Friday, June 21, 2019

Profile: Valkyrie


Real name: Brunnhilde

First appearance: Avengers #83, December 1970

History: initially, Valkyrie debuted as a disguise of the Enchantress, and later, made an appearance as the persona of a deity that was placed into the body of a mortal woman, Samantha Parrington, in the Incredible Hulk #142 in 1971. Then, in the 4th issue of The Defenders in 1973, Valkyrie's essence was placed in another mortal woman, Barbara Norris, and the 3rd iteration of the character joined up with the group for much of the rest of the run.

Was subjected to the following acts of discrimination: she was originally killed in the last issue of Defenders, just so some cast members like Beast could then be used in X-Factor, though later resurrected in a Dr. Strange story 2 years afterwards. More recently in 2019, she was slaughtered again in the War of the Realms crossover by the dark elf Malekith, just so that Jane Foster could take her role, after being forced into the role of Thor himself a few years prior when Axel Alonso was Marvel's EIC.

What's wrong with how this was done? It was cheap and superfluous to kill her off in the Defenders finale from 1986, though in fairness, they did wisely reverse this shortly after in Dr. Strange's solo book. It was much worse when Valkyrie was put to death in War of the Realms, where she was either stabbed to death with a sword in the back, or worse, decapitated.

The worst thing is that this was coming some time after Marvel had taken up a social justice Orwellian anti-sex agenda, yet jarring violence was still left intact. That's what really makes their steps abominable, and it hasn't changed much under C.B. Cebulski either.


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