WARNING: This article contains major spoilers for Marvel's Thor: Ragnarok, opening Friday in North America.
From the moment the first teaser debuted in April, fans were eager for Marvel's Thor: Ragnarok to arrive in theaters. The trailers promised a lot, from a battle between Thor and Hulk and the shocking destruction of Mjolnir to the fire demon Surtur and, of course, Led Zeppelin's "Immigrant Song."
Of course, the purpose of a trailer is to excite potential audiences by offering a taste of all of the action, drama and humor the film has to offer. Frequently at least some of the footage used in marketing doesn't make it into the final cut. And in the case of Thor: Ragnarok, there were three weeks of reshoots ahead of Comic-Con International, which means some scenes were bound to be lost to make way for new ones.
While Taika Waititi's sequel definitely delivers, some of the crowd-pleasing sequences from the trailers didn't make their way into theaters, while others don't appear in the way we thought we would. None of those changes affects the plot, but it's interesting to consider what changed, and why.
The Big Mjolnir Moment
Let's start with one of the most obvious changes: the location in which Cate Blanchett's Hela destroys the enchanted hammer Mjolnir with her bare hand. Early trailers and promos depicted the confrontation between the goddess of death and Chris Hemsworth's Thor taking place in a New York alley, with the ensuing explosion radiating out across the city.
That changed in the final promos and, naturally, the film, in which Hela instead destroys the thunder god's signature weapon on the edge of a cliff in Norway, almost immediately after the passing of Odin. Waititi explained that the alley didn't properly convey the emotional impact required. We can't argue that, as the new setting was perfect for Odin's peaceful death scene, and made more sense than a dingy all mere blocks from Doctor Strange's Sanctum Sanctorum.
Loki On the March
Fans of Tom Hiddleston's Loki were excited to see him back for the first time since 2013's Thor: The Dark World with the teaser that depicted the god of mischief, wearing his gleaming horned helmet, leading an army to Asgard, flipping knives as he walks. It's a great shot, but it doesn't show up the final film.
The trailer scene looks to take place near the end of Thor: Ragnarok. There are helpless Asgardians behind the god of mischief, as well as odd-looking warriors. They appear to be marching through a valley, either escaping from Asgard or marching toward it. We can only assume that it would have been pretty much like the ending we were given.
The final scene takes place on the Bifrost Bridge, as Loki joins Thor, Hulk (Mark Ruffalo) and Valkyrie (Tessa Thompson). However, he's not clad in regal attire or spinning twin blades. There isn't an army at his back, and he never actually marches through Asgard, although that's not to say he doesn't show up during the climax, leading a group of warriors like the god he is.
Whether the inclusion of that scene would have changed anything is uncertain, but if it means Loki would have remained a villain, then we're glad that Waititi opted for the ending sequence that he did. Loki's character clearly developed further than what might have been initially intended.