Marvel’s Replacement Thor Meets a Dark End… Again

WARNING: The following article contains spoilers for Strange #2, which is on sale now from Marvel Comics.

Thunderstrike makes his grand return from the dead in Marvel's Strange #2, only to then be killed off in glorious fashion once again.

In Strange #2, Clea Strange -- who is acting as Sorcerer Supreme following the death of her husband, Stephen Strange -- finds herself battling a familiar face when an undead version of Thunderstrike, also known as Eric Materson, shows up from beyond the grave. Incapable of communicating and clearly not the man she once knew, Clea has no choice but to battle the zombified monster, which is a task that quickly proves to be easier said than done. Harvestman, Clea's mysterious adversary, is also present for the battle and delivers the final blow against Thunderstrike with their scythe. After Materson's head comes falling off, a massive amount of spooky green-glowing souls leave the creature's body.




Prior to the kill, Harvestman warns Clea that Materson is not the man he formerly was when he was alive. Rather, Harvestman says that Materson's soul has "been commandeered by thousands of rogue ghosts" and that he's now a "gestalt-entity of mad souls, their own identities worn away by the grit of ages." While it initially seemed like Harvestman was the one who resurrected Thunderstrike for the purpose of killing Clea, the character calls Thunderstrike a "vessel for unquiet spirits rebelling against my mistress, ridden across the barrier between life and death."

Operating under the assumption that Harvestman is referring to death when they say "my mistress," Clea tells her foe that her battle is then with her and that she wants her deceased husband back. Harvestman, however, simply says that's "impossible" for reasons that aren't immediately clear. The two turn to face one another after they've dealt with Thunderstrike and the moment cuts away, but Clea later tells Wong that Harvestman quickly flew off "to wherever it came from" after that.

Eric Materson first appeared in 1988's Thor #391 by Tom DeFalco and Ron Frenz. Thunderstrike initially served as a replacement for Thor while the God of Thunder was in exile, but then received his own name and identity when the Asgardian hero returned. Materson later became corrupted by the power of the Bloodaxe and battled Thor for a time. When he regained control of himself, Materson turned his powers against the Bloodaxe but was ultimately killed in the process.

Strange #2 also sees Clea struggle to fit into her new position as Sorcerer Supreme, as she's relatively uninterested in all the responsibilities and tasks that come with the title. The issue ends with her learning that a group of criminals called the Blasphemy Cartel has destroyed the Shrouded Bazaar, where Clea threw them out of in Strange #1. Donning a fiery new look, Clea promises to take revenge against the Blasphemy Cartel by going to war.

Strange #2 comes from writer Jed MacKay, penciler Marcelo Ferreira, inker Don Ho, colorist Java Tartaglia and letterer VC's Cory Petit, with cover art by Björn Barends and variant cover art by Stephanie Hans and Dan Panosian. The issue is on sale now from Marvel.

Source: Marvel

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