It finally happened!
The first Thor: Love and Thunder trailer was all good vibes, man. Bright colors. Taika Waititi’s trademark sense of humor. The promise of the continuing redemption arc of the God of Thunder. An amazing instrumental version of Guns n’ Roses “Sweet Child O’ Mine.”
And the second Thor: Love and Thunder trailer? Well, it has bright colors, that director’s humor (and voice), the aforementioned redemption arc, that killer GnR tune again. But then we get the vibe shift at exactly one minute in, with the long-awaited introduction (and official first look at) Christian Bale as the film’s big villain, Gorr the God-Butcher.
Before we go any further into what that means, you should have a look for yourself:
While there isn’t QUITE as much to unpack here as we did in the other Thor: Love and Thunder trailer, there are still a few things that are worth discussing. Let’s start with the biggest one…
Gorr the God-Butcher
Now, in the comics, Gorr is every bit as intense as that impossibly metal name makes him sound. Gorr here talks about the selfishness of the gods. Why? Because Gorr is a being whose prayers were never answered, who lived a miserable, hard life, and whose family died of starvation and disease while he prayed for salvation. When his “prayers” were answered in the form of a powerful alien sword, he decided to take a, shall we say, proactive approach to getting the gods’ attention.
Oh and that sword? It’s got the even more impossibly metal name of All-Black the Necrosword. I’m not going to explain its history here because it will give me and everyone else a migraine, but needless to say, it has ties to both Venom AND the Celestials (of Eternals fame).
It drinks the blood of the gods he slays and helps him create shadow-berserkers to do his bidding. Pretty sure that’s what those tendrils are above. AND we’re pretty sure that’s what everyone is fighting when Jane Thor first shows up.
ANYWAY, back to our guy…Gorr was created by Jason Aaron and Esad Ribic in 2013, as part of the same Thor series that eventually introduced the Jane Foster Thor to official Marvel Comics continuity. We wrote more about the history of Gorr here. Keep in mind that the main Gorr story in the comics was almost impossibly dark and gruesome, a horror-tinged sword-and-sorcery epic that spanned the cosmos, and in which entire pantheons of gods were, well, butchered at Gorr’s angry hands.
Hell, they even recreated one page from the comics almost perfectly in both of these trailers, with the shot of the very dead Falligar the Behemoth from Aaron and Ribic’s Thor: God of Thunder #3.
Something tells me we won’t be seeing quite that kind of body count in this film. On the other hand, you don’t bring Thor to Olympus and introduce Zeus unless you need some recognizable god to be butchered and establish Gorr as a credible threat. Which brings us to…
Russell Crowe as Zeus
Russell Crowe is clearly going to have the time of his life in this movie, ain’t he? We’re still holding out hope that this movie also introduces the Marvel version of Hercules somehow. But there’s one small problem here…
Here is King Valkyrie (Tessa Thompson) fighting Gorr…with what appears to be Zeus’ thunderbolt. Ummm…. something tells me we shouldn’t get too attached to Russell Crowe’s Zeus.
Anyway, on to some more cheerful stuff…
Jane Foster as Thor
Interestingly, this trailer puts to rest the theory that Jane could possibly be a variant from another timeline. This is definitely “sacred timeline” Jane, based on her discussion of her history with Thor.
There’s two ways we can read their conversation about how long it has been since they’ve seen each other: one is that Jane is just kind of over Thor. But the other, given the five year gap in their assumptions, is that Jane was indeed a victim of “the snap.”
Also, this isn’t an Easter egg or anything, but it’s pretty clear that Mjolnir can break apart to mess up bad guys’ days in individual pieces.
OK, so MAYBE this is a reach, but given how shy these movies have been about letting Thor wear a helmet, I’m gonna go for something here. Despite these scenes being next to each other in the trailer, it’s clear that Thor first seeing the other Thor wielding Mjolnir and then discovering it is Jane do not happen in the same battle. In the comics, Thor was depressed over his unworthiness to wield Mjolnir, and pined for it like a lost lover (or an addict) he so desperately wanted to be worthy again. He’s even wearing his costume from The Unworthy Thor era when he first sees her (and his King Thor suit when he exclaims “Jane?” in the trailer’s next shot).
What does this have to do with the helmet? I’d like to think that he sees Jane Thor and at least subconsciously is trying to emulate whatever she has going on in the hopes it will make him, if not more worthy (we established that in Endgame anyway), at least more like “himself.”
This shot of Jane is cool enough on its own, but let’s have a look at those statues behind her. On the right we have The Living Tribunal (whose statue also appeared in Loki, and who was glimpsed ever-so-briefly in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness) and What If…? stalwart Uatu, the Watcher.
On the left, though, things are a little more tricky. Up front, that does appear to be Death. As in the cosmic embodiment of Death. As in, the Jodie Foster to Thanos’ John Hinckley Jr. in the original Infinity Gauntlet comics.
Behind Death? It’s a little harder to tell. That next bust looks kind of like how Jack Kirby drew Zeus in his Thor comics, but it’s hard to tell. No idea who the third figure is in the background. Is this a hall of cosmic deities who Gorr has slain?
Guess we’ll find out when Thor: Love and Thunder opens on July 8.
Spot anything cool that we missed? Got an answer to one of our questions? Let us know in the comments!