10 Scenes That Most Define Thor’s MCU Story


  • Thor’s journey in the MCU showcases growth from warrior prince to humble hero despite initial struggles.
  • Thor’s worthiness is proven through vulnerable displays of bravery, compassion, and selflessness.
  • Thor’s final transformation symbolizes finding inner peace, love, and meaning after enduring loss and accepting who he truly is.



Chris Hemsworth’s Thor has been one of the most central figures in the Marvel Cinematic Universe since his first appearance in his 2011 solo movie, and a range of crucial scenes highlight his significance to the franchise. With four solo outings and a lead role in the Avengers series, Thor has one of the longest tenures of all the heroes in the MCU, especially if his story continues in Thor 5, which is yet to be made official. While Thor has always been a highly recognized character in the comics, this lengthy tenure in the movies, as well as Hemsworth’s performance, has made the character achieve iconic status around the world.

As a god, Thor has lived for thousands of years, but his appearances in the MCU Timeline have seen him undergo a journey of immense development. Across eight movies, audiences have witnessed Thor discover more within himself beyond a proud cosmic warrior and the prince of Asgard. He has progressed into a wiser, more humble person who has learned pain, sensitivity, and determination. These 10 key scenes highlight the immense journey he has been through in the MCU thus far.

Chris Hemsworth as Thor in the MCU surrounded by a circle of lightning
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10 Exile To Earth

Thor Being Stripped Of His Powers And Inability To Lift Mjölnir Is A Welcome Deconstruction

Audiences first meet Thor as the arrogant and impulsive heir to Asgard, but then Odin strips his son of godly powers and exiles him to Earth as a mortal, accompanied by his hammer, Mjölnir. During exile, Thor and Mjölnir are detained by S.H.I.E.L.D. After a struggle with the guards, Thor tries to lift the hammer but cannot, as it is now protected by an enchantment where only the worthy can wield it. This is tied to a recurring struggle throughout his journey: is Thor deserving of his own strength?

Having Thor begin his journey like this not only allows the godlike being to appear vulnerable, but it is the beginning of his progression from a spoiled-rotten prince and shows there is more to him than a mighty warrior. This initial failure to live up to Mjölnir’s code turns out to be his greatest salvation. His journey to prove his worthiness as a hero will eventually be achieved through his time on Earth, powerless and hammerless.

9 Regaining His Powers

Thor Displays An Act Of Bravery And Vulnerability As A Sign Of His Progression

Thor’s worthiness is achieved when his adopted brother Loki unleashes the Destroyer on the New Mexico town he landed in. Here, Thor’s maturity and heroism are exemplified. The once impulsive warrior allows himself to be vulnerable, not just physically, as he is still powerless, but emotionally. He attempts diplomacy with Loki first, taking ownership of his mistakes, and apologizes to his brother. Loki has The Destroyer beat Thor, essentially killing him, but Thor has already regained his right to wield the hammer.

Without any powers, Thor displays the essential traits of a full-fledged hero. This is further stated through Odin in this scene. The sleeping all-father sheds a tear of pride after seeing his son die in a selfless act to save a town of humans, including Jane Foster, Thor’s human lover. Thor had changed, learning compassion for people, and became worthy as a king as well as a hero. Without his experience as a mortal on Earth, Thor might never have become the hero who would later fight side-by-side with the other Earthbound members of the Avengers.

8 Not Accepting The Throne Of Asgard

Thor Shows His Newfound Love And Loyalty For Humanity Upon Rejecting The Throne

This mature version of Thor sees protecting our world as part of his responsibility and fights alongside Iron Man and Captain America.

In Thor: The Dark World, Thor returns to Asgard, where he declines Odin’s (who is actually Loki) offer to take the throne and chooses to remain on Earth. When we first saw him, Thor used his powers to boast of his strength to those around him or seek their approval. He particularly sought the approval of his father. Yet, now with the throne offered to him, Thor rejects it. Not because he was afraid of the responsibility, but because he felt the need to fulfill his duties to the people of Earth.

Thor’s initial failure to understand what it meant to be worthy became the catalyst for his development into a true superhero. All that development came from his time on Earth. Once, the impulsive prince of Asgard viewed our world as small and primitive. Now, this mature version of Thor sees protecting our world as part of his responsibility and fights alongside Iron Man and Captain America, and other human heroes as equals. He would stay on Earth from The Dark World to Avengers: Age of Ultron, before Thor: Ragnarok saw him return to the cosmic realm.

7 “What Were You The God Of Again?”

Upon Encouragement From Odin, Thor Finds The Power Within

Mjölnir has been Thor’s constant companion, but in Ragnarok, the hammer is destroyed by his evil sister and Goddess of Death, Hela. In the climax, the hero believes he is unable to beat her without his life-long weapon until he receives a pep talk from Odin. His father encouraged him that the hammer was never his power, but a tool to channel it. With his father’s confidence flowing through him, Thor returns to unleash waves of dramatic lightning from his hands.

Self-belief is a key element of Thor’s journey. His powers vary in each movie, yet he is often hit with phases of doubt, particularly against equally omnipotent enemies. Moments of doubt quelling superpowers is a great way to illustrate humanity in a seemingly invincible superhero. The hammer truly was a restriction to Thor reaching his full potential and this final battle is an inspirational overcoming of that as Thor charges hammerless and one-eyed, onto the Bifrost, blasting through Hela’s forces as Led Zeppelin’s “Immigrant Song” accompanies the spectacle.

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6 “What More Could I Lose?”

The God Of Thunder Allows Himself To Be Vulnerable In Acknowledging The Losses He Has Endured

Thor’s journey has incurred a range of suffering from losing his friends, both his parents and his homeland. In Avengers Infinity War, he endures a multitude of grief in a short space of time. Thanos attacks Thor and the Asgardian survivors in the prologue and kills Heimdall and Loki. Thor vows revenge. With Rocket Raccoon, Thor travels to the planet Nidavellir to claim a new hammer. Here, the two share a quiet moment where the proud Thor briefly allows his pain to surface.

This truly reflects how much Thor has lost. Hemsworth’s excellent acting governs the emotion of this scene. Thor still tries to mask it through his signature swagger and warrior spirit, with his revenge against Thanos likely the only thing keeping him from breaking down, but all the hurt is clear behind those ancient eyes. Finally, his voice cracks as he asks that faithful question, and a single tear is shed, the most emotion the God of Thunder has allowed to show in front of others.

5 Taking On The Full Force Of A Star

Thor Displays His Strength And Determination Through This Death-Defying Stunt

Upon arrival at Nidavellir, Thor discovers that Thanos got there first and laid waste to the foundations. There, he finds Eitri, the last surviving dwarf, who agrees to help him make an ax he calls Stormbreaker. However, to do so, Thor needs to restart the enormous forge. He does so with a cable from Rocket’s ship and has himself hold the forge open, taking a direct blast from a star in the process. The star’s energy is something that could kill even someone as powerful as Thor. The spectacular visuals complement the epic atmosphere of the scene.

This scene displays Thor’s immense strength and determination. As the star’s energy tears at his body, Thor remains standing to let the energy feed through the mechanism. Pain is key to Thor’s journey, and it always produces the best version of him. He not only achieves a feat few MCU heroes have rivaled, but his never-failing warrior spirit encourages him to undergo the essential suicide mission. When he finally collapses, the ax is ready. Regardless of the physical torment from the star and the emotional turmoil of losing Loki and his people, Thor remains determined to stop Thanos.

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4 “You Should Have Gone For The Head”

Even At His Most Powerful, Thor Experiences Failure

Infinity War is about the heroes losing, and no character endures failure more than Thor.

Thor has his greatest moment in the Battle of Wakanda. His epic entrance sees him turn the tide in his allies’ favor. Thanos then arrives and, after defeating the other Avengers and finally obtaining all the Infinity Stones, Thor charges in to stop him. Thor impales Thanos with Stormbreaker and gazes into his enemies’ eyes to make it clear he delivered on his promise to kill Thanos. The victory, however, is short-lived. Having aimed for the chest, instead of the head, Thanos summons enough strength to initiate the Snap that kills half of all life in the universe.

Infinity War is about the heroes losing, and no character endures failure more than Thor. He preoccupied his emotional stress with his revenge quest on Thanos for the deaths of his people and his brother. Now, Thor’s thirst for vengeance, where he chose to torture his enemy instead of kill him swiftly, has cost him more. He has lost the people he hoped to protect, as well as his dignity as a hero. It is a failing the mighty warrior cannot mask.

3 “I Am Still Worthy”

Thor Retrieves His Fighting Spirit After A Long Journey Of Heartache

In Avengers: Endgame, everyone is feeling the pain and guilt of failing to stop Thanos. No one’s pain is on display more than Thor’s. He lives his days as a depressed, overweight drunkard and deems himself a failure, both from being unable to prevent the Snap and the historical deaths of many of his loved ones. Even after the surviving Avengers concoct a plan to reverse the Snap, Thor is still emotionally defeated. Upon traveling back in time, Thor encounters Frigga a few hours before her death. This finally has the proud god break down in tears.

It is in the following conversation between the two that Thor’s identity crisis is overcome. Frigga helps him realize that failure makes Thor like everyone else. Thor states he was never meant to be like everyone else, showing that, even after six prior appearances, he still holds his pride close. She also tells him not to live up to the expectations of others, because real heroes strive to be who they are. This touching scene ends with the incredibly satisfying moment when Thor discovers he is still worthy of wielding Mjölnir, despite his failings.

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2 “It’s Time For Me To Be Who I Am Rather Than Who I’m Supposed To Be”

Thor Embraces His Identity And Puts The Interests Of His People First

Valkyrie accepts Thor's offer to be the new King of Asgard in Avengers Endgame

After defeating Thanos, Thor returns to the New Asgard and crowns Valkyrie as king of Asgard instead. After much turmoil, Thor needs to find himself and, in this scene, we see the culmination of all that he has learned. This scene recalls the ending of The Dark World. After he developed into a more mature hero from his time on Earth, Thor progressively grew less fond of the prospect of succeeding Odin and favored his duties as a hero over his right to the throne. He even stated, “I would rather be a good man than a great king.”

In Ragnarok, Thor having Hela as his older sister meant she was the heir to the throne, and Thor even told her he “would love for someone else to rule.” It was only because Hela was evil that he stepped in to take the throne. Thor was always a heroic protector more than a monarch. Heeding his mother’s encouragement, he claims he has spent his whole life being what others have assumed he would be. Thor’s pride is finally depleted. In its place is a seasoned man full of humility.

1 “From Sad God To Dad God”

Thor Finally Finds A Purpose After Thousands Of Years

Thor: Love and Thunder may have garnered a polarized reception, but it did leave the God of Thunder with a satisfying status. At first, Thor appears aimless as he accompanies the Guardians of the Galaxy on their madcap missions. Peter Quill/Star-Lord acknowledges the god’s dilemma, saying he once felt lost too until he “found meaning and love” through his teammates. Thor seems to find meaning through the return of Jane, now the Mighty Thor, but their reunion ends again as she dies from the power of Mjolnir. Yet, Thor promises to raise Love, the daughter of Gorr, the God Butcher.

Thor finding love, through someone named Love, finally allows him meaning. Now, he can pass on all the lessons of compassion and humility. Thor is shown to be a playful father and still finds room for his warrior instinct, as the two charge into battle, hammers in hand, accompanied by Guns N’ Roses’ “Sweet Child of Mine.” It’s also a potent reminisce of Odin, where Thor adopts the child of his enemy. After eight movies of self-discovery, Thor finds love and more meaning than he could have at the beginning of his journey in the MCU.

  • Thor

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    Director Kenneth Branagh Release Date May 6, 2011 Writers Zack Stentz , Ashley Miller , Don Payne Cast Chris Hemsworth , Natalie Portman , Tom Hiddleston , Kat Dennings , Stellan Skarsgård , Idris Elba , Clark Gregg , Colm Feore Runtime 115 minutes Sequel(s) thor 2 , thor 3 , Thor 4 , Thor 5 Budget $150 million


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    Director Alan Taylor Release Date November 8, 2013 Writers Stephen McFeely , Christopher Markus , Christopher Yost Cast Tom Hiddleston , Tadanobu Asano , Idris Elba , Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje , Anthony Hopkins , Natalie Portman , Zachary Levi , Christopher Eccleston , Rene Russo , Chris Hemsworth , Ray Stevenson , Stellan Skarsgård , Jaimie Alexander , Kat Dennings Runtime 1h 52m Sequel(s) Avengers: Age of Ultron , Thor: Ragnarok , Avengers: Infinity War , Avengers: Endgame , Thor: Love and Thunder Budget 150 million USD


  • Thor Ragnarok Poster

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    Director Taika Waititi Release Date November 3, 2017 Writers Christopher Yost , Craig Kyle , Stephany Folsom Cast Cate Blanchett , Anthony Hopkins , Jeff Goldblum , Karl Urban , Tom Hiddleston , Mark Ruffalo , Tessa Thompson , Chris Hemsworth Runtime 2h 10m Sequel(s) Thor: Love and Thunder Budget $180 million


  • Thor Love and Thunder Poster depicting the primary cast over a waterfall

    Thor: Love and Thunder

    Thor: Love & Thunder is the fourth Thor film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe and director Taika Waititi’s second outing with the character. The movie finds Thor (Chris Hemsworth) on a journey to find inner piece. But when Gorr the God Butcher (Christian Bale) goes on a killing rampage against the gods, Thor is thrown back into the action. Tessa Thompson returns as Valkyrie, as does Waititi’s Korg. Natalie Portman also returns to the franchise for the first time in nine years as Jane Foster, who transforms into the Mighty Thor to wield Mjolnir.

    Director Taika Waititi Release Date July 8, 2022 Writers Jennifer Kaytin Robinson , Taika Waititi Cast Christian Bale , Russell Crowe , Tessa Thompson , ​Chris Pratt2 , Natalie Portman , Karen Gillan , Chris Hemsworth Runtime 118 minutes Sequel(s) Thor 5 Budget $250 million


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