Today's Thor Makes Even Less Scientific Sense Than Usual

Okay, this is going to be a tricky one. Because this is about the Thor comic book not making scientific sense.

Yes, I know.

But bear with me on this. In today's Mighty Thor, available at all good comic shops and possibly a few bad ones as well, he is being painted as an environmental champion and protector of the planet's ecosystem. So we have the evil Roxxon corporation, a stand in in the Marvel Universe for Exxon, with their new money making scheme.


Because the polar ice caps are melting, Roxxon are bringing in ice mined from Jupiter's moon Europa to replace it and provide us all with drinking water.

Get that?

Now, some ice caps, some glaciers are used for drinking water, it's true. Peru is a good example of that. But the problem with the melting of the ice caps and glaciers isn't a reduction of drinking water in that fashion, it's about the rising sea levels. And indeed that can damage freshwater supplies in floods, when the sea washes back into rivers or lakes, threatening drinking supplies and agriculture. Somewhere like Egypt could be especially prone to that problem.

But bringing in interplanetary ice wouldn't help that, if anything by increasing the amount of water on the planet, it would hinder it. Also, it's a billion times cheaper to desalinate sea water and, if you really want, turn it into ice, than mine it from half way across the solar system and ship it all the way here.

If you really have some kind of cheap access to interplanetary travel, why not just take sea water into space, where it will freeze, and then bring it back again? Of if you have a teleportational portal somehow into space, use it to refreeze the ice caps, generate geothermal energy and do away with fossil fuels forever.

So clearly Thor has a legitimate target here in Roxxon, as an environmental protector. And how does he solve it?


By bringing in ice from another time and place, for free, to freeze Roxxon out of the marketplace.

And, again, probably raising the sea levels in the process. Either way, it's no solution. He's a Thunder God, if he really wanted ice, couldn't he just make it… hail? Using water already in existence on this planet?

I do like the current Thor comic, and this issue has a strong emotional resonance about power, waste, regrets and change. But, for me, this is up there with Green Arrow carrying around a nuke on his back everywhere he goes.


You know, just in case.


About Rich Johnston

Head writer and founder of Bleeding Cool. The longest-serving digital news reporter in the world. Living in London, father of two. Political cartoonist.

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