By Evan Liss
With very positive reviews rolling in for Thor: Ragnarok (see AFJ's review), it’s safe to assume comic book fans are excited to finally see The God of Thunder in a great movie. To be completely honest, of the superheroes we’ve seen on film so far, Thor never really piqued my interest, and before the hype of Ragnarok, I hadn’t even seen the movies. But, by Odin and his eight-hoofed steed, I can now say I am excited to see the new movie dropping next week. It looks like the newest installment will be fun, bright, and worthy of Mjolnir.
In preparation for the new movie (besides watching the first two) I read Thor: Ragnarok, a collection of Thor (1966) issues #272-278. While this comic is a little dated, with its constant references to movies from the 30’s and 40’s, it is still a good read because it keeps you on edge with the impending doom of Ragnarok right around the corner. This is my list of "10 Things I Want To See in Thor: Ragnarok (From the Comic)".
1. Thor/Loki Adventure The collection of the 1966 Thor comics starts with Thor explaining an adventure he had with Loki where they had been tricked by a Giant as a test of their wills. This adventure is filled with shenanigans that make our hero look ridiculous, but the reason this is the start of my list is simple: character development. Currently, the relationship between Thor and Loki is strained at best and murderous at worst, but there was a time between their childhood (glimpsed at in Thor (2011)) and the present where the dynamic is different. At that time there was trust between the brothers. We should see this trust so we can have that juxtaposition for their status quo at the start of the film, and their possible reluctant return to trust by the end.
2. Balder the Brave
Balder the Brave is an important player in the Ragnarok prophecy because it’s with his death that Ragnarok is doomed to begin. As far as I can tell after watching the movies, he has not been introduced as a character yet, but even if Balder is an Easter egg (maybe just a friend they find dead, and starts the plot) he should be a part of the story.
3. The Midgard Serpent
The Midgard Serpent is a fabled monster that is coiled around our world and is said to, in the comic, be the death of Thor. Though the massive beast is teased many times in the book, it doesn’t truly arrive until the last deciding moments of Ragnarok and it is a climactic moment. I would expect the movie to have Hela as its main antagonist, but I hope the Midgard Serpent will slither by for some fun.
4. Hela’s Domain
Though there is very little imagery of Hela’s Domain in the comic, the specter that gives the prophecy of Ragnarok, while a simple image, would be a new one for the Thor movies. The thought of seeing the Norse Underworld is an exciting prospect (especially with the way this new movie has looked so far in the trailers), and it could even give Thor and Loki the chance to speak to their mother one last time.
5. The Warriors Three One of my favorite moments from the first Thor movie was when Hogun, Fandral, Volstagg, and Sif come to Earth. It was a genuinely enjoyable moment because they were so out of place on Earth, and that strangeness is a strength that the Thor movies rightfully capitalize on. What the movies do not capitalize enough on, however, is the overall use of these side characters. The comic has these three (Sif is not part of the Warriors three) in every issue, and almost every scene because they fill out the world with interesting characters that we will care about. In the few moments that we got of them in the two movies, they brought some needed life that would no doubt add to this next film.
6. Fake Thor
This one is a little harder to explain. In the comic, a cameraman is in Asgard with the Gods as they discuss Ragnarok because his boss wanted to film a TV special from Asgard. The cameraman, Red, is tricked by Loki into taking Thor's belt of strength and iron gloves and gains the power of Thor. It’s silly, and to be honest, this character is more annoying than he is anything else (making more old movie references than Odin’s steed), but the concept is full of possibilities. Odin created a fail-safe in the event that Thor was away when Asgard needed to be defended they could imbue someone with a copy of Thor’s abilities. What if Hulk gained the powers of Thor?
7. Thor Without "Mew Mew" (Mjolnir) There are a few moments in this comic where Thor is without his trusted hammer, and gathering from the trailers, he may not have it for long in the upcoming movie. We all know how strong Mjolnir is, but what is Thor, as a God, without it? We got that awesome shot in the new trailer of lightning rippling out from Thor, so I think the loss of Mjolnir will lead to bigger and better things.
8. TV Crew
I know this one is going to be a hard sell, but hear me out. In the comic, there is a TV crew filming the whole Ragnarok event. I think it would be hilarious to watch a camera crew try and film Thor and Hulk’s battle and attempt to survive as people and weapons are flying through the air.
9. Hela’s Motivation
Hela is the Goddess of Death and ruler of her own realm which seems to be where the spirits of the Asgardians go when they die, a Norse Underworld if you will. From what I could tell, in the comic, in the event that Ragnarok would occur, Hela would then have all the spirits of the Asgardians in her realm and that would give her power (I think?).
10. Thor Lifting a Cat Honestly, this one is here because it is obscure and it would be hilarious to watch. In the comic, Thor is being tricked by a Giant into performing all these seemingly easy tasks that are actually, as he comes to find out, illusions. One of these tasks is to lift a common house cat, which actually turns out to be the Midgard Serpent. The panel on its own made me laugh, so watching Chris Hemsworth sell it as Thor would be truly special.
These are the things that I found in the comic that I hope to see in the movie. What do you guys hope to see in the new movie? Did you read the Thor: Ragnarok comic? Let me know in the comments!
Hey! One last thing! Evan is a new writer for AFJ, and this is his first article. Evan writes from a diner at the edge of the universe with surprisingly good wi-fi. Tweet at him @Indiecomicblog and look out for more of his articles here on AFJ.