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Top Five Oddest Thor Powers

Here is an archive of all the past top five lists I’ve one over the years.

Today, I spotlight the top five oddest powers of Thor.

As we addressed in the last top five list, Thor’s hammer, Mjolnir, has a lot of weird powers. But so, too, does Thor himself! Thor’s general powers are super strength and invulnerability. Here are some less general powers of Thor…

HONORABLE MENTION

I guess this isn’t strictly a POWER, so I left it off of the list, but surely “Thor…Electronics Genius” is nearly close to being a superpower!

Here, in Journey Into Mystery #111 (by Stan Lee, Jack Kirby and Chic Stone), Thor rewires the electricity of a house to blast Cobra…

This one isn’t so odd when you take into consideration the idea that perhaps Mjolnir just FOCUSES Thor’s energy manipulation powers. But still, even if it is somewhat logical, it is still really weird to see Thor shooting lightning bolts from his hands, like he did in this issue of Journey Into Mystery #93 by Lee, Robert Bernstein, Kirby and Ayers….

5. Control over the Earth

In his return to life during J. Michael Straczynski’s run, Thor learned that he could control the Earth, as well. I don’t believe we’ve seen this particular power (shown here in Thor #4 by JMS, Olivier Coipel and Mark Morales) since…

4. Super Cape Twirl!

In Journey Into Mystery #100, Lee and Don Heck broke out this amusing depiction of Thor’s powers. Without his hammer he can still twirl his cape enough to cause a tornado!

3. Super-Ventriloquism!

Superman used this power quite often during the 1950s, so it is funny to see Thor using it, as well (in Journey Into Mystery #89 by Lee, Larry Lieber, Kirby and Dick Ayers).

2. Thor, the Cosmic Roofie

In Journey Into Mystery #115 (by Lee, Kirby and Frank Giacoia), Thor used his power of making people forget stuff on Jane Foster. A few issues later, he used it on a reporter, as well.

1. Hurricane Breath

There is just something so special about seeing Thor cause a hurricane just by blowing really hard. Lee, Lieber, Kirby and Ayers presented it in Journey Into Mystery #86.

That’s the list! Agree? Disagree? Let me know!

27 Comments

Give them a little credit, at least they explained Thor’s amazing knowledge of electronics. Of course, I love that story, so I’m willing to make allowances.
The Radioactive Man story has all kinds of pull-it-out-their-butts bits like that. The Radioactive Man, for example, is able to hypnotize people just because he has a radioactive aura. Or something. And it has one of my favorite bits of Commie dialog when Mao’s scientists tell him Thor cannot be stopped because he’s the mightiest force on Earth: “No, Communism is the mightiest force on Earth!”

They gave an explanation, but I dunno if I’d say that they actually explained it. “Because I’ve been hanging out with Iron Man, I now have genius-level knowledge about electronics!”

Thor makes his girl forget something and its weird. Superman does it and its a classic. Says it all.

This isn’t really a power, and it’s perfectly in keeping with Norse mythology, but I still submit: having a chariot pulled by two flying goats is kind of weird.

Oh, I concede that it’s a feeble explanation, but feeble’s better than we often got.

If his months of association with Iron man in the Avengers gave him that ability, then Jarvis (with his Years of association with all the Avengers) is now a master engineer, military strategist, master archer, swordsman, black belt martial artist, doctor, and has excellent knowledge of nearly every scientific field.
(Though it is more of an attempt at an explanation than usual).

The Earth powers make sense since his mother was the fucking spirit of the Earth itself!

I actually like the idea of Thor understanding electronic technology. He has over a thousand years of life experience, and he’s shown mastery of rune magic– a technology far more sophisticated than our printed circuits. Couple that with the experience he gained being mortal doctor Donald Blake and later mortal EMT Jake Olson, and he should have no problem figuring out Midgard’s tech.

While rune magic is sophisticated, that doesn’t mean the understanding transfers. My wife’s a computer whiz, but it doesn’t give her any deep insight into electrical wiring.

Thor-Breath!! Thor-Ventriliquism!! Pulling powers out of various bodily orifices, and never using them again!! Those early Thor stories were more like Superman stories than many people realize. ‘Nuff Said!!

It took a while for Stan Lee and co. to find their feet and develop the “Marvel Style”. Some of the stories in 1962 or so, particularly those written by Larry Lieber, feel “off”. Not just the weird powers. It’s stuff like Iron Man travelling in time to fall in love with Cleopatra, or Thor fighting aliens with a duplicator ray. Larry Lieber writes more like second-rate Silver Age DC than the usual Marvel style Stan Lee would perfect. Larry Lieber himself said he didn’t like superheroes. He was more into western comics and other stuff.

But I like the amnesia thing. It’s the sort of ability a god might have. Too often, Thor was just a strong man that controlled the weather. But if Neil Gaiman or someone like that were writing, gods had all those interesting magical abilities, and making a mortal forget his secrets was just the sort of thing that would fit.

Didnt Thor in Journey Into Mystery #95 also show his mechanical knowledge by building a robot that was nearly indestructable and twice as intelligent as a man ?

True, but in his Don Blake identity he seemed different. But yeah, I considered using it.

They don’t even try to make sense of Thor’s powers. He’s basically modern comics-dom’s closest equivalent to Stardust the Super Wizard in that he can more or less just make up powers as he goes along.

#3 makes me realize we need a list of five best reactions to when Thor’s hammer has been out of his hands. I remember in Avengers #233 when the hammer was hurled through the null-field and then simply dropped, Thor is just staring and Cap is like “Don’t you need to be getting somewhere?” And then when the null-field is dropped Blake slips in and grabs the hammer and Scarlet Witch is just like “hey, Thor, good to see you, can you help my husband please?”

Several of these powers have indeed turned up elsewhere.

This one isn’t so odd when you take into consideration the idea that perhaps Mjolnir just FOCUSES Thor’s energy manipulation powers.

This idea was used explicitly in the Dan Jurgens era of Thor, where Thor pretty much said that his storm powers are simply his and Mjolnir just channels and directs them. For example, without Mjolnir in hand, he used lightning bolts as a crude defibrillator.magic cure for Hogun the Grim after the Wrecking Crew absorbed Hogun’s life energies and left him at the brink of death early on in Jurgens’s run.

5. Control over the Earth

In his return to life during J. Michael Straczynski’s run, Thor learned that he could control the Earth, as well.

He did something similar, if smaller-scale, to end the “Acts of Vengeance” crossover plot in West Coast Avengers v.2 #55. Therein, Thor, battling Loki, rips open a chasm in the Earth, tosses Loki in, and then seals the thing with his bare hands to contain his wicked sibling until Odin can judge him. (Since Loki turned up flying off into space in an epilogue story in Amazing Spider-Man shortly thereafter, it didn’t work too well…or David Michelinie just wasn’t talking to John Byrne.)

2. Thor, the Cosmic Roofie

In Journey Into Mystery #115 (by Lee, Kirby and Frank Giacoia), Thor used his power of making people forget stuff on Jane Foster. A few issues later, he used it on a reporter, as well.

This might be an extension of the hypnotic power he employs in JiM v.1 #102, where he can focus light from his hammer in such a way as to mesmerize others.

I know for most superheroes it took a while to evolve from their early appereances to their classic iterations, which plenty of changes along the way, but Thor is probably the most drastic example. It went from a kind of dull mashup of Suerman and Captain Elements, fighting aliens and communists, to defining the concept of the cosmic pantheon in superhero comics!

Hmm, blue suit (partly), red cape, super-breath, super-hypnotism, super-ventriloquism, super-breath, energy projection, super-strength, can fly (kind of).

Sounds kind of familiar!

I’d love to see a Top Five Strangest Superpowers Only Ever Used Once.

I think the hard part would be showcasing just five.

Yeah, most of these are goofy, but I kinda like the typhoon breath and the ability to generate lightning even without Mjolnir. I mean, Thor is the God of Thunder… it’s not Mjolnir that’s “the hammer of thunder”. It makes sense to me that Mjolnir would help Thor focus and channel HIS natural power, but the power isn’t in the hammer – it’s in Thor himself. If the X-Men’s Storm can influence the weather and blast lightning with just a thought, Thor should be able to do the same, without having to spin his hammer everytime he wanted to do something.

The super-ventriloquism and magical roofie powers, though? No. Just no.

the god Thor had ties to earthquakes as well as thunder.

Omar, the end of Acts of Vengeance wasn’t coordinated very well at all- in addition to the Loki in ASM problem, we had the Red Skull appearing in AWC 55 when he should have been buried alive (which was eventually explained as a robot) and Lieutenant Stone meeting with a crimelord that is clearly intended to be a disguised Loki a few hours after Acts of Vengeance ended in Thor 414.

I’m a little late to the party, here, but I think the JMS, Earth-controlling power doesn’t belong on this list. If I recall correctly, he had Odin’s power at the time, which has repeatedly been shown to be cosmic-level power that can be manipulated in myriad ways. It’s also why his fight with Iron Man during the same period was so one-sided.

So when you consider the Invaders issue highlighted in the other story, Thor has the power to make people forget things with or without his hammer….

@odum,

Plus, the way it’s drawn, it doesn’t look like he so much “controlled” the Earth as he hit the ground really hard with his Odinforce enhanced hammer and some lightning, and just opened a giant fissure.

I’m a little late to the party, here, but I think the JMS, Earth-controlling power doesn’t belong on this list. If I recall correctly, he had Odin’s power at the time, which has repeatedly been shown to be cosmic-level power that can be manipulated in myriad ways. It’s also why his fight with Iron Man during the same period was so one-sided.

No, he didn’t have Odin’s powers at the time. It was specifically mentioned as a power he had to control the earth due to his connection to Gaea.

Suggestion: Top Five Avenger Cover Appearances!

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