The Abandoned An’ Forsaked – Did Thor Just Beat Up the Most Powerful Hindu God?
Every week, we will be examining comic book stories and ideas that were not only abandoned, but also had the stories/plots specifically “overturned” by a later writer (as if they were a legal precedent). Click here for an archive of all the previous editions of The Abandoned An’ Forsaked. Feel free to e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any suggestions for future editions of this feature.
Today we look at the short-lived victory of Thor over Shiva, one of the Hindu Great Trinity of Vishnu, Brahma and Shiva….
So in Thor #301 (written by Mark Gruenwald and Ralph Macchio), Thor decides to bring Odin back to life. For this to happen, Thor has to get a little bit of power from all the various mythological gods. The Greek gods, the Egyptian gods, the Chinese gods, etc.
Well, when he comes to the Hindu gods, things don’t go so smoothly…
As you might imagine, Hindu readers weren’t thrilled with the fact that Thor just kicked the ass of one of their most important deities, let alone what is supposed to be their MOST powerful deity.
I don’t know if that is precisely the motivation for what came next, but it seems likely, since less than two years later, in Thor Annual #10 in 1982, Alan Zelenetz (co-plotted by Gruenwald) has Thor team-up with gods from different religions that are the rough equivalent in their religion as Thor is in the Norse hierachy. One of the gods is the one who Thor fought in #301, only now he the character called Indra and not Shiva….
Thor is confused and so later in the issue…
And Shiva has been on the same standing of Odin ever since.
Note that during Dan Jurgens’ Thor run years later, while Shiva is depicted as an equivalent to Odin, Shiva is also drawn by the artists of the issue (the Lai brothers) the same as in Thor #301…
Which is pretty confusing.
That’s it for this week!
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