I just realized that the first issue of the new Thor comic-book series is out, the one that, as announced a few months ago, features a woman as Thor.
I've now purchased the issue online (via the Marvel Comics iOS app) and read it, and it didn't wow me, but I'll definitely keep reading for at least another couple issues.
But the reason I'm posting here is to quote what series writer Jason Aaron says in the lettercol, in response to a longtime Thor fan who was considering “leaving comics altogether” because of the announcement.
[...] I'll just say, for my part, that nothing has changed for me in regards to my love or understanding of the character of Thor. I am still telling the exact same story that I set out to tell way back in God of Thunder #1. The same story of worthiness and the challenges of being of a god. This is not me throwing away everything I've been working on and building up for two years. As you can see this issue [...], the same threads continue on from the previous series. This is merely the next act of what I still hope will be a very long run by me as writer of Thor's adventures. Yes, it's an act where Thor Odinson has to face a very different sort of challenge. The challenge of a world where he's not worthy. But just because he's not holding the hammer doesn't mean he's going away. His story will continue on in these pages and elsewhere. Believe me, I've still got big plans for the Odinson. The same big plans I've always had.
And as for our new hammer wielder, well, you can dismiss it offhand as an “obvious gimmick” if you like, but as the guy who came up with the idea and who crafted the story, I clearly see it as something quite a bit different. In the pages of Marvel Comics going back to 1962, the hammer of Thor has always come with a certain inscription, one that makes a very specific promise. The promise of transformation. That promise was first established by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby in the pages of Journey into Mystery #83, Thor's very first appearance, when a crippled doctor wandered into a remote cave to find a strange stick, a stick that became a hammer when he whacked it on the ground, a hammer that transformed him into the Mighty Thor, “The Most Exciting Super-Hero of All Time!!” Years later, writer/artist Walter Simonson's first issue of a legendary run on the series would feature a cover showing a strange, horse-faced alien wearing Thor's garb and using Thor's very own hammer to smash apart the book's old logo. Those stories, and many more over the years, have shown the transformative power of Thor's hammer, Mjolnir, in action. That promise is, without a doubt, a fundamental part of the character's legacy.
This story, the one that begins this very issue, is the next evolution of that promise. Is it exactly the same story as with Donald Blake or Beta Ray Bill or Eric Masterson? No, of course not. If it was, what would be the point in telling it? But is it a Thor story? You bet your ass it's a Thor story. And it's one I'm super-excited to tell.