Of all the eclectic guests in Hotel Valhalla, there are few more idiosyncratic than Thomas Jefferson, Jr. and Halfborn Gunderson. Just think of it: TJ’s a rule-following Civil War Union soldier with a bone steel bayonet, and Halfborn’s a merciless Viking warrior with twin battle-axes. Okay, maybe these two have more in common than we thought. Let’s break it down.
Until the Bitter End
Everyone wants a room at Valhalla, but no one wants to complete the application process. To secure a spot, one must die a hero’s death. TJ, a freed slave and the son of Tyr, bravely gave his life during the American Civil War. Halfborn’s been around even longer, having died during a Viking invasion over 1,200 years ago. So, trust him when he tells you to avoid the custard in the 247th floor mess hall.
Most likely due to their cultural and chronological differences, Halfborn and TJ spent decades upon decades either arguing with or avoiding each other altogether in Hotel Valhalla. It wasn’t until Halfborn’s future girlfriend, Mallory Keen, arrived at the hotel in 1972 that the two were able to broker peace, as she showed them that they had more in common than they initially thought. Even if TJ still never seems to know when to stop talking.
Magnus Comes Aboard
Everything changed for these two a few years ago, when Magnus Chase, the son of Frey, first arrived at floor 19. The two immediately welcomed him with open arms and taught him the ins and outs of the Nine Worlds, as well the best battle tactics to use if you don’t want to die for the third, fourth, or fifth time.
Sailing the Ship of the Dead
After TJ and Halfborn fought alongside him in battles against Surt and the giants, Magnus did what any good friend would do and asked them to join him on a death-defying quest to stop Loki from destroying the gods. No biggie. During the voyage to Jotunheim, TJ and Halfborn proved themselves invaluable, both of them almost single-handedly slaying giants and bonding over their shared past regrets.
At the end of the day, these two prove that, despite our differences, we’re all going to find commonalities in the afterlife. Whether we’re from South Carolina or East Anglia, we’re bonded by our innate desire not to get on Mallory Keen’s bad side.