New female heroes, a Hulk and Thor team-up, and Marvel’s darkest script yet.

Last week we heard Taika Waititi was the front runner to direct Thor: Ragnarok and this week we now know why.

Birth.Movies.Death reports that his hiring was Marvel’s way of balancing the reportedly uber-dark apocalyptic narrative with a comedic voice closer to previous releases. Waititi’s last film What We Do In The Shadows was praised for its levity while riffing on the vampire genre’s melodramatic subject matter. Clearly Marvel saw something they liked and have added another interesting filmmaker to their pantheon of heroes. While the Thor films have been my least favorite part about the MCU, this bit of hiring has certainly piqued my curiosity.

So where might we find the humor in ‘Ragnarok‘? Word on the Bifrost is that Thor may be accompanied on his journey by a fellow Avenger. Hulk will tagging along for the ride after his self-imposed exile from the rest of the Avengers team. I’d say this would be just the kind of holiday to set him right if it didn’t signal the collapse of Asgard and total chaos. Hulk’s inclusion here definitely continues the trend of hero overlap we’ve seen escalate in previous films, and most recently with Falcon’s scene in Ant-Man.

More than just mere fan service, I’m excited to see this duo interact more frequently given that Banner is a man of science and Thor- a man of legend. Their unlikely partnership will definitely venture deeper into uncharted territory as we’ve yet to see a buddy road movie in the MCU. So it’s either now or the eventual Rocket Racoon and Groot spin-off.

Lastly, Birth.Movies.Death is also reporting that we might see a new female hero in the mix with the appearance of Valkyrie. It’s unclear in what capacity she’ll appear, whether it’s in a side role or a major player in the story. The superheroine Valkyrie has popped up in numerous places around the Marvel Universe- from interactions with the Defenders ( Daredevil and crew) to kicking it with Dr. Strange. So her appearance might signal another connective tissue to the rest of the MCU.