thor.

  4. #1699
    Mighty Member Panic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by phantom1592 View Post
    Considering Thor was Banished to Earth for being arrogant and needing to learn Humilty… I can easily accept terrible behavior from a young Thor.

    Modern Thor however has learned his lessons and is a hero-born son of Asgard. he should not be falling into behavior I can tolerate with a 'young' Thor.
    He wasn't actually shown as very arrogant, and certainly didn't behave terribly. The two instances of "arrogance" that Odin punished him for were not bad at all: Thor breaks the treaty with the giants by crossing into their lands chasing a murderous bird-demon, arguing that it will kill giants much as it has been killing Asgardians, and therefore crossing the border is justified; when he succeeds he is discovered by the giants, who ignore his explanation and try to kill him. Thor fights them off (without killing them) and leaves when Baldur shows up to tell him he must go. I'll put up a truncated version here:

    The second incident is a brawl at an Asgardian tavern where Thor is accused of cheating at arm-wrestling; when he refuses to admit he was cheating (he wasn't), his opponent draws his sword and comes at Thor and the Warriors Three with his gang; they are easily defeated, and Thor leaves when he hears his father summon him:

    Really the arrogance thing was to explain why Odin would exile Thor as Blake, something needed after Stan decided he could get more mileage out of Thor actually being Thor rather than a mortal with the powers of Thor. Young Thor was never shown as arrogant in Stan's stories, and contemporary Thor was likewise very noble.

  5. #1700
    Extraordinary Member JKtheMac's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by phantom1592 View Post
    Considering Thor was Banished to Earth for being arrogant and needing to learn Humilty… I can easily accept terrible behavior from a young Thor.

    Modern Thor however has learned his lessons and is a hero-born son of Asgard. he should not be falling into behavior I can tolerate with a 'young' Thor.
    Is it actually true that Thor was banished though? That’s not what Odin said. He said he was sent to Earth to protect him from being killed based on a soothsayer telling him he would die before his assigned role in Ragnarok and thereby doom creation. Now there was clearly a lesson of humility tied up in that, but it certainly wasn’t the canonical reason he was sent to Earth unless we decide to throw out much of modern Thor and wind back to the 90s.
    Last edited by JKtheMac; 06-27-2019 at 03:06 AM.

  6. #1701
    Extraordinary Member JKtheMac's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Daniel22 View Post
    I think it's good that we can both read the same thing and have different takeaways as to what's important and why. To me it says that the story didn't overly explain or put forth one "right" way to read it. We can both make good cases for our viewpoints and they're both totally valid. I also think it's inevitable that a story with such huge abstract concepts that lack one singular definition (worthiness, the role of gods and religion, selfless acts existing or not, how much past actions define us, and a slew of others) is going to read many different ways depending on how you feel about those things.
    Indeed the nuances and the way he deals carefully and with a light touch all of the issues that his detractors rail against is one the reasons I keep saying ‘why choose to interpret it negatively’. The nuance is there, the depth is there, the complexity of meaning is all in there, to take that and condense it into an argument of ‘alcoholic, hobo Thor’ or ‘Jane is the best Thor’ or ‘Aaron clearly hates Thor, Odin, Loki, canon’ is to throw away everything other than a surface impression that doesn’t even hold up on examination.

    You pretty much summed up the whole argument with ‘They were living unexamined lives.’

    The whole of Aaron has been an examination of the issues underlying Thor. Some will naturally not want such examination, but those of us that do, and indeed people like me that demand it, can find much to enjoy in his run.
    Last edited by JKtheMac; 06-27-2019 at 03:02 AM.

  7. #1702
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    Quote Originally Posted by JKtheMac View Post
    Indeed the nuances and the way he deals carefully and with a light touch all of the issues that his detractors rail against is one the reasons I keep saying ‘why choose to interpret it negatively’. The nuance is there, the depth is there, the complexity of meaning is all in there, to take that and condense it into an argument of ‘alcoholic, hobo Thor’ or ‘Jane is the best Thor’ or ‘Aaron clearly hates Thor, Odin, Loki, canon’ is to throw away everything other than a surface impression that doesn’t even hold up on examination.

    You pretty much summed up the whole argument with ‘They were living unexamined lives.’

    The whole of Aaron has been an examination of the issues underlying Thor. Some will naturally not want such examination, but those of us that do, and indeed people like me that demand it, can find much to enjoy in his run.
    Ah, the old 'they just don't get it' excuse.

    See, the problem is that Aaron's Thor is even worse with nuance and a critical eye.

    As I've said before, Thor's inability to lift the hammer legitimizes his poor self image during depression. It says that Thor's feelings of worthlessness are 'real', that he is in fact as worthless as he feels. A poor message, without a doubt.

    And again, Aaron's unworthy arc (that never seemed to God damn end) didn't start with Thor doubting his own self worth. It started with him doubting the worth of his entire race (IE Gods) and it being legitimized by the hammer. As I have said before, that's basic racism. Racism, to be clear, against a fictional concept that is NOT a stand-in or metaphor for a real life group (and thus, not worthy (heh) of meaningful anger or outrage).

    Lest we forget, that Thor has only proven his own worthiness and value, not that of Gods. As it now stands, Gorr's words now only exempt Thor

    No overreaching arc can account for over 30 years of story telling. It would be too much to ask of writers, even in our modern era. But Aaron's themes falls short in both general overview, and myth itself.

    That Asgard has saved the earth and universe has happened under nearly every long term writer of Thor. And in the myths, Odin was a benevolent God of wisdom. He isn't sex offender Zeus and Thor isn't Hercules, stumbling from one party to the next.

    Thor's series has examined their lives in great detail before, Aaron is not the first. He's simply the first to ignore general canon to pigeon hole Thor as Herc, Odin as Zeus and Gods as utterly useless. Railroad plots are not the same as meaningful examination

  8. #1703
    Extraordinary Member JKtheMac's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JackDaw View Post
    Yes, I think we can all accept that young Thor was more likely to eat, drink, womanise to excess..and he matured over time and became the more responsible “present day” Thor.

    The head scratcher for a lot of us is why...the present day Thor suddenly and inexplicably became “unworthy”.

    Has anybody seen any compelling reason to believe his behaviour had regressed to that of his much, much younger self? And if it had regressed any convincing reason why?

    Or any reason why he should suddenly be so riven with doubt that a fairly innocuous question from Nick Fury would completely throw him?

    For me..it just comes across that Aaron had decided it was important that one day “present day” Thor could no longer could lift the hammer...and reader was just supposed to accept that without any critical questioning.

    As I’ve suggested before I think it’s sort of approach that works IF reader is so swept up in positive aspects of story telling that critical questioning is suspended.

    For me..I didn’t quite enjoy story enough to avoid critical “nit picking”.
    Playing catch up a bit. Sometimes this thread is too fast for me.

    We had an entire thread about this. It is kind of referenced in WotR #6 too. Did you get to “Unworthy Thor”? Thor didn’t do anything to become unworthy. He just discovered that the gods of the Marvel Universe are are by their nature and on balance unworthy. That necessarily included him. That sent him into a spiral of self doubt and depression before he got kidnapped and forced to confront some of that self loathing. He may never consider himself worthy again.

  9. #1704
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    Quote Originally Posted by JKtheMac View Post
    Playing catch up a bit. Sometimes this thread is too fast for me.

    We had an entire thread about this. It is kind of referenced in WotR #6 too. Did you get to “Unworthy Thor”? Thor didn’t do anything to become unworthy. He just discovered that the gods of the Marvel Universe are are by their nature and on balance unworthy. That necessarily included him. That sent him into a spiral of self doubt and depression before he got kidnapped and forced to confront some of that self loathing. He may never consider himself worthy again.
    "He just discovered that the gods of the Marvel Universe are are by their nature and on balance unworthy."

    Substitute any real world minority in place of Gods in your sentence, and you will understand why some people like myself find the basic premise flawed.

  10. #1705
    Extraordinary Member JKtheMac's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Cool Thatguy View Post
    Ah, the old 'they just don't get it' excuse.
    Again with the simplified characterisation of me and what I am saying. Just stop it please.

    I have never made this claim about you or anyone else. All I am saying is IF and it’s a big if it seems, you or anyone actually tries reading the material with a generosity of spirit, and assume that Aaron is not somehow trying to ruin your day, the nuance is there for you to read. Clearly I am saying you are ‘choosing’ not to do this. That is your right. If you don’t enjoy it why should you? That is not the same as saying you are not able to, or even willing to. It is a genuine appeal.

  11. #1706
    Extraordinary Member JKtheMac's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Snoop Dogg View Post
    Step 1: Thor is already worthy because he's a good guy.

    Step 2: Thor fights a villain who proclaims the cruelty and unworthiness of gods, planting the idea in his head

    Step 3: The belief is affirmed by someone all-knowing, the doubt becomes real

    Step 4: Thor's doubt of Gods causes him to believe he shouldn't have the power, so he can't, throwing his identity in flux because he's the same person but believes that his entire life was wrong because of his species-guilt as a privileged, unworthy god and that he has to be something more

    Step 5: Thor goes back to work regardless of this issue, which is why he can lift the Mjolnir chip

    Step 6: By throwing away the chip, Thor abandons the entire quest to do the right thing so he can end the war

    Step 7: Which allows him to learn that he doesn't need to reach some higher idea of worthiness, he needs to be the best he can be in spite of that, knowing that he isn't perfect or the idea of "worthy" that is perfection, but that the struggle to try and live up to it anyway is what gives you the real power

    Step 8: This increased knowledge gives Thor the full power of the hammer that no one's ever had

    Step 0.5: The first time he lifts it in today's tie-in is when he forgets about being worthy and just tries to do his best to save his mom, before deciding to be satisfied the way he is whether he has it or not

    TL;DR Thor became disillusioned by the idea of there being something more he couldn't live up to, but that lets him realize that obsessing over something you can't reach leads nowhere, but accepting that and trying your best anyway is the key and real lesson of the story

    STL;DR: We can never be "worthy" if that means we have to be perfect, but we can still do our best to try and that's ok. That's what gives us value. And Thor'll be our god trying just like us.
    Lovely work. There are a couple of tiny things I would take a different slant on, but that’s the nature of the beast. Well summarised and succinctly put.

    I think there are some issues of legitimacy sprinkled in there which go some way to rounding out the concepts, and I think there may be more to examine in the moment he relinquished the last piece. He seems to own the plan later so he may have known why he was relinquishing it. Maybe it is about that last shred of self-doubt. What if the plan works and he can’t lift it.

  12. #1707
    Extraordinary Member JKtheMac's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Del torro View Post
    What do up with Aaron using villains like Ulik and Absorbing man to represent fans that question the sense of people taking thors name since it's not a mantle.
    And then showing them having their faces bashed in.
    Hmm, makes you think.
    Makes you realise he has feelings too perhaps? That he is a human writing a comic about people punching other people as the solution to most problems. He gets to occasionally have his own say about things, and some of us cheer along because it’s fun.

  13. #1708
    Kinky Lil' Canine Snoop Dogg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Cool Thatguy View Post
    "He just discovered that the gods of the Marvel Universe are are by their nature and on balance unworthy."

    Substitute any real world minority in place of Gods in your sentence, and you will understand why some people like myself find the basic premise flawed.
    Why are you comparing it to minorities when it's obviously closer to privileged people? The basic premise of Gorr's opinion on gods is that he thought they were perfect beings who would reward him if he kept the faith, only to discover that gods are powerful entities more like mortals who are flawed and who can do bad things. But they still get worshipped as something greater anyway. His title was butcher because he wanted to prove that they weren't above mortals by killing them and proving that they're all just meat like everyone else. Thor starting to believe it is Thor realizing that gods don't live up to expectations and don't deserve the privilege, because that's true, and that truth has him deny and devalue his own worth and heroism.

    The end of the story, again, is him fully accepting that he cannot live up to Gorr's standard of perfection, but he can try his best regardless. He chooses to do that instead of letting that fact impair his ability to be a hero by obsessing over it and denying his value. He was partly there when Mjolnir got thrown into the sun and he still decided to be Thor, but he was still upset that he wasn't something he can't be. Which is why he could only carry the chip around his neck. Which is why he still goes into the sun for the hammer, because he still views it as a way to affirm who he is. Throwing the chip away is him abandoning the idea entirely to just do good. Young Thor lifts the hammer when he forgets about the hammer to just do good. It's not that he becomes worthy and the rest of the gods aren't, it's that he is still and will always be unworthy and that's ok. It's no excuse to not do his best and he accepts that fully. It is in the comic book. If your takeaway was "Gorr's words only exempt Thor." You didn't read yesterday's issues.

    The gods are still flawed beings and many don't deserve their position, and the standard of "worthiness" established by the first villain is impossible to meet. Be yourself and be the best you can be. That's the story. The closest allegory would be to those at the top of society, not minorities at the bottom. And it still doesn't make much sense because we don't expect the richest and most powerful to be perfect, because it's not an allegory for a group of people. It's an examination of how religion works in a universe where deities are casually written as really powerful but normal characters.
    tag the movie made me cry

  14. #1709
    Extraordinary Member JKtheMac's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Snoop Dogg View Post
    Why are you comparing it to minorities when it's obviously closer to privileged people? The basic premise of Gorr's opinion on gods is that he thought they were perfect beings who would reward him if he kept the faith, only to discover that gods are powerful entities more like mortals who are flawed and who can do bad things. But they still get worshipped as something greater anyway. His title was butcher because he wanted to prove that they weren't above mortals by killing them and proving that they're all just meat like everyone else. Thor starting to believe it is Thor realizing that gods don't live up to expectations and don't deserve the privilege, because that's true, and that truth has him deny and devalue his own worth and heroism.

    The end of the story, again, is him fully accepting that he cannot live up to Gorr's standard of perfection, but he can try his best regardless. He chooses to do that instead of letting that fact impair his ability to be a hero by obsessing over it and denying his value. He was partly there when Mjolnir got thrown into the sun and he still decided to be Thor, but he was still upset that he wasn't something he can't be. Which is why he could only carry the chip around his neck. Which is why he still goes into the sun for the hammer, because he still views it as a way to affirm who he is. Throwing the chip away is him abandoning the idea entirely to just do good. Young Thor lifts the hammer when he forgets about the hammer to just do good. It's not that he becomes worthy and the rest of the gods aren't, it's that he is still and will always be unworthy and that's ok. It's no excuse to not do his best and he accepts that fully. It is in the comic book. If your takeaway was "Gorr's words only exempt Thor." You didn't read yesterday's issues.

    The gods are still flawed beings and many don't deserve their position, and the standard of "worthiness" established by the first villain is impossible to meet. Be yourself and be the best you can be. That's the story. The closest allegory would be to those at the top of society, not minorities at the bottom. And it still doesn't make much sense because we don't expect the richest and most powerful to be perfect, because it's not an allegory for a group of people. It's an examination of how religion works in a universe where deities are casually written as really powerful but normal characters.
    You say privilege, I say legitimacy but the point still holds. The closest analogy for me is monarchy. The gods are bad monarchs. I know that argument sometimes misses its mark in countries that disposed of their monarchies.

    We could say bad government I guess. Certainly there was a critique of isolationism in there for a while.

    The gods of the Marvel Universe are looked up to, but rarely do those gods even bother to look down. Thor did. Perhaps he was able to wield Mjolnir precisely because of this? Aaron asks this question, or at least the more generalised version of it.

    We now seem to have a clear answer that ‘the struggle is enough’. I doubt it will end with this. The messianic element may inevitably creep in, because Thor is an example to us, and now crucially also an example to the gods. This is something that has been addressed before in previous runs, but never so thoroughly and never without couching everything so as not to offend the religious, which is somewhat underestimating the religious I would say. Many religions have struggled and argued with ideas like this for centuries, so I imagine they can take a bit of handwringing from a comic.
    Last edited by JKtheMac; 06-27-2019 at 05:22 AM.

  15. #1710
    Kinky Lil' Canine Snoop Dogg's Avatar
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    aaron killed jesus
    tag the movie made me cry

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