'Avengers: Endgame': Captain America and Thor Aren't The Only Heroes To Control Moljnir in the MCU

'Avengers: Endgame': Captain America and Thor Aren't The Only Heroes To Control Moljnir in the MCU

10/05/2020

The Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) is popular, in part, because it has a little bit of something for everyone. Whether somebody has read every last Marvel comic there is or goes into the series blind, there’s going to be something for them.

For this reason, the franchise has become a popular grounds for speculation about every little action laid down by the villains. Sometimes, this seems like far-out interpretations of barely-there subtext.

Others, it provides a look into the universe that, at the very least, raises some valid questions. To view this, look no further than Captain America, Thor, and the Norse god’s hammer, Moljnir. 

Moljnir in the MCU

Moljnir made its MCU debut before Thor did. In many ways, Iron Man 2  was the first look into the expanded Marvel universe that fans know today. Not only did it feature Nick Fury past his introduction at the end of the first film’s credits, but it expanded the roles of Happy and Pepper Potts while introducing Black Widow. 

At the end of the film, however, early Marvel staple Agent Coulson discovers a hammer in the desert that nobody seems capable of lifting. This led the way to Thor. In Thor, the Asgardian god (played by Chris Hemsworth) finds his way on planet earth and regains his mighty hammer. Both Thor and the Hammer became staples of the MCU thereafter. 

When Captain America (Chris Evans) finally met Thor (Chris Hemsworth) in the first Avengers movie, the pair formed a friendly rivalry. While Captain America was a superhuman in his own right, he was no match for Thor or his hammer.

For several films, Captain America tried to prove his worth by lifting Moljnir. In the second Avengers movie, he appeared close to doing so. 

However, it wasn’t until the final battle in Endgame that he finally got to wield its power. That said, the first Easter Egg lies in the second Avengers movie when fans see the hammer slightly move and Thor noticing it. In Endgame, after seeing Captain America handling the hammer, Thor mutters: “I knew it.” This suggests even Thor knew, deep down, that Captain America was worthy.

Captain gets his hand on Moljnir

Like Excalibur, Moljnir can only be lifted by those that are worthy to do so. Up until Thor’s sister, Hela, broke Moljnir. Many believed that Thor was the only one who fit the bill. However, after the Avengers went on an adventure that took them through space and time after Thanos snapped half of the universe into oblivion, Captain America shocked the world by wielding the mighty hammer himself. 

Audiences across the world erupted after creative editing showed the hammer fly as though it were going to Thor only to end up in the American hero’s hands. Eagle-eyed observers noticed something peculiar about the moment, too. 

Happy accident or brilliant Easter Egg?

Fans on Reddit have speculated on nearly every aspect of every Marvel movie at this point. However, until recently, Captain America’s shining moment wasn’t thoroughly dissected.

After Reddit user u/Moohamin12 noted that Captain America catches the hammer much like he would his shield, users speculated that it was either a brilliant easter egg bringing the two together or Evans doing what he’d done for years unknowingly. 

Jake Kleinman of Inverse elaborated on the fan theory.

What explains the difference? There are a few different possibilities. From a narrative perspective, it makes sense that Captain America would flinch a bit when Moljnir flies through the air straight at his face. After all, he’s not used to the weapon and, while he might be a superhero, he’s not a god. By comparison, Thor is clearly comfortable with the weapon; even in his darkest moment while traveling back in time to Asgard, he never flinches when the hammer careens towards him from across the city.

Whether it was an actor’s choice, a hidden Easter Egg, or a simple random gesture is up for debate. However, Captain America’s show-stopping moment shows precisely what makes the MCU different from other universes. Fans are willing to buy into a broad scope of coincidences and ideas. Regardless of intention, they often fit right into the mythology. 

Who else can wield Thor’s Mjolnir?

It’s not just Captain America and Thor. According to CBR, the comics have shown Beta Ray Bill and Jane Foster have been worthy to lift Mjolnir. In more recent comics, courtesy to the hammer acting strangely, Loki and a non-hero named Adam Aziz were able to wield the weapon.

While many of these characters aren’t in the MCU outside of the comic books, it’s unclear what the future holds. Suffice to say the Asgardian weapon’s saga will only grow bigger in the coming years, as Thor is poised to retake the screen in the upcoming Thor: Love & Thunder. Jane Foster is also making a comeback in this film, so perhaps fans will see actor Natalie Portman handle Mjolnir.

CBR reports that Avengers #36 reveals that the Black Panther is able to control Mjolnir on some level. Many reports suggest T’Challa’s sister Shuri will be the new Black Panther on screen, in light of actor Chadwick Boseman’s tragic passing. Whether the creative team show her worthy to control Mjolnir is yet to be determined.

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