Matt Fraction is a writer that… confuses me. Why is it that I can’t stand his work on Invincible Iron Man and just don’t get what people see in that book, yet I loved Fear Itself and have really enjoyed his writing on the new Mighty Thor title. Maybe it’s me, I don’t know…

Anyway, I honestly haven’t enjoyed a Thor comic this much since the heyday of the Walter Simonson era. Fraction is doing the same thing that legendary writer/artist did and is making The Mighty Thor a book about all of Asgard and not just Thor. Sure, the focus will always be on the Thunder God, but by allowing the rest of the cast to shine (especially Loki), we get a more fully fleshed out reading experience.

With issue #9, Fraction continues the dense, multilayered storyline he started in issue #8. The All-Mother continues to transform Asgard into the new republic Asgardia, Tanarus hangs out with the Avengers, Loki tries to understand why he is the only one who remembers his brother and, oh yeah, Thor shows up for a couple pages. Like I said, dense. There is a lot going on in this issue and keeping track of it all can be a problem, but a good kind of problem. In a day and age when most comics can be read in minutes, I can really appreciate Fraction wanting to do a Machiavellian political thriller that a reader might have to reread a couple times in order to get the complete story.

On the art side regular penciller Pasqual Ferry is teamed up with Pepe Larraz. While I’m not familiar with Larraz, their styles are compatible enough that it doesn’t affect the flow of the book in the least. A couple panels could use some more backgrounds (the Avengers sequence in particular) but on the whole the art works and Ferry’s pencils are gorgeous as always.

As I said above, this is a multifaceted, complex story that Fraction is telling here. If you have some patience and pay attention, there is a lot to like in The Mighty Thor. Give it a read and see if I’m right.