Thor, the God of Thunder, is unquestionably not only one of Earth’s mightiest heroes, but one of the most powerful forces for good in the universe. The strongest Asgardian, second to only his father Odin, the God of Thunder’s power and feats are known throughout the ages and into the future. Thor Odinson boasts strength far above, well, nearly any mortal. He’s practically immortal, he’s imperious to most earthly weapons, and he’s one of the greatest fighters of all time. Add to that the fact that Thor is armed with the enchanted hammer Mjolnir, and the list of Thor’s powers keep going. Mjolnir can control the weather on a global scale, rain down lighting, create portals, fly at faster-than-light speeds, and discharge massive energy attacks.
With such incredible power, it can only be expected that the villains who fight Thor would have to at least be near his level of strength. And many are! Thor has defeated, and been defeated by, some of the worst denizens the universe has to offer. From Galactus, the entity capable of eating whole planets, to Mangog, a creature of hate fueled by billions of souls, Thor always has his hands full. Today at CBR we’re looking at Thor’s godliest villains and ranking them in power!
One particular downside of being a superhero is that you’re occasionally going to run into poorly named villains. In the case of Mongoose, not only did he simply go by the name “Mogoose”, but was also an actual mongoose. First appearing in The Amazing Spider-Man #283, Mongoose underwent genetic engineering experiments conducted by the High Evolutionary. Turning into a bi-pedal, fully sentient mongoose, Mongoose wasn’t especially pleased with his new lot in life. Deciding to try out crime, Mongoose was hired by someone to take on Thor. Along the way, Spider-Man got involved in their fight and the only thing became a madhouse.
With a fighting style similar to that of Spider-Man, Mongoose has a habit of jumping around like a jackrabbit while in the midst of combat.
Strong enough to lift ten tons, he might not be anywhere near Thor’s level of strength, but he can run up buildings, possesses low-level super speed, and is incredibly agile. Additionally, the Mongoose wears gloves that have gas pellets and can fire off concussive blasts. At the end of the day, there isn’t anything especially impressive about Mongoose, which is why he’s likely been forgotten and will never see the light of a comic book page ever again.
19 THE EXECUTIONER
The Asgardian Skurge, also known as the Executioner, was one of Asgard’s finest warriors. Thanks to the alluring nature of the Enchantress, he’d often find himself manipulated by the devilish vixen, teaming up with her and doing whatever it was she demanded. Typically, on account of her anger towards Thor, this involved fighting the God of Thunder. Skurge may not have been the brightest bulb, as he was nothing more than the plaything to Enchantress, but he was incredibly loyal and dedicated to defeating Thor. To that end he’d even team up with the Masters of Evil once or twice.
Though Skurge is nowhere near the toughest opponent Thor has ever faced, his skills in combat and physical strength put him almost on par with Thor, making him a worthy challenge for the God of Thunder. Alone, Skurge would have no chance of besting Thor, but when Enchantress combined her magic with his might, they made for a formidable team. However, out of all of Skurge’s abilities, his greatest asset on the field of battle is his axe. The axe has many unique and powerful abilities. These ranged from cleaving inter-dimensional portals that can serve as passageways to other dimensions, it can even slice away magic and illusions, and even discharge blasts of fire or ice.
Thor doesn’t have many foes who can outthink the likes of Loki, but that’s exactly why Malekith is especially dangerous. Though it’s true that Malekith is not one of Thor’s most physically strongest foes, his power lies in subterfuge, manipulation, and dark magic. Malekith is the ruler of the Dark Elves of Svartalfheim and is one of the more sinister and dangerous creatures to ever live in all the Nine Realms. When he’s not plotting Thor’s demise, he’s off masterminding wars or disorder, so that he can take advantage of the situation. Actually, Malekith has done just that, tricking worlds into combat, while he manipulated events around him way to ensure even greater power for himself.
Along the way, Malekith managed to chop Thor’s arm off... with a little bit of help.
Malekith is known for cackling with savage delight at the mere thought of killing his enemies. Heck, he gets a rush out of killing his own people. Inspiring fear, the Dark Elves respect him as a leader, but are also too scared to oppose him. Maleketih is cold, calculating, and kills with a devil’s abandon. A practitioner of lethal Dark Faerie magic, he uses his magic in all sorts of horrible ways. When his own strength or mastery of magic isn’t enough, he’ll employ those around him to take care of his dirty work.
Every so often you have an opponent who, while they might not be tossing around world-destroying energy blasts, are too thickheaded to know when to give up in a fight. For Thor, Ulik is that adversary. The most powerful and deadliest of the species known as the Rock Trolls, Ulik is one of Thor’s greatest and longest-lasting enemies. He may not have the brains of Loki or the ability to warp reality like Galactus, but Ulik has it where it counts. Unlike many opponents Thor faces, Ulik doesn’t mind rushing in and taking a beating if it means he’ll come out victorious in the end.
His hide makes him impervious to conventional forms of attack. Bullets bounce off him, and his physical strength is enough that he’s even beaten the thunder god once or twice (usually thanks to the element of surprise). Though the troll might not wield fancy powers, he doesn’t need or want them. He wears a form of metallic brass knuckles that make his punches deadlier than normal and he would even acquire weapons made from the same forge that created Mjolnir. He used the weapons to lead Loki’s attack on Asgard during Ragnarok. Years later, after Thor “died” during "Fear Itself" fighting the Serpent, Ulik temporarily replaced the thunder god, using illusions to mask his identity. Loki, now a child, found him out and helped get Ulik ousted.
While the parentage of Amora the Enchantress is unknown, it is known that at a young age she was taken in by Karnilla and became an apprentice, learning all sorts of powerful magic. However, because she was too undisciplined, Amora was banished. She continued learning on her own, seducing other sorcerers and learning whatever magic they could teach. Eventually, Amora became one of the most powerful sorcerers in all of Asgard. Studying longer and harder than nearly anyone else, Amora training’s has transformed her into a living magical weapon. Though she often appears dainty and fragile, Amora is anything but.
In fact, Amora is one of Thor’s most lethal opponents, not just on account of her vast magical knowledge, but also because of her infatuation with him.
At her core, Amora is in love with Thor and wishes he could be with her. Though Thor sees goodness in Amora, he can’t bring himself to be with her. And so, Amora maintains the thinking that if she can’t have him, no one can. Amroa has beaten the demon Nightmare in his own dimension and even repelled Doctor Strange’s Eye of Agamotto energies. Yet despite being capable of obliterating opponents with deadly energy blasts, Amora favors manipulating her opponents with her beauty.
Because of the nature of the world he lives in, Thor usually spends his time battling magical threats. Yet every once in a while the God of Thunder will have to face a technological danger as well. That’s where the crazed high-tech Thor comes into play. For anyone who was ever curious about what would happen if Thor went bonkers and lost any and all reservations about killing innocent people, then pontificate on it no longer. Introducing the cyborg known as Ragnarok. A cyborg clone of Thor, he was created by the brilliant (and somewhat amoral) minds of Reed Richards and Tony Stark during the early days of Marvel's first "Civil War". Using the DNA from Thor, the original purpose of Ragnarok was to assist the Pro-registration forces. Using the God of Thunder’s genetic code without his consent, many issues quickly followed suit.
Rather than prove noble and heroic like his organic counterpart, this Thor thirsted for battle and possessed an insatiable bloodlust. Ragnarok possessed many of Thor’s abilities, but he didn’t possess any of the thunder god’s humanity. The bio-engineered weapon would go on to kill Goliath with a blast from his artificial hammer, before nearly killing a bunch of other heroes. After an intense battle, Hercules eventually destroyed Ragnarok, but he’s been remade since and only became more mentally unhinged and powerful than ever before.
By now, we all know Loki. Thanks to appearing in as many movies as his half-brother in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Loki is an established character worldwide. Though the MCU version of Loki is certainly devious and oftentimes vicious, he’s nowhere near the monster as his comic book self. The half-brother of Thor, Loki Laufeyson, started his time in Marvel as one of the most powerful villains in the comic line’s universe. When he first arrived on the scene, he was Thor’s primary antagonist and a living dynamo. Though when you think about, considering his opponent was Thor, he’d pretty much have to be.
And so, Loki often found bizarre and convoluted ways to defeat his half-brother and try and separate Thor from his hammer.
Known as the God of Evil, Loki could take on the nearly invincible Silver Surfer (a being fueled by the Power Cosmic), destroy a building with a single punch, and he wielded deadly magic to preform extraordinary feats. Through the usage of magic, Loki possessed telekinesis, he could teleport, time travel, hypnotize, shapeshift, bring inanimate objects to life, and generate powerful blasts of magic that could hurt practically any mortal, regardless of their level of power. In recent years, Loki’s power has been watered down substantially, but we haven’t forgotten the days when it’d take everything Thor had just to stop his evil sibling.
Hela’s gotten some attention lately, thanks to her appearance in the relatively recent Thor: Ragnarok movie. Before we get started, let’s just say that Hela is not Thor’s sister, but rather the daughter of Loki and the giantess Argrboda. After she was born, the Norns, the three Asgardian goddesses of fate, foretold she would be a great danger to all of Asgard, Odin, realizing the power Hela would wield, knew he couldn’t have such a threat in his presence. He opted to banish her to Hel, where she would rule both there and Niffleheim. Understandably, Hela wasn’t particularly happy with the arrangement and has since tried to claim as many Asgardian souls as possible, most notably Thor’s.
Her dominion focusing on Asgardians who didn’t die as heroes, she tried to rectify this by expanding her kingdom through conquering Valhalla. She’s never succeeded, if only because Odin and Thor always have something to say on the matter. Because of this, Hela spends the majority of her time figuring out how to either steal Thor’s soul or acquire more real estate for her mad ambitions. Along with her funky green headdress, Hela possesses incredible magic. She can time travel, astral project, fire bolts of power that can kill immortals, and she’s been known to even slow down Mjolnir in flight and redirect the hammer. Yet the one ability that makes her truly terrifying is her Death Touch and her control over life and death.
In the ‘90s, Marvel decided to get rid of Thor and replace the iconic hero with Thunderstrike, who was essentially a B-Grade spin-off. Eric Masterson was an architect who accidentally got hurt in a fight between Thor and Mongoose, but not before Eric picked up Mjolinir to use against the villain. After the battle, Odin saved Eric by merging him with Thor, where he experienced a brief tenure as Thor before getting demoted to the less powerful Thunderstrike. With a starling lack of experience, even with his Thor powers, Masterson was constantly getting thrown around. One baddie in particular who nearly killed him was the villain Bloodaxe.
Jackie Lukus was an architect like Eric Masterson who one day happened about the Axe of Skurge, the Executioner’s enchanted weapon.
It was nearly as powerful as Mjolnir. When she picked it up, she was physically transformed and completely overwhelmed by the weapon’s thirst for blood. Becoming a murderous vigilante, she started attacking criminals, but this got the attention of Thor. The two fought and Bloodaxe won, thanks to some help form the Asgardian Sorceress Karnilla. Later, When Eric was Thunderstrike, Bloodaxe would almost kill him again. It wasn’t until their final confrontation that Thunderstrike would beat her by separating Jackie from the axe. Though Masterson eventually won, Bloodaxe was a tough foe. With strength and durability equal to his own, Jackie had the advantage since the axe imbued her with fighting skill that Masterson did not possess.
11 THE SERPENT
Thor really has a problem when it comes to family. That problem being that the majority of his family members wants to, or have tried to, kill him at least once. All things considered, Thor handles all the bloodlust that runs through his family rather well, even if that involves fighting it out with his own uncle. First making his debut in Fear Itself #1, Cul Borson, the Serpent, is the brother to Odin, the All-Father. An incredibly mighty being, Cul is the living embodiment of fear. Responsible for kicking off the event "Fear Itself", Cul made a set of enchanted hammers, similar to Thor’s, and released them into the world.
Various superpowered beings picked them up, fell under his sway, and became his avatars for him to spread fear throughout the planet. Even before Cul set a foot on Earth, Odin knew his brother would return and decided to flee Midgard so he could formulate a plan with which to literally raze the planet, cleansing the world of its inhabitants to ensure Cul couldn’t acquire a foothold by way of Earth’s people. Nearly as mighty as Odin, Cul can reanimate the dead, turn into a giant snake, tore Captain America’s shield, and it required Thor wielding the Odinsword in order to defeat him.
One of the physically strongest heroes in the Marvel Universe, if a villain is likely to beat Thor, usually it’s going to be through means other than a straight up fist fight… usually. Kurse is one of the few exceptions to this rule and has zero problems defeating Thor in a one-on-one fight, and more than once, just for good measure. Though Kurse might not be on the level of Mangog, he’s a baddie that requires Thor tapping into and all reserves if he wants to win or even just stay alive. Still, since Kurse doesn’t have his own comic, Thor has obviously beaten the Dark Elf monster.
In fact, Thor’s beaten several versions of Kurse over the years, as more than one creature has taken up the malevolent mantle.
Each one, especially Algrin the Strong, the original Kurse, boast ridiculous physical strength. Algrin was so powerful he single-handedly defeated Beta Ray Bill, Thor, and Loki. When he first met Thor, he knocked the thunder god for a loop without even breaking a sweat. At one point, the Beyonder magically enhanced Kurse to the point where his power became four times that of Thor. Sure, a multiplier of four doesn't sound too bad, but when you’re dealing with people who can destroy worlds, a multiplier of four is practically unimaginable. With iron his only weakness, Thor’s had to put on his Belt of Power (something he almost never does), which multiplies his strength, to take on the Dark Elf.
9 THE FROST GIANTS
Constantly in a state of war against Asgard and its inhabitants, the Frost Giants are one of Thor’s oldest enemies. Heralding from the realm of Jotunheim, the Frost Giants are descended from Ymir and have laid siege to Asgard time and again, only to always be beaten by Thor. Towering creatures with insane strength and even nasty magic occasionally, though individual Frost Giants are easily dispatched with, when they assemble en masse, they are a tremendous threat.
Like any species, the Frost Giants have a leader, and that leader is Laufey. King of the Frost Giants and the rightful father of Loki, Laufey, similar to many Frost Giants, has very few weaknesses. Incredibly strong, he has the power to control elements like ice and the weather. Despite his power, Laufey, and the rest of his kind, is nothing when compared to the fearsome strength of Ymir. Ymir is an immortal being, and like Surtur, he’s considered an Elemental, which means he’s more a force of nature than a god or a regular giant. One of the strongest beings in the Nine Realms, he rarely appears, but when he does, expect trouble. Physically stronger than Thor, Ymir can freeze anything he touches, and can reform his body if it’s shattered. The only beings capable of challenging him are gods like Odin and even Surtur.
8 THE DESTROYER
Thor and his hammer Mjolnir are synonymous as one. But what if Thor had to do battle with his hammer? That’s the predicament whenever Thor does battle with the Destroyer armor. Though only mildly sentient and nearly incapable of moving on its own accord, it’s still one of the mightiest adversaries Thor has ever faced. To be fair, the Destroyer armor was not part of some malevolent plan to conqueror the world or anything like that. Rather, it was meant to be a tool of protection. Created by Odin and the other pantheons of Earth, the gods realized that one day they would have to do battle with the Fourth Host of Celestials. To that end, the planet’s most powerful gods -- Odin, Zeus, etc. -- came together and constructed the Destroyer.
Made out of a mystery metal stronger than uru, the metal that makes up Mjolinir, the gods fueled the armor with their magic.
On account of all the energy poured into it, the Destroyer it completely invulnerable, it can discharge energy blasts capable of killing gods, and is far stronger than Thor could ever hope to be. Thor ends up fighting the Destroyer armor whenever someone takes control of it. The act happens more often than you’d think, and Thor is the only one with a hint of chance at stopping it. People like Loki, who temporarily control the Destroyer, send it after Thor, so our hero ends up fighting the Destroyer whether he wants to or not.
Over millennia, Thor has acquired a wide range of villains, but few have inspired such fear in the God of Thunder like Gorr, The God Butcher. Gorr’s tale began thousands of years ago, when he and his family were living on a harsh and unnamed planet. As his family lay dying before him, Gorr prayed for the gods to help, but his prayers remained unanswered. Wandering the dessert, Gorr came across two gods on the ground, barely alive. One died and its weapon bound to Gorr -- Gorr killed the other. From there, Gorr went off to slaughter all the gods. The weapon that bonded itself with him became known as All Black, the Necrosword. A fearsome blade, it proved more than sufficient to kill hundreds of gods. Said to have been the tool that carved creation’s first dawn from eternal night, the more gods that blade killed, the stronger it and its wielder would become.
Thor would meet Gorr at three separate times in his life, and nearly each time he’d be defeated. While Gorr isn’t necessarily the strongest enemy Thor’s ever faced, the Necrosword empowers him enough so that Gorr can withstand going up again King Thor, the future Thor who has the power of Odin too. Ultimately, it required three Thors from across the thunder god’s timeline to come together so they could beat Gorr and stop his plan of killing all the gods.
Fathers and sons don’t always get along. For countless millennia we’ve seen the same tales of sons and their fathers at odds. Disobedience, power, freedom, it doesn’t really matter what the squabble revolves around, but rest assured, it’ll appear. For unlucky families, this can cause a divide that never heals. For divine families, this can often mean the fate of the universe. Though Thor and his father Odin both try and defend the cosmos, they each believe they know best and that the other is wrong and pig-headed. Thor and Odin are equally stubborn and consider themselves the alpha male in any particular situation. With such massive personalities, the two often find themselves in direct conflict with one another. Blows tend to then ensue, and while Thor might get a good shot or two in, he’s no match for the All-Father. Thor really can’t catch a break with his family.
Aside from the Elder Gods, Odin is among the strongest in the universe.
It’s said he created Earth, entire galaxies, and can even destroy said galaxies at a whim. He’s beaten Thanos, fought Galactus to a standstill, and even Dormammu avoids confronting the All-Father. Apparently, when Odin died, his death was so impactful, that his death energies could be felt throughout the cosmos. Thankfully, Odin doesn’t try to murder Thor and settles with knocking out his son and teaching him hard lessons.
5 PERRIKUS AND THE DARK GODS
Rarely has Odin of all people been completely annihilated by a foe, yet Perrikus and his band of Dark Gods have pushed Odin, Thor, and all of Asgard to the brink. The Dark Gods are the evil opposites of the Asgardians and each and every one is at least as powerful as Thor. Though Odin and Thor defeated them once before and banished them to the farthest reaches of the universe, they returned years later, seeking revenge.
Taking over Asgard with a sneak attack, Perrikus was quick to enslave Odin and his people. Upon discovering his friends and family were being held hostage, Thor went to their rescue, but things only went from bad to worse. Easily defeated himself, Thor could only watch in horror as Perrikus sliced through Mjolnir with a single stroke of his blade. As a result, Thor lost the connection to his power and reverted back to his human form. Thor was depowered and also enslaved, but eventually was able to escape. After fixing his hammer, Thor was forced to ally himself with the Destroyer armor, possessed by the mind of a criminal, and also recruited Hercules to his aid. Together, the threesome were able to free the Asgardians, Odin included, and beat back the Dark Gods, with Thor unleashing some of his most devastating attacks in his repertoire.
4 THE MIDGARD SERPENT
As it turns out, Thor’s uncle isn’t the only massive reptile the thunder god has had the misfortune of fighting. According to Norse legend, the World Serpent, or Jormungand, was the son of Loki and the sorceress Angerboda. Odin, acknowledging the Serpent’s deadly potential, banished the creature (as was Odins typical way of dealing with problems) to the bottom of the ocean. Of course the Midgard Serpent came back, hungry for some sweet revenge -- Odin has that effect on people. Among the singularly largest foes Thor has ever stared down, the Midgard Serpent is also one of the most powerful and horrifying creatures in the universe. The Midgard Serpent completely encircled Midgard at one time. Though Thor fought the creature then, the Serpent was even far larger than he let on.
Forever an enemy of Asgard, it was prophesized that during Ragnorok, Thor and the Midgard Serpent are destined to kill each other in battle.
The Midgard Serpent is a divine creature with vast and virtually limitless power. It cannot be hurt or stopped by conventional means. His mere movements are enough to cause tidal waves and earthquakes, he can cast illusions, is incredibly intelligent, and is immortal. To make matters worse, the Midgard Serpent’s gigantic fangs come with a deadly poison that is capable of killing most Asgardians, and other gods too for that matter.
The massive Lord of Muspelheim, it rarely gets much worse than Surtur, the King of the Fire Giants. A perpetual threat to all of Asgard, Surtur is like few foes Thor, and even Odin, has encountered. Colossal in stature, Surtur is more a force of nature that can never be truly stopped. On one occasion, Surtur faced down the combined might of Thor, Loki, and Odin. During the struggle, the fire demon seemingly killed the All-Father and easily shrugged off Thor’s God Blast, his strongest attack, an ability known to stagger Celestials. Surtur, who is just as old, if not older, as Odin, spends most of his time sitting back and awaiting the end of time so that he can kill the remaining sentient beings in the universe. He’s essentially awaiting Ragnarok, the end of all things.
Aside from his overwhelming might, Surtur is a brilliant tactician and has made countless strategic deals to further his cause. With amazing powers that are seemingly unending, Surtur wields the Twilight Sword, otherwise known as the Sword of Doom. It alone can shatter dimensions, knock back Thor’s hammer, and manipulate all sorts of magic. Even though Odin has imprisoned the deity before, it’s only ever been a temporary solution. When Surtur reappears (as he always does), the ensuing fight focuses around locking him away, rather than trying to kill him, as such a feat is likely impossible.
One of the deadliest and most powerful villains Thor has, or will ever, face, Mangog’s threat is unique in the danger he represents. First appearing in Thor #154, Mangog was a threat since the moment he first reared his ugly head. You see, Mangog in the physical embodiment of an entire race that was killed by Odin in a war with Asgard. Channeling the strength of a billion billion beings, Mangog’s hatred for Asgard is unending. With strength far greater than anything Thor has demonstrated, and even more powerful than Skyfathers like Odin and Zeus, Mangog’s power is nearly limitless and his durability is such that he can withstand Thor ramming Mjolnir down his throat and discharging one of the thunder god’s most powerful attacks of all time.
Because Mangog is a corporeal being, he can be hurt with physical attacks, however, there isn’t anyone he’s ever faced who possesses the physical might to hurt him.
In The Mighty Thor series, when Jane Foster was Thor, Mangog defeated Odin, the Serpent, Hemidall, all of the warriors of Asgard, including Thor Odinson, and even the dreaded Destroyer armor. Jane Foster only defeated Mangog by tying the creature to Mjolnir and throwing her hammer into the sun, taking the hate monster with it. Even so, this is only likely a temporary setback as Mangog has returned from all sorts of defeats.
Barring the Celestials, of whom Thor has only had the displeasure of encountering less than a handful of times, his greatest cosmic adversary is Galactus. First introduced in Fantastic Four #46 in 1966, Galacus has proven time and again that he’s one of the strongest beings in the Marvel Comics. Known as the Devourer of Worlds, Galactus eats planets, siphoning their energy, until they explode. However, before he was the fabled Galactus, he was simply Galann from the planet Taa. Then a little something called the Big Bang happened and destroyed his entire reality. The sole survivor of the explosion, Galan transformed, having combined with the Sentience of the Universe; and so was born Galactus.
Thor, through all his journeys among the stars, has face down the Devourer on multiple occasions. How the God of Thunder has survived is anyone’s guess, considering all the raw energies that Galactus has at his disposal. Galactus wields the Power Cosmic and uses it to do whatever he desires. If there’s a power you can think of, Galactus possesses it, including reshaping reality, creating wormholes, and destroying planets; even looking upon him is enough to drive some individuals mad. Though Thor is never one to back down from a challenge, he thankfully has his father Odin to back him up whenever it’s time to tussle with the world-eater. Only in the far-flung future where Thor is King Thor and wields the Odinforce, does he finally becomes powerful enough to beat Galactus on his own.