Since the end of Fear Itself, Thor has been “dead” and for some reason no one has any memory of him. Only Tanarus fills everyone’s memory when it comes to anything that Thor should have been involved in. That is, everyone except the guy that’s known for only telling lies and causing mischief. Loki has been trying to convince everyone of his brother’s existence, but all he gets are blank stares. Fraction opens this issue with him struggling to jog the Silver Surfer’s memory and finally saying something that breaks through. The two then speed off for more help, but their target is having issues of her own. By the time they reach her, things are going from bad to worse pretty fast. With all of the bad guys making their push for Asgardia, the only bright light is that Heimdall sees Tanarus for who he really is. We also get to see the villain pulling the strings in her jaw dropping entrance!
This “Mighty Tanarus” arc is even better than the opening one that started this title off. Fraction has made this absolutely fun, and even finds time to add a bit of humor courtesy of kid Loki. The interactions with him and the Silver Surfer the past few issues make for some great moments. Fraction keeps it natural and really gets over the childlike frustration of Loki trying hard to save his brother. Thor’s struggle to get back is handled just as well, as he only gives us brief glimpses of the fight against the Demogorge. Fraction also has done well in writing the supporting cast so strongly that at times I forget Thor is supposed to be in this book. Kid Loki is really stealing the show here, folks.
Ferry and Larraz’s art is yet another high point of the series. The sequence where Crone is beating the hell out of her sisters looks as good as it does brutal. Another stand out part is the two-page spread of Asgardia after Tony Stark shows the All-Mother the completed project. Frank D’Armata’s colors help pull that scene off, making it the grand scale spectacle it should be. There was a portion of the fight inside Demogorge that didn’t seem as strong as the rest of the book. Certain panels looked a bit incomplete, and Thor’s face looked like he had been hit by a frying pan.
Fraction does a lot of things right with this story, so if you didn’t give this title a chance because of Fear Itself, then I’d suggest you reconsider. The build up to the end of this thing has been a great ride and reminds me of how fun comics were when I was a kid.