Things to know for Thor: Ragnarok
Marvel + 80s Sci-Fi vibes = YES. Source: Marvel Studios

With Thor: Ragnarok set to be released in cinemas on the 25th of October, there’s still not much known about some of the new-coming main characters. That’s why we’re breaking down four things to know before watching Thor: Ragnarok.

You know what, now that I think about it, this is going to be Marvel Studios’ first movie of 2017. If you recall, we started off the year with Logan which was followed two months later with Spiderman: Homecoming. But neither of those are actually Marvel movies, despite having Marvel comic characters. Regardless, this epic hulk-buster of a film, directed by New Zealand hero Taika Waititi, is sure to be spectacular.

EDIT: Forgive me Stan Lee for I have sinned. How could I have forgotten Guardians of the Galaxy 2? Well it was arguably a crummy throwaway of a film (no excuse for forgetting it I know). Shoutout to Chris Vanden-Driesen for calling me out on my crap.

Ragnarok will be helmed by Chris Hemsworth (Thor), Tom Hiddleston (Loki), ‘Spoil-er Supreme’ Mark Ruffalo (Hulk), and Cate Blanchett (Hela). But who’s Jeff Goldblum playing? What about Tessa Thompson or Karl Urban? And what’s up with that big fire demon that the Hulk’s fighting at the end of the Thor: Ragnarok trailer? Well be patient young padawan, for I shall teach you a few things to know for Thor: Ragnarok.

Who’s Jeff Goldblum playing in Thor: Ragnarok?

Things to know for Thor: Ragnarok
Surely I’m not the only one crushing on Jeff right? Source: LA Times

Now I don’t say this too easily, but I may have more of a crush on Jeff Goldblum than I do on my homeboy Hugh Jackman. But seriously, how does a man at nearly 65 keep his skin and hair so young, smooth, and wrinkle-free? Actually now I think about it, it’s probably a lot of makeup and botox… there’s no other way. Unless he’s an Elder of the Universe with a naturally extended lifespan?

Which brings me to my main point – who the hell is Grandmaster?

In Ragnarok, Sex Godblum will be playing an Elder of the Universe by the alias of Grandmaster. The Grandmaster’s real name is En Dwi Gast, the sole survivor of his species which evolved after the Big Bang.

The Grandmaster is also like that one friend you have who’s really into, and really good at playing games. If you introduced them to a game, you’d soon find that they’d learn to play the game better than you. But more importantly, they’re the sorest loser of all time. Well that’s essentially the Grandmaster in a nutshell (as well as my friend Josh – love you long time Jim Sim).

So if you haven’t gotten the message, the Grandmaster is very into mastering all games. And even more so, he loves hosting Grand tournaments. There he will pin willing and unwilling fighters against each other with stakes higher than cows on grass.

But it’s okay, because the Grandmaster keeps his word, and grandly rewards the victors of his tourneys. Which will be a real good plot device if Thor needs this ridiculously rare item/ability/information to stop Hela from taking over Asgard.

The Flight of Thomspon’s Valkyries

Things to know for Thor: Ragnarok
Now act like you didn’t do it, they’re not buying it… Source: Marvel Studios

Tessa Thompson, for the uncultured swines in the sounder (which obviously isn’t you, it’s the other reader) is known for her work on Creed: The Rocky Legacy, Dear White People, as well as Westworld and Selma.

Tessa will be playing the last Valkyrie, flying by the name Brunnhilde (best name ever in my opinion), but is called Valkyrie? In any case, Valkyrie led the Valkyrior (plural of Valkyries I guess), transporting brave Vikings who died in battle to Valhalla. Valhalla being the Viking heaven where they feast in the hall of the slain till Ragnarok (which is conveniently soon).

Now from the trailers, it looks like Hela – the Norse Goddess of Death, had taken out the Valkyrior, with Tessa’s Valkyrie being the sole survivor. She somehow ends up escorting mighty warriors to the Grandmaster’s tournaments, and is that really so different to her duties as the Valkyrie?

In any case, with the opportunity to take out Hela on the table with Thor’s arrival, how could Valkyrie resist to take her revenge?

Who is Karl Urban in Thor: Ragnarok?

Things to know for Thor: Ragnarok
Not sure if Skurge or Judge Dredd… Source: Marvel Studios

Well shame on you for even asking that. The name probably won’t be familiar at first, but as soon as I tell you what he’s been in you’re going to think two things. First, oh my god, it’s him! Second, wait, he was in Star Trek too?

Well Karl Urban has surprisingly been in everything. He’s played Judge Dredd in Dredd, Eomer in Lord of the Rings (the horse-rider who saved everyone at the end of The Two Towers with Gandalf), as well as Doctor Bones from the new Star Trek trilogy.

But in Ragnarok, Karl Urban will be playing the Executioner – Skurge. Skurge is a longtime nemesis of Thor, who is the illegitimate son of a Storm Giant and an Asgardian from Skorrnheim, and is one of Asgard’s greatest warriors. So think Jon Snow pre-season 7.

Now in the comics, Skurge was seduced by the Enchantress, and was manipulated by her to carry out her bidding. And while he was willing to literally drop everything for her, she continually kept him on the line.

Now, the Enchantress is not reported to appear in this movie. But if you replace her with Hela, then I think we’ll have a more accurate guess as to Skurge’s motives.

What the F#*% is Surtur?

Things to know for Thor: Ragnarok
The Hulk is really excited to see Surtur. Source: Marvel Studios

In the last Ragnarok trailer, we saw a quick image of the Hulk smashing his way onto something straight out of Dante’s Inferno. Or as I like to call it, my upcoming exams (may god have mercy on us all).

Well this fiery, Satanic depiction goes by the name of Surtur, and he predates even Odin. Surtur resides in the flaming realm of Muspell (which isn’t Norse hell, but it’s still like my new mixtape).

And according to Neil Gaiman’s Norse Mythology, at Ragnarok, Surtur will leave his station at Muspell. Brandishing his fiery sword he will go “…and burn the world with fire, and one by one the gods will fall before him.” If that’s not chilling, I don’t know what is.

In Marvel comics, Surtur is the mortal enemy of Odin and Thor, being more powerful than either. And in Marvel’s Ragnarok, Surtur wields the Twilight sword, crossing the Bifrost to destroy Asgard.

At a guess I’d imagine that Hela would want to utilise Surtur to bring Asgard to the ashes, and from there build anew. And this bit of guessing is based on one line that Hela has in the second trailer. There she announces that “Asgard is dead. And it will be reborn in my image.” Now I don’t know what’d be more appealing to a Goddess of Death then ruling the ashes of a once great civilisation.

Wrapping Up

Things to know for Thor: Ragnarok
I actually have so much confidence Hela is going to be a good but campy villain. Source: Marvel Studios

And that’s all we have on the main things to before watching Thor: Ragnarok, specifically regarding the more obscure characters.

Obviously if you’ve been following with the MCU, you’d know everything about Thor, Odin, Loki, Hulk, Idris Elba, and the rest. But if you haven’t I would recommend checking out this article on a comprehensive explanation of the MCU.

So hopefully you will find yourself prepared for all the exposition sure to come in the 2 hours and 10 minutes of Taika Waititi goodness. The reviews so far have been amazing, the story is sure to be grand, and you can catch Ragnarok on the 26th of October for Marvel’s first film this year.

If you have any questions about Thor: Ragnarok, or even Ragnarok in Norse mythology leave a comment down below. Alternatively, tweet me @ElliMiller17, because I’ve actually taken the time to research some of the best parts on Norse Mythos.

Your Friendly Neighbourhood Writer Man. My love for telling puns is only rivalled by my love for procrastination.