Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Hammer Pants: The Mighty Thor

Greetings, gentle readers. It saddens thine most favored costumer, aye, with grievous groans and rendings of his brightly-hued garments, that his post should be late. Know only this: mine trip to Asgard was of long duration, owing to differences in the passage of time 'twixt that fabled land and lowly Midgard. Mayhap thou hath noted also that my speech be wondrous strange. Mine sincerest apologies be thine, but I was compelled to enter Asgard 'neath a false identity and the shedding of certain aspects of that masquerade hath proven to be most difficult indeed. Still, 'twas in the service of that noblest of goals: to redesign the costume of the Odinson himself, the Mighty Thor!

What Doth Be His Deal:
Doth thou jest? I speak of the Mighty Thor! All who breathe sing of the glorious form of the Thunder God. And those unfortunates who live in miserable ignorance of the Odinson need but consult the font of all knowledge, the Wikipedia.

Foul Deeds 'Gainst Fashion Itself:
Some superhero costumes withstand the changing tastes of the inexorably passing decades because they be true classics, without need of improvement. Thor's raiments belong not in that category. Like most costumes, Thor's hast limped along with either minor or temporary alterations because of a sickly nostalgia among the Odinson's fans. The changing of the merest stitch be enow to set the pasty, unwashed horde to howling like nigh unto terrible Fenris. Their gibbering electronic protestations to the contrary, Thor's costume sucks donkey balls.

I take umbrage firstly with the boots, with their ace of spades/cow-catcher tops and their strappy/stripey middles. Thor's pre-Christian muscle shirt also sticks in mine craw. 'Twould look most appropriate on a body builder from Long Island circa 1988 -- but it be not worthy of the Thunder God. Thor's winged helm finds disapproval in mine eyes, as the shape of it flatters his divine features not a whit, and resembles not so much as a silver-plated stocking cap... with wings glued on. His overly-starched cape, attached without fanfare to his muscle shirt, is likewise a point of contention. But of all the many abominable qualities of Thor's garments, the six yellow discs 'pon his midsection vex me the most. What, pray tell, are they meant to be? Frisbees? Pancakes? I knoweth not -- and if thou claimeth to have the answer, I call thee a filthy liar, good sir. Truly, Thor be in need of mine artistic talents.

When Titans Meet!
Having attained the most divine fur and leather raiments from a Renaissance Faire booth (whilst the propriator's back was turned) I reinvented mineself as an Asgardian costume maker with the noble appelation of "Bloga the Impeding." Then, 'twas a simple matter to distract Heimdall ("Hey, but look yonder!') and sneak past him over Bifrost into gleaming Asgard.

The Odinson I found in brooding reverie (i.e. trying to get the tiniest synapse in his brain to fire) in the back of a tavern. I ordered two steins of mead and then took the foamy beverages to Thor's table. I announced mineself with mine deepest, most booming voice: "Thor, great friend! Oh, Bloga the Impeding hast found thee at last!" Mine eyes detected in Thor's visage the strenuous calculating of his feeble brain as he attempted to recognize the handsome figure before him. I pressed on. "Surely thou must know thine old compatriot, Bloga the Impeding, most fashionable of the gods! Mayhap thou hath seen mine needlework in the stylish garments of your friend, Fandral the Flaming."

"Fandral the Flashing," Thor mumbled, his speech slurred by many tankards of ale.

"Precisely," said I, and hurriedly sat beside him.

Behold: Mine Presentation!
"Thor, mine brother-in-arms, very much should I like to regale thee with mine many blood-curdling adventures whilst away from Asgard's comforts -- but it shall suffice to say thine friend hath learned even greater skill in his chosen trade of fashion design. And thou, should it please thee, are to be mine next client!"

The dimmest of lights gleamed in Thor's drowsy eyes. "Art thou,' he queried, "as skillful as mine Midgardian friend, the Wasp?"

The untalented harlot's name caused mine anger to rise with startling swiftness but I restricted mine comments to this: "That mine talents surpass the Wasp's there can be no doubt, as mine many successes can attest! Why, only recall how I hath arrayed thine good friend, Fandral the Fabulous!"

"Flashing," said Thor with a hint of annoyance in his low, gurgling voice. He seized the stein and drained it in one gulp, regarding me with great suspicion.

"But of course," I stammered. "Mine absence from this great land hast been of, um, such a duration... er, certain names escape mine, um... MORE MEAD HERE!"

A buxom Asgardian barmaid speedily presented us with an entire pitcher, which the Odinson drained forthwith. With a casual gesture of his tree-like forearm, he swept every item from the table: the pitcher, the steins, a half-eaten turkey leg, several cocktail napkins emblazoned with amusing runes, and an inebriated pixie. I laid mine drawings before him.


"Regard!" I exclaimed. "This sassy, streamlined little number takes thine image boldly into the twenty-first century! Thine perplexing yellow discs hath been mightily reimagined as a series of large, gold studs on a navy-and-red leather costume. Thine most kind and considerate friend hath also taken it upon himself to simplify thine boots, and to give thee gloves to match. So as not to overpower thine handsome new costume, 'twould be wise to trim thine golden hair a smidge. A Donegal beard wouldst be just the thing to frame thine strong jawline and add a touch of the warrior spirit.

"But if this ensemble catches not thine lordly fancy, feast thine eyes on this!


"Here thee may behold a costume steeped in tradition -- half leather, half chainmail and all kick-ass! In this ensemble, thine long-lost friend Bloga the Impeding hast replaced the blinding blue-black of thine current raiment with somber tones, the better to highlight the gleaming gold detailing and the bold crimson cape. With a stylized helm and a thick blonde beard, thou wilt be a potent vision of Norse masculinity! What say thee, Odinson?"

All Shall Tremble At The Words Of The Mighty Thor:
Thor grasped both drawings in his mighty hands and peered at them for quite some time, holding them at various distances from his red-rimmed eyes, as though unable to focus properly upon them. At length he flung them back on the table and slurred, "Thou hath confounded the Odinson, Bloga the Impeding. I thought thou said thou had more talent than the Wasp...?"

T'was at this juncture, gentle readers, that thine fashionable friend totally lost it. "Now see thee here, Miss Thang, Bloga the Impeding suffers not the mead-soaked insinuations of--!" But mine protestations were interrupted by a lengthy belch from Thor's beautiful lips as he forthwith lost all consciousness. He slumped to the floor, his divine noggin rebounding off the oaken table with a terrible noise. For mine own part, I managed to get out of the tavern without paying mine tab ("Hey, but look yonder!") and high-tailed it back to lowly Midgard and Jeremy's lowly apartment.

Enjoy thine stupid yellow pancakes, thou jerk.


Anonymous said...

Lo, thy recounting of yon tale 'tis most amusing!

Methinks thy second design in particular be fulsome sweet--'tis the only Thor redesign, conceptual or actual, that hath convinced me of its worth to supplant Thor's hoary-yet-iconic ensemble of yore.

That said, how fared you in beseeching the Odinson to forgo his compulsive hair-bleaching to regain his original fiery-maned glory, as all old sagas but Marvel's recall?

Anonymous said...

Sir, you are a frickin' genius.

Unknown said...

I really like the first costume, but for someone else. It looks kinda like a really good costume for someone in the Image universe for some reason. But the second one just screams God of Thunder. It's a really great design.

Anonymous said...

Zounds! You out-do yourself, Blockade Boy! A nigh-perfect post, and a pair of most seemly costume changes for the Odinson! Keep up thy good work!

Jon said...

No way Ron Frenz could draw that second one. It's a sweet outfit, though.

Anonymous said...

Doing Thor right:

1) Red hair, shorn short, with a mighty (and manly) beard.

2) The cape should be the skin of an inhumanly large bear.

3) Like Jacko, he wears a glove on one hand. Unlike Jacko, said glove is a cool-looking field plate gauntlet.

4) He needs a girdle -- like a wrestler's championship belt, with maybe glowing golden runes. The girdle should be a minor weakness; much of Thor's strength comes from it.

5) I'd make the winged helmet a magic item that lets him fly and survive in space or underwater, but that's less mythological than personal preference.

6) Thor has at least two well-known, visually striking symbols. One option would be a capital letter Thorn, the other would be the Thorshammer, pretty much an inverted crucifix with small circles on the ends of the three lower arms.

7) Mjolnir could stay solid until it hits, then transform into a humongous lightening bolt that returns to Thor's hand. Not only would this look cool, it's a clever reference to how lightning bolts really work -- the main discharge is from the ground to the clouds!

Jeremy Rizza said...

I'm all better now!

Chawunky: Naw, Thor's a natural blonde. Trust me. He does have calf implants, though.

Kevin: Thanks!

Bittercupojoe: Image? Ouch. I hope you meant "Jim Lee" Image and not "Rob Liefeld" Image. As for myself, I thought it was positively Chris Sprousian.

Isaac: Thanks!

Jon: Haw! I'm familiar with the Ron Frenz rule, and y'know what? Screw it. Rules were meant to be broken. Anyway, forget the Ron Frenz rule. How 'bout the Vince Colletta rule? As in, would Vince have erased it? And he sure would've, in this case. Just erased the whole dang thing and drawn in a stick figure or sumpin'. (The man was a menace!)

Anonymous: You forgot the goat-drawn chariot. (Which Walt Simonson introduced into the comics back in the 80's.) I appreciate the time and the care you put into your comment. Good stuff. Now, I love mythology as much as the next guy but in this case I was dealing with the blonde Kirby-esque Marvel Thor, and I didn't want to just make him a carbon copy of the original Norse version.

You have a lot of neat ideas and you obviously would like to share them with folks... you ought to get a blog! It's a helluva lotta fun!