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The Midgard Serpent rises to fight again in Thor #8 variant

(Image credit: Nic Klein (Marvel Comics))

Thor fought an illusion of the Midgard Serpent in June's Thor #5, but now it appears the real thing is rearing its head in a variant to Thor #8 by series artist Nic Klein.

(Image credit: Nic Klein (Marvel Comics))

The Midgard Serpent - a.k.a. Jormungand - is, like Thor, based on Norse mythology. That was adapted into Marvel lore, with this rarely-seen monster fated to be the one who ultimately kills Thor once and for all - although dying itself in the process, as well. Thor and Jormungand have faced off a number of times, but each has lived (or died and been revived) to fight another day. 

Back in Thor #5, the deadly new villain Black Winter appeared as Jormungand in an illusion to vex the hammer-wielding hero.

Nic Klein's Thor #8 variant here depicts the two locked in battle, and appears to be a homage to Walt Simonson's 1987 cover to Thor #380.

(Image credit: Walter Simonson (Marvel Comics))

So will Thor face-off with the Midgard Serpent once more in Thor #8? It's not clear. Although it's depicted in this variant, oftentimes what happens in variant covers isn't a sign of what's inside the book. The synopsis for the issue released by Marvel earlier this year doesn't reveal it happening either.

"Everyone gets a hammer! That's right - come on down to Broxton, Oklahoma, and pick up Mjolnir for yourself!" reads Thor #8's description. "The famed hammer of the Thunder God is free for the taking...no worthiness required???"

Thor #8 goes on sale on October 7.

Chris has covered comic book news for Newsarama since 2003, and has also written for USA Today, Life, Entertainment Weekly, Publisher's Weekly, Marvel Entertainment, TOKYOPOP, AdHouse Books, Cartoon Brew, Bleeding Cool, Comic Shop News, and CBR. He is the author of the book Modern: Masters Cliff Chiang, co-authored Art of Spider-Man Classic, and contributed to Dark Horse/Bedside Press' anthology Pros and (Comic) Cons. He has acted as a judge for the Will Eisner Comic Industry Awards, the Harvey Awards, and the Stan Lee Awards. Chris is a member of the American Library Association's Graphic Novel & Comics Round Table.