Thor: Ragnarok has stormed through the UK box office with rave reviews all round with a £12m opening – making it the 4th biggest opening week (including previews) of 2017, behind Disney’s own Beauty and the Beast, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2 and Universal’s Fate of the Furious. And with £6.8m during the three day weekend itself, that’s the biggest non-James Bond October opening weekend of all time in the UK/Ireland. At the international box office, the movie grossed an estimated $107.6m during the opening weekend. And reaction has been strong, with a 96% on Rotten Tomatoes.
But some want a bit of a breakdown, regarding the movie, the comics and the wider continuity of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. The film hasn’t opened in all areas, including a certain United States Of America, to be warned how far and wide you spread these. I have been careful to include as little plot, especially from the end of the film, while still totting up the statistics. So who lives, who dies, who’s related?
And I have to start with my favourite line, from Tom Hiddleston as Loki, “I am asking for passage through the anus”. Okay, on with the spoilers. You may experience a similar sensation., You can stop anytime you like, you know.
So who dies?
Well, Odin dies. As gods go, that’s a permanent death.
The Warriors Three die at the hands of Hela. Early on. They’re deaded. Gone to the halls of Valhalla. Man, this film really mows through your memories of the first two Thior movies, which is no bad thing, with Matt Damon and Sam Neill as Asgardian actors playing a reprise of the final scenes of Thor: The Dark World, at least from Loki’s perspective.
Mjolnir is destroyed at Hela’s hands. You may have seen that in the trailer. But how is she even able to hold it?
Because Hela is Thor and Loki’s sister, and daughter of Odin. A direct move away from the comics and Norse mythology, where she is Loki’s niece, if I was a suspicious man, I would see this as evidence that Marvel Studios thumbing their nose up at Marvel Comics making Angela the hidden elder sister of Thor and Loki. Here it may also be seen as symbolic as the secrets and lies of old Asgard, the empire built upon the graves of millions, and our own civilisations.
Skurge The Executioner gets it, following Walter Simonson‘s story arc in the comics, with the battle of Gjallerbru, eventually turning against his new masters in defence of the people of Asgard. All while Karl Urban does his best impression of an east London used car salesman. He is riotous.
And you may recognise this scene pretty much down pat.
Everyone else pretty much lives. A few random Warbound get it, there are lots of random Asgardians, new and old that bite it, as well as those captured on Skaar, but the rest of our heroes make it through. Possibly with the exception of the Grandmaster, but even that’s left open-ended in the hilarious post-credit sequence.
Thor, as you know gets a haircut, What you may not know is that he loses an eye. And that the recent Thor #700 comic prepares for it, as Thor gets the Odin look.
And I know he has his eye back in the Infinity War trailer than ran. Maybe they still have to add a special effect eyepatch? Or he gets a new one?
While the most recent Hulk #709 continues to use the same symbolism of control between Co and his Hulk, that Banner uses for Hulk in the movie, previously having had one hand on the wheel but now, the Hulk having both hands.
The biggest spoiler comes down to the concept of Ragnarok, so I’m only going to tease that. Naturally, it is something Thor thought that by defeating Surtur, he had prevented, only for Hela to threaten unleashing the same. What Thor realises, makes the difficult third act, that has plagued so many Marvel Studios films, work better than any before. And it is that which elevated the movie for me, making Thor Ragnarok the best Marvel movie to date. For me, at any road.
And you’ll find it right in Walter Simonson’s comics. Aside from Stan Lee, Lary Lieber and Jack Kirby, Walter gets the biggest and most prominent comic creator credit in the movie, followed by Planet Hulk creators Grek Pak and Carlo Paglieri.
What you won’t find in the comics is that when younger, Thor wanted to be a Valkyrie. That’s brand new. Well, he has the hair for it – or rather, he did…#
As for whether that’s Skuttlebutt at the end… that’s pure speculation.
Thor Ragnarok, the sequel to Thor and Thor: The Dark World was released in the UK from Marvel Studios and Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures on October 24th and in the US on November 3rd. Directed by Taika Waititi with a screenplay by Eric Pearson and the writing team of Craig Kyle and Christopher Yost, and stars Chris Hemsworth, Tom Hiddleston, Cate Blanchett, Idris Elba, Jeff Goldblum, Tessa Thompson, Karl Urban, Mark Ruffalo, and Anthony Hopkins.