This week on View from the Gutters, our topic work is The Ballad of Beta Ray Bill, by the legendary Walt Simonson. The arc—currently collected In Thor Visionaries: Walt Simonson, Vol. 1—formed the beginning of Walt Simonson’s classic character redefining run on the title, introduced the character of Beta Ray Bill, and foreshadowed events that continue to influence Thor even today.
Simonson’s time writing and drawing Thor in the mid 80s continues to be a stellar example of what 80s comics could produce. It transformed Thor from a super-hero with a secret identity and damsel love-interest into a full-time god who transversed the star-ways and battled elves and demons. This is the beginning of an era as important to Marvel as Jim Steranko’s time on Nick Fury: Agent of Shield or Chris Claremont’s relaunch of the X-Men in Giant-Sized X-Men #1
In our recommendation section our hosts nominated Cerebus, Vol. 1, X-Men: Vignettes, The Rabbi’s Cat, The Invincible Ironman: The Five Nightmares, and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turles, Vol. 1 (IDW) for discussion on the next episode, and our selected title is Teenage Mutant Ninja Turles, Vol. 1 (IDW)
Our hosts for this episode were Andrew Chard, Eric Manix, Joe Preti, Tobiah Panshin, and Cade Reynolds.