Thor #442-443 (1992)

Not only do I hate the Eric Masterson storyline, but now this book is coming out twice a month.  So much misery to read.

But to be positive, I like how the covers harken back to the late ‘70s, when Thor was great.

Don Blake is back, so maybe, you think hopefully, the real Thor is coming back and we’re getting to the end of this. (We’re not.  Masterson will become “Thunderstrike” and get his own book in 1993.)

Actually, these issues aren’t all bad.  Masterson is familiar with Blake’s identity as the original Thor, but the doctor has no memory of it.  And there’s a reason for that…

Mephisto still has Thor in a plastic bag.  And not content with just that, he steals Eric Masterson’s walking stick (y’know, the one that turns into a hammer).

With the help of Dr. Strange, Masterson goes to Mephisto’s hell with Silver Surfer to get his stick/hammer back.  He gets it back, but isn’t able to get the plastic bag with Thor in it.

What I don’t like about this story is that Masterson tells Dr. Strange that Thor is trapped down there, and Strange doesn’t do anything himself to rescue Thor.  I mean, sure, he gets Surfer to help–but why wouldn’t Stephen actively participate? That makes no sense to me at all.

At the very end, Silver Surfer doesn’t even believe Mephisto has Thor after all–and Strange seems to agree.

In the back up feature to #442, Sif is teamed up with Beta Ray Bill in outer space. Their relationship seems to be deepening, but they’re not knocking boots yet. Pat Oliffe does the art, and it’s a welcome change.

On the down side, Sif just yells a lot and is called “stunning Sif.” She’s basically a prop–and she’s supposed to be a warrior.

Creators: Tom DeFalco and Ron Frenz (main story), Patrick Olliffe (Sif/Beta Ray).
Grade: C

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