Thor: The Dark World was another Marvel hit at the box office, but many critics and audiences expressed disappointment with the film’s dark tone and grim, serious story, which departed so dramatically from the God of Thunder’s more whimsical first solo outing and deadpan wittiness in The Avengers. While a certain level of seriousness has been the order of the day in other superhero franchises, like The Dark Knight or Man of Steel, Marvel features have thus far gained a reputation for having a crowd-pleasing sense of humor amid the action and adventure — making The Dark World an outlier (however appropriately-titled) in its own franchise.
But Thor: Ragnarok director Taika Waititi, previously a specialist in comedies like Eagle vs Shark and the quirky vampire spoof What We Do in The Shadows, says he has a solution for bringing levity back to the Thor saga: add more jokes.
In an interview with The Wrap at the Sundance Film Festival for his well recieved new feature Hunt For The Wilderpeople, Waititi was asked how he’ll be dealing with an apparent edict from Marvel Studios boss Kevin Feige that the third Thor film regain its sense of humor. Without missing a beat, Waititi replied that his approach will be to “Just fill it with jokes.” After earning a laugh from the other assembled actors and filmmakers, the New Zealand-born writer/director elaborated on his intentions — tongue, presumably, planted firmly in cheek:
“Just take what they’ve done before… I’m just going to take the second Thor film and just add some jokes to that.”
Actor Sam Neill, on hand as one of the stars of Wilderpeople, interjected that he and the rest of the cast would love to also have roles in the highly anticipated Marvel adventure, but joked that Waititi is “Only hiring people from Tazmania.”
Kevin Feige isn’t the only Marvel veteran angling for Ragnarok to be more than the previous Thor outing. The Odinson himself, Chris Hemsworth, has previously stated that he’d like the series to head in a direction closer to Guardians of The Galaxy. This aim may be partially to thank for the surprising addition of The Incredible Hulk the to film’s cast, as Mark Ruffalo has by now ably proven that his character can act as a great comic foil to his fellow Avengers. However humorous the proceedings get, though, don’t look for the film to lack in thrills or high stakes: “Ragnarok” is the name for Norse mythology’s version of Armageddon, and rumors have suggested that Thor and The Hulk could be facing a powerful enemy in the form of Hela (Cate Blanchett) — the Asgardian goddess of death — and the ever-looming threat of Loki, still very much alive despite the rest of the Marvel Universe believing otherwise. They may also be in the path of upcoming Infinity War heavy Thanos, given that Thor departed Avengers: Age of Ultron with a specific interest in tracking down the remaining Infinity Stones.
In the comics, Thor is no stranger to laughs and comedic flights of fancy. In one especially well-remembered storyline (notably following a long-running Ragnarok-related story set in the comics universe) the hero found himself transformed into a frog by Loki. Thor spent several issues of his then-bestselling series in amphibian form, becoming involved with a community of (normal) frogs living in Central Park and helping them win a war against an army of sewer rats while searching for his missing hammer. But just when it looked like Mjolnir might end the “frog saga” once and for all, writer Walt Simonson pulled one of comics’ all-time great pranks: Thor regained his armor and powers, but would remain a (now human-sized) frog for several more issues. Whatever humor Waititi has planned for Thor: Ragnarok, chances are it won’t be quite that absurd.
Captain America: Civil War will release on May 6, 2016, followed by Doctor Strange – November 4, 2016; Guardians of the Galaxy 2 – May 5, 2017; Spider-Man – July 7, 2017; Thor: Ragnarok – November 3, 2017; Black Panther – February 16, 2018; The Avengers: Infinity War Part 1 – May 4, 2018; Ant-Man and the Wasp – July 6, 2018; Captain Marvel – March 8, 2019; The Avengers: Infinity War Part 2 – May 3, 2019; Inhumans – July 12, 2019; and as-yet untitled Marvel movies on May 1, July 10 and November 6, 2020.
Source: The Wrap