After years of waiting, the Marvel Cinematic Universe will finally take a big step forward with its representation.
Tessa Thompson has officially confirmed that Valkyrie will be the first major LGBTQ+ hero in the MCU. At San Diego Comic-Con International, Thompson spilled the very first details on Valkyrie's role in the upcoming Thor: Love and Thunder.
"As new king, she needs to find her new queen," the Westworld actress stated."So that'll be her first order of business. She has some ideas. I'll keep you posted."
This is in reference to a key plot point in Avengers: Endgame, in which Chris Hemsworth's Thor ordained Thompson's Valkyrie to be the new king of Asgard. The exact ramifications of that decision were up in the air, so it seems like Love and Thunder will put a square focus on what Valkyrie's rule looks like.
MCU head honcho Kevin Feige backed up Thompson's statements in a later interview.
"The answer is yes," Feige confirmed with i09, when asked if Valkyrie would be the franchise's first LGBTQ+ hero. “How that impacts the story remains to be seen with that level of representation you’ll see across our films, not in just Thor 4.”
Feige's confirmation seems to indicate that Valkyrie will be the first of many steps taken towards inclusion in the MCU. This can only be a good thing, especially considering some fans' dissatisfaction with the franchise's lack of queer representation. Many have decried the MCU's lack of acknowledgment of queerness to be baiting of its fanbase, so this explicit statement of intent is sure to come as a big relief for many.
How well Thor: Love and Thunder handles its representation, exactly, remains to be seen. There's also the fact that some major territories explicitly ban depictions of same-sex relationships in media, which might make Disney balk at a serious commitment beyond a few easily removable scenes.
We'll just have to wait and see when Thor: Love and Thunder hits theaters in 2021.