Out of nowhere, Marvel decided to drop a trailer for Thor: Ragnarok yesterday, the third of their big trio of superhero epics for 2017 (following Guardians Vol. 2 and Spider-Man: Homecoming) — and on this fresh evidence, quite possibly the best.
Some in the galactic wilderness known as the internet have observed that the Ragnarok looks to have been heavily inspired by Guardians Of The Galaxy, but I actually think Taiki Waititi's movie looks like its own, very impressive beast — so before we talk about how Hela, Cate Blanchett's all-powerful villainess, might connect #ThorRagnarok to both Thanos and Infinity War, check out the new Ragnarok trailer below in all its colorful, frenetic, comic book-homaging glory.
Ready to take a deeper dive in? Let's do it.
If James Gunn is a man of his word, Guardians Vol. 2 isn't about Thanos at all. His quest for the Infinity Stones doesn't feature. It's highly unlikely we'll get any hint of that in Spider-Man: Homecoming, either. That means that, logically, there are two movies in which #Marvel can advance the Thanos plot prior to Avengers: Infinity War — Ragnarok and Black Panther.
More Infinity War:
- The One Major Difference Between 'Infinity War' Comic And Movie
- Does Hela Hold The Soul Stone In 'Thor: Ragnarok?'
- Where Are The Fifth & Sixth Infinity Stones Being Sought By Thanos?
Hela, the villain of Ragnarok embodied by the glorious Cate Blanchett, has been described as the "Goddess of Death," with some speculating that she's actually the #MCU's equivalent of Mistress Death, the entity who Thanos falls in love with in the Infinity War comic book saga (with horrible consequences for the entire galaxy).
As we all know, there are currently two Infinity Stones unclaimed by Thanos — the Time Gem (in the possession of Doctor Strange) and the Soul Gem, whereabouts unknown. Considering her title is the Goddess of Death, it would make a lot of sense if Hela had the ability to manipulate the souls of those around her — with the help, say, of an Infinity Stone...
Is Hela in possession of the Soul Gem, and is that what gives her the power to wield Mjolnir, as she does so fearlessly in the trailer? Some have questioned whether Mjolnir itself could be the Stone ("H" for Hammer corresponding to the missing "H" in Thanos's name represented by the Soul Gem), but that seems to raise too many problems or holes in logic, like why the big deal over whether Thor is worthy of Mjolnir if it's an Infinity Stone? As we've seen, anybody can use an Infinity Stone because they're objects of power which are open to manipulation in the wrong hands, rather than loyal artefacts like the hammer.
That shot in the trailer of Hela pushing her thumb into the surface of Mjolnir also appears to suggest that the power which then manifests into a huge pulse of energy actually resides inside her, not the hammer itself (which would make more sense than the Soul Gem randomly hiding inside Thor's hammer all this time).
Of course, Hela has been imprisoned for a vast length of time prior to Ragnarok, suggesting that, if she has the Soul Gem, it will be acquired during the course of the movie. That might explain her transformation from the more low-key (ha) look presented during the fight on-Earth with Thor and Loki into the much grander aesthetic of the destruction scenes on Asgard with the large, antlered headdress (as a visual signifier of the power obtained from the stone).
All of this is loose theory work for now, and we won't probably won't get any closer to unlocking the mysteries of Hela or the final stone until the next trailer at the earliest — look out for that around June time. But with Ragnarok being Marvel's best opportunity to set up Infinity War before the event itself, I'd be shocked if the Soul Gem wasn't integral to the plot in some way — and my money is on Hela taking it for her own.
Thor: Ragnarok hits theaters November 3, 2017.
Do you think Hela comes into possession of the Soul Gem in Ragnarok, or is her immense power simply the product of nature?