Day Seven: 7/19 down!
Enter Phase Two!
The Dark World
Thor The Dark World was an earnest attempt at re-inventing the Thor franchise, and while it didn't hit home with most critics, I do think it's worth a re-watch as it has a lot of good that may go overlooked. Thor has been reinvented in almost every film he's appeared in in the MCU but I do think certain consistencies were established first here.
Javier: The moment during the final battle with Malekith where Mjolnir is just trying to pin point Thor, it flies into space and then back into orbit just trying to locate Thor.
Antonio: The beginning of Malekiths invasion of Asgard is my highlight, specifically when Hiemdall leaves his post to take down a dark-elf ship all by himself. Idris Elba guys.
Darcy (Portrayed by Kat Jenning): "So...how's space?"
Thor Odinson (Portrayed by Chris Hemsworth): "Space is good."
I really don't have one. This movie just kind of Forgettable to me.
Antonio: Malekith is an example of awesome costume design...and that's kind of it. I want to like him so much but where he's a fun charismatic-unpredictable character in the comics...he's just kind of a brick in the film.
Javier: He's...there? What really else is there to say?
Javier: He's also just kinda there, but he has better moments and a better death. He's just a cool big dude.
Antonio: I know I just said Malekith was a well-designed, poorly written villain, but Kurse is sort of an exception to that rule. He is not a very complex villain, but like The Destroyer, he is so wonderfully realized visually, that he just works for me.
The Dark Elves
Antonio: I think it's worth talking about The Dark Elves as a whole, because while they are an army of canon-fodder, like the Chitauri. The visual language surrounding them is so goddamn cool that it's a shame this is their only outing.
Javier: They're just really cool looking. Pretty accurate to the comics.
Final Ranking: 5.5/10
Well, this was kind of the big one. Thor the Dark World not only firmly established Marvel's cosmic scope but it also confirmed possibly the biggest over-arching story-line in film history.
Alright lets go...
1. We start with the introduction of Svartalfheim, the home of the Dark Elves and the 3rd of the nine realms we've gotten to explore.
2. Odin's father Bor is introduced. He also uses the OdinForce, most likely referred to as the BorForce at this time.
3. We see the Aether infused stones that "curse" the Dark Elves into becoming super-humanly strong. As well as their awesome Singularity Grenades.
4. In present day, we see Loki facing trial for his crimes against Asgard and Midgard (after his arrest in The Avengers).
5. It's revealed that Loki learned his sorcery from his adoptive mother Frigga.
6. The next scene we are on Vanahiem, the 4th realm we've gotten to explore and the home of Hogun, of the Warriors Three.
7. In this battle we see pirates from other worlds beyond the Nine Realms, including a Kronan, a stone man from Mars. The Kronan's were the first threat Thor faced in Journey into Mystery #83.
8. The Warrior's Three all have upgraded their armor, with Hogun sporting his signature beard from the comics. Fandral the Dashing has also been re-casted, not portrayed by Zachari Levi.
9. Odin has a crow land on his hand as Thor returns to Asgard. This crow is most likely either Huginn or Muninn one of Odin's two Crow oracles.
10. Odin act's a lot more like his comics counterpart in this film, much more harsh and cold. He also has a distaste for mortals.
11. Jane Foster has moved to London in order to study anomalies that are later revealed to be part of the Convergence, this research was an attempt to reconnect with Thor.
12. Thor explains that he would have returned sooner as the Bifrost has been repaired, but he had to quell the war of the nine realms.
13. Erik Selvig, after being mind-controlled by Loki is now mentally unstable, suffering from a disconnect with reality. He seems to recover from this later on.
14. In order to break into Asgard, Algrim dresses as marauder, allowing him to be arrested and brought to the dungeons. He is dressed in alien-armor very visually similar to the costume he wears in the comics. When he "Kurses" himself, the armor becomes part of his physical form.
15. Jane is shown visions of a warped reality after becoming the host to the Aether. This is important.
16. After arriving on Asgard, Jane is taken into the Asgardian Library, which is home to the physical form of Yggdrasil, the world tree, which holds in its branches, windows into the nine realms.
17. Here, Odin explains the history of the Aether, how it is a relic from before the universe, manipulated by Malekith. He goes on to explain there are other relics from before the universe...but they usually manifest...as Stones.
18. This is later explained as during the end credit scene, The Aether is confirmed to be an Infinity Stone.
19. It is also confirmed that the Tesseract is also an Infinity Stone and it is unwise to keep two stones too close together.
20. We can assume, based on its ability to warp reality, that the Aether is indeed the Reality Stone. This solidifies the Tesseract as the Space Stone.
21. After Frigga's death, we see an Asgardian funeral, it is similar to a viking funeral but Frigga's corpse is boated off the side of Asgard's planetoid, as it burns, the flames evaporate into the sky, where Heimdall witnesses them become a constellation.
22. After being released by Thor, Loki taunts Thor by appearing in various forms, one of these forms is Steve Rogers, in his Captain America costume from The Avengers. This is a cameo from Chris Evans.
23. The secret ways out of Asgard that Loki is aware of, are most likely how he smuggled the Frost Giants into Asgard in the first Thor film.
24. When Loki seemingly cuts Thor's hand off as part of their ruse to fool Malekith, this is a reference to Thor's actual loss of a hand in the current comics, as well as a character losing a hand as part of the long-running Empire Strikes Back goof.
25. Loki is seemingly killed by Kurse, only to later reveal that he has made his way back to Asgard in the guise of a Einherjar, and then later is revealed to have taken the place of Odin himself.
26. Thor decides that he does not intend to become king of Asgard and instead decides to remain a protector of all nine realms.
27. In the end credit scene we are introduced to Tanleer Tivan, the Collector, who is being given the Aether for safe keeping.
28. This is both a direct tease for Guardians of the Galaxy and also a confirmation of the long-game being played within the MCU.
Javier: The world-building is fun, Asgard is very enjoyable, everything else is forgettable. It's the second time I've seen it and I immediately remembered why I forgot it.
This film earnestly attempted to re-calibrate the Thor franchise, focusing more on the interstellar aspects of the character rather than his relationships with mortals. I don't think it was all successful but it's a much more enjoyable film for me than the first Thor.
Final Score: 6/10
After the Credits:
Thor The Dark World has two after the credits scenes, which as I've mentioned becomes part for the course from here on out.
Javier: Specifically the Collector scene is super fun to see, both for the confirmation about the Tesseract being an Infinity Stone, and the Collector's intentions, the end credit scene: who gives a shit.
Antonio: The second scene is largely unimportant as it is never re-addressed, the mid-credit scene however, is maybe one of my favorite in all of the MCU, much like the Avengers and Iron Man ACS, it means so much to the larger plot of the MCU.
Final Score: 9/10
Starting to get back on schedule here, tonight we are watching Guardians of the Galaxy. See you all tomorrow!
See you all tomorrow!
Before the universe,
there was Grodd.