Someone urgently felt that The Dark World needed to be funny, since comic bits are interlarded throughout the entire climactic battle, which itself veers into a Sherlock Jr. direction as Thor and Malekith are warped in all directions, for more reasons than are worth mentioning, as they try to battle in Greenwich. The situation seems ripe for absurdity, but Taylor may lack the writers' sense of humor, since the nearest he gets to a funny moment is when Thor materializes in an Underground station and, being a stranger in town, must take a train back to the fight. The sequence seems designed, almost perversely, to get Darcy involved as much as possible, warping her in and out of danger whenever things get too dramatic. There's never much danger of that, since by now the latest threat to the entire universe is unlikely to impress anyone, and most of the audience for this movie in particular is more interested in what Loki might be up to. Mostly (to summarize what I can without spoiling things) he's up to sulking in his Lecterite prison and making jokes. Sibling (or quasi-sibling) rivalry between Loki and Thor is a constant in the comics, but in Dark World what are they -- ten years old? In one scene Thor's trying to pilot an alien craft through some crowded Asgardian architecture -- don't ask -- while Loki snarks away like the god of backseat drivers. People adore Hiddleston, apparently, but in his third appearance he's starting to wear out my welcome, and Loki should not be doing that in a Thor franchise. Hiddleston has had his moments as the alpha villain of the Marvel movies, but he's also that dangerous cliche, the camp villain who gets all the good lines -- or at least the best these writers can come up with. I hope I won't be accused of taking superheroes too seriously if I insist on not having characters like that in my comic-book films. To be fair, however, Hiddleston may be the only thing making Dark World an entertaining experience for many viewers. For me, it just wasn't entertaining. With the arguable exception of Iron Man 2, it's the worst film of the Marvel series so far, and the first half of that was better than any of this. It may be too soon in a movie franchise for the sort of revisionist jolt Simonson gave the Thor comics, but after two films the Thor series is already repetitive and tiresome -- and a third one is just about a certainty. Just this year, of course, Iron Man 3 improved considerably on its predecessor, but the second Thor film gives us every reason to believe that the third will only be more of the same. In closing, I quote the ancient Norse bard:
'You ought to know before I go, I'm Thor,' he bid adieu.
'You're Thor,' said she, 'Consider me; I'm thorer, thir, than you.'