Title: Norse Mythology #1
Publisher: Dark Horse
Words: Neil Gaiman
Art: P. Craig Russell, Mike Mignola, Jerry Ordway
Published: October 7, 2020
Publisher’s Summary: “#1 New York Times bestselling author Neil Gaiman and Eisner Award-winning comics legend P. Craig Russell breathe new life into the ancient Norse stories by taking readers through the creation of the Nine Worlds to the epic origin and adventures of Thor, Odin, and Loki all the way to the end of life–Ragnarok. Having previously written about deities in American Gods and The Sandman, Gaiman teams with Russell to finally bring readers to follow the northern gods in their own setting in this comic book adaptation of the hit novel!”
The series begins with renditions of three stories from actual Norse Mythology. They are interpreted and illustrated by three different artists in this comic, and united with words by Neil Gaiman to good effect.
The first tale “Yggdrasil and the Nine Worlds,” is about the World Tree that unites all the worlds. The next is “Mimir’s Head and Odin’s Eye,” about a well of wisdom. The comic book with “The Treasures of the Gods,” a retelling of one of Loki’s pranks and its consequences. This one serves as an introduction to the beginning of the longer narrative revolving around the trickster god and brother of Thor.
Neil Gaimain’s writing is surprisingly straightforward, taking few liberties with the traditional folk tales, but are engaging, nonetheless. The stories are placed in a sequence that aids to the backstory and context to follows and concludes with a bit of a cliffhanger and a promise of a more detailed adventure concerning Loki to follow.
The artwork is the real showcase here. Russell, Mignola, and Ordway tell separate stories but work well depicting the different moods and tones of each piece.
The Bottom Line
Norse Mythology feels a little too like an introductory primer about the subject matter rather than much of a story, but ends with a hint at more, particularly with respect to Loki and his scheming.