UPDATE: Thor: Ragnarok's official first trailer finally gave us our first official images of Oscar-winner Cate Blanchett as Hela, ruler of the Asgardian underworld.
We know precious little about who the Marvel Cinematic Universe version of Hela is, or what exactly she's up to in Thor 3, but there are some pretty big questions looming over her character's position within the Marvel Cinematic Universe. And the biggest one is: Is Hela the Marvel Cinematic Universe version of Death?
Death is Alive
If you are unaware of this fun aspect of Marvel Comics: Death is alive. Sort of.
In the Marvel Comics Universe, Death is personified, often appearing as a woman in robe whose face is shrouded by a shadowy hood (though "she" has been known to go all Grim Reaper from time to time).
For a time Death was the one true love and obsession of Thanos, who sought to impress her by obtaining the Infinity Gauntlet and snuffing out half of all life in the universe.prevnext
While we can't confirm any real details of Marvel Cinematic Universe Hela, the character's Marvel Comics counterpart was ruler of the realms of Hel and Niflheim, where the lost souls and dishonored dead go. Hela continuously sought to expand her influence to Valhalla (land of the honored dead), Asgard, or even Midguard (Earth). It's not hard to assume the MCU version of the character is also something along those lines.
In fact, Blanchett recently revealed that Hela has "been locked away for millennia getting more and more cross, and then, with a mistake, she gets unleashed and she ain't getting back in that box."
That "box" could easily be a realm that the villain was confined to - one that particular events within the MCU may have freed her from.prevnext
Too Legit to Quit
Marvel Studios head Kevin Fegie has already hinted that Blanchett did a spectacular job as Hela, and Marvel fans have long speculated that the actress is too big for a one-and-done role in the MCU.
Asked point-blank if Cate Blanchett's Hela could show up in, say, Avengers: Infinity War, Fegie said, "Anything is possible, but knowledge of the comics can be both beneficial to fans anticipating things, and also misleading. So you'll have to see."
The speculation here is that Hela is the MCU version of death (ruler of the dead), and that she will eventually ally with Thanos in Avengers: Infinity War - especially if she comes bearing a particular MacGuffin that Thanos needs...prevnext
We've already explored the fan theories about where the final Infinity Stone (the Soul Stone) is located within the Marvel Cinematic Universe. And one of the most popular theories is that Hela has the Soul Stone, which is the source of her power over the dead.
That's not the only theory out there, but it does go a long way to helping position Hela as the MCU incarnation of Death. It gives her a clearly unique set of powers that would help mainstream viewers by the idea of Death incarnate, without getting as silly and fantastical as the comics do.
...Watching Josh Brolin's Thanos trying to court Cate Blanchett's Hela also sounds pretty awesome.prevnext
Thor: Ragnarok is currently the 7th Most Anticipated Film as voted by ComicBook.com readers. Are you excited to see Loki on the screen with Thor, Hulk, and Doctor Strange? Let us know with your vote in the Movie Database below!0comments
In Marvel Studios' Thor: Ragnarok, Thor is imprisoned on the other side of the universe without his mighty hammer and finds himself in a race against time to get back to Asgard to stop Ragnarok – the destruction of his homeworld and the end of Asgardian civilization – at the hands of an all-powerful new threat, the ruthless Hela. But first he must survive a deadly gladatorial contest that pits him against his former ally and fellow Avenger – the Incredible Hulk!
Thor: Ragnarok is directed by Taika Waititi and returns Chris Hemsworth starring as Thor and Tom Hiddleston reprising his role as Loki. They are joined by Cate Blanchett, Idris Elba, Jeff Goldblum, Tessa Thompson and Karl Urban, with Mark Ruffalo and Anthony Hopkins.prev