Another San Diego Comic Con is in the books! And, while other sources will parse the winners and losers from the convention, we know that the true answer is that the fans, once more, are the ultimate winners. We had our first footage for Aquaman, learned that Ocean Master is the true villain in that film, got incredible trailers for Stranger Things, Westworld, and Ready Player One.
And then there was Marvel Studios closing out the panels in Hall H on Saturday with a 5:30 showing that proved the studio really, truly knows how to entertain their fans, giving us Michelle Pfeiffer as Janet Van Dyne, a.k.a. The Wasp, releasing some information about Captain Marvel being a prequel and then this — Thor: Ragnarok.
The Black Panther trailer that they showed promises the film to be one of the coolest, most badass Marvel films ever made. The Avengers: Infinity War was a perfect choice to end on because that film will certainly be epic. But this film — Thor: Ragnarok — looks to be one of the weirdest, wildest, trippiest, most WTF films Marvel has ever made and that’s saying something because they’ve done two Guardians of the Galaxy films and Doctor Strange.
So let’s get into it.
At the panel, they showed three full scenes that then led into the trailer.
It starts with Thor in a moving chair as if on an amusement park ride, similar to the EPCOT ride, Spaceship Earth. He’s moving through cosmic scenery as a voice tells him the history of the Grandmaster all to an instrumental version of “Pure Imagination.” The history told to Thor sounds more like brainwashing propaganda — how Grandmaster is one of the oldest beings in the universe, one of the most powerful, humble, benevolent beings in existence. It goes on to say that he alone is responsible for the creation and maintenance of Sakaar. Ultimately, you get the feeling that the only thing The Grandmaster actually really is, is the most arrogant being in existence.
He is sat before The Grandmaster himself — Jeff Goldblum at his most Goldblum — as well as Topaz (we think that’s what they were calling her), played by Rachel House and Valkyrie, played by Tessa Thompson. This is apparently Valkyrie making an offer to sale Thor to Grandmaster for a LOT of money. Topaz is not happy about it, but Thor is able to break out of his restraints, proving just how much he’s worth the money, before then being subdued once more. Grandmaster buys his new champion.
The next scene sees Thor in the Gladiator holding area where he’s met by Korg, played by director Taika Waititi. Korg tells him of this place, that he’s led a few rebellions, which are always quelled, and that he’s simply the warm-up gladiator because he’s not stupid enough to take on the Grandmaster’s Champion — everyone who takes him on dies. Like “Doug.” Doug is a dead gladiator in the holding area that thought he could take on The Champion, but he obviously failed. Thor tries to run away and immediately ends up right back next to Korg — the holding area is a fold in space-time that one cannot leave unless The Grandmaster allows it. Apparently.
Finally, we get to the gladiator scene where we see Thor arrive in the ring. His new helmet appears in his hands as if magic and he then puts it on his head, readies for battle, as The Grandmaster announces him as the Lord of Thunder to take on his Champion. Thor screams out in excitement, catching everyone off guard, when he sees Hulk.
We’ve already seen this part in the trailer, but then it goes into Thor catching up with The Hulk, asking him where he’s been, telling him that everyone has been worried sick about him. He then goes on to say that he’s quit running around with The Avengers because it’s become “… too corporate.” It’s this that then leads Thor into saying, “Me? Well, I lost my hammer…”
And then we’re into the trailer!
As for the trailer itself, let’s break some of this down.
Hela, played by Cate Blanchett, is the Asgardian Goddess of Death. That means, to us, she’s not so much a goddess of death on Earth, though certainly she could reap her share of human souls. No, our take on this is that she’s literally death to the Asgardians. She can kill gods and reap their souls, in essence. Which explains why Odin has had her locked away for so long.
In here, it appears that she has a power — twirling in a cyclone that then throws off thousands of knives, swords, axes and other sharp, pointy killing objects. This is sort of like the Death Blossom in The Last Starfighter — right?
She appears to be the most epic villain Thor has ever faced. For proof, all you need to do is look at each of her fight scenes against the Valkyrie which looks like every Metal album from the 80’s.
It’s unclear what role Fenris Wolf is playing here, but in the comics, Fenris terrorized Asgard. Once he was finally put in bonds that grew tighter and stronger the more he struggled, a prophecy was made that he would finally be able to break the unbreakable bonds when Ragnarok was upon us. Furthermore, when that happens, he’ll devour Odin himself.
He is a wolf of super intelligence, strength and divine power. He’s as much a God as Thor, Odin, or Hela. Him being on the scene in Asgard cannot be good news for anyone except, maybe, Hela.
Yeah. Surtur. One of the biggest of the baddest of all Thor villains. Odin himself was unable to defeat him one-on-one. It took both his brothers, Vili and Ve, sacrificing themselves to defeat him once and lock him away forever. It’s this imprisonment in his realm of Muspelheim that has incensed the Fire Giant, older than even Odin, and caused him to want to decimate Asgard even more than he already did.
In the classic Walt Simonson Thor run that this film gets its name from, Ragnarok, Surtur was the ultimate villain. Only he could truly bring Ragnarok to Asgard. It’s unclear what role the fire giant will play in this film, but even more than Fenris, his appearance here is terrible news for our heroes and should have you, the audience, very, very excited.
THOR + LOKI + GUNS
There’s nothing to really say here except we’ve never seen either one of them using guns at all. Loki has his magicks and his staff, Thor has always had his muscles and Mjolnir, but here, on Sakaar, neither of them have their weapons. Thor and Loki both wielding super awesome pulse laser gatling guns is something we’d never expect from either one of them. In fact, there’s a lot of laser gun use in this film and that’s partially what sets it apart from the other two films in the Thor franchise.
Speaking of Loki — why is he in chains when they find him? It seems initially that he was there as a guest of The Grandmaster, but here we see that may not have ever been the case or his status changed in some capacity.
Tessa Thompson plays this new character who, initially, is definitely not on Team Thor as it’s her that sells him. However, it’s pretty apparent that she eventually joins his team. It’s entirely possible that Valkyrie and her forces were defeated by Hela and she’s spent her life hiding from the Goddess of Death. However, perhaps she hears from Thor that she’s now attacking Asgard and knows that she can no longer afford to hide from the fight.
Plus, can we just talk for a minute about how bad ass she looks and how awesome her armor looks? And her poise and confidence — man is she going to kick every ass she comes across.
God of Thunder
At the end of the trailer, we hear Hela patronizing Thor, saying, “I’m the goddess of death, what were you the god of?” Then, from the top of the palace in Asgard, as if in answer to her question, we hear thunder and see lightning as Thor comes shooting to the Rainbow Bridge, lightning crackling all over him.
However — he is not wielding Mjolnir. Do we find out in this film that Thor has always had the power of the lightning within him and that Mjolnir simply channelled it?
It seems likely to us!