Back in January, reports began swirling that Christian Bale would make the leap from DC Comics to Marvel by joining the cast of Thor: Love And Thunder. After playing Batman in the award-winning The Dark Knight Trilogy, Bale claimed to be over superhero films, but it looks like director Taika Waititi has the magic touch after wooing Natalie Portman back into the fold.
However, Bale’s role in the fourth Thor movie has been shrouded in mystery. Fans have speculated that he could be playing Beta Ray Bill or Silver Surfer, and new theories are sure to abound thanks to Tessa Thompson, whose Valkyrie is the new King of Asgard, sharing some pertinent info with Entertainment Tonight:
“We’re gonna have fun. We’re gonna have fun. Taika is writing, directing. Some familiar faces, some new people into the mix. Christian Bale’s gonna play our villain, which is gonna be fantastic.”
Granted, being the film’s antagonist doesn’t mean Bale isn’t playing the long-rumored Beta Ray Bill or the less likely Silver Surfer. Marvel does a history of first introducing characters as villains before a turn to the more heroic as it did with Loki, The Winter Soldier, and Nebula. However, this new twist does bring back an old theory that Thor could face off against Mangog in the Ragnarok sequel. From THR‘s Richard Newby:
The Mangog is one of Kirby’s goofier-looking villains, which again seems to fit with Waititi’s interests. But despite his appearance, Mangog has one of the more interesting backstories of Thor’s adversaries. The monster is the total hatred of a billion alien lifeforms whose race was wiped out by Odin. Mangog is awakened by Ulik the Troll, another frequently appearing Thor character we’ve yet to see in the MCU, in hopes to form a partnership. But Mangog has no interests in partnerships, and his hatred drives him to seek out the Odinsword and draw it from its scabbard, an act that will end the entire universe.
Newby argues that Mangog would continue the theme of forcing Thor to grapple with his family legacy even after abandoning the throne of Asgard and possibly even his hammer to Portman’s Lady Thor. Is this the villainous role that seduced Bale back into the comic book realm? Fans will have to wait and see as the time of Love and Thunder draws near.