Writer: Donny Cates
Art: Nic Klein. Matt Wilson, VC’s Joe Sabino, and Olivier Coipel
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Release Date: April 14th, 2021
The Prey Finale takes root as All-Father THOR finally explodes out of his prison. Nevertheless, during his entrapment, Donald Blake has accumulated more strength and power than the King of Asgard can process. Well, when the mallet drops, only one Odin-”son” will remain. With the stakes at their highest, let’s dive into THOR #14 by Donny Cates to see this creative team like you’ve never seen them before.
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THE WINNER… NIC KLEIN
Oftentimes, I find myself beginning a review by discussing the story, its plot angles, and how well it seduces me into the narrative. Or, I examine how it missed the mark. This time, I’d like to open with what a sensational job Nic Klein portrayed throughout this entire issue. His illustrations were jaw-droppingly stunning throughout this concluding issue of THOR, to say the least. However, it was a combined effort with Matt Wilson and Joe Sabino. Whether it be DOCTOR STRANGE’S Sorcery or elements of the THOR/ Odin Force, Wilson’s colors thrived in each magical scene as Sabino’s lettering amplified each swing and vicious hit.
The final showdown between THOR and Donald Blake couldn’t have been more mesmerizing as the epic, close-up smashing directly into Blake’s face on page 7. The detail by Klein down to every last knuckle and wrinkle was astounding. The pain that readers will feel for Blake is due solely to Klein’s craftsmanship as well as his artistic team delivering a sheer masterpiece as Cates’ story comes to a close. And as a reviewer, I would be remiss if I was to forget to mention the splash page where THOR makes his “physical” return. The immense power Klein conveys through THOR’S armor exit on page 14 is wildly impressive.
By ending with an insane cliffhanger, Cates ushered fans to the tipping point in his normal fashion. However, like many instances in the past, he doesn’t forget or steer clear of the prior issues climatic event. We get the Destroyer showdown Cates’ promised as the last issue of THOR came to a close. And readers, the battle was fierce. Nevertheless, my main disappointment came in the form of how they wrapped up Donald Blake.
Ultimately, a simple task by Loki was deemed enough to end this turmoil, which I feel like could have happened at anytime much sooner. Granted, one would argue a battle-torn Blake made the switch-a-roo a bit more manageable. Yet, the “switch” never really happens. It’s presented as a big deal that THOR and Blake can’t occupy the same space at the same time. Nonetheless, the issue concludes as if it’s now somehow possible.
The Good News: punishment! This is where Cates shined this issue. I’m tired of no repercussions in comics. Blake killed, ensnared, violently tormented, and destroyed many realms during his hissy fit. So, punishment must fit the crime. Cates makes sure that readers see Donald Blake’s penalty and sentence. This aspect of the narrative was needed. Furthermore, can I just add that I’m loving THOR and Loki working together? When given the opportunity, these two really do work so well together regardless of their drastic character differences.
The gravitas and allure of this concluding issue can only be weighed by Klein’s artistic expression throughout this culminating narrative. Even if you haven’t been following along on Cates’ THOR, I highly recommend anyone to read this issue simply to see how extraordinary this comic is. The artistic team alone will impress. Mix the talents of this team with Cates’ crazy ideas and readers get a rather explosive comic sure to leave you ignited for the future of this series. This issue is fast, furious, relentless, and will leave you with the feeling of a Summer Blockbuster! Don’t wait to grab this issue. Hit me up in the comments, let me know what you think, have a great week, and God Bless!