For the last decade, the Marvel Cinematic Universe has been an intensely continuity-conscious franchise (with only the occasional arithmetic miscalculation), and so when filaments of plot are left swaying in the narrative breeze, viewers have come to expect resolution. While some of us are still waiting to learn what happened to Samuel Sterns after he became infected with Bruce Banner’s irradiated blood, another more recent example involves a certain God of Thunder and his potential involvement with a ragtag band of intergalactic outlaws.
Thor, in his full dadbod glory, was last seen in the closing moments of Avengers: Endgame relinquishing the realm of New Asgard to the stewardship of its newly-crowned king, the Valkyrie formerly known as Scrapper 142. The Son of Odin then boarded the Benatar to join the self-styled Guardians of the Galaxy on what was hinted to become a search for the time-displaced Gamora, who had traveled forward from 2014 after her 2018 self had been sacrificed by Thanos in exchange for the Soul Stone. Peter Quill asserted his command of the ship and its crew, and Thor coddled Star-Lord’s ego by passive-aggressively agreeing. Hilarity ensued.
Fans have since been anticipating confirmation that Thor will formally, if even temporarily, become an official Galactic Guardian, and the wait was made agonizingly longer by James Gunn’s removal from, and eventual reassignment to, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3. At the world premiere for Pixar’s latest animated film Onward, however, Chris Pratt was asked directly whether Thor would appear in the third volume of the Guardians trilogy, and his response was classically evasive.
“How do you know that Thor’s not in Guardians 3? We haven’t started it yet. He might be in Guardians 3. We don’t know. There’s no definitive yes or no on that. We’ll just have to wait and see.”
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Who, specifically, “we” refers to is debatable, as Gunn himself has been clear that the story of his third Guardians adventure will in no way “change according to anything from [Endgame] because I already knew what was in that script before I wrote [Vol. 3],” which he’s confirmed takes place after Endgame.
Like Pratt says though, we’ll just have to wait and see what happens. But what we can tell you for sure is that Thor will next appear alongside Jane Foster and Valkyrie in Taika Waititi’s fourquel Thor: Love and Thunder on November 5th, 2021, while the Guardians are expected to return for their third outing during the MCU’s fifth phase (with the date of February 17th, 2023 being rumored), after Gunn completes his work on the DC Extended Universe film The Suicide Squad, scheduled to debut on August 6th, 2021.