After being created and brought to life by a stroke of Thor's lightning

Vision casually passes Thor his hammer without even straining.

I think there was a gasp from the cinema audience at this point, I'm quite confident this was not in the comics.

Why is this character deemed worthy to lift Mjolnir?

I see three possible reasons:

  1. The mind stone, an infinity gem, overpowers/overrides Odin's enchantment

  2. Thors lightning imparts some of his worthiness

  3. Vision is considered worthy by Odin

Which is it it, or is it another option?

  • 3
    The Hammer's enchantment maybe sees Vision as the equivalent of a baby? How can you judge a newborns worthiness?
    – Stark07
    Apr 23, 2015 at 10:28
  • 3
    Is it possible that the hammer doesn't register Vision as a sentient being, because he's an Android?
    – Dennis_E
    Apr 23, 2015 at 10:51
  • 8
    @Dennis_E: So any given Iron Man armor should be capable of lifting the hammer as long as it's controlled by Jarvis instead of Tony? I doubt that...
    – DevSolar
    Apr 23, 2015 at 11:40
  • 1
    After watching the movie one thing I am pretty certain about is my interpretation that even Thor trusts that Vision is worthy.
    – Stark07
    Apr 24, 2015 at 13:13
  • 1
    @WIllJBD Vision certainly wields the hammer at the end in The Church.
    – apnorton
    May 12, 2015 at 15:20

6 Answers 6


SPOILERS - In small print on the side of Mjolnir - "Worthiness lifting requirements may be waived in the event of a sentient machine operator. No powers included."


Whedon On Avengers: Age Of Ultron Moment Where Thor Trusts The Vision

  • Joss Whedon reveals in an interview/podcast he used the Vision lifting Mjolnir as a "narrative shorthand" to say the Vision was a "good guy."

"That came from a 'Do you know what would be cool?' moment. It’s the cheer moment of the film. And what’s great is that, like the Hawkeye thing, we’d set it up – we’d unknowingly set it up, just by having that ['Who is worthy enough to Mjolnir?'] sequence, then with Quicksilver as well, trying to grab it and it throws him off. Both of those things were in the script before I came up with the idea of [the Vision lifting Mjolnir].

I had done something similar in an episode of Angel, where I needed you to know someone was telling the truth. It was, very simply, Angel saying, 'He hates it if you ask questions, he can’t lie.' So, you just accept that.

So on the one hand, I want them all to trust each other and go into battle not as a coherent group, but when they finally all show up at the church, they really do come together for the first time.

On the other hand, I need them to take this guy with them, and I need something to say, 'All right, we’re off!' And that really does answer a lot of questions. It was so much fun and so cute. Chris added the 'Nice work!' as he walked by Tony, by the way."

  • This clarifies my position that the Vision is not "worthy." Vision doesn't get any of the powers of Mjolnir, he just lifts it. Whedon needed a way to make the Avengers trust the Vision and move the movie along.

  • This flies in the face of the previous expressions of worthiness (in the comics) and instead takes the hammer into a nebulous region of being used as a mystical polygraph.

The Vision is an android, a sentient machine.. There has already been precedent in the Marvel Universe for androids, who are NOT alive, to be able to pick up Thor's hammer. See: Awesome Android. This loophole does not allow them to wield any of its powers, however, since the hammer essentially does not register them at all. Picking up Mjolnir and wielding its powers are two different things!

  • Adding to this, the Destroyer picks up and holds on to Mjolnir when Jane Foster's Thor engages it in battle. Since the Destroyer is a weapon inhabited by a spirit, the Destroyer can lift Mjolnir, but gains no powers. With its already superhuman strength, Mjolnir makes a great club.

enter image description here

  • If you can lift it, and swing it, then technically you are wielding it but not gaining the power of THOR, just using his hammer like an oversized croquet mallet. If Vision had summoned a lightning bolt with it, threw it and it returned to HIM, then I would have said, he was WORTHY because he would exercising the powers of THOR and not just playing polo with Ultron...

  • Recently, Thor's grandfather Bor has also either overpowered or simply ignored Mjolnir's worthiness requirement.

enter image description here

  • This immovability enchantment has been subverted as well. Mjolnir has been wielded by a select number of other individuals: alien Beta Ray Bill; Avenger Captain America; Eric Masterson; Odin (Thor's father); Borr (Thor's grandfather); and Buri (also known as Tiwaz, Thor's great-grandfather).

enter image description here

  • The hammer has also been lifted by various sentient constructs i.e. Galactus' herald, Air-Walker (animated by the soul of Nova Corps captain Gabriel Lan); and the Awesome Android (by mimicking Thor's abilities and worthy nature). The hammer has also been lifted by Earth itself when animated via magical means. --Wikipedia -> Mjolnir (comics)

enter image description here

  • When Mjolnir is dropped or set aside, it takes a fixed position, from which it cannot be moved except by a 'worthy' individual. This power does not stop the hammer from being driven from place to place in a vehicle unless Thor does not want it to be moved. If it is dropped by Thor in a battle, its "default" setting is immovable until summoned by Thor. So while on the Helicarrier, Mjolnir could sit on a shelf somewhere until Thor called for it and it would still be immovable to a person trying to drag it away, but perfectly able to be flown where it needs to be.

The verification of qualification of worthiness with Mjolnir is simple. If you can't summon a storm, throw lightning, or use Mjolnir to fly, you are likely a machine just moving Mjolnir from one place to another and trying to look cool doing it.

enter image description here

Yes, when you have the power of Thor, you look something like this. So, she clearly qualifies.

  • 7
    This does make sense. But one thing for sure, the fact implies more towards Vision being worthy rather than him being inanimate as witnessed in the movie. That is why Thor is willing to leave behind such a huge responsibility & privilege in Vision when he leaves for Asgard.
    – Stark07
    Apr 24, 2015 at 13:12
  • 1
    According to your answer, Ultron could have lifted Mjolnir (powers not included) without effort? Let's say Thor is not around to prevent Ultron from doing so.
    – Kalissar
    Apr 27, 2015 at 7:59
  • 6
    From memory, The Vision does hit Ultron with Mjolnir, in the ruined church, while Thor is... providing a wordy distraction.
    – AerusDar
    Apr 28, 2015 at 6:59
  • 2
    So basically like mentioned in the movie, Vision is as worthy as an elevator
    – Huangism
    May 11, 2015 at 13:13
  • 2
    I have to disagree @Thaddeus - not only does Thor imply that The Vision is worthy at the end, but also your first point is negated by the fact that Mjolnir was at rest when The Vision picked it up. They specifically made the "woompf" sound when Thor set it down, indicating it should stay there.
    – Omegacron
    May 12, 2015 at 13:01

We don't know, but we can speculate. Based on the context, the most likely explanation is that

The Vision is completely pure of character, having recently been born with no opportunity yet to become corrupted or un-worthy. Like a newborn baby, at no point in his life has he experienced anger, deceit, selfishness, or any other "un-worthy" emotion. Unlike a child, however, he has an understanding of right and wrong, and has chosen to help The Avengers defend the innocent - perhaps even to the point of sacrificing himself.

Then again, we still don't have a complete understanding of what makes someone worthy. However, this theory is supported by dialogue in the film - in fact, it's the dialogue immediately preceding the event in question:

CAPTAIN AMERICA: Are you? On our side?

VISION: It's not that simple. (pause) I'm on the side of life. Ultron is not.

This seems to indicate that The Vision does not see the struggle as "Avengers vs. Ultron", but rather as "Life vs. Death" - the purest of conflicts, with no room for moral ambiguity or variables. As such, his motive is equally as pure - to protect life.

The second prevailing theory - and one that may be supported by dialogue in the movie - is that The Vision can pick up Mjolnir due to his nature as an android. This is implied by Steve and Tony near the end of the movie, with the following dialogue:

THOR: He can lift the hammer, he can keep the Mind Stone. It will be safe with him.

TONY: Well, he's not a man, after all. He's an android.

STEVE: What about an elevator? If you put the hammer in an elevator...

TONY: ... it still goes up.

THOR: Ah (laughs) I will miss our talks.

On the other hand, that first line by Thor would seem to support the first theory. Thor seems to imply that The Vision is a worthy protector of the gem because of his character... not because of his nature as an android. As it is, we are left to guess.

  • I cannot agree with this... being "pure" or "benevolent" is not the same as worthy. I thing that to be worthy one has to earn it by deeds, so no newborn would be able to do that...
    – Bardo
    Apr 24, 2015 at 12:18
  • @Bardo you could be right. The problem is that A) we don't know what exactly constitutes being "worthy" and B) it's never been consistent in the comics.
    – Omegacron
    Apr 24, 2015 at 12:53
  • @Omegacron - There is no such dialog. They do not have any discussion(at-least not a serious one) regarding this.
    – Stark07
    Apr 24, 2015 at 13:09
  • @ash_k29 ah ok, thanks for clearing that up. Someone else had said that Tony implied something about a "non-machine warranty" or something afterwards. Sucks being 2 weeks behind everyone else.
    – Omegacron
    Apr 24, 2015 at 13:32
  • 1
    @Omegacron - Can totally understand your pain bro.. Tony & Steve do discuss this in the end, not very seriously though.... & End up with an explanation that involves an analogy of Thor's hammer being in an elevator & the elevator carrying it upwards... (No wonder Thor doesn't stay here full time :D )
    – Stark07
    Apr 24, 2015 at 14:07

Perhaps Vision is just THAT purehearted. Captain America managed to budge it slightly, and Vision seems a lot more chill, accepting, and considerate. He even regrets having to destroy Ultron despite his obvious amorality and genocidal tendencies, where nobody else really does. He's kind of a really zen all-loving paragon from what I could tell.

  • I like this. I feel that this is exactly what makes Vision worthy.
    – Stark07
    Apr 24, 2015 at 6:31
  • Except that Thor, who definitely is worthy, is definitely not "chill" or "zen".
    – KSmarts
    May 11, 2015 at 14:56
  • I like the idea that Captian America didn't pick up the hammer on purpose.
    – Yakk
    Jun 6, 2017 at 20:07

The actual quote/enchantment is Whosoever holds this hammer, if he be worthy, shall possess the power of Thor.

We see Vision holding and wielding the hammer, but he never actually uses any of Thor's powers (lightning etc.)

This led me to believe that he isn't considered worthy to use it.

Besides, it isn't Thor who decides who is worthy (as shown from the first movie. He thought he was worthy, but couldn't lift it until he showed he was worthy), so the Hammer itself decides.

The rest of the other explanations give good enough reason for why he can lift it though, and I will summarize the possible reasons below.

One explanation:

In the final scenes, when Thor, Tony and Steve are discussing how Mjolnir works (but it can go up in an elevator!) I think it could be a similar thing happening. The Vision isn't really a person being considered worthy, he is an android. He can simply move the hammer around, like it is being moved in an elevator.

Another explanation:

Whether the Hammer understood that it was its own powers that allowed the creation of Vision, or something resonated between it and the Infinity Stone, he may be allowed to lift it without actually using its powers.

  • Vision probably doesn't use the hammer's ability to call down lightning because he isn't aware of it. And he can already fly, so he doesn't need to use it for that, either. That's really about it for the Hammer's magic, except for the whole "worthiness" enchantment. Thor can't call down lightning without the hammer, so it isn't really a "power of Thor", so to speak, but a power of the Hammer wielded through Thor, its legendary wielder.
    – TylerH
    May 13, 2015 at 3:21

Vision is worthy (in the eyes of Odin's enchantment).

Proof from the movie:

The original plan was taking the yellow mind stone to Asgard, but in the end Thor himself said that Vision was worthy so he could let him keep the Infinity Stone. This proves the point.


A side note: Thor's lightning just provided power to the system. A moment ago, Quicksilver unplugged power cables from the system.

  • I’m not quite clear what your answer actually is. You’re saying Vision is worthy because Thor thinks he is? Apr 26, 2015 at 18:10
  • 1
    @PaulD.Waite Nope. Odin's enchantment thinks that he is worthy.
    – user931
    Apr 26, 2015 at 18:48
  • Sure, but you said “The original plan was taking the yellow mind stone to Asgard, but in the end Thor himself said that Vision was worthy so he could let him keep the Infinity Stone. This proves the point.” How does that prove that Odin’s enchantment thinks the Vision is worthy? Apr 30, 2015 at 15:39
  • @PaulD.Waite It's obvious. What/who else can decide that in real-time?
    – user931
    Apr 30, 2015 at 16:05
  • 1
    I didn’t ask whether it was obvious, I asked how Thor’s statement proves that the enchantment thinks he’s worthy. But ignoring that, the question is asking why Odin’s enchantment deems the Vision worthy. I don’t think you’ve answered that. Apr 30, 2015 at 16:20

Overall I would say that it's a matter of character and honor. Thor became worthy when he was willing to sacrifice himself for his friends and the humans. So like Christ, once he died and came back, he was then worthy of those great powers, or in Christ's sake, to become eventual King of the world and universe at His second coming.

This attitude is also why Captain America was also able to wield Mjolnor and I believe that I read somewhere that Superman was also the only other person worthy and honorable enough to be able to wield the hammer.

  • I do not see why this answer is given negative votes. Even on Marvel Wiki it clearly says that Captain America IS worthy to lift Thors hammer. As a matter of common sense, it's always been understood that only those with no lust for power, that fight for truth, justice and righteousness without seeking reward, fame, fortune or power are those considered most worthy. This is true in countless religions including many stories of those that attained great heights, only to abuse their positions for self seeking and glory and lose it all. Captain America is not like that at all making him "worthy" May 24, 2015 at 5:48

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.