Odin (Marvel)

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All-Father Odin stands behind his son in The Mighty Thor v1 #2.

Odin is a comic deity that features in Marvel Comics.

Contents

Biography

Origin

Odin Borson in Thor v1 #294.

He was born of the Aesir as one of three sons of Borr and Bestla with his father being responsible for creating the universe. (Journey into Mystery v1 #97) Odin had another older brother besides Vili and Vi with this being Cul. (Mighty Thor v1 #7) His grandfather Buri would later take the name Tiwaz who was said to had known Odin and were old friends with him. It was said that Tiwaz was responsible for Odin getting his first job and station. (Thor v1 #355)

In his youth, his father taught him how to fight, think, rule and serve as well as showed him to defend his dreams. Before the rise of mankind, he walked over the fields of Midgard and found it beautiful but empty. The young Odin began to think of his own legacy that he could leave on the world and thought of perhaps creating a new race to inhabit the empty Asgard. Thus, at that time, he breathed life into man but his father Bor was not pleased with his son's actions. Bor did not undo his son's creations but decided to punish him to quell his own rage and thus visited every suffering he could bring upon the mortal race of man. (Thor v3 #7) One account held that King Bor died whilst his children were still young with his eldest Cul seeking to take the throne. During one of Odin's adventures, he along with his brothers Vi and Villi battled Sleipner but was stopped from killing the beast by Cul. (Mighty Thor v1 #7) Afterwards, a new war came to Asgard whose enemies arose in great numbers to challenge King Bor with Odin fighting by his father's side. In the heat of battle, Bor pursued a fleeing Frost Giant and came across a powerful sorcerer with Odin arriving just to see his father cursed into becoming living snow that slowly dissipated into the winds. Bor begged his son to find the greatest sorcerer he could find and restore him leading to Odin becoming the new King of Asgard. (Thor v3 #7) Millennia ago, the All-Father came to Midgard seeking to consult with Jord the goddess of Earth and the last of the Elder Gods. He consulted her as he desired a son unlike any on Asgard and wanted to join with Jord to produce such an heir. The child born from their union was named Thor with his origins being withheld as Odin took him back to Asgard to present him to his wife Frigga. (Thor Annual v1 #11) During his reign, Odin believed he could hear his father's voice in the wind but chose to eventually ignore it as he pursued his own destiny whereupon he devoted his time to his own son and heir who was Thor. (Thor v3 #7)

There exists a conflicting story in Thor v3 #7 and Mighty Thor v1 #7 as the latter showed that Bor died when Odin was a young boy rather than during his adulthood.

The young Odin at some point encountered the Dark Man and his wife Desire. After seeing the entity, he knew his true nature as a creature of fear and managed to escape death at their hands. (Thor v1 #323) As his brother Cul grew more tyrannical, Odin sought knowledge to stop his brother and sacrificed his eye to Yggdrasil for the needed wisdom. (Mighty Thor v1 #7) After plucking out his eye, the eyeball was not destroyed but actually was empowered as well from the power of the Well of Mimir. The Eye of Odin developed a sentience of its own and grew in power where it formed into a massive eyeball that went through the realms under its own power. (Thor v1 #292) Armed with wisdom, he along with Vi and Villi moved to stop their mad brother Cul. (Mighty Thor v1 #7) Odin decided to create powerful shieldmaidens with his first and most powerful creation being the Doommaidens who were deadly female warriors that served as his spies and messengers. During their journeys into the depths of space, they encountered something that changed and corrupted them leading to them returning as monstrosities that killed all in their path until King Odin had defeated them. (Fearless Defenders v1 #2) As the All-Father, he had his brothers turned their attention to Earth which held much beauty to their eyes. They set a ring around it and the magical tree Yggdrasill grew where it spread its branches around the Earth whereupon the gods awaited the coming of man. (Journey into Mystery v1 #97)

All-Father

When the world was young, Odin was called to war when the ice giants laid siege to Asgard where he managed to defeat them except for their King Ymir. The progenitor of the ice giants pursued the All-Father until he tricked him into a spot where he ignited the fires beneath to surround Ymir thus imprisoning him behind a wall of flame as an eternal prisoner. (Journey into Mystery v1 #98) After Ymir's death, the young Odin along with his brothers Ve and Vili made their way to Muspelheim on a mission of discovery to the Kingdom of Fire. They were confronted by the native Fire Demons who brought the three sons of Bor to their master Surtur. The Asgardians questioned the fire giant on the legend that he would bring about the end of existence and he showed them the Eternal Flame that would ignite his Sword of Doom at the designated time. This led to Odin and his siblings challenging Surtur with the demon of fire bringing forth his blade to slay them for their defiance after revealing the that the Eternal Flame could never be extinguished. Odin merged with his brothers to become a giant where he brought forth his blade to fight against Surtur and his Sword of Doom. Such was he scale of the fight that it turned the Asgardians back to their normal forms and caused Surtur to sink into his Sea of Flames with his shattered Sword of Doom. Odin then stole the Eternal Flame where he along with Ve and Vili attempted to escape Muspelheim only for Surtur and the Fire Demons to pursue them. As they approached the exist, Ve and Vili remained behind to hold off the demons of fire to ensure Odin's escape. In their final moments, Ve and Vili caused the doorway to Muspelheim to close whereupon they perished with their essence merging with their brother Odin. This merged power that came to Odin became known as the Odin-Power further empowering him even though he grieved for his lost brothers. (Thor v1 #349)

Eons ago, a sentient superstorm by the name of the God Tempest approached Asgard with Odin waging war against it. After a long battle, he managed to defeat the raging Mother of Thunderstorms where he imprisoned it within Uru. The trapped storm was then taken to the Dwarves where he ordered them to fashion it into a hammer that he named Mjolnir. All-Father Odin had intended to use the weapon himself but it rebelled against him where it nearly destroyed Asgard. An angry Odin decided to place an enchantment to prevent anyone from wielding the hammer and left it within the weapon vaults of Asgard where it was never to be wielded by anyone. (Mighty Thor v2 #12)

Another great task involved the fire demon Surtur when a group of rebel Trolls allied with him in a plot to topple Asgard. This saw Odin intervening where he defeated the Trolls before confronting Surtur himself. Surtur was unable to vanquish the All-Father and decided to strike at the one thing the Asgardian King loved namely Earth. To reach his quarry's target first, Odin created the Rainbow Bridge and sped to Earth where he used it as a prison by trapping Surtur in its core to be kept there as a prisoner for eternity. (Journey into Mystery v1 #97) At some point, during a slumber he was visited by the Mares that went into his dreams and awakened Odin. In anger, he trapped the Mares in Marelock for daring to intrude in his dreams unaware that this was how they communicated with others. (Mighty Thor v1 #17)

At time's dawn, Asgard was gripped with war with the rival tribe of deities known as the Vanir. To end the conflict, a truce was achieved with hostages exchanged by both sides with Asgard surrendering Mimir to the Vanir. According to Mimir, for no good reason he was executed by the Vanir and his living tortured head was sent back to Odin. In this state of living death, Mimir was gifted with the power of prophecy whereupon Odin transformed him into fire and made him an advisor. For his actions, Mimir was said to hold hatred towards Odin for leaving him in this state. (Thor Annual v1 #7) Among the earliest conflicts fought by the Asgardians was the Aesir/Vanir War with the former being the victors. After that long war, a peace was made whereby King Bor's son, Odin of the Aesir would marry Freyja of the Vanir. The marriage was supposed to culminate in a child of both people that symbolized the unity of the two Asgardian races with this being a daughter who would become Angela with the newborn child being stolen by the Angels of Heven. (Angela: Asgard's Assassin v1 #2)

A million years ago, he was on Earth where he was joined by likes of the Phoenix, Agamotto, Black Panther, Iron Fist, a Spirit of Vengeance and a Starbrand in defending the world against a renegade Celestial known as the Fallen. They defeated the creature and buried it within the Earth to prevent it from summoning the Final Host to destroy Earth. (Marvel Legacy v1 #1) Thousands of years ago, an Asgardian by the name of Millennius believed that mankind was cursed with sorrow and pain with him deciding that the only way to bring them peace was to destroy them all. For his actions, Odin and his fellows were responsible for banishing Millennius to a forsaken dimension where he remained trapped in his prison without any other being with him. (Silver Surfer/Thor Annual v1 1998) At some point, he had dalliance with a giantess named Grid who bore him a halfborn son named Vidar Odinson though the child was banished to live in the mountains. (Thor Annual v1 #12) During his reign, a number of Asgardian often visited Midgard during the early days of man and cruelly preyed upon the mortals. To stop this practice, King Odin had secretly hired the services of the Angels of Heven from the Tenth Realm where he paid them for dispatching these rogue Asgardians. He later learnt that the mercenary nature of the Angels meant that they allied with Asgard's enemies if they paid the right price with the angry All-Father meeting with the Angel Queen. As a result, he broke his ties with the Angels as he concluded that they had no honor. Afterwards, the Angels attacked Asgard but were ultimately defeated and imprisoned within the Tenth Realm that was separated from the other realms. (Original Sin v1 #5.4)

Thor

The All-Father returns in Thor v1 #618.

His son Thor later petitioned the All-Father to marry the mortal nurse Jane Foster with Odin refusing the request. (Journey into Mystery v1 #97) The All-Father later agreed when Jane was brought to Asgard and with his power he turned her into a goddess where he put her to a test to judge her worthiness to marry his son. This saw her being placed in a hall to show no fear against the Unknown but she was overwhelmed with fear and rejected the madness of Asgard leading to her deciding to remain mortal. (Thor v1 #136)

Fear Itself

Return

He later found his wife guilty of insurrection against Asgard but before he could pronounce sentence the trial was interrupted by the female Thor with the two engaging in a battle. (Mighty Thor v2 #4)

Overview

Personality and attributes

His own father Bor taught him to fight, think, rule and serve but did not teach how to have dreams of his own. When his father was turned into living snow, Odin decided ultimately not to honor Bor's wish of being restored to life and instead continued as his successor as the King of Asgard where he had a child of his own. (Thor v3 #7) As a young boy, he stated that he loved his brother Cul more than the sun and the moon. (Mighty Thor v1 #7)

It was said that Odin loved disguises and to fool people as well as surprise them with no one being his equal. (Thor v1 #355)

Odin's mercy was said to be without peer but equally was his wrath all-consuming. (Thor v1 #136)

Powers and abilities

As an Asgardian, he had the power to merge with his brothers Ve and Vili where their fusion combined their great power allowing them to become a giant. A powerful foe could cause the three to break into their component parts. After Ve and Vili's death, their power merged with their brother that became known as the Odin-Power. (Thor v1 #349)

The monarch of Asgard was able to summon the awesome forces of nature that followed his commands with him being able to hurl mighty meteor bolts at his foes. With his sword, he was able to strike with such force that he split entire mountains in two and open chasms that led to the fiery realm of Surtur. (Journey into Mystery v1 #98)

The Odin-power he could gift onto others to act on his behalf such as depriving an Asgardian of their full strength. (Thor v1 #126) Such was his power that he could also confer godhood upon mortals giving them the abilities of Asgardians. (Thor v1 #136)

One of the artifacts that he wore as symbol of his status was the Ring Imperial that was worn his entire ruling life. (Thor v2 #40)

The chief weapon in his arsenal was the heaven-spear Gungnir that was forged from magical sunlight by the Dwarves. Odin stated that it was his inheritance from Asgard's Elder Gods with none but Odin being able to lay a finger on it. (Thor Annual v1 #11) Unlike Mjolnir, the spear had no magical safeguards which meant anyone could technically wield it though the idea of anyone attempting to do so beyond Odin was unthinkable to the Asgardians. (Thunderbolts v1 #141)

A further armament of his was Oversword of Asgard that was also known as the Odinsword. Such was its power that legend said that if it ever left its sheath then the universe was set to end. (Journey into Mystery v1 #117)

Another weapon of Odin's was the Mace of the War-Myths. (Thor v1 #312) He also wielded the Imperial Sceptre of Supremacy could be used in combat to consume cosmic blasts directed at him or he could use it to direct molecular cyclone. Despite such feats, the ceremonial sceptre itself lacked any power of its own as it simply channelled Odin's own might. (Journey into Mystery v1 #123)

By his side, he had two ravens that served him named Hugun (Thought) and Munin (Memory) that gave him information on dangers and developments. (Thor v1 #274)

In Asgard, Odin was the realm eternals ruler and his law was considered supreme. (Thor v1 #126)

Notes

  • Odin was created by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby where he was first mentioned in Journey into Mystery v1 #85 (October 1962) but his first actual appearance in Journey into Mystery v1 #86 (November 1962),
  • The character was based on the Norse mythological deity Odin and adapted for Marvel Comics.

Alternate Versions

  • In Ultimate Comics: Thor (2010-2011), the Ultimate Marvel universe's Odin was shown to embody all of Asgard along with Mjolnir and the Norn Stones being extensions of his power. As such, hid death was said to bring about the end of all of Asgard.
  • In Infinity Wars: Iron Hammer v1 (2018), an alternate world was created when Gamora using the Infinity Stones used its powers to merge various individuals with one another leading to Odin along with Howard Stark combined into a single entity called Howard Odin that had his own unique backstory.
  • In What If? Thor v1 #1 (2018), an alternate version of history was shown in a What If where Laufey had killed Odin long ago. With his death, Asgard fell to the Frost Giants and the young Thor was raised as the son of Laufey as he eventually came to become the God of Winter.

In other media

Television

  • In The Marvel Super Heroes, Odin appeared in the animated The Mighty Thor where he made his first appearance in "The Vengeance of Loki" and was voiced by actor Bernard Cowan. The defeated Loki was taken back to Asgard to be judged by Odin who sentenced his adoptive son to imprisonment once again for his crimes.
  • In The Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes, Odin made a number of appearances in the animated television series where he was voiced by actor Clancy Brown.
  • In Ultimate Spider-Man, the character appeared in the episode "Field Trip". He was shown as being in the Odinsleep where Loki with the aid of the Frost Giants managed to freeze Asgard. Though in control, they struggled to break into Odin's chamber and when they managed to break the doorway they were defeated by Thor along with Spider-Man and his team.
  • In Avengers Assemble, the character appeared in the episode "Planet Doom" where he was voiced by actor Frank Welker. He would argue with his son Thor about spending his time on Midgard with him warning him that mankind would disappoint him. In "All-Fathers Day", he returned to convince Thor to return to Asgard only to help battle Mangog that ambushed him. After the Avengers helped defeat Mangog, he became convinced at the worthiness of humanity and decided to allow Thor to remain on Earth as a hero.

Film

  • In the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Odin made a number of appearances in the shared continuity setting.
    • In Thor, Odin first appeared in the live-action film where he was portrayed by actor Anthony Hopkins. He was shown as being the All-Father who led the Asgardians who battled their enemies such as the Frost Giants of Jotunheim. Centuries ago in 965 AD, he defeated their attempt at using the Casket of Ancient Winters against Midgard. After pursing then to their realm, he found a Frost Giant child and adopted the boy as his son who appeared Asgardian and named Loki. Odin was the husband of Frigga and father to his biological son Thor along with his adopted son Loki though the latter did not know of his origin.
    • In Thor: The Dark World, Odin returned in the sequel movie where he was once again portrayed by actor Anthony Hopkins.
    • In Thor: Ragnarok, Odin appeared in the live-action film where he was again portrayed by actor Anthony Hopkins. It was shown that long ago that he had a daughter that was his first born named Hela and that she served as his Executioner where together they waged bloody conquest on the realms leading to Asgard gaining great wealth and power. However, in time, Odin grew tired of the bloodshed and wanted to rule as a benevolent king with Hela opposing him. Thus, he dispatched the elite Valkyrie that served the throne to apprehend her with all but one of them dying. Hela was ultimately defeated and she was imprisoned in another dimension with Odin's power keeping her at bay. Aferwards, the All-Father hid all this past from the records and ruled as a more wise king to Asgard. By the modern day, it was revealed that Loki took his fathers identity and banished the All-Father to Earth where he used a spell to make him appear as an old man trapped in a care home on Midgard. This allowed Loki to rule in his stead where he ignored the various dangers towards Asgard until Thor revealed the deception. By this point, the care home was demolished but Odin had broken his adoptive son's spell and departed to Norway as he was dying by this point. He informed Doctor Strange to inform his sons of his location where he met them. Odin revealed that his time had come and that he was going to pass away but that upon his death then Hela was going to be released.

Video games

  • In Marvel: Ultimate Alliance, the character appeared in a non-playable role as part of the storyline where he was voiced by Peter Renaday. The Masters of Evil were responsible for attacking Asgard where they captured the various Asgardians who the world's various superheroes seek to rescue. Odin was among those captured with the heroes searching Niffleheim for him and learn from Ymir that Doctor Doom along with Loki had taken the King of Asgard to Raven's Spire. During the fight with the Masters of Evil, Doom managed to siphon off Odin's power turning himself into a near god-like figure who attempted to destroy the superheroes only for them to be saved by Uatu the Watcher's intervention. As Doctor Doom conquered Earth, the heroes were dispatched by Uatu to gather the M'Kraan Crystal and Muonic Inducer that were used to depower the villain. A restored Odin then sends a blasts of lightning at Doctor Doom leaving his mask as the only thing that remained.
  • In Marvel Heroes, Odin appeared in the MMORPG video game where he featured as part of the story setting. During the Odinsleep, his adoptive son Loki intended to rule Asgard and all the realms where he siphoned the power of the Cosmic Cube from the defeated Doctor Doom and allied with Asgard enemies. He was defeated by the Asgardians with the aid of Midgards heroes but the demon Surtur had arisen to commence Ragnarok. After Surturs defeat, Odin had awakened and in his anger he punished Loki by placing him in a time loop during recent events so he could serve as a hero.
  • In Marvel: War of Heroes, Odin appeared in multiple playable cards in the video game.

Appearances

  • Journey into Mystery:
  • Thor:
  • Thor v3:
  • Loki
  • Angela: Asgard's Assassin:

External Links

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