(A version of this post was shared with Pirates & Princesses on September 23, 2022.)
When thinking about legendary Marvel comic book weapons, what comes to mind? Captain America’s shield? Spider-Man’s webs? Hulk’s fists? Those are all great entries, but arguably the most famous weapon in the Marvel comic universe is Mjolnir – Thor’s mighty hammer. The semi-sentient weapon has the ability to determine who is morally worthy to lift the tool in battle. The hammer has famously denied thousands of would-be wielders, but throughout comic time, several have proven themselves worthy of the legendary Mjolnir.
In the Marvel Cinematic Universe (the MCU), we’ve seen several heroes (and even a villain) prove their worth, including Captain America, Jane Foster, Thor’s family (Odin – his father and Hela – his sister-turned evil), and even Vision.
When recently listening to a Ringer-Verse podcast episode about Marvel’s Moon Knight series on Disney+, I heard a little factoid that piqued my interest. In the Marvel comics, Moon Knight was one of only a few characters who could wield Mjolnir. I wondered about that a bit, and decided to look into the matter myself. In doing so, I found an article published by Marvel Unlimited listing quite a few heroes (and even a few villains) who have at one time carried Mjolnir.
Here are a handful of additional characters who have also achieved this legendary feat of worthiness in the Marvel comics. You’ll be surprised at some of these entries.
Moon Knight (2018)
In this comic arc, Moon Knight was the bad guy, and battled (and beat) several Avengers. He also realized that the metal of Thor’s hammer (stated to be Uru) was made up of moon rock material. Moon Knight didn’t physically hold the hammer, but he was able to control it due to his close association with moon rock (um, ok).
Red Hulk (2008)
Did you think there were only green Hulks? Red Hulk – a derivative of Thunderbolt Ross – skirted the rules by figuring out the hammer’s limitations only work within gravity. So he used the hammer in zero-G outer space!
An amphibious friend of Frog Thor (aka Throg), Puddlegulp proved his worth while fighting alongside Throg to save his colony of froggy friends. His acts of valor enable him to lift the tiny frog-sized hammer.
In a temporary reversal of typical roles, a purified Loki battled an evil Thor on the surface of the moon. After a hard-fought battle, the reversal was…well…reversed, and Loki turned back to his mischievous ways. Unfortunately for Loki, “evil” Thor never remembered his brother’s temporary heroics.
Black Panther (2018)
T’Challa revealed that one of his ancient predecessors had once wielded Mjolnir. Of course, he didn’t exactly explain how this happened. We’ll just take this one one faith then, since it happened thousands of years ago.
Spider-Man’s murderous enemy eventually straightened his moral compass, and put his newfound integrity to work in a battle with Knull – god of the symbiotes. During this battle, Venom (Eddie Brock) was given the powers of Captain Universe, and was able to wield the hammer. However, Venom took this advantage a step further by merging Mjolnir with the Silver Surfer’s surfboard to create an even greater weapon. With his newfound charity, Venom returned the hammer and surfboard to their rightful owners. How generous!
Black Widow (2014)
This is one of those “What If?” scenarios. In this Age of Ultron-based period, Ultron’s Artificial Intelligence takeover caused Thor to die before saving Asgard from Ragnarok. With earth then overrun by Asgard’s enemies, Black Widow was deemed worthy of the hammer, based on her willingness to sacrifice herself for mankind, and used it in the fight against Ultron.
Silver Surfer (2016)
In a world where “King Thanos” reigned supreme, Silver Surfer found himself to be the only hero left with the potential strength to challenge the ultimate villain. Since the Surfer deemed himself “unworthy”, he spent eons earning the ability to finally wield Mjolnir. Once worthy, Surfer gave Thanos a run for his money, though ultimately fell short of victory.
These are just a few of the Marvel heroes who were able to play with the most legendary hammer in creation. Other less well-known (and some downright goofy) dabblers include “Red Norvell, Beta Ray Bill, Awesome Andy, Thunderstrike, Squirrel Girl, Gwenpool, and Dargo Ktor. You can read more about them in the Marvel Unlimited Article “Who Has Wielded Thor’s Hammer?” written by Blair Marnell.
Did you have any idea Thor’s exclusively worthy hammer had so many handlers? If you could pick one Marvel superhero (or villain) not listed above, who would be your choice to lift that hammer? Let us know with a comment on social at: Instagram Facebook X (formerly Twitter)