Odin was a character who frustrated me a lot during Fear Itself. He postured and made very large speeches, but it seemed to be too late when he decided to actually get off his ass and do something. I think his character's "cool factor" has been redeemed a bit, and I enjoyed his presence in this issue. Mourning the death of his son, bringing back the Allmother and resigning himself to a life of servitude just makes me feel for the big guy. He did what he thought was best, screwed up royally, and is now paying for it with honor.
It really feels very "SECRET WAR" in the sense that Nick Fury disappeared for awhile after things went horribly awry. I hope that stays the same with Odin; I want his return to be a big bang, if it ever happens.
Otherwise, it was a bunch of little things that I enjoyed: the fish-eye lens with the Warriors Three to make them seem extra "godlike", the "star-bedecked leader" line from Heimdall, the initial "our son is an ass" line from the Allmother, Sif's wonderful funeral garb. It all came together with this issue with taste.
I really have no problem with the new God of Thunder, and I think the way that he entered into the mythos as "always being there" is a good way of minimizing the fallout of Thor's death and spinning a very interesting "Gods are only stories the people tell" concept. I applaud Fraction for taking a leap of faith, but I'll remain hesitant for reasons I'll explain below.
Some of the art in this issue just felt a little bit off. This was especially true in the opening pages, as Iron Man looks downright "evil-anime" and Captain America's face has really odd proportions. It seems to mellow out a bit over the course of the book, but it's hard not to notice when you're opening it for the first time.
The "Loki is the only one that realizes something's wrong" storyline reeks of JUSTICE LEAGUE: GENERATION LOST, a series that prompted me to give my lowest review ever on this site. I am hoping with sincerity that whoever writes this new story does not mess it up like Judd Winick did there.
This book felt good to read because it was not so somber that it took up too many pages to get a point across, nor did it pack it so full of action that the message of Thor's passing was lost. It was a good balancing act, like most comics are.
Ultimately, this book is a proper epilogue to the crossover, and sets up what looks to be an interesting event with Loki. However, the execution needs to be spot on in order to keep this issue (and the drama that accompanied Thor's demise in the first place) becoming a mere afterthought.