In recent time, there have been things afoot in the Marvel comic universe. With the advent of Disney and marvel’s drive for new stories and a rejuvenated feel to its comics, the publisher has been searching for opportunities to solidify its characters in the eyes of new comic readers. To do this Marvel comic universe has been rebooted one time a too many. The entire premise of Brand new #1s leave little room for character development and irk longtime comic readers.
However, there is one title in Marvel’s lineup that has continued to do well despite the plague that the publisher is going through. The issue I am talking about is THOR. The comic has done comparatively well in contradiction to its silver screen counterparts which only succeeded with its third installment.
The latest story arcs of the Thor series (including the Jane Foster Thor, Thor’s New weapon, and the Death of Thor) have been comparatively popular with the readers, even to the point where the readers have completely forgiven Marvel for taking creative liberties with the series.
In the latest bout to keep the series fresh, the comic writers have introduced an old character from the Thor mythos, The King of Hel Balder. Even if you are a hardcore Thor fan, chances are you have never heard of Balder. Well, I have news for you, not only is this character the King of Neifelheim (the realm of the Asgardian dead) , he also the long lost brother to them. As you read this article, you can be sure there is someone working hard in the Marvel office to make Balder an important part of the upcoming Thor story arcs.
Balder was first introduced in the Thor comics as the King of Hel and the long lost brother to both Thor and Loki in the yesteryears of comics. The entire comic industry borrows heavily from mythology and tries to use the cultural mythos for their own favor. Balder is one such case. Balder is the ruler of the realm of Nifelheim, the realm of the Dead, the king of Hel. Although, Ragnarok viewers will argue that the domain of Death belongs to Hela. To that, my contention is simple. Although Hela might be the Goddess of death but Balder is the ruler of the Afterlife, a position granted to him by Odin himself.
In the comics, during the death of Thor story arc, Bedlam finally comes out of his recluse to fight along with Thor and to help him survive. During the time that the Death of Thor occurs, Bedlam is also fighting a war of his own against the Queen of Cinders (Surtur’s Daughter). The official summary of the issue is as under:-
The sons of Odin ride again! In the land of the dead, Thor is reunited with his long-lost brother, Balder, the King of Hel, just in time to face the Fire Goblin armies of the Queen of Cinders, as the War of the Realms continues to burn its way across all creation. Plus Loki! Thori the Hel-hound! Skurge with a really big gun! Monster trucks! And more!
Even though it is clear that the brother on brother partnership will benefit both parties (after all two sons of Odin with all their combined power are a force to be reckoned with) it is unclear how this comic development will transfer onto the Marvel Cinematic Universe. In fact, fans theorize that the existence of Balder in comics all but confirms his appearance as a crucial plot point in the next installment of the Thor movies.
The Theory goes that as we left the Asgardian people on the ship at the end of Thor: Ragnarok (credits scene), Thanos appeared and conquered the entire ship of Asgardian refugees including Thor, Loki, Heimdall and all the Asgardian people. As the plot of infinity war seems to be unfolding it seems highly likely that Thor would be defeated by Thanos and his people killed until Loki decides to handover the space stone to Thanos. It is predicted that Loki will make a deal with Thanos for the space stone, the deal will be simple, to spare Thor’s life. Thanos will grant this wish but not before he takes the life of everyone else on the refugee ship, including all the innocent bystanders.
As Thor is powerless against a riled up Thanos, Thor will run away in search of a weapon to rival Thanos’s infinity gauntlet. The God of thunder will be weighed down by the death of his comrades and may seek to resurrect them. If that is the case then it is entirely possible to picture Balder in the Marvel Cinematic universe as someone to challenge and share the screen with the likes of Thor.