Thor: Love and Thunder has crashed into theaters, bringing fans the long-awaited next entry in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, as well as Thor Odinson’s next wild adventure. One of the most anticipated aspects of this film has been the appearance of Jane Foster for the first time in nearly ten years.
Not only is Portman back as Foster, she’s also back in a huge way. Her turn of her as The Mighty Thor is one of the best parts of the MCU’s entire Phase Four so far. Though it was ultimately short-lived, fans are thankful for this redemptive, electrifying arc for Marvel’s brightest astrophysicist.
10 She Has Great Chemistry With Valkyrie
Since Thor’s journey off into the sunset with the Guardians of the Galaxy, Valkyrie had taken on the title of King of Asgard. Ella’s position ultimately seems to bore her, however, as she longs for the thrill of battle. As such, she struggles to let certain parts of her be seen by other people — except Jane Foster.
Though their relationship is built almost entirely off-screen, there is plenty on-screen to love. Whether they’re sharing supportive banter or teaching one another what it means to be a warrior, their’s is one of the most relatable relationships in the MCU.
9 Natalie Portman Finally Got An Active Role In The Plot
Despite being one of Hollywood’s most iconic actors, Natalie Portman was dreadfully underused the first two times she appeared in the MCU. In Thor: The Dark Worldin particular, she was given little to do but react to Thor’s brooding dialogue and be yanked by him to whatever nonsense plot location came next.
In love and thunder, Portman is an active member of the plot, pushing it forward just as much, if not more than Thor Odinson himself. The two of them truly share the spotlight, and the film is all the better for it.
8 She Showed What Thor Could Do With Brains
Thor Odinson is good at a lot of things. He’s capable of immense kindness, can best almost any foe in a physical match, and never fails to overcome the odds to save the world. A genius, however, he is not.
What makes The Mighty Thor so interesting is that she has Odison’s might, but retains Jane Foster’s unmatchable intellect. As such, she often makes more measured decisions than she could. She even fights smarter than he does, pulling off tricks like using the shards of Mjolnir to pin down the Necrosword.
7 Her Version Of Mjolnir Is The Best Mjolnir
Nobody wields Mjolnir like Jane Foster. Up until this point, fans had likely believed they’d seen all that Mjolnir could do in previous Thor films. Usually, the mystic hammer is either being thrown or swung. It’s why Waititi faced little backlash when he shattered the hammer in Thor: Ragnarok.
With the pieces reassembled to revive Jane Foster’s strength, the hammer itself somehow feels different. She wields Mjolnir with a steadier flow, sending it around her surroundings more freely, echoing her close relationship with her sentient weapon in the comics. Ella’s ability to use the hammer’s shards to strike multiple enemies is also a substantial upgrade and a lot of fun to watch.
6 It Honors All-New, All-Different Marvel
Jane Foster became The Mighty Thor in the comics during Jason Aaron’s seminal run with the character. This was part of Marvel Comics’ “All New, All Different” initiative, which sought to increase representation in their comics by creating new legacy characters.
Though the results were a mixed bag, the push was really admirable and ultimately paved the way for more diversity in comic book heroes and for moments like a woman playing Thor on the big screen. It proves what the MCU should have been saying all along. Anyone can wield the hammer, they just need to be worthy.
5 She Addressed Loose Plot Threads From Thor Films
One of the only head-scratching moments from Thor: Ragnarök was Jane Foster’s disappearance in between films. It was jarring for fans who had expected her to always be a part of Thor’s cast.
Thor: Love and Thunder explores Jane’s relationship with Thor Odinson in between Thor: The Dark World and Thor: Ragnarök, allowing audiences to finally understand why this relationship fell apart. The answers it offers make a lot of sense, and build upon the relationship fans have known for eleven years.
4 Seeing Her Interact With Thor In The Present
The fact that fans finally get to see these two characters reconnect for the first time in nearly ten years is huge. Luckily for everyone, the chemistry is still there. Many fans were in an entirely different place when Thor: The Dark World came out, so seeing these two on screen again is roughly as shocking as Thor reuniting with Jane in the first place.
It was an incredibly smart move from all involved to finally give the audience — and Thor himself — concrete closure on this iconic relationship. Some of the answers were more tragic than anticipated but they were satisfying, in their ways.
3 She Has A Different Style Of Comedy
Good characters in film support and uplift each other, allowing their peers to shine through whatever story is being told. Jane Foster has many moments where characters help her shine, but when it comes to comedy, she provides an incredible straight man for Thor Odinson’s wacky antics.
Of course, Jane also drops a few solid one-liners. Her sense of humor is refreshingly different than the other characters in the cast. Still, comedically, she’s at her best as the Jim to Thor’s Dwight.
two She Brings Nostalgia For Star Wars Fans
Though Taika Waititi may have forgotten Natalie Portman was a starwars alum, fans of the Prequel Trilogy sure haven’t. For many of them who were young when those films came out, Natalie Portman was a sci-fi action hero just as much as Harrison Ford or Carrie Fisher.
Despite this, fans haven’t gotten to see Portman shine as an action star in a mainstream, sci-fi hit since Revenge of the Sith. Hearing her shout nonsense as she takes down bad guys was delightfully nostalgic for millions of fans.
1 She Finally Proved Jane Foster Was A True Hero
Jane Foster was, unfortunately, apart of a thankfully brief era of MCU ingenues that included Pepper Potts, Betty Ross, and, arguably Peggy Carter. These characters were woefully underwritten and included as a conventional “prize” for the hero to win at the end of the film.
In Thor: Love and Thunder, Foster is finally given her long-overdue Captain Carter / Rescue moment; and it’s better than anyone could have expected. As The Mighty Thor, Jane Foster is the most defined she’s ever been, with a striking agency that some Marvel films still fail to give its female characters. She’s a genuinely refreshing and empowering hero for all audiences, one of the best gifts Thor you have ever given your fans.
NEXT: 10 Marvel Comic Easter Eggs In Thor: Love And Thunder Only Hardcore Fans Caught