By now Marvel fans are all too aware of how director Taika Waititi swooped in to save the Thor franchise with Thor: Ragnarok. After an solid first installment, Thor's journey took a major detour into nightmare with Thor: The Dark World, which all but killed fan enthusiasm for that solo franchise. Taika Waititi gave Thor a total makeover, transforming the franchise into a hyper-kinetic comedic ride, which masked some deeper themes about nationalism, immigration, history and contemporary notions of progression and self-identity. However, as we're now finding out, Thor: Ragnarok originally had a much different story to tell!
Over on Reddit a user posted a claim about what Thor: Ragnarok would've been, based on information he claims to have heard from his best friend, who worked on Marvel movie productions between 2015-2017. That user claims that during a recent lunch, his BF spilled the beans about what Marvel was going to do with Thor 3 before Taika Waititi came onboard.
Here are just some of the major differences between that original idea and the final version of Thor: Ragnarok:
The original vibe for the movie was almost horror-film esque. It was going to be very dark and serious, and adhere a little more faithfully to the actual Norse Ragnarok where everyone dies.
Loki was going to have already taken the Tesseract during his time ruling Asgard as Odin and have it for the entire movie, although this would only be revealed in the end.
Thor and Loki were gonna find a deranged, homeless Odin in an NY alleyway, his deteriorating health ensuring he didnt have the strength to keep Hela banished any longer and she'd appear out of a ring of fire finally freed, have a final confrontation with Odin and impale him to death in front of Thor and Loki... This whole scene actually almost made it to the very end (albeit with a little more Taika humour and not as grizzly) until they changed it to a more regal setting in Norway upon Taika's request and a poor reception to the scene from test audiences.
A lot of the Planet Hulk/Sakaar stuff would have remained as is but with a much darker tone that would have totally altered the perception of it. Valkyrie for instance was supposed to have a much bigger role and would have been a much darker character with her depression and alcoholism portrayed more seriously without the humour and bright colors...
- Deranged, hobo Odin never managed to tell Thor and Loki that Hela was their sister. It was ultimately Valkyrie who tells Thor this on Sakaar when she's explaining the true wickedness of his family and why she walked away. The guy didnt remember if Loki ever even found out for sure that Hela was their sister, although he thinks he did at some point.
There's much much more to this breakdown (so much more!) that you can check out over on Reddit. Some of the bigger points include Tom Hiddleston's Loki getting a much bigger 'fall from grace' arc that ended with him alone and banished on Jotunheim, with the big secret that he has the Tesseract. That would've been the setup for Avengers: Infinity War's confirmed alternate scene where Thanos collects the Space Stone from Loki on Jotunheim. Heimdall would've also died during Ragnarok instead of Infinity War, while helping evacuate Asgard to escape Hela's forces in the climax. The ending of the film was said to be significantly darker, with Valkyrie being loyal to her own plan and setting Surtur free (dying in the process); Surtur laying waste to Asgard; and Thor being unable to stop him, leaving the realm destroyed and the Asgardians dead and floating in space, where the Guardians of the Galaxy would eventually find Thor in Infinity War.
So basically... this would've been the dark and hellish "Ragnarok" story many Marvel fans would've expected. But would it have been nearly as enjoyable and memorable?
Upcoming Marvel Studios projects include Black Widow on May 1, 2020, The Falcon and The Winter Soldier in Fall 2020, The Eternals on November 6, 2020, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings on February 12, 2021, WandaVision in Spring 2021, Loki in Spring 2021, Spider-Man 3 on July 16, 2021, What If…? in Summer 2021, Hawkeye in Fall 2021, and Thor: Love and Thunder on November 5, 2021, and Black Panther 2 on May 6, 2022. Marvel Studios Disney+ series without release dates include Ms. Marvel, Moon Knight, and She-Hulk.