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Thor: Tales of Asgard

by on May 15, 2011
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With the current release of their big-budget film “Thor,” it was smart of Marvel to release its latest animated adventure, “Thor: Tales of Asgard,” in the same month. Unfortunately, all I can do now is compare the two.

Marvel Studios’ involvement in the screenplays of its live-action films to maintain series continuity and source-material respect has been very public. The best prequels are the ones that set up the character we already know and tell a worthwhile story in the process.

“Thor: Tales of Asgard” does not succeed on either account. The older Thor in the live-action film was tough, arrogant, and willing to fight for his kingdom. So who is this younger Thor? He seems unwilling to fight people, unclear on why he’s disobeying orders and completely dull.

The plot consists of young Thor and Loki randomly going on an adventure because they think they are being too sheltered within their kingdom. This is because Odin, the god of war, doesn’t want them to get into danger.

They get into danger, but it’s always difficult to understand the stakes. Thor loses his sword and takes a really powerful fire sword that causes a war among the realms. After seeing the effects of the sword, Thor believes it’s too powerful and nobody should be allowed to use it. This is from the guy who is usually seen with the most powerful hammer in existence.

There is also another subplot involving women who hate men who train to become warriors and bathe naked. I think this is supposed to be for children. Any attempt at a feminist message is quickly abandoned and reversed by the end.

Everyone who watches this will just be bored. The dialogue is completely lifeless, and none of the vocal performances will save it. The story is not worthwhile and doesn’t even feel like it’s Thor and Loki. The animation is misguided. They want to focus on the grand elements like a battle or a big castle, but those always fall flat. They should have focused more on the characters because most of their animated reactions were clichéd and laughable.

There are two commentary tracks for this 70-minute movie, because that’s what people were asking for. There is also a 20-minute making-of documentary that confirms this was intended to be a companion to the live-action film. These documentaries are always odd because I end up liking their sketches more than the final product. There is also an episode of “The Avengers: Earth’s Mightiest Heroes” because why not?


Film: 1.5 Yaps
Extras: 2 Yaps