A war is raging across the 10 realms of the Marvel Universe, and that war claimed another major casualty in last week's The Mighty Thor #701.
SPOILERS For The Mighty Thor #701 follow.
Volstagg has undergone quite the transformation in recent issues of The Mighty Thor. The most voluminous member of the Warriors Three had been acting as a delegate to the Council of Worlds on Asgard's behalf. He was on a trip to Nidavellir, the realm of the dwarves, when the dark elf Malekith the Accursed sent the firey forces of Muspelheim to burn the realm down.
Volstagg was caught in the flames and several dwarven children were burned to death around him. The experience filled him with a rage that allowed him to lift the Mjolnir from the Ultimate Universe, which washed up in the Earth-616 timeline following Secret Wars. This Mjolnir, filled with the wrath of an entire dead universe, transformed Volstagginto the berserk War Thor.
As the War Thor, Volstagg felt that the only way to end the War of the Realms was through force. He went on a mad one-man assault against the forces of Malekith and Muspelheim and threatened to destroy that entire fiery realm and everyone in it until his allies, specifically Jane Foster and the Odinson, were able to talk him down.
In The Mighty Thor #700, Volstagg was being taken into custody in Asgardia when the Ultimate Mjolnir found him once again. His friends were unable to restrain him and Volstagg lifted the hammer, once again transforming into the War Thor.
The War Thor left Asgardia but ran into Mangog, the furious beast who had been searching for the Asgardians in the ruins of old Asgard. The Mighty Thor # 701 is primarily comprised of the vicious battle that takes place between the War Thor and Mangog, one powered by the rage of a dead universe and the other by the fury of an entire race wiped out by Odin.
The battle comes to its decisive conclusion when Mangog crushes the Ultimate Mjolnir, destroying the weapon. Mangog then knocks the War Thor clear across the dead realm, leaving him hanging by his fingertips while dangling out over the vacuum of space.
Without Mjolnir to sustain him, the War Thor transforms back into Volstagg. That's where Malekith finds him. Volstagg pleads for the dark elf to help him, but Malekith instead stabs a dagger into the Asgardians hand. The last readers see of Volstagg is his lifeless body, dagger still protruding from his hand, floating off into space.
Malekith's narration in the panel reads, "A world where gods are dying, with more soon to follow."
This is only chapter two of "The Death of the Mighty Thor" and already the story has claimed the life of one Thor. How many more Thors will fall before the story ends?
The Mighty Thor #701 is on sale now.