A new era has begun for Thor, Lord of Thunder — but just what is going on with his enchanted hammer, Mjolnir? Jason Aaron’s run is over, with Thor succeeding Odin as Asgard’s new all-father. What’s more, he has returned Mjolnir, and now wield it once with pride. However, there is something wrong with Thor’s most potent weapon.
The current version of Mjolnir is more potent than before. This Lord Storm, sometimes called Mother Storm, is so powerful that it can also damage the famous Phoenix Force and match Odin when he was all father. Where the Lord was a reluctant prisoner before the storm, this time it chose to cooperate with Thor in reforging Mjolnir and placing himself within it.
And yet, something is going on with Mjolnir. Donny Cat’s Thor # 1 contains a stunning scene in which Thor struggles to lift Mjolnir. This is seen by Loki, his brother, who is somewhat surprised at the sight. “Is it getting heavy, then,” he asks. Loki has recently ascended the throne of Jotunheim, becoming the ruler of the Tushar giants, and for once he has little to gain from an interruption to the status quo. Thor attempts to scare his brother — but it will not escape Loki’s attention that he does not deny it.
At first glance, this scene would appear to suggest that Thor is becoming disqualified. The important thing is, however, that it correlates with Avengers # 28, where Captain America wields Mjolnir. “I remember this one being very easy going,” the hat reflected as he struggled to take the hammer. “Think worthy thoughts,” he told himself. “Baseball. Apple Pie. Punching Nice.” That seemed a trick at last, and he gave a hammer to a worry-infected Thor face.
Put these two scenes together, and it seems as if the problem is not with Thor; Rather, it is the same with Mjolnir. Aaron’s Mighty Thor # 12 revealed that the merit spell was placed on Mjolnir by Odin in the act of desperation, as he was angered at his refusal to bend his desire for a hammer. It was designed to make it almost impossible for anyone to wield. It seems that this spell is somehow increasing in power, augmented by some unknown period, making it increasingly difficult for anyone to take Mjolnir at all. Whatever the definition of “merit maybe — and that definition has always been largely a mystery — it is becoming increasingly restrictive. It is not long before Mjolnir could be picked up by anyone at all — even That cannot be Thor.
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