When people talk about how great Lee/Kirby Thor was, this is what they mean. Let’s start with the villain. He’s got the alliterative name “Crusher Creel,” which is a Stan Lee trademark, he’s big and burly, which is a Kirby trademark, and his origin narrative is full of multisyllabic adjectives.
He is created by Loki, but he’s really just intended as a distraction while Loki snatches up Jane Foster. Still, it’s the Absorbing Man story that keeps this multi-issue arc going—all the way to his defeat, when Thor turns him into helium.
I have to say, up to this point these Journey Into Mystery comics have been a bit…Plodding. Here, they really pick up speed and get great.
First appearances: Absorbing Man.
Grade: A+. Terrific.
For the complete history of the MU, year by year, go here.