Man, Marvel Phase Three is looking incredible. We loved Captain America: Civil War. Doctor Strange is looking truly promising. Black Panther is shaping up incredibly. Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2 has Kurt Russell in it. And now Thor: Ragnarok. Holy crap, the latest casting.
The Thor movies have always been the weakest link in the MCU. Even if you like them you kind have to admit that. But now, with the third film, it looks like the Thor franchise is finally coming into its own. Directed by Taika Waititi, he of What We Do In The Shadows and the upcoming Hunt for the Wilderpeople, Thor: Ragnarok will team Thor with Hulk for a cosmic adventure. Which we already knew! So what's new?
Jeff Goldblum has joined the cast, and he'll be playing The Grandmaster, one of the Elders of the Universe. We've already had an Elder in the movies - Benicio del Toro as The Collector in Guardians of the Galaxy - and it's exciting to get another. But what's even more exciting is that The Grandmaster usually looks like this:
And he's one of those great cosmic eternal beings, driven by one thing and one thing only - playing games. He's pitted the Marvel superheroes against each other many times in the past, and I imagine he'll be doing something similar here. He also has been a wielder of an Infinity Gem, so I'm betting he has one in this movie.
What role could The Grandmaster have in this movie? Perhaps he's running an intergalactic arena where The Hulk fights, similar to Planet Hulk...
Also joining the cast is Karl Urban as Skurge, more commonly known as The Executioner. He's usually paired up with the Enchantress, but she doesn't seem to be in this movie. Hela is, however (that's now confirmed by Marvel, and Cate Blanchett is playing her), so maybe Skurge will be her muscle.
The Marvel press release announcing this casting also, as I mentioned, confirmed Blanchett as Hela (which we speculated about months ago) and confirms an earlier scoop of mine: not only is Valkyrie in this movie, she's being played by Creed's Tessa Thompson. I love that Marvel is boldly race swapping the character; it fits perfectly in their multicultural version of Asgard.
The image at the top of this article is concept art released by Marvel. Check out Hela's awesome fucking hat! And I love the way she stands defiantly against the assembled hordes of Asgard.
Look, the last two Thors were disappointing but it seems like Marvel finally got their shit together. All of this news is so good.