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Endgame writers reveal Fat Thor made people mad on set

Add some of Avengers: Endgame's crew to the list of people who weren't thrilled with Thor Lebowski.

In a recent interview with Empire magazine, the flick's screenwriters Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely revealed that the Thunder God's new look didn't sit so well with some of those who were on the production's set. (via Express) In case you're one of the six people who hasn't seen the film yet, be advised that spoilers for Avengers: Endgame follow.

You'll recall that after Endgame's five-year time jump, Bruce Banner (Mark Ruffalo) and Rocket (Bradley Cooper) set out for New Asgard to track down Thor Odinson (Chris Hemsworth), who had dealt with his failure to prevent the Decimation — and his subsequent beheading of an unarmed, defenseless Thanos — in a rather unhealthy manner. Specifically, he had spent the previous half-decade drinking enough beer to drown an elephant, playing Fortnite with Korg and Miek, and growing the type of gut you rarely see on superheroes. Many fans felt that Thor's obvious depression and new, portly physique were being played for laughs, although later scenes — such as his tender moment with his mother Frigga in 2013, during the Avengers' time heist — treated his fragile mental state with sensitivity, allowing it to play into his larger character arc and making the near-immortal god that much more relatable for the audience.

According to Markus and McFeely, a few unnamed crew members took issue. "There was a sad moment where it was like, 'We've got this gross, disgusting body for Thor now,'" said Markus. "And then they unveiled it and it's just kind of like everybody else's body here."

McFeely, however, implied that it was not necessarily because they felt that Thor's condition was being handled with a lack of tact, but because the screenwriters had seen fit to send the character on his downward spiral at all. "There were many people on set who were angry at us about doing that to Thor," he said. Markus agreed, saying that it was simply a brutal shock to see just how despondent the mighty Odinson had become. "He kills the biggest bad guy in the MCU," he said, "and it's such a failure. It breaks him completely. He has no recourse at that point other than video games and beer."

It's worth pointing out that — going by Markus' remarks — it wasn't Thor's failure to go for the head at the crucial moment, but his subsequent killing of the Mad Titan in such a blatantly dishonorable fashion that was the final straw in breaking his spirit. It should also be noted that nobody, not even the God of Thunder, could put away that much beer without packing on a few pounds in the process — and that it's not like Thor went on any kind of crash diet before jumping back into the mix to take part in the Avengers' most important mission yet.

"I like that heroes come in all shapes and sizes," Markus said in defending the writers' decision to give Thor a little extra baggage of the physical variety. "He comes from a tradition of guys like Volstagg, of a big, ass-kicking fat guy. There's no reason that he has to slim down."

Of course, Marvel Cinematic Universe fans are an opinionated bunch, and no amount of explanation will keep a certain subset of them from finding fault not only with the narrative decision to saddle Odinson with depression and several extra pounds, but with the screenwriters' choice to mine his new appearance for what could be seen as tasteless gags. But it could also be argued that Thor's struggle with depression worked as a means of continuing to add depth to a character that was once seen as being one-note, and that Endgame made a point of showing that although said struggle had changed him physically, it had made him no less worthy. 

One of the most poignant moments in a film full of them came when, after receiving words of wisdom from Frigga in the Asgard of 2013, Thor is able to call Mjolnir to him. That he is able to do so brings tears to his eyes, and demonstrates for both him and the audience the truth in his mother's counsel: "Everyone fails at who they're supposed to be, Thor. The measure of a person, of a hero, is how well they succeed at being who they are."

Frankly, we hope that the character of Thor continues to be explored in interesting and unexpected ways, as he may be the only original Avenger who will continue to be a presence in the films of Phase 4. Endgame's conclusion saw him heading off into the cosmos to find new adventures with the Guardians of the Galaxy, and Tessa Thompson — who portrays New Asgard's new ruler Valkyrie — recently let slip to the Los Angeles Times that he might also very well be the first MCU character to get a fourth solo flick, with Thor: Ragnarok director Taika Waititi possibly being courted to return. Of course, it wouldn't be too surprising if the God of Thunder were to shed all those extra pounds before his next appearance, but one could simply chalk that up to there being no decent beer in space.