The God of Thunder was recently embroiled in a clever arc of twists and deceptions in Jason Aaron’s run on the character in the Marvel Comics Universe. Aaron spun a clever tale with Thor. The Unworthy Thor gave rise to a whole new Thor nobody had ever guessed to become the God of Thunder. The Hero we know as Thor was now a female.
For a year now, Aaron made sure no one knew the identity of this all-new Female God of Thunder. That secret was revealed not that long ago in Aaron’s Thor run. Sure, there have been many other Marvel characters who have lifted and even wielded Mjolnir in combat – Captain America, Vision, Groot and even Doctor Doom have lifted Mjolnir and defeated enemies with it. But for the first time, Thor is a woman and it is none other than Jane Foster, Thor’s longtime love interest. And she has just died a truly heroic death in the Marvel Universe.
We start off Thor #705 with a reminiscent conversation between Jane foster and Heimdall. This is before Jane foster wielded the hammer, right before it transpired. Jane and Heimdall debate something that we do not understand. They stand at the Bi-frost and argue about something. Heimdall is concerned for Jane’s safety and Jane only wishes to the right thing. Heimdall can only guide, he cannot control the Lady.
The senator of worlds commands the gatekeeper and the gatekeeper obeys, as he must. Heimdall sends Jane to the location where Mjolnir rests after Odinson became unworthy to wield it. Before Jane entered the Bi-frost she told Heimdall that there’s a voice inside her head telling her what to do, this path comes to fruition when we see the inscription on the hammer shift as Jane lifts it for the first time. The smile on her face as she transforms into the blonde God of Thunder is only matched by her Glee and the brute strength that foster gains upon wielding Mjolnir.
Jane Foster always knew she was walking a dangerous path every time she became Thor. Jane Foster, when she touched the Mjolnir, transformed into the blonde-haired Goddess of Thunder to become Thor. But it came at a heavy price. The Unworthiness of Thor and Worthiness of Jane Foster to wield Mjolnir wasn’t all black and white. Foster could become Thor only if she was ready to sacrifice the most important thing to her – her own life.
But when a thousand souls hungry for vengeance come for everything you love and hold dear, then your life is a small price to pay. Jane Foster knows, and that is the reason she unflinchingly picks up the hammer to combat any and all creatures that stand against the Gods or fight for the annihilation of Midgard. There must always be a Thor. And anyone worthy to be Thor is not someone who will refrain from performing her duty. That is what the worth of being a Hero is. Your life is forfeit to the higher purpose.
Foster is a Cancer Survivor. She had a terrible bout with cancer. She was cured when years of grueling chemotherapy finally was able to save her. But every time she became Thor, the effects of chemotherapy on her body slowly reversed, little by little. By the way Foster was using the hammer; it was only a matter of time until the effects became lethal. Foster’ cancer returned to her body. And it returned with a vengeance.
She walked into an unfathomable fate. Thor #705 is the issue her fate is finally sealed. Jane Foster dies and the scene is truly emotional. It makes us question the morality of Thor’s actions. Whether the God’s deserved to be saved is one of the questions presented to Jane all throughout the issue, and still, her resolve to save Asgard is unwavering.
The secret of Jane Foster and her alter ego as the Goddess of Thunder was only a secret for a while. The people on Earth and the Asgardians were finally able to decipher the woman under the metal mask some time ago. But where the Earthlings realized what a sacrifice she has done for a group of people she doesn’t even know, the Asgardians chose to stay ignorant of her heroic actions. Studying her body made the sorcerers and scientists on Earth realize that transforming into Thor was taking its toll on her body, cancer she fought so hard to overcome was returning to her body as she kept using her powers more and more.
Doctor Strange even warned her not to use Mjolnir even one more time lest she endangers herself permanently. So when the Mangog came out of nowhere and flung Asgard into the sun itself, Jane Foster had to make a hard choice. She chose Asgard over her own life and she paid a heavy price for herself.
When Mangog set free by Malekith the dark elf, who is currently waging a war against all nine realms to establish his rule, Mangog is the manifestation of a Thousand vengeful souls came knocking; only three heroes decide to stay behind as the rest of the city is evacuated to somewhere safe.
Odin Borson, Lady Freyja, and Thor Odinson are the only three heroes who decide to face Mangog to fight and possibly defeat him before it is too late. They fail miserably, Mangog slicing through them like a hot knife through butter. As Odin mentions, The Mangog is not a monster, it is the personification of vengeance. It cannot die. Its own death will not stop it. Even the Death of the God’s death will not stop it.
The only option for Asgard was Thor. Mjolnir came for Jane Foster and she knew she was Asgard’s only chance at survival. Without hesitating, she grabbed the hammer, transformed into Thor to fight Mangog, and sealed her fate to an untimely death.
Mangog was a creature designed to defeat the Gods. So Jane Foster had to come up with an innovative way to stop it. She uses Mjolnir to wrap Mangog in a chain, ties the chain to Mjolnir and flings the hammer to the sun. Mangog dies as Mjolnir takes it to the heart of the sun. The price is Mjolnir will also be destroyed. But the sacrifice doesn’t end there.
Since Mjolnir is the only thing transforming her back to human, and the effects of chemotherapy have also been completely reversed since she transformed into Thor, Jane Foster is now in terrible danger. She makes the ultimate sacrifice. As Mjolnir is destroyed, Jane Foster’s body transforms back into a cancer-struck human corpse.
She removes her iron mask and looks at Odinson for the last time. As the inferno burns all around them and Jane starts to transform back into her human form the lovers kiss in the heart of the fire. We’ve heard of a kiss of life but this was one that only instilled the chill of death. The next panel is Asgard going Boom all over the comic page. This issue is impeccably drawn if nothing else. The artists really outdid themselves with the design choices for the burning Third and Jane foster as the Mighty Thor.
As Asgard is reduced to ashes, Odin and Freyja mourn their son, who dies alongside Thor while she defeated the Mangog or so Freyja thinks and that is what Ofin believes. He can feel it. The chill of death. And just then Odinson lands on the moon in front of his parents, holding the lifeless body of Jane Foster in his arms. This comic not only destroyed one of the prettiest and the most badass Thor we have ever seen grace the pages of Marvel comic, the comic also effectively destroys Mjolnir and puts Thor and Odin in the position where the Odinson can never again transform into the Mighty Thor. Or so it seems. We will have to wait for the next issue to find out.
In the mythologies, it is always the Gods that make the sacrifice to save mankind. In this story though, it’s a human who sacrifices her life to save the Gods. It is a truly terrifying and heart touching tale. Rest in Peace Jane Foster. Until we meet again….