Thor's (Chris Hemsworth) personal journey in Avengers: Infinity War came out of panic. Fresh off his most successful standalone outing in Taika Waititi's Thor: Ragnarok, the public was eager to know how directors Joe and Anthony Russo would handle the God of Thunder moving forward. The Russos leaned into the personality overhaul for the character by teaming him up with Guardians of the Galaxy's Rocket Raccoon (Bradley Cooper) and Groot (Vin Diesel). But apparently, at one point, the filmmakers couldn't crack the proper treatment for the Avenger.
One can argue that Infinity War was Thor's film as much as it was Thanos' (Josh Brolin). Both characters go through their own contradicting journeys resulting in a collision. In the end, the Mad Titan won by successfully wiping out half of life in the universe. The God of Thunder, on the other hand, came really close in stopping him only to make a colossal mistake. But while the film's ending had always been set, Thor's road to Wakanda looked significantly different in the early drafts of Infinity War, as the film's writers will tell fans.
Speaking with Comic Book at San Diego Comic-Con, Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely revealed that "no one liked" an early draft of Infinity War, forcing them to rehash the whole story. Thor's arc, in particular, wasn't working. "It goes through all these ebbs and flows, and there was a point in mid-to-late 2016 where no one liked what we all had. And so we flew back to Burbank from Atlanta in sort of a panic, all hands on deck, ‘oh my God, we’re in trouble.’ And the biggest thing that came out of that was the Thor storyline sucked rocks,” Markus recalled. Initially, the God of Thunder and Rocket were supposed to battle a serpent, but they deemed it's “much too adventure-related and very much insufficiently character based.” McFeely added that "eventually, Eitri and the Dyson sphere and all of that stuff, only came out of that panic."
Regardless of the stressful process, the result, especially with regard to Thor's storyline, worked out fine. Infinity War elevated the character's popularity even more, ironically, despite the fact that he depressingly failed in the end, further highlighted by his narrative in Avengers: Endgame. For some reason, his failure made him relatable and grounded - two character aspects that were arguably missing in his earlier outings. As they recall this, Markus and McFeely also briefly discussed how Marvel Studios tackled the crisis at that point, lauding their ability to remain calm amid what was shaping to be a massive issue. “Marvel knows damn well what a first draft is, and then they work on it. And that means you never leave the conference room, but it makes good movies,” McFeely said.
In hindsight, the evolution of Thor's treatment in the MCU reflects the tumultuous process of nailing his journey in Avengers: Infinity War. During the early years of his existence in the MCU, it felt like he was second fiddle to Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.) and Captain America (Chris Evans), although he's supposed to be at the same level as them in the universe's superhero hierarchy. His breakthrough came just in time for the wrapping up of The Infinity Saga, and fans can thank Marvel's refusal to cast aside the character. Now, as the franchise breaks new ground, the God of Thunder will continue to be one of the oldest pillars of the MCU with Thor: Love and Thunder.
Source: Comic Book
- Black Widow (2020) release date: May 01, 2020
- Eternals (2020) release date: Nov 06, 2020
- Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings (2021) release date: Feb 12, 2021
- Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness (2021) release date: May 07, 2021
- Thor: Love and Thunder (2021) release date: Nov 05, 2021