the_mighty_monarch's Thor: God of Thunder #5 - The God Butcher, Part Five of Five: Dream of a Godless Age review

The Ur-Nihilism

Esad Ribic is the ultimately perfect artist for Thor. The colors are so elegant, and the scenery is something way beyond grandiose. It evokes that sense of 'mythological epic' that this story most certainly is IN SPADES.

This entire story, there's been a very strange sense of mystery about this story. We've known from the start who Gorr is and what he does and the basics of how; but there's a deeper multi-layered intrigue to the 'why.' We don't know why Gorr is so intensely dedicated to 'butchering' all of the gods. It was clearly not a whim or a simple goal; Gorr treated his definitive deicide as a mission, a calling, an almost ritualistic obsession that he defines as his purpose in life. And on a level beyond that, the encounter he had with the Past-Thor somehow drastically changed his approach to the mission, a punishment of sorts for reasons unknown. The point we've reached here was critical. The tone has continually been amazing, but the mystery here is the tipping point for the quality of the story and the quality of Gorr as a villain. There are MANY ways his motivation could've gone that were lazy and generic... And Jason Aaron is smart enough to avoid them!

Ok, his reasons for deicide aren't incredibly unique, but that mission overall isn't terribly common. It takes serious driving dedication to scour the entire known universe and beyond to murder every single god in every pantheon, hunting down the records to make sure he doesn't miss the wide range of gods he doesn't know the existence of. That's REALLY strong motivation. What we see is a man who took nihilism to the extremes based on an implied betrayal. It's interesting in that he's motivated by fairly traditional nihilism inspiration, yet it's based in a motivation that disproves traditional nihilism and extends into a DESIRE to create a world that proves nihilism. Gorr dreams of a world with no gods, because in his mind there might as well be no gods. The gods don't deserve the mass worship they gain without even trying, and perhaps cause even more problems themselves, and in Gorr's mind he's fixing the entire universe.

As for his specific grudge on Thor, it's actually very surprising. He's NOT angry directly at Thor for a specific counterattack. He doesn't hate Thor for nearly defeating him, he actually HELPED Gorr see the error of his ways, unintentionally of course. Thor showed Gorr just how deeply rooted the non-immortal's dedication to their gods was, and completely changed his process. Gorr is convinced that he'd eventually have failed if not for the epiphany he got from his torture of Thor. In his twisted mind, his gratitude is expressed in terms of treating Thor as the spiritual Ur-God, the one god who ever meant anything to Gorr. In his reverence, he treats Thor to the 'honor' of being the final god he kills. And yet this 'honor' is not an act of compassion, but in fact an act of extended torture. Gorr's feelings towards Thor are so deeply psychologically complex and it's amazing to see it unfold here.

In Conclusion: 5/5

Past-Thor and Present-Thor have failed. The players are all beginning to collect at the end of ages, the world of Future-Thor. The reason The God Butcher arc ends here, is because Gorr's mission of butchering the gods is over. In the world of Future Thor, Gorr has spent nearly a millennia since his last encounter with Present-Thor and has succeeded in butchering every single god in existence, save Thor. His life's work is entering the final stage, The Godbomb is coming to commit Dei-genocice across all of time and space. The Godless Age is coming.

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