Here's How Thor Became The Most Beloved Character In The MCU
This is dictionary-definition character development.
If you have been on the internet recently, you may have noticed a lot of Thor.
A lot of Thor.
This is a big deal because even though Thor has been a central member of the Marvel Cinematic Universe's Avengers since The Avengers and has had three of his own solo films, fan appreciation of Thor and Chris Hemsworth was once...lacking.
In fact, when the first Thor film came out in 2011, followed by The Avengers, most of the attention went to his onscreen sibling, Loki.
Leah, a 19-year-old Marvel stan from New York, who runs @thatsafakelaugh, told BuzzFeed News that she started out stanning Loki after watching The Avengers.
"I got interested in Thor in 2012 with the first Avengers movie because Loki was my favorite, so I also loved Thor. He wasn’t my favorite back then but I really did love him."
Love of Thor and Loki kind of came together back then. There was even the, uh, uncomfortable Thor/Loki ship, Thorki?
Anyway, Tom Hiddleston as Loki was hugely popular, so much so that he eclipsed Hemsworth's Thor. (This was a promo for Thor: The Dark World, aka Thor's film.)
And so was this.
And this kept going.
And it pretty much continued up until recently. (I mean, people still love Loki but he did, like, cause Infinity War.)
Yeah, there were interesting Thor moments throughout Thor, The Avengers, The Dark World, and Age Of Ultron, but the problem remained — he just wasn't that interesting, he was a kind of a dick, and Mjolnir (his fancy hammer) meant that his action scenes were a little dull too.
Hemsworth got more attention for Thor's godlike physique rather than for being Thor. It also didn't help that Hemsworth spent a lot of time talking about how he wasn't even that into Thor.
However, the release of Thor's third film, Ragnarok, marked a change in direction and a pretty big reinvention for the character — they made him funny.
Which arguably had a lot to do with Hemsworth's work outside of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
In between Age of Ultron and Ragnarok, Hemsworth appeared in a number of comedic roles, which made people view him as an underrated comedic actor.
At the same time, Taika Waititi, a director typically associated with comedy and independent films, was announced as director of Thor: Ragnarok, bringing renewed interest to the character.
Then, prior to the film's release, Waititi released a number of teasers for the film, signaling a change in Thor.
And then, of course, came Ragnarok.
Fans loved it.
And it changed the entire perception of the character.
For some reason.
Shortly after Ragnarok, reports came out that Thor would play a key role in the upcoming film Avengers: Infinity War.
And after Infinity War was released, love for Thor just continued.
He goes through so much in that film, but just stays likable and driven.
And the popularity of the character contributed to a rise in interest in Hemsworth, with old interviews and new social media posts getting more and more attention.
Chleia, a 15-year-old who runs the Thor fan account @thorsraqnarok, said they have loved Thor since seeing the first film and said that Thor: Ragnarok and Waititi changed how fans view the character.
"We get to see this side of Thor that we have never seen before, because usually we just see him with his long blonde hair and his hammer, you know?" they said. "In this film we get to see how truly powerful he is as a hero (and how incredibly hilarious he is, by the way). No offense, but Thor: Ragnarok is the BEST Thor film out of all the three films. Then Infinity War came. Infinity War's Thor was insanely and amazingly remarkable. He was a LOT stronger and powerful in this movie and he basically stole the whole movie. This is probably one of the reasons why Thor gained more popularity in the fandom."
Leah agrees: "He definitely became more popular when Ragnarok came out, I feel like he was made more relatable and adorable due to Taika Waititi’s writing and Chris’s new portrayal of him."
But Chleia also noted that those who have just jumped on the Hemsworth/Thor bandwagon are way behind.
"Look, whether or not he received this popularity, I can assure you one thing and that is that this God of Thunder will always and forever will be a huge part of my life."