WARNING: This article contains major spoilers for Marvel's Thor: Ragnarok, in theaters now.
Director Taika Waititi's Thor: Ragnarok has at last arrived in theaters nationwide to critical acclaim and a booming box office. Now what every fan of the Marvel Cinematic Universe wants to know is, What's the deal with the post-credits scenes?
For better or for worse, those scenes don’t add to the film's story, at least not in the way Doctor Strange's did by introducing Mordo as a potential villain for the sequel. Luckily, audiences got just a little more Jeff Goldblum, which is all anyone could ever really hope for.
Thor: Ragnarok ends with Chris Hemsworth's thunder god deciding the location of the next Asgard (or at least a temporary stopover until a permanent one can be established). That place is Earth, and the mid-credits scene dives a little deeper into that choice.
The scene depicts Thor and Loki (Tom Hiddleston) gazing out into the vastness space from the bridge of their escape ship, mulling over whether it’s a good idea to allow the god of mischief to return to Earth. Thor reasons that things seem to be looking up, which prompts the duo to look up – and into the maw of an enormous spaceship.
Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige has identified the vessel as Sanctuary II, the flagship of Thanos (Josh Brolin), who's been pulling many of the strings in the MCU since 2012's The Avengers.
Sanctuary II is actually pretty familiar to MCU fans, whether or not they realize it. The ship acts as a massive, mobile throne room for Thanos, and its appearance sets up the events of 2018's Avengers: Infinity War. In that film, Thanos will be on the hunt for the Infinity Stones. Loki was seen in Ragnarok nabbing the Tesseract from Odin’s vault before unleashing Surtur, the destroyer of Asgard. Loki is also on Thanos’ bad side following the events of The Avengers, so it makes perfect sense the Mad Titan would come calling. What that means for the Asgardian refugees is anyone's guess, as Thanos doesn't seem like the kind to ask nicely for them to hand over the Space Stone.
The post-credits scene is more lighthearted, reintroducing Jeff Goldblum’s deposed Grandmaster. He exits a crashed ship on Sakaar, only to be met with the masked faces of the revolutionaries responsible for toppling his empire. He immediately launches into a speech (which serves as a reminder that Goldblum is very good at speeches) about how the revolution was a smashing success and that, as their former dictator, he actually deserves all the praise. The revolutionaries don’t seem impressed, however, and the audience is left to wonder if they’ll consider Grandmaster to be fighter or food.
There’s not much of a story tease to be pulled out of this scene, other than to say the Grandmaster makes it out alive. What that means for future Marvel cosmic adventures is anyone’s guess, but it’s safe to say we haven’t seen the last of Goldblum’s eccentric, self-styled emperor.
In theaters now, director Taika Waititi's Thor: Ragnarok stars Chris Hemsworth as Thor, Mark Ruffalo as Hulk, Tessa Thompson as Valkyrie, Tom Hiddleston as Loki, Cate Blanchett as Hela, Jeff Goldblum as The Grandmaster, Idris Elba as Heimdall, Anthony Hopkins as Odin, and Karl Urban as Skurge.