It wouldn’t be a stretch to say that the Thor franchise was hardly the high point of the Marvel Cinematic Universe until Taika Waititi came along and completely upended the formula with his wonderfully irreverent cosmic buddy adventure Ragnarok.
Kenneth Branagh’s first installment was a perfectly solid origin story laced with the filmmaker’s signature Shakespearean trappings, but setting the majority of the story in a dusty town in New Mexico was hardly the most thrilling of locales. Alan Taylor’s The Dark World was a disjointed shambles, and fully deserves the status of being labeled as one of the MCU’s weakest entries.
Chris Hemsworth leaned into his excellent comic timing to reinvent the Odinson as one of the franchise’s best and most hilarious heroes, and Ragnarok was a complete breath of fresh air for the previously-middling Asgardian series. As you can see below, the movie was trending as fans celebrated the fourth anniversary of its release on November 3, 2017.
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Next year’s sequel Love and Thunder will be looking to raise the stakes significantly, and we’ve got more faith than ever that Waititi, Hemsworth and the rest of the team can pull it off given that Thor: Ragnarok is widely lauded by both fans and critics as one of the MCU’s finest offerings, a status that’s becoming harder and harder to reach with 26 installments and counting in the bag.