Hammer Time

With Thor on everyone’s lips at the moment, I can’t help but think of a few favorite Thor characters that we undoubtedly won’t be seeing on the big screen anytime soon.


Beta Ray Bill 1.jpg

Beta Ray Bill is awesome. One of the first innovations of Walt Simonson’s run, Bill was an alien who happened to pick up Thor’s hammer (as it turns out, he was the only other being equally worthy to wield it, thereby getting past Odin’s enchantment), and found himself suddenly transformed into a horse-faced alien version of Thor, with all the powers and abilities that go along with it. And what about Thor?


He was left powerless in human form and out of luck, until Odin had the dwarves of Niffleheim make Bill his own hammer, Stormbreaker, with which Beta Ray Bill has defended both Asgard and Earth ever since. Frankly, I think we need to get Bill on one of the Avengers teams, pronto. I mean, if there’s a spot for Red Hulk, surely there’s room for Beta Ray Bill somewhere?



Good old Crusher Creel has been a mainstay of the THOR comics for decades, ever since his first appearance back in 1965, when he downed a magic potion slipped him by Thor’s evil half-brother Loki, which gave Creel the ability to absorb the properties of any substance he touches. The character was humanized a bit following the events of the MARVEL SUPERHEROES SECRET WARS, in which he embarked on a long-running romantic relationship with the supervillainness Titania, and I have to admit, I’ve always been a sucker for the Crusher Creel/Titania love story.


If anything, the Crusher Creel character needs to be toughened up more; while for years he was a Thor-class villain that really made an impact when he showed up, nowadays he’s practically a joke — I think Mockingbird and Victoria Hand beat him a while back.



Another case of an Asgardian type giving mortals a little magic power-up, although this time it was by accident, with the Wrecker and his trademark crowbar receiving a super-strength enchantment from Queen Karnilla that was meant for Loki. The Wrecker in turn split his power four ways among three of his fellow inmates during a prison break, and the foursome became known as the Wrecking Crew, with the other three nogoodniks taking the names Thunderball, Piledriver and Bulldozer. While it’s true there’s not a lot of characterization going on with this bunch, I’ve always liked the Wrecking Crew, I think because they’re one of the very few dedicated supervillain teams in the Marvel Universe. These days they’ve been mostly relegated to crowd scenes as part of The Hood’s villain army in SECRET INVASION and NEW AVENGERS, which is kind of a shame. Compare that to their run in the 1980s, in which they viciously beat down both She-Hulk and Hercules, the latter so bad the character was on the shelf for years. These guys need to be back on the front lines again, although perhaps their recent television appearances on AVENGERS: EARTH’S MIGHTIEST HEROES will help.



He’s a planet with a giant face. And a beard. Sold!


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