Thor: The Dark World launched its first teaser trailer at midnight, bringing promises of an epic battle between Thor (Chris Hemsworth), Loki (Tom Hiddleston), and a race of Dark Elves led by the vengeful Malekith (Christopher Eccleston). It's a beautifully contained 90-seconds of fantasy action that looks to live up to Marvel's The Avengers and Iron Man 3. But can it?
The Thor: The Dark World trailer is winning over the hearts of fanboys across the globe, and it certainly looks to be an improvement over 2011's Thor. But will it keep the Mighty Marvel Machine rolling into 2014, when we'll get Captain America: The Winter Soldier and Guardians of the Galaxy? We'd like to think so. And here are the five things that must happen to push it there.
1 Thor and Loki Team-Up to Fight Against Malekith and the Dark Elves
Tom Hiddleston has become a beloved member of the Marvel movie universe, playing Loki for a third time in Thor: The Dark World. In Thor, and even more so in Marvel's The Avengers, Loki was the penultimate villain, and slightly more intriguing and interesting than his heroic counterparts because of it. More than anything, he was human and relatable. The brother of Thor, he has long lived in the shadow of this Godly being with Farrah Fawcett hair and a perfectly sculpted body. It's about time that he slid over to the good side. If only for a moment. Thor: The Dark World must have a battle that sees Loki teaming up alongside Mjolnir (who really should be getting his own credit by now) for the ultimate showdown against the Dark Elves. That's the one thing that will really will push this movie into the realm of legend. One request though? Please don't let him lose his dark side. Loki needs to remain a mischievous, unpredictable spirit, and he should never show his hand. He can be an all-star this time out, and still be a shady snake capable of turning on his brother at any minute. He is fighting for his homeland after all, which we learned was more important to him than family in that first outing. So he's not really breaking character fighting against Malekith. We want to see him use his tricks to beat the bigger enemy. We also want to see Thor and Loki side by side in a climax that could give the end of Marvel's The Avengers a run for its money.
2 A Movie that Plays to the Strengths of Director Alan Taylor
Because of Marvel's notorious penny pinching, both Thor and Marvel's The Avengers took place in a shoebox. They were contained within a truncated environment for most of their running time. Especially with Thor trapped in a small town that only had one 7-11. Thor: The Dark World brings the fight to Asgard, and the trailer promises a fully realized and expansive world with plenty of captivating landscapes. Original director Kenneth Branagh was criticized for many things, but he did manage to pull off a beautifully rendered homeland for Thor that set it aside from the other Marvel movies. Now, director Alan Taylor gets to really play in that world, and he has the potential to do something incredibly special with it. Especially if he brings the human emotion and true heart he captured in Game of Thrones, turning that fanboy fantasy into a true phenomenon. He has the ability to bring realized, identifiable character archetypes into a fantastical backdrop, and make them eternally relatable. He also knows how to utilize the drama without ever losing the comic book aspect of the story. There's a reason he was chosen for Thor: The Dark World, and the trailer plays to his strengths. Getting Thor: Game of Thrones Edition is not a turn off. In fact, it will probably get some people into the theater that skipped the first installment. Alan Taylor has the potential to be the next Joss Whedon. Just look at his extensive and impressive resume in the world of television. You'll come to understand his ability to take pre-existing characters and do something truly new and unique, and surprising with them. This won't be the dime store Shakespeare version of Thor that Kenneth Branagh gave us. The trailer promises an epic fantasy adventure unlike anything we've seen in the genre.
3 A Team-Up between Jane Foster and Sif
Our first inclination is to call catfight between these two women in Thor's life. But really, we'd rather see Jane (Natalie Portman) and Sif (Jamie Alexander) become true friends and fight together rather than against each other. As the greatest stories in human history have proven, unrequited love brings the best drama, and if Thor sets off with Jane on an intergalactic honeymoon, leaving a spurned Sif behind, it will bring a lot of emotional weight to the third film. While a fight might be fun for a minute, it doesn't do this middle chapter of the saga any good. And having Sif and Jane as friends will only up the emotional ante between them. It also makes Sif the more empathetic character, and gives us someone to root for. Jamie Alexander has created a warrior that we want to see more of, and she's actually a little more likeable than Jane. Fighting another woman for Thor's affections seems below her. Also, Sif is seen fighting the Dark Elves alongside Thor in the new trailer. She could decimate the much weaker, mortal Jane. If any fight does breaks out, it will be a vattle of words. And as we saw in the first movie, Sif can probably win that too. What a mouth on that broad!
4Anthony Hopkins as Odin engaging in Battle
So far, Anthony Hopkins has been relegated to the sidelines, giving us a hefty voice-over narrative. What we really want to see is Odin in battle. With his eye patch and his armor, he looks like he's set for one hell of a fight, but if the trailer is any indication, he will likely be sitting this one out, too. We don't see him on the battlefield, going against the Dark Elves alongside Thor and Sif. Hopefully, he will pull himself off his throne and throw himself into the ring when Thor and Loki, working together to defeat Malekith, are at their lowest point and in need of a helping hand. The climax of Thor: The Dark World needs a couple of 'Hu-rah!' moments that make the audience stand-up and cheer. Odin coming in from out of left field to knock Malekith on his ass and give his sons a much-needed helping hand will surely be a cheer worthy moment.
5 More Kat Dennings as Darcy Lewis
One of the shinning bright spots in the original Thor was Kat Dennings as Darcy Lewis. She brought a lot of much needed humor to the proceedings, and proved to be a fan-favorite. If the trailer is any indication, we'll only be getting a few minutes of Jane Foster's motor-mouthed sidekick before Jane and Thor leave earth for Asgard. What we want to see is Darcy on Asgard. Jane Foster doesn't really serve us well as an audience conduit. Seeing this fantasy world of the Gods through Kat Dennings' eyes would be a lot more relatable and fun. As long as they don't turn her into Jar Jar Binks, which shouldn't happen under the direction of Alan Taylor, we think she could prove to be an important part of the climactic end battle. Of course, it doesn't look like that's the case. Maybe we can put in our request now for a re-shoot that incorporates her into more of the action? How about Heimdall develops a crush on her and whisks her up into the heavens? Wait...Even better idea...What about a romance between Sif and Darcy? Now that would make a great spin-off movie, and push this one to heights not yet recognized within the confines of the Marvel Movie Universe.
What do you most want to see happen in Thor: The Dark World ?
Thor: The Dark World was released November 8th, 2013 and stars Chris Hemsworth, Natalie Portman, Tom Hiddleston, Anthony Hopkins, Christopher Eccleston, Jaimie Alexander, Zachary Levi, Ray Stevenson. The film is directed by Alan Taylor.