The God of Thunder stormed into our movie screen in May of 2011 and was the 3rd new Marvel hero to be introduced into the MCU and given their own movie being Iron Man and Hulk. Thor introduced us to a rather large group of characters and even a few fan favorites as well. Chris Hemsworth starred as The God of Thunder/ Thor, Tom Hiddleston as Loki, Natalie Portman as Jane Foster, Stellan Skarsgård as Erik Selvig, Idris Elba as Heimdall, Kat Dennings as Darcy Lewis, Colm Feore as Laufey, Ray Stevenson as Volstagg, Tadanobu Asano as Hogun, Josh Dallas as Fandral, Jaimie Alexander as Lady Sif, Rene Russo as Frigga, Anthony Hopkins as Odin, Clark Gregg reprises his role as S.H.I.E.L.D. agent Phil Coulson and we got our first ever interaction with Jeremy Renner as Hawkeye.
The movie starts with a flashback to Odin waging war with the Frost Giants of Jotunheim and their leader Laufey, in an attempt to stop them their quest of conquering the Nine Realms. The Asgardians defeat the Frost Giants and seize their power, the Casket of Ancient Winters. In the present time, Thor prepares to become King of Asgard, but is stopped when Frost Giants attempt to steal back the Casket of Ancient Winters. Thor demands retaliation against Odin’s orders and travels to Jotunheim with Loki, The Warriors Three: Fandral, Hogan, Volstagg, and Lady Sif. A battle begins but is ended by Odin saving the Asgardians, but breaking the truce between the Frost Giants and Asgardians. As punishment Odin strips Thor of his godlike power and banishes him to Earth with his hammer Mjolnir, protected by an enchantment that whoever is worthy shall wield the power of Thor.
Thor is sent to New Mexico where he encounters astrophysicist Dr. Jane Foster, her assistant Darcy Lewis, and mentor Dr. Erik Selvig. Mjolnir is soon found by the locals but only until S.H.I.E.L.D. Agent Phil Coulson blocks off the area while also stealing Jane Fosters data on wormholes, like how Thor traveled to Earth from Asgard. Thor learns the whereabouts of his hammer and travels to the S.H.I.E.L.D. facility, where he runs into Hawkeye and S.H.I.E.L.D., who are protecting it. But once Thor finds his hammer, he finds he is not worthy to wield it and cannot take it out of the ground and is captured. With the help of Dr. Selvig he is freed and begins living his life in exile.
Loki discovers that he is Laufey’s son and taken by Odin at the end of the war. As Odin falls into his “Odinsleep” to heal and recover, Loki takes the thrown and gives Laufey the chance to kill Odin and steal back the Casket of Ancient Winters. The Warriors Three and Lady Sif convince Heimdall to allow them access to Earth through the Bifrost in order to bring back Thor. When Loki finds out he sends the Destroyer to stop them and Thor. Defeated, Thor offers himself as sacrifice but before he is killed, it proves his worthiness drawing Mjolnir to him and destroying the Destroyer. He says goodbye to Jane vowing to
return to Earth and leaves for Asgard to stop Loki.
Back in Asgard, Loki betrays and kills Laufey, using it as an excuse to destroy Jotunheim, proving himself to Odin. Thor arrives and a fight ensues and results in the destruction of the Bifrost Bridge, where Odin arrives to save Thor and Loki from falling into the abyss, but Loki apparently committs suicide after he doesn’t get Odin’s approval. Thor makes amends with Odin, admitting he is not ready to be king; meanwhile, on Earth, Jane and her team search for a way to open a portal to Asgard. In the post-credit scene Dr. Selvig is taken to a S.H.I.E.L.D. where Nick Fury opens a briefcase and asks him to study a mysterious cube-shaped object, which Fury says may hold untold power. An invisible Loki prompts Selvig to agree, and he does.
Thor introduces A LOT of different characters, locations, and storylines into the MCU. If you look back at it, it is probably one of the most important of the Marvel movies when it comes to building the foundation in the MCU. It gave us our first introduction of the Infinity Stones with the Tesseract at the end of the movie. It established Loki who would end up being the main villain for The Avengers. And was our first introduction into the galaxy outside of Earth. So in the long run it may be a little bit low on the list, but it’s significance is important.