Beta Ray Bill Can and Should Appear in the Marvel Cinematic Universe
I never thought I would see the day where Thor was a household name. Marvel Studios has accomplished a lot in the past 7 years, but I am still most amazed at how they have turned previously unknown heroes like Thor, Iron Man and the Guardians of the Galaxy into bonafide celebrities. It’s amazing. There are kids out there who want to dress as Thor for Halloween. The Dark World was a truly great film, and I still herald it as one of Marvel’s best. I am legitimately excited to see the third one, Ragnarok.
I just think it should also include Beta Ray Bill, one of the greatest and weirdest comic book characters of all time. Yes, I’m talking about Horse Thor.
Shortly after leaving the theater when the first Thor film debuted, I joked to myself that there was no way Beta Ray Bill would ever fit into what Marvel was building. But now we’re several films deep, including the amazing and alien-filled Guardians of the Galaxy, and I have completely changed my mind. Beta Ray Bill should appear in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
And if you’ll join me after the jump, I’ll tell you how!
First, a little backstory from the comics.
Comic book Thor is pretty similar to movie Thor, at least in the big picture sense. He’s still the God of Thunder, and his power is linked to his magic hammer, Mjolnir, which only Thor can lift. As the magical inscription goes, “Whosoever holds this hammer, if he be worthy, shall possess the power of Thor.” That inscription held for 20 years.
In the comics, Beta Ray Bill is the first person, other than Thor, to be found worthy enough to wield Mjolnir. If that’s not badass enough for you, I don’t know what is.
Beta Ray Bill is an alien called a Korbinite. The Korbinite planet was dying, so their leaders devised a way to put everyone to sleep in a big transport ship in order to head out into the cosmos to find a new home planet. In order to protect the ship while everyone was asleep, they needed a champion to lead the charge, so several Korbinites volunteered and were put through a grueling tournament process to pick the best of them. Bill won, and he was then put through an even more grueling and painful transformation process that turned him into the monstrous, horse-faced cyborg you see before you. The look is based off one of the planet’s most fearsome predators.
The point of the character was that he looked like a monster, but his heart was pure and heroic. That he volunteered to put his body through this hell in order to protect his entire race makes Bill worthy of lifting Mjolnir.
Of course, being a nice guy, Bill eventually gave the hammer back to Thor. But then Odin was so impressed with Bill’s heroism that he had a whole new hammer made – Stormbreaker – and gave it to Beta Ray Bill as a gift. Since then, Bill and Thor have been the best of pals!
And now the time is right for Beta Ray Bill to appear in the Marvel Cinematic Universe! It’ll be easy!
An Unpowered Bill Should Debut in Guardians of the Galaxy 2
The first Guardians of the Galaxy film was a huge success, and it opened up the Cinematic Universe to include all manner of alien races and planets. No longer is the Movieverse beholden to the planet Earth, there are countless new species and organizations out there. So why not Korbonites?
Did you know that there was some Korbinite concept art made up for Thor: The Dark World? Compliments of artist Josh Nizzi:
As with any good team franchise, the cast has to expand in the sequel. That’s why the Avengers are going to get Quicksilver, Scarlet Witch and Vision in Age of Ultron. And while there are tons of new Guardians characters that could show up, I think the newest member of the Guardians of the Galaxy should be Bill the Korbinite. Why limit yourself to comic book Guardians? The movies don’t have to be exact adaptations of the comics, so use Bill, who would fit perfectly in among the other ‘monster’ characters like Drax and Groot. Bill could be this big, heroic lunkhead, tasked with protecting his people as they travel the galaxy, but then he gets mixed up with the Guardians on their latest adventure. He wouldn’t have anything to do with Thor or Mjolnir. He’d just be the weird, horse-faced alien who is much more gentle and pleasant than he looks.
The Guardians are all outlaws and scoundrels. Bill could be the team’s white knight.
It’s not like these sorts of crossovers are unheard of in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Hawkeye showed up briefly in the first Thor movie before his proper introduction in The Avengers. And Loki made the same jump as the villain in both films. Black Widow went from Iron Man 2 to The Avengers to Captain America: The Winter Soldier. Black Panther is going to show up in Captain America: Civil War ahead of his own solo film. And I bet Captain Marvel is going to show up somewhere prior to her solo movie too.
So there should be no problem having Bill show up in Guardians of the Galaxy 2 before jumping over to Thor: Ragnarok, that way you can lay most of the groundwork for the character in advance.
The Power of Mjolnir is Clearly Established
The fact that only Thor can life Mjolnir is well-established in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Not only was it a major factor in the first Thor movie, but it was referenced again in both Thor: The Dark World and The Avengers. And now it’s a major issue in the first trailer for Avengers: Age of Ultron.
Joss Whedon has built a whole scene around the Avengers being unable to lift the hammer. It’s a gag scene, sure, but it firmly puts the thought in people’s minds that not just anybody can lift Mjolnir.
And check out this little joke as Captain America manages to at least wiggle the hammer. Poor Thor.
So people know how important it will be when someone other than Thor lifts Mjolnir.
Beta Ray Bill Should Get The Power in Ragnarok
Once you have Bill as an established character in Guardians of the Galaxy 2, he then comes into his own in Thor: Ragnarok. We don’t know the plot of Ragnarok yet, but it’s probably going to involve the fire demon Surtur and a giant, massive battle! Thor’s going to need all hands on deck for this one.
The movie is also going to need subplots.
So why not tell Bill’s story via subplot? It’s one of the most highly regarded Thor stories of all time. It would make for a pretty great opening action scene as Thor is called upon to investigate Bill’s ship, which is under attack from hostile alien forces. Thor then finds himself battling the monstrous Bill, who audiences know is a good guy from his Guardians 2 appearance. During the battle, the audience will be shocked to see Bill pick up Thor’s hammer and get his power – which they will fully understand, since it was in the earlier movies.
Then for a big chunk of the film, Thor could be powerless. He hasn’t been without Mjolnir since the first film, but now, with Ragnarok growing, Thor has lost Mjolnir. And he can’t just take it back, since Bill needs the power to fight off the hostile aliens.
This leads to a lovely story about Thor and Bill becoming friends and working together to stop the aliens, then Bill goes to Asgard and gets his own hammer, and then the two of them are fighting side-by-side against Surtur and Ragnarok.
Honestly, the story writes itself! Though I’ll gladly take a big, fat paycheck to write it for you, Marvel Studios!
The world is ready for a live action Beta Ray Bill!
Posted on November 24, 2014, in Avengers, Comics, Marvel, Movies and tagged Asgard, Avengers: Age of Ultron, Beta Ray Bill, Guardians of the Galaxy, Guardians of the Galaxy 2, Loki, Mjolnir, Thor, Thor 3, Thor: Ragnarok, Thor: The Dark World. Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.
Beta Ray Bill deserves to be in a movie just because he has the best name from anything ever. Plus he looks like a demonic horse, why doesn’t he already have his own solo movie!? Why isn’t he the leader of the avengers??!!? All joking aside, I think this would be a great idea, also Bill would be a hit among children for his look alone then you add the rest of his awesomeness and everyone else will love him too. Get to it Marvel
I want Beta Ray Bill in the popular lexicon! I want children cheering for Beta Ray Bill!
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