Avengers: Infinity War Directors Explain Why Thor Was Paired With Rocket

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The culmination of a decade of world-building blockbusters, Avengers: Infinity War gave us the opportunity to see characters from previously unconnected sections of the Marvel universe bounce off each other with often amusing results. And while it was fun to see Doctor Strange squabble with Tony Stark and Wakanda follow through on their resolution to open up to the rest of the world, the cast of the Guardians of the Galaxy were the ones who really benefited from their newly established links to the wider universe.

Though the planet-hopping team had previously been relatively isolated from the rest of the franchise, Infinity War managed to find welcome chemistry in Peter Quill’s interactions with his Earth-based associates, and Rocket Raccoon fared even better opposite a certain God of Thunder. In fact, the pair-up between Thor and his new “rabbit” friend was a highlight for many viewers, not least the film’s own directors, Anthony and Joe Russo.

On a video shared by the filmmakers during Vudu’s live Infinity War viewing party last night, Joe explained why he felt the callous raccoon and newly homeless son of Odin made for a compelling combination.

“Tonally, [it’s] one of our favorite scenes in the movie. Thor is at his lowest point that he’s been in any of the films. He’s lost everything. And he’s been partnered up with Rocket, who is perhaps one of the least emotional characters in the Marvel universe. We thought that would be an interesting pairing if Thor had to pour his heart out to a character who — to a certain extent — lacks empathy, and see if it would affect that character in some way. I think what we love so much about the scene is how complicated the scene is. It’s at times absurd and funny and completely tragic.”

Sure enough, Thor runs into the Guardians in the middle of a pretty grim period. As well as seeing his home world go to ruin in Ragnarok, the character has also recently witnessed the deaths of both his father and his step-brother Loki, the latter at the hands of Thanos. For Anthony Russo, Thor’s low point was an opportunity to bring the character into some intriguing emotional territory, with his insensitive new partner being an important part of this undertaking.

“It’s a threshold moment for the character where you really realize he has nothing left. And for us as storytellers, it’s a wonderful place to take a character when you strip everything away.”

Of course, if things were looking bad for the God of Thunder when he first meets Rocket, his situation manages to get significantly more dismal from there. And if you’d like to re-experience the whole tragic journey of Thor and his peers, Avengers: Infinity War is now available on Digital HD, and coming to 4K Ultra HD, Blu-Ray and DVD on August 14th.

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