Valkyrie Marvel Pride 2022

These Are the Best Valkyrie Comics To Read Before ‘Thor: Love and Thunder’

The work of a Valkyrie is never done.

Since the Thor: Love and Thunder trailer dropped earlier this week, all things Asgardian have been living rent-free in my head. When I stopped freaking out over Natalie Portman’s reveal as the Mighty Thor and King Valkyrie, I started re-reading various Jane Foster comics while I wait for the movie to release on July 8th.

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Now that I have made a list of Jane Foster comics to read, I thought it only fair to give my other favorite, Valkyrie, the same treatment. Although the film Valkyrie may or may not be the original Marvel Comics Valkyrie, a version of Tessa Thompson still appeared in the comics. Let’s celebrate all the great Valkyrie storylines Marvel has put out so far.

Avengers #83

Valkyrie Avengers Comic 83
(image: Marvel Comics)

In December 1970, Marvel published Avengers #83—the first appearance of a character named Valkyrie. She rallied female superheroes together and told them they should form a team of just women called the Lady Liberators. They needed to fight male chauvinist oppression instead of just serving under the male heroes.

While reading this comic, I realized they wrote it during second-wave feminism and probably meant it to be a bit of a joke, but I loved it and was severely disappointed that the Lady Liberators never became a legit team.

Valkyrie: Jane Foster #1-10

Jane Foster Valkyrie
(image: Marvel Comics)

After Jane Foster’s time as the Mighty Thor, she became Valkyrie. During the series, she explores the differences between the powers of a lightning god and someone who helps lost souls. She discovers the meaning of being a true Valkyrie rather than just being a fun name.

Some may see it as a downgrade in powers from being the Mighty Thor, but I beg to differ. As Valkyrie, she gets to keep her brown hair when she transforms. She wields the Undrjarn the All-Weapon, an arm brace that turns into any weapon. She has wings. And she has a sarcastic Scottish Pegasus named Mr. Horse.

King in Black: Return of the Valkyries #1-4

Return of the Valkyries Marvel comics
(image: Marvel Comics)

During the 2020-2021 Marvel Comic mega-event, King in Black, all the heroes came out of the woodwork to take down Null. Jane Foster had to gather up all the still-living Valkyries to aid in Earth’s fight. Jane rescued one of the original nine Valkyries, named Rūna, from being trapped inside a Celestial. Tessa Thompson’s MCU version inspired this Valkyrie and brought the character from the films to the comics.

Mighty Valkyries #1-5

Mighty Valkyries Runa
(image: Marvel Comics)

The Mighty Valkyries picked up right after the other series because a Valkyrie’s work is never done. Pat of the story followed Jane Foster on Earth, trying to undo a whole mess the Loki orchestrated (that little scamp). The other story showed Rūna traipsing around space and hunting down her battle-ax, Jarnbjorn. The two storylines eventually met and wrap up.

I’m still waiting for a solo Rūna series or another Valkyrie team-up. Or maybe they could reform the Lady Liberators and add some other overlooked characters to the team. Which Valkyrie is your favorite?

(featured image: Marvel Comics)


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Author
D.R. Medlen
D.R. Medlen (she/her) is a pop culture staff writer at The Mary Sue. After finishing her BA in History, she finally pursued her lifelong dream of being a full-time writer in 2019. She expertly fangirls over Marvel, Star Wars, and historical fantasy novels (the spicier the better). When she's not writing or reading, she lives that hobbit-core life in California with her spouse, offspring, and animal familiars.