Disney’s MCU Controversy: New Footage Reveals Scrapped LGBTQ+ Relationship

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Thor winking at Valkyrie and Mighty Thor

Credit: Marvel Studios

Kevin Feige has served as President of Marvel Studios for an extensive period, during which he has been responsible for overseeing the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU), currently under the ownership of The Walt Disney Company. The MCU has had a profound and enduring impact on the superhero film genre and the entire movie industry, leaving an indelible mark, despite differing opinions on the subject.

Marvel's Avengers including Thor, Black Widow, Captain Avenger, Hawkeye, Iron Man, and the Hulk, look up at the destruction of the city.
Credit: Marvel Studios

Related: Report: Marvel to Introduce Gay Romance for ‘Captain Marvel’ Lead

The expansive narrative referred to as the Infinity Saga reached its conclusion with the spectacular releases of Avengers: Infinity War (2018) and Avengers: Endgame (2019), signifying the culmination of Phase Three. As the franchise has grown in popularity, the MCU has unquestionably established itself as a formidable presence in entertainment.

The Controversial Thor Movie

Chris Hemsworth Thor in 'Thor: Love and Thunder'
Credit: Inside the Magic

Thor: Love and Thunder by director Taika Waititi premiered last year in theaters on July 8, 2022 to generally middling reception. Starring Chris Hemsworth (Thor Odinson) in the titular role, the movie also brought back Natalie Portman as Jane Foster/Mighty Thor, Tessa Thompson as Valkyrie, and introduced Christian Bale as Gorr the God Butcher.

It also brought audiences Russell Crowe as the Greek god Zeus, as well as Brett Goldstein as his son, Hercules. The Guardians of the Galaxy also made an appearance, namely Chris Pratt (Peter Quill), Dave Bautista (Drax the Destroyer), Karen Gillan (Nebula), and Pom Klementieff (Mantis), before taking off in their own solo movie by director James Gunn, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 (2023).

This Thor franchise movie, however, did not escape criticism and controversy — in fact, it wound up getting banned in multiple countries.

Chris Hemsworth as Thor
Credit: Marvel Studios

Related: “Skinny” Hercules Actor Speaks Out, Marvel Gave Only Two Weeks to Train For ‘Thor’

On what grounds, you may ask? Well, a particular scene in which Korg (Taika Waititi) was revealed to be “gay” — in a sense — caught some flak. It was revealed that Korg’s species reproduces through a specific lava pit ritual, and the scene involving two male-presenting Kronan aliens holding hands over said lava pit effectively got the movie banned in several non-LGBTQ+ friendly countries.

Natlie Portman as Jane Foster/Mighty Thor (left) and Chris Hemsworth as Thor (right)
Credit: Marvel Studios

Marvel has tried implementing LGBTQ+ characters and storylines before. For example, in the Disney+ (Disney Plus) series Loki (2021), where the titular character Loki Laufeyson/Loki Odinson (Tom Hiddleston), has been depicted as gender-fluid, remaining faithful to the character’s representation in the original Norse mythology. In Eternals (2021), Brian Tyree Henry’s character, Phastos, is also shown in a loving gay marriage.

Marvel’s Abandons LGBTQ+ Relationship

It appears that Disney — and therefore Marvel Studios — have indeed previously planned to implement an even more explicit LGBTQ+ relationship into the MCU proper.

Tessa Thompson as Valkyrie
Credit: Marvel Studios

Recently, Thor Updates shared the following footage of a deleted scene wherein Tessa Thompson’s Valkyrie (reigning King of New Asgard after Thor Odinson leaves the position) and Jaimie Alexander’s Lady Sif were set to reunite:

New storyboards from a deleted Thor: Love and Thunder scene show Valkyrie and Sif (re)uniting during the Battle of New Asgard!

Valkyrie was supposed to grab Sif out of battle and take her to New Asgard’s infirmary, but this sadly got deleted.

This in and of itself seems fairly unremarkable (if not interesting for Thor fans) — but more recently, Hollywood and Marvel insider MyTimeToShineHello added an even more interesting context.

Apparently, Disney and Marvel Studios, during the production of Thor: Love and Thunder, had decided to scrap a relationship between the two where Lady Sif was meant to become Valkyrie’s girlfriend, and eventually Queen of New Asgard (to her King):

And she was supposed to be her girlfriend and then queen

Interestingly, it has also been rumored that Brie Larson’s Captain Marvel/Carol Danvers is slated to get her very own same-sex relationship — with Valkyrie herself, no less! Thompson herself has commented on the likelihood of the good ship “Valcarol” (the fan-crafted portmanteau) sailing off into the Marvel sunset, so there is every indication that a major same-sex relationship might be heading to cinemas when The Marvels drops this November.

Seeing as there is yet another upcoming gay relationship slated for the MCU, it seems like despite scrapping a potential LGBTQ+ relationship in Thor: Love and Thunder, it’s still fairly possible that fans of these pairings (and those excited for proper LGBTQ+ rep within the superhero movie genre) will see these ships finally sail.

Whether proponents of the Lady Sif/Valkyrie ship are happy with this news is an entirely other matter.

Why do you think Disney and Marvel scrapped the Sif/Valkyrie relationship in Thor: Love and Thunder? Share your thoughts in the comments below!

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