Thor isn't your normal superhero. In fact, it can be hard to even classify him as such, because he's technically a Norse god. Yet Marvel has taken their own "swing" at the legend, telling his tale for years in the comic books, and now on the big screen.

Because Thor isn't a superhero, the film provides a different sort of origin story. Instead of a movie filled with someone trying to grasp their new-found powers, we have a god who is instead stripped of all his powers and banished to Earth. With what is usually relegated to a sequel, we get to see Thor grapple with what it means to be a hero when you no longer have that which set you apart from mere "mortals."

We are presented with a mythological superhero movie, with a touch of Shakespeare and a little Arthurian legend thrown in, which should sate just about any nerd's appetite! Betrayed by his brother who is attempting to ascend the throne, Thor can only save his people and escape exile once he has proven himself a true hero and can finally remove his hammer from the stone. It should all sound familiar, but that's ok because most good hero stories follow a certain structure (see Hero's Journey).

Thor and his hammer

In this case it delivers. We see a brash and arrogant man who learns to love and care, allowing his heart and mind to rule his passion, and eventually lay his life down to save his friends and people. A man who began the film by starting a war because he was insulted, now willingly faces death because he has gained the wisdom to see his role in the bigger picture, one step closer to becoming a wiser king. He steps past his pride and now is truly worthy to be called a prince of Asgard.

It's practically a Shakespearean play with some serious butt-kicking thrown in! It may not be as actually be as "good" as Shakespeare, but the hammer-throwing more than makes up for it, providing a great heroic struggle to set up The Avengers. I can already tell (with hints from the trailer) that there is going to be some friction between Stark and Thor, but it will most likely offer some good comic relief. S.H.I.E.L.D seems to still have much to learn about these Asgardians, but I think they should be happy to have Thor as the protector of Earth, especially with Loki getting involved!

[caption id="attachment_2522" align="alignnone" width="580"]thor-movie-poster Hammer Time![/caption]

(This is my part of my series, The Avengers Initiative. See more here.)