Thor: Love and Thunder, the next installment in the Thor series will be released in a blink of an eye, and fans already have various questions regarding the main character in Thor 4.
Why is it that the last two movies in the Thor franchise, Thor: Love and Thunder and Thor: Ragnarok, are so much more popular and beloved to the community than the first two movies, Thor and Thor: Dark World? The answer, we think, is to be found in the new direction that Thor: Ragnarok received, thanks to the super-talented director, and actor, Taika Waititi.
It is no secret that the third installment in what is now the Thor quadrilogy was a turning point in the fame and popularity of the franchise not only in the world but also in the MCU itself. The working relationship between Hemsworth and Waititi is going to continue into the latest addition to this series, with the recent trailers and teasers suggesting that the movie only increases the level of coolness and excitement from Thor: Ragnarok.
But the contradiction here is that even though Thor is supposed to be the protagonist of the movie, with the inclusion of so many new and interesting characters into the film, he is actually pushed to the sidelines this time.
Why Thor won’t be the main character in Thor 4?
We see Thor going in a new direction in Thor: Love and Thunder. He is recuperating from the burden of being a fat Thor for the past few years, dealing with the emotional plus physical turmoil of the transformation. His prime aim in life now is to pursue peace and love and stop leading the superhero, which he now realized was never really who he was.
Well, the transformation does pay off. As we have seen in many footages and BTS clips (for example, on Chris Hemsworth’s Instagram), Thor is going to have freakishly huge arms in this film. The actor has said that the character is going to be his strongest ever on this set and we do not argue. But even then, with Natalie Portman’s Jane Foster and Christian Bale’s Gorr the God Butcher occupying space on the center stage, this won’t be the most exciting part of the movie.
Sure, Thor is the eponymous hero of Thor: Love and Thunder. But we need only look at the vast and varied perspectives this movie will look at to realize he is far from being the only hero.
We will see Valkyrie take the mantle of the Asgardian queen. She is also involved in an LGBTQ+ storyline. As we mentioned, there is Gorr the God Butcher, who is said to be one of the best villains in MCU yet. Moreover, the critically-acclaimed actor Russell Crowe is also set to debut an appearance as Zeus with his Olympians. Then, there’s Jane Foster, Darcy (Kat Dennings), plus the beloved Korg, voiced by Waititi. We might go so far as to say Thor could be the least exciting character of the film.
Who will take Thor’s spotlight in Love and Thunder?
The bold prediction we have been audacious enough to make sets up a demanding question. If Thor does not occupy the spotlight in Love and Thunder, then who exactly is the protagonist? Well, we have several candidates.
Almost the entire cast of the Guardians of the Galaxy has a part to play in this movie. They were there with Thor when he faced Thanos, and they are here now.
The Thor: Love and Thunder trailers we have seen have had many appearances of Star-Lord (Chris Pratt), Rocket (Bradley Cooper), Drax (Dave Bautista), Mantis (Pom Klementieff), and the teenage Groot (Vin Diesel). Even without Gamora, these guys could upstage Thor. There is also the character of Oscar-winning actor Natalie Portman as Jane Foster.
She was (is?) the love interest of Thor, and she comes back in this Thor: Love and Thunder film with a bang, wielding the Mjolnir itself and being a Thor herself. There’s Russell Crowe’s Zeus, plus the highly-anticipated Gorr the God Butcher played by Christian Bale. Matt Damon is coming back with a cameo too. Fans will remember he played a thespian in Thor: Ragnarok, acting as Loki. Whichever way you look at it, Thor’s presence is going to be undermined heavily.
Thor: Love and Thunder break new ground and extends to fresh territories. We might say that it is a movie unlike any other we have seen before in the MCU. Take Thompson’s character, Valkyrie, for instance. She is the one who will spearhead a dedicated entry of an LGBTQ+ arc into the plotline. Valkyrie is the queen of Asgard and she is looking for her queen. That’s not to say LGBTQ+’s presence hasn’t been there in the MCU. Just that it has never been given center stage. But Valkyrie’s arc might change that, in addition to acting as a major highlight of the film.
Another example is Portman’s character, Foster. She will be transformed into the Mighty Thor and wield Mjolnir, which could cure cancer and make her the first female to do so. A look at the Thor: Love and Thunder trailers reveal that the storylines of these two characters will receive no less attention than that of Thor himself.
With all that being, it is easy to see that in Thor: Love and Thunder, Thor doesn’t have a lot of room to grow. This giving up of his superhero life and following the ways of peace and self-discovery isn’t exactly original. It is in a way repetitive.
Thor was haughty in Thor, gaining some sense in the next few movies, and then getting his ego crushed in Avengers: Infinity War. After that, he finds some purpose in Avengers: Endgame again, before handing the throne of Asgard over to Valkyrie and going his own way. This cycle of gaining wisdom is one Thor has already followed. Whatever we see in Love and Thunder is likely to be a reiteration of this. And it’s bound to get boring sometime.
Thor happens to be the only Phase One Avenger still standing. Tony Stark’s dead and God knows which bliss land Steve Rogers is in. Thor has had a pre-Disney+ solo franchise, and Hemsworth has held this role for over a decade. Maybe MCU recognizes the need for a new Thor for Phase 4. If that is the case, then who knows whether Thor will remain standing by the end of this movie.
The two new Thors in Love and Thunder
Thor: Love and Thunder is the first movie in the Thor franchise to feature the Mighty Thor. Played by Natalie Portman, Jane Foster, aka Mighty Thor, arrives back in the MCU after a long time and she has a huge surprise up her sleeve. She wields the all too familiar weapon, Mjolnir, in the film.
In the teasers and trailers of Thor: Love and Thunder, we see many clips showing Jane doing the usual Thor stuff: throwing lightning bolts, bringing down evil soldiers, and even taking on Gorr the God Butcher.
At first, when people heard of the Mighty Thor, they were suspicious, which was fair to be honest, as they had just gone through a similar experience with Wandavision. The experience of the apparent appearance of Evan Peter’s Quicksilver was just a misdirection that was fresh in the minds of people and they had similar reasons to doubt Mighty Thor’s appearance. But it has been confirmed that Mighty Thor will be there in Love and Thunder and that the scenes we see in the trailers are not just costume parties.
The second Thor we would like to discuss here is Thor himself. We will explain why we are calling him a new Thor. Thor has undergone a long and arduous journey of self-discovery and acceptance since his first film. Since he has gone through so much, he is almost a new version of himself. Ergo our calling him a new Thor. His fat Thor days are over. He isn’t exactly partying Thor from What If…? now but he is more casual and at peace with himself and the world.
In the Thor: Love and Thunder trailers, we see some scenes of Thor’s transformation. This means that we are going to see progress, if not a conclusion itself, in this character. That would mean that Thor will be an indispensable element in Love and Thunder.
Gorr the God Butcher has grabbed more attention than Thor
The one and only Christian Bale is finally joining the ranks of the MCU. As destiny would have it, it is as the antagonist of Thor: Love and Thunder, Gorr the God Butcher.
Even before it was revealed who the villain of the movie would be, people were excited to see which villain they would get to experience next. As it were, Gorr happens to be one of the most compelling, complex, and interesting villains in all of MCU. When we finally got to see how Bale would look in the movie, and it is absolutely horrific, the departure from the source material was justified. From just a few minutes of clips we have of Gorr, it is clear that he is going to be one of the most significant antagonists yet.
Coming to the actor himself, Christian Bale couldn’t be more suited to the role of Gorr. One of the most famous Batmans yet, Bale is well-known for his ability to play a wide variety of characters, especially those who are a bit psychopathic (no offense!). And if anyone in Love and Thunder has a few screws loose, it is Gorr.
The trailers’ scenes are proof that Bale has done justice to the character. More than Thor’s new ax, there’s been discussion about Gorr’s deadly sword, All Black the Necrosword. True, Thor’s arc will feature a lot of growth, and he even gets a new armor in the movie. But what the noise in the community says right now is that Gorr just scores higher on the awesomeness level. Plus, he is super creepy. So he is the complete package.
Waititi’s Korg is back!
Korg is the beloved stone alien played by Taika Waititi who was first introduced in Thor: Ragnarok. He was based on a Marvel Comics character but received a total makeover of his personality and origin. Given the love he received within his first appearance, a major reason for that being his “freaky circle” observation, he was bound to make a comeback. And he has! Plus he has gotten promoted to a much more visible and prominent location in Love and Thunder.
You will have noticed that Korg does the voiceover for many trailers. Many of these trailers start will a scene of Korg regaling alien people with stories of Thor’s adventures, sitting around a fire in a cave. There is a real possibility that this VO is from the movie itself, and wasn’t just recorded for the sake of the trailer. Bringing back Korg in Love and Thunder is easily a major win for the movie’s popularity, especially among kids.
And that ends our take on this topic. We would like to add a coda to this post and say that Thor to stop occupying the spotlight in Thor: Love and Thunder is not bad at all. We are not saying that there is any lack in the character or the actor, for that matter.
For over a decade, Chris Hemsworth has wonderfully depicted this complicated character. His popularity won’t decrease at all. As the recent Avengers movies have shown, even when he is among the most celebrated characters of the MCU, he doesn’t lose his godly aura. All we are trying to say is that the world of Thor has blown up so much that Thor alone can’t fill it. New characters must be brought in if Thor’s universe is to be sustained. And this is what makes Love and Thunder such a vibrant, colorful, and from the look of it, spectacular movie.
The storytelling, the riotous colors, and the cool old-school music, all of it come together to spin one of the most sophisticated tales MCU has ever told. So even if Thor is not the main character here, that doesn’t mean Love and Thunder is going to be bad. All it means is that the world of Thor just got way bigger.
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