Thor (Thor Odinson) is a fictional superhero appearing in American comic books published by Marvel Comics. The character, based on the Norse deity of the same name, is the Asgardian god of thunder and possesses the enchanted hammer Mjolnir, which grants him the ability to fly and manipulate weather amongst his other superhuman attributes.
Debuting in the Silver Age of Comic Books, the character first appeared in Journey into Mystery #83 (Aug. 1962) and was created by editor-plotter Stan Lee, scripter Larry Lieber, and penciller-plotter Jack Kirby. He has starred in several ongoing series and limited series, and is a founding member of the superhero team the Avengers, appearing in each volume of that series. The character has also appeared in associated Marvel merchandise including animated television series, clothing, toys, trading cards, video games, and movies.
The character was first portrayed in live action by Eric Allan Kramer in the 1988 television movie The Incredible Hulk Returns. Chris Hemsworth portrays Thor Odinson in the Marvel Cinematic Universe films Thor, The Avengers, Thor: The Dark World, Avengers: Age of Ultron, and Thor: Ragnarok, and will reprise his role in Avengers: Infinity War and its untitled sequel. Additionally, archival footage of Hemsworth as Thor were used in the episodes “Pilot” and “The Well” of Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.. Thor placed 14th on IGN’s list of “Top 100 Comic Book Heroes of All Time” in 2011, and first in their list of “The Top 50 Avengers” in 2012.
The Marvel Comics superhero Thor debuted in the science fiction/fantasy anthology title Journey into Mystery #83 (cover-date Aug. 1962), and was created by editor-plotter Stan Lee, scripter Larry Lieber, and penciller-plotter Jack Kirby. A different version of the mythological Thor had appeared previously in Venus #12-13 (Feb.-April 1951). Lee in 2002 described Thor’s genesis early in the Marvel pantheon, following the creation of the Hulk:
[H]ow do you make someone stronger than the strongest person? It finally came to me: Don’t make him human — make him a god. I decided readers were already pretty familiar with the Greek and Roman gods. It might be fun to delve into the old Norse legends… Besides, I pictured Norse gods looking like Vikings of old, with the flowing beards, horned helmets, and battle clubs. …Journey into Mystery needed a shot in the arm, so I picked Thor … to headline the book. After writing an outline depicting the story and the characters I had in mind, I asked my brother, Larry, to write the script because I didn’t have time. …and it was only natural for me to assign the penciling to Jack Kirby…