Get PJ Media on your Apple

PJM Lifestyle

5 Reasons Why Thor Is a Second-Rate Superhero Franchise

Chris Hemsworth plays the hammer-wielding god like a slab of beef.

by
John Boot

Bio

November 8, 2013 - 9:00 am
Page 1 of 5  Next ->   View as Single Page

Thor-Hammer-Bottle-Opener

It’s been all of six months since the last so-so Marvel superhero movie, and yet here comes another weak entry: Thor: The Dark World. Despite the hype, this one is easily skippable. Here are six reasons why the Thor franchise is strictly B-list.

1) A hammer? Seriously?

Thor’s all-powerful weapon “mjolnir” is simply and literally a blunt instrument. What else can you do with a hammer except smash things with it? It’s not like flying, or the ability to cast webs out of your palms: It doesn’t open up a world of possibility.

A hammer is such a short extension of reach and force that Thor might as well just punch enemies in the face. And when he winds up the hammer by swinging it in super-fast circles he just looks as ridiculous as a character from an old Warner Brothers cartoon.

Superhero weapons are supposed to be deeply marinated in myth, not in cheap jokes, and yet you can tell from Thor: The Dark World exactly how seriously the writers take this supposed all-powerful item when Thor, on a visit to Earth, simply hangs the object on an ordinary coat rack. Isn’t the hammer supposed to be so heavy only Thor can lift it? Why doesn’t it rip the coat rack off the wall and maybe smash through the floor below it? 

Comments are closed.

Top Rated Comments   
Your Thor policy has been cancelled for failure to cover nose abrasion therapy for Inuit Indians. Please feel free to shop on "SuperHero.Gov"; for a replacement for you sub-par super hero policy. May we recommend the "Obamaman" Platinum policy...
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
As for the rest of the criticism, Thor is a warrior god for a warrior people. His virtues are those of the warrior: Directness, bluntly honest, courageous, tough and enduring, determined, self-assured, and proud.

He is not supposed to get all weak-kneed around the women. They get weak-kneed around him. He is not filled with angst and self-doubt. He is not constantly pondering his feelings. He is manly, not the modern emasculated man.

His conflict with his father, Odin, is about Thor's lack of wisdom, his rashness, and his inability to see nuance. Loki is far better about all these things, but is a complete weasel. He's basically a lawyer, whereas Thor is a warrior. Thor and Loki are antitheses. Thor has the decency, forthrightness, and courage, but lacks cleverness, and Loki is the opposite. Thor's role on Earth is to learn the nuances, so he can take his father's place, someday. Loki, however, can never be salvaged.

As a manly, unmarried, warrior god, do not expect a bunch of romance out of him, although he does have such feelings for the Lady Sif. However, he has known her a looooong time....

So, Thor is dense, but righteous. Loki is jealous, spiteful, treacherous, and deceitful. Odin is mysterious and long-sighted, and has the Odin-sleep as a vulnerability.

And this is boring? It is not boring to the warriors among us. However, I am sure the touchy-feely, effete, artistic girly-men will be bored by it.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
"Isn’t the hammer supposed to be so heavy only Thor can lift it? Why doesn’t it rip the coat rack off the wall and maybe smash through the floor below it? "

Let me answer your question with a question: why do you write entire columns about topics on which you have absolutely no knowledge?

It's ok if you don't like Thor, you're certainly entitled to that opinion. But your question bespeaks such complete ignorance about the character and his world that one wonders why you bother. It'd be like tapping me to write a column about "Fifty Shades of Grey".
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
All Comments   (52)
All Comments   (52)
Sort: Newest Oldest Top Rated
I have a response to this article from my niece, who considers herself an expert on superhero movies:
He thought Superman was better? Clearly, this person has no understanding of Norse Mythology. When it comes to superhero movies and the geekdom you have to be careful about your sources. The guy that reviews for the Dispatch gives all geeky movies a bad review. I still remember when Nine and The Amazing Spiderman came out. The only time he gave a superhero movie a good review and it tanked. Nine he hated and it won a couple of Academy awards. I'm still excited about Thor. I like how it mixes science and magic, and modern culture with Norse myth. The only thing I would agree with is that Jane Foster needs to play a bigger role. Mjolnir is awesome. Superman sucks.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
"What else can you do with a hammer except smash things with it? It’s not like flying..."

He flies by throwing his hammer and forgetting to let go. So, it IS like flying. Almost exactly, in fact.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Actually, I thought the movie was great fun, and my wife -- not a superhero movie fan by any means -- very much enjoyed it.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Disagree with all but the love story part (and that's on the insufferable Miss Portman). I like Thor more than other superhero films (which pretty much bore me, especially in taking themselves seriously) precisely because of the last reason - the silliness and the Buffy-style self-awareness. Superheroes are inherently ridiculous because they're dressed in clown suits. I loved The Dark Knight not for the brooding weirdo in the bat suit, but for the lunatic in the (literal) clown suit - who SHOULD be wearing it because he's a LUNATIC.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
The only thing I agree with in this whole review is that I don't get any chemistry between Thor and Jane Foster. Of course, I'm a Sif fan-boy, so I'm biased.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Also, people who like movies like Thor, The Avengers, and that awful movie about the blue aliens (Avatar?) are in desperate need of a better education in good taste.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Roger Ebert wrote a hilarious take-down of the 1st Thor movie and why it is such an uninspired, terrible piece of film-making. I personally couldn't make it past the 1st hour of the first movie. I suggest you check it out.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
I take everything that clown wrote with so much salt I have to take blood pressure meds.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
I think Ebert threw darts at a board with one to five stars.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
After that, check out the box office receipts for both movies. Real-world data suggests that you are in the minority...
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
I think you misspoke. Should be Third-Rate Superhero.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Sorry, but, the metrosexual you are seeking was not born in Thor's milieu.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
If you consider the dismal Batman movies a standard to live up to, your ship is lost and your friends will not survive.

PS: Thor's hammer isn't heavy, it's his brother.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
1 2 3 4 Next View All