Catching Up With… Thor: Ragnarok!

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I usually just review the comics I’m reading but why not share my thoughts on the latest Marvel blockbuster gracing the screens right now?  A little setting of the scene here: I refused to watch any trailers (other than anything shown in a theater before a movie), I did not read any articles or click on updates and leaked news or scenes – I like to go into movies like this completely fresh.  I have found it makes my viewing sessions a lot more pleasurable.  So, other than knowing that the Hulk fights Thor is an arena battle scene (a la Planet Hulk), and that Hela is the big bad, I knew nothing of the story.

I also learned a little too late that my theater was 1 of 2 theaters in MA that was having a Hulk premiere event, handing out collectible Ragnarok cups and coins.  I was bummed I did not learn this earlier as I would have gone to the earlier show… as it was I ended going to the 10:00pm show – the last show of the evening.  Just my luck though, when walking through the doors I asked the man behind the counter if there was anything left over from the premiere event and he smiled and said “You want some free stuff?  I’ll get you from free stuff!”  He came back with a coin – one that I will post tomorrow – but you’ve most likely seen on the web already.  It features a Thor helmet on one side and a Hulk helmet on the other.  I was glad to get anything – even if the cups were all gone I still had the coin I could go home with!

Now, I’m probably going to speak freely about the movie so if you don’t want to know anything about it or have yet to see it you should probably not read any further.  I will say this – I’m not going to give any real plot points away or the ending – just my thoughts on the character portrayals themselves.  Let’s start with Thor.

Thor: I really liked how they handled Thor in this movie!  They made him a lot more powerful and finally gave the character some depth – something two solo movies and two group Avenger movies had yet to do.  Hemsworth really seemed to enjoy playing Thor this time around and I think it effected the movie in a positive way.  That being said:

Humor: Something that has been said over and over on the various chat rooms is that Thor: Ragnarok has a lot more humor in it than earlier installments.  While that is true the debate is really on if it makes the movie more enjoyable or not.  Now, I have seen the movie twice already.  My first viewing I felt all the laughs were more of a distraction than adding to the movie’s overall experience.  A second viewing had me feeling a bit differently though… it really did not bother me too much at all.  I was looking forward to certain scenes

Hela: She pretty much makes this whole movie!  Cate Blanchett is both sexy and scary as hell and poses a real threat that makes you wonder how the heroes will defeat.

Valkyrie: I did not like the actor chosen for the part nor did I like the way she portrayed the Valkyrie.  A warrior turned slave trader?  That was too much of a stretch for me.  Especially when she learns who Thor is – how she could go from fighting on the side of Asgard to imprisoning and selling beings to be killed for sport is absolutely beyond me.

Hulk: Speaking of characters that Thor: Ragnarok got wrong – Hulk was a HUGE disappointment!  All they needed to do was add in one little piece of the Planet Hulk lore to make things right – but the neglect to add it in pretty much ruined the Hulk inclusion for me.  That piece?  The obedience disc.  In the movie the Hulk doesn’t have one!  That means Hulk has been on Sakaar, beating and killing alien beings for sport – and doing so of his own free will.  That certainly contrasts the image they have been portraying in the movies and in the comics for years.  That they Hulk would take innocent lives – and do so happily – was too much of an insult for me to ignore.  Otherwise, the Hulk/Thor dynamic was played off fantastically.

Korg: Ugh.  Talk about missing the mark on another Planet Hulk character.  Korg might’ve been a bigger disappointment than the lack of an obedience disc!  Korg is treated as a clueless buffoon of sorts.  A simple prop for comedic effect and therefore not to be taken seriously at all.  His “matter of fact” delivery gets old real quick and his aloofness is grating at best.

With all of that being said believe it or not I really did like the movie.  I didn’t love it – but I did like it.  I would recommend seeing it – it’s really good.  But it’s not great and it misses the mark on some essential and even not essential characters.  Other great additions I didn’t mention was Skurge, Loki and Miek.  All which were just fine.  I was a but bummed that the Warrior’s Three were dispatched so easily but hey, at least Heimdall was back kicking ass!

So, what did you guys think?  Anyone feel the way I did?  Anyone look past it and just enjoy the ride – or did you hate it?  Let me know in the comments!

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Thor: Ragnarok Hulk Softs (2017)

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I am really trying to post all the Thor: Ragnarok stuff I’ve added to the collection – something I was trying to accomplish last week but I ended up getting really busy.  Anyways, the plushes released for the movie are pretty fun.  One, released by Funko (above) is everything you’ve come to expect from the company.  The other (below) is a slam and make noise kind of soft.  Both are equally cute – and obviously both agree that the Hulk is nose-less.  That’s not the facts I come away with after seeing the movie twice – but maybe the executives were shown an early cut?

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Either way it’s still an amazing thing that we get Planet Hulk softs!  Never did I think we’d see the day when we would see a mass produced Hulk plush in his gladiator garb!  Now we have two!  Both are worth picking up too – but if you’re just going to just choose one then I would say pick the noisy one.  It may not be as accurate as the Funko one but it looks better made.  Funko softs look as though they would fall apart if given some love from a child.

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Funko made their helmet with actual fuzzy “feathers” which is vastly superior to the other soft that doesn’t even color the headdress correctly!  Still, the eyes and patched on shoulder pad and overall look of the Marvel one takes the cake for me.  What do you guys think?  Did anyone out there pick either or both of these up?

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15 Minutes: A Year’s Worth of Hulk Confusion – Week 44

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I can imagine how seeing yourself portrayed on screen could be jarring.  Of course, I never saw the 70’s TV show as insulting to the Hulk – then again, I’m not the Hulk so…

Can You Keep Your Fluids to Yourself?: A Year’s Worth of Hulk Confusion – Week 43

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A possessed Hulk is bad – but an confused, angry possessed Hulk?  Take my word for it – it’s probably better to stay home, under the covers on that day!  Spidey has been able to do some impressive things with his webbing over the years – but wrapping the Hulk completely in it?  Well, let’s just see how that goes:

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The Hulk just tore right through it.  Shocker.

Que?: A Year’s Worth of Hulk Confusion – Week 42

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Submitted without comment – mainly because I’m not sure what this says.

Thor: Ragnarok Hulk Mystery Minis (2017)

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Just when you’ve reached the end of your rope with the Hulk pieces from Thor: Ragnarok all being exclusives and limited or even worse… really freakin’ expensive, we’re finally dealt a break by Funko in the form of the Mystery Mini.  Before we continue with the review here – will you take a look a the size of that first sentence?  Let’s move on.  Like I mentioned seeing the distribution of the characters it’s a relief to see that the Gladiator Hulk is actually one of the more readily available.  With a 1/6 chance to score this little guy it’s also a relief to know how easy he is to find IN the mystery box.

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If you lightly shake each box you’ll notice certain figures don’t move as easily as others.  Now, with a few larger figures you’d still be stuck getting figures you’re not trying to obtain if it weren’t for the fact that the Hulk’s not only one of the bigger figures but also the heavier!  With that 1-2 combo discovering the boxes that this guy is hidden in isn’t a challenge at all!

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I had narrowed it down to 2 different boxes that could possibly the Hulk when I discovered my instincts were spot on!  With both boxes opened each one contained the Hulk I was looking for!  Can I just say, the sculpt on this figure is awesome!  I again wish that Funko was not locked into having to make these figures bobbleheads but it’s something I can live with when the pieces come out this cool!  I mean, look at his little oversized helmet and alien hammer!

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After discussing this with a good friend he informed me that Hot Topic also has a variant with the Hulk in his gladiator leisure wear. I was a little dejected thinking I spoke too soon with the Mystery Minis being an easy score but have no fear Hulk fans!  The Hot Topic exclusive is also has a 1/6 chance!  The weight and size of the figure still applies so with just a little patience you can narrow it down to the exact right box!

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Again, I had it narrowed it down to 2 boxes it could be AND…: BOOM goes the dynamite!

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I Might Have a Problem…

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Whenever I see the Spider-Man Mystery Minis and I can tell there is a Venom in the box I feel as though I have no choice but to buy it!  I can’t stop myself!  I know exactly which boxes have the Venom figures so I buy it up!  I have now taken to buying both Venom AND Rhino!  It’s like a virus that I can’t shake!  I see the boxes and tell myself not to even go near them because I don’t need anymore Venoms.  Then, like I knew I would, my self-control fails me and I find myself in the toy aisle shaking these damn boxes again!  When I come to the Venom I tell myself I will not buy it.  Guess how that works out?

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If it happened once or twice I’d say it wasn’t a sickness – but look at this disaster that keeps spreading!  Count them!  This has happened 9 times!  I’m like an addict with no support group, man!  I have more Mystery Mini Venoms than I know what to do with!  The real kicker is knowing that the next time I find myself in the presence of these boxes I will definitely be shaking those damn boxes to pick out the Venom… and, most likely the Rhino.  At least the Rhino has a past with the Hulk – but Venom?  They’ve met and fought, what?  Once?  Ugh… someone help me!

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