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Thor is a character in Norse mythology known as the God of thunder who became a character in the Marvel Universe in 1950. The Marvel character has most recently been portrayed by Chris Hemsworth in Thor (2011), The Avengers (2012) and Thor: The Dark World (2013).
Thor appears in Norse mythology as the son of Odin, living in the fictional land of Asgard. Thor originally appears as a character in the Marvel universe in Venus #11, which was released in November of 1950. Thor got his own self-titled comic books series in March of 1966 with the first issues titled “Whom the Gods Would Destroy!” The series continued for over 400 issues through 2009. From 2011-2012 a series titled The Mighty Thor put out 23 issues, and from 2012-2014 Thor: God of Thunder put out 25 issues.
On May 6th, 2011, the film Thor was released, starring Chris Hemsworth as the titular Thor. The film was a critical and commercial success, earning a rating of 77% on RottenTomatoes and earning over 440 million dollars worldwide. Hemsworth also appeared as Thor in the 2012 Marvel film The Avengers. On November 18th, 2013, Thor: The Dark World was released. The film earned a rating of 65% on Rotten Tomatoes and earned over 640 million dollars worldwide.
The Female Thor
On July 15th, 2014, Marvel announced on the morning talk show The View that in an upcoming comic Thor would become a woman. The same day many sites covered the news supporting the change including TIME’s article “Here’s Why a Female Thor Makes Total Sense.” Other sites focused on other angles to the story, like Wired’s piece which explained the speed the news traveled through mainstream news sources is proof comic culture is truly mainstream and The Guardian opinion piece titled “A female Thor is good – a feminine male superhero would be better.” Jason Aaron, a writer for the Thor comic book series explained exactly what a female Thor would mean, saying:
“This is not She-Thor. This is not Lady Thor. This is not Thorita. This is THOR. This is the THOR of the Marvel Universe. But it’s unlike any Thor we’ve ever seen before.”
As of July 2014, the Facebook page for the film Thor has gained over 12.1 million likes and the film’s Twitter account has gained over 260,000 followers. On May 8th, 2011, the /r/Thor subreddit was launched for discussions related to the superhero, as of July 2014, the subreddit has over 600 subscribers.
There are numerous Thor fan blogs on Tumblr, including fuckyeahthor, verily-thor and ask-the-mighty-thor. As of July 2014, more than 170,000 images have been uploaded to DeviantArt  under the tag “Thor” and over 7,000 Thor related stories have been submitted to the fanfiction database Fanfiction.net.
Following the release of the 2012 film Marvel’s The Avengers, a fandom arose surrounding Tom Hiddleston’s portrayal of the villain Loki. In April of 2012, a Quickmeme page titled “Loki” was created, which features photographs of Hiddleston that can be edited with custom captions (shown below).
On April 4th, a Facebook page titled “I Love Tom Hiddleston (Loki Page)” was launched, accumulating more than 15,000 likes in the first 16 months. On Tumblr, several Loki-related fan blogs have been launched, including “F Yeah Loki,” “Loki Lovers” and “Loki’s Monster Crotch.” On July 21st, 2013, Hiddleston appeared as Loki at the San Diego Comic-Con and took over comedian Chris Hardwick’s panel to address the audience (shown below).
Viral Videos and Parodies
On June 2nd, 2011, YouTuber HISHE  uploaded a video titled “How Thor Should Have Ended.” As of July 2014, the video has gained over 9.7 million views. On October 29th, 2013, YouTuber Screen Junkies uploaded an Honest Trailer for Thor. As of July 2014, the video has gained over 3.3 million views.
On November 5th, 2013, YouTuber CinemaSins uploaded a video titled “Everything Wrong With Thor In 8 Minutes Or Less.” As of July 2014, the video has gained over 2.8 million views. On February 14th, 2014, YouTuber Screen Junkies uploaded an Honest Trailer for Thor: The Dark World As of July 2014, the video has gained over 3.7 million views.