Marvel created a huge splash at San Diego Comic Con yesterday. The studio unveiled a staggering array of films and new stars for the upcoming Phase 4 which will include limited series on Diseny+ as well as the blockbuster big-screen releases. One of the biggest shocks came when Natalie Portman walked on stage during the Thor Love and Thunder presentation. What happened next took everybody completely by surprise and was one of THREE major revelations on stage.
The director Taiki Waititi, who breathed new life into Thor Ragnarok, knelt down before the actress on stage.
But this wasn’t just a mark of respect for the Oscar-winning star, he handed her a hammer. Not just any hammer, of course, but Mjolnir.
Yes, that’s right, Portman isn’t just returning to the franchise, she is taking on the comic book role of Female Thor from the Might Thor storyline.
There had been speculation whether Hemsworth would continue in the role. Or, if he did, whether he would become part of the Guardians of the galaxy franchise instead. Now, though, it has been confirmed his character will be the first in the MCU to headline four solo movies, breaking the previously accepted and expected trilogy format.
There was still one last surprise, though. It came in the form of a casual throwaway comment by Tessa Thompson.
Avengers Endgame saw Thor hand the rule of New Asgard to Valkyrie and she is already planning on a huge change to the MCU.
Thompson revealed Valkyrie’s plans on stage: “As new king (of Asgard), she needs to find her queen. That will be the first order of business.”
This is a major step for Marvel, which has received criticism over its lack of representation on screen, especially for removing references to diverse sexualities.
Valkyrie was believed to have a female lover, who was killed in the first war against Hela. Thompson said she had played the role with that love and loss in mind but nothing was shown on screen. This is similar to the reports one of the female Black Panther characters would also be revealed to be in a relationship with another female warrior. Again, nothing was shown on screen.
Even the much-touted gay character played by Joe Russo in Endgame was regarded as rather an underwhelming way to introduce diversity.
The new female King of Asgard appears to have no time for such mortal games and will finally introduce a same-sex relationship. Even more tantalising are the rumours of a love triangle involving Valkyrie, Jane and Thor…