I was very excited when I originally saw episode 8 of the second season of Avengers: Earth’s Mightiest Heroes was titled “The Ballad Of Beta Ray Bill.” I was wondering how true they would stay to the original comic book story arc that was crafted by the mighty Walt Simonson but as it turns out I had no reason to fear.
The episode was maybe my favorite yet, and yes part of that is that it was VERY heavy in Thor and his universe but also that Beta Ray Bill is one of my favorite characters. I will follow the same review format that I do with my movie reviews in which I assign PROS, CONS, a numerical score and then my own brief closing comments.
Was this episode worthy to wield Mjolnir?
– I have to say that the intro was awesome when they showed the current members that would be featured in the episode and there was only one Avenger standing, Thor. I will admit I was very excited.
– The voice of Beta Ray Bill was Steve Blum, who is a very talented voice actor, and he delivered a powerful performance. His resume is long and impressive and he made Bill sound like a legit bad ass.
– Tying Surtur into Bill’s origin story was fantastic, as Surtur’s attack on the 9 Realms during Simonson’s arc was one of Bill and Thor’s most epic moments. I thought it was a great way to merge two of his highlight’s in the comics in one episode.
– It was a nice nod to the comic to show the enchantment worded on the hammer when someone unworthy tried to pick up the hammer. It first appeared when Sif touched the handle as she was approaching Thor and Balder.
– When Odin summoned the wielder of Mjolnir and Bill appeared in Asgard, it was just like the comic book. Thor was bested in combat and Bill was worthy to lift the hammer, just as it happened in the comic as well. The reaction of the Asgardians was awesome!
– Touching on the romance that Bill and Sif shared in the comic was also a nice touch here as well. It also allowed Sif to have a great moment in which she finally understood how Thor could be infatuated with Jane Foster, as she was taken with Bill as well.
– How bad ass did the Surtur possessed Amora The Enchantress look? Her armor, glowing red eyes and fiery hair made her look like the “Demon Queen” that Bill named her. She looked powerful and deadly.
– I freaked out when Thor and Beta Ray Bill (now in his Beta Ray Thor costume) stood back to back and fought back the droves of fire demons that attacked them. It was also very cool to see the two “Hammer Brothers” realize that they needed to combine their efforts to stop Amora. The channeling of the giant lightning blast and the united hammer throw looked epic and very powerful.
– The moment that Bill called Thor “Brother” I smiled wide. There is a bond that Thor has with anyone who has lifted the hammer but it is strongest with Bill. There was also foreshadowing of the battle with Surtur, as Bill stated that he would stand and fight alongside Thor when Surtur arose.
– The moment at the end of the episode where Surtur finished forging The Sword Twilight was a great way to end the episode, as it sets up the battle to come between his hordes and Asgard’s warriors.
– It was a great moment by the writers to have Thor and Bill have their own battle cries that were also very similar. Thor bellowed “For Asgard!” and Bill followed with “For Korbin!” as they jumped into battle.
– I know I am probably missing some things but this was my favorite episode to date bar none and I can not wait to see Beta Ray Bill and Thor battling the legions of Surtur on Asgard and Migard.
– I really did not like that they didn’t show the forging of Bill’s hammer Stormbreaker or his transformation once he wields the hammer. I really wanted to see him raise the hammer above his head and his Korbinite armor be replaced with the Beta Ray Thor armor. It would have been a great scene.
– This really could have been paced over two episodes. Especially since there is no new episodes for a month. They could have delved a little more into the deal Thor made with the dwarf to forge Stormbreaker and could have added more to the fight between Thor and Bill. The episode really felt rushed due to it needing to be reconciled in a half hour.
The episode was almost perfect for any Thor fan and I scored it accordingly. If there would have been at least the Beta Ray Bill transformation scene once he wields Stormbreaker, I would have scored the episode a 9.9, for it was a huge moment for the character that we missed out on.
I am not sure how they are going to balance the remainder of the season between the Skrull Invasion and the Surtur Invasion. I am afraid that one of these story lines may suffer but if they pull it off………..there will be some epic moments to come in which Asgard and Earth will need their heroes more than ever.
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