Thor: Love and Thunder is set to introduce Russell Crowe as Zeus, one of the strongest heroes in the MCU. So where was he during Phase 3?
Thor: Love and Thunder is set to introduce Russell Crowe as Zeus, one of the most powerful figures in the MCU. Zeus could defeat Thanos singlehandedly, so the film may have to address what the Olympian God was up to during the events of Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers: Endgame.
While Marvel is yet to confirm Zeus’ introduction into the MCU, Crowe himself stated that he will be portraying Zeus in Taiki Watiti’s upcoming Thor: Love and Thunder. Crowe joins Christian Bale, who is playing Love and Thunder villain Gorr the God Butcher, as one of the most high-profile additions to the MCU in a long time. While Zeus’ exact role in the events of the film remains unclear, the character’s immense power suggests plenty of potential moving forward, even if Crowe’s appearance is expected to be somewhat brief.
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Zeus is the ruler of the Olympian Gods, a race of super-humans. As their ruler, Zeus is referred to by the Gods as the Skyfather and is by far their most powerful member. The MCU’s version of Zeus is largely similar to the Zeus of Greek mythology. He is the God of Thunder and Wisdom, and the father of Hercules, who could be a potential replacement for Thor in the MCU. As the most powerful of the Olympian Gods, Zeus would have been capable of entirely overpowering the Mad Titan, but he was nowhere to be found during Phase 3 of the MCU. He is not the first character to force this dilemma for the MCU; Gilgamesh from Chloe Zhao’s Eternals would also likely destroy Thanos. But Zeus is even more powerful than Gilgamesh, and would have defeated Thanos with particular ease.
Zeus has superior strength, speed, and agility. He is essentially immortal, and features a healing factor as well. He has been deemed capable of defeating Hulk and even Galactus. Thor’s father Odin has been one of Zeus’ few worthy challengers in the comics, so it will be interesting to see whom the MCU designates as stronger: the Skyfather or the Allfather. Odin (Anthony Hopkins) is deceased in the MCU, and with Gorr the God Butcher on the loose, Zeus could be in danger as well. It is possible that Gorr hunts down and miraculously defeats Zeus, highlighting the extent of his threat to Thor and the broader MCU.
Still, the question remains as to where a powerful God like Zeus was during Thanos’ reign of terror. The seeming entirety of the universe eventually came together to defeat Thanos, so it seems unlikely that a figure like Zeus would have just stood idly by while Thanos wiped out half of humanity. This lingering question could just be a simple narrative gap in the MCU’s Phase 4, or it could be addressed directly. Perhaps Gorr and Zeus were already locked in conflict during the events of Infinity War and Endgame, keeping Zeus busy with an altogether different threat to his existence. Whatever the case, Thor: Love and Thunder is sure to be an explosive entry in the MCU, with one of the most powerful characters fans have ever seen now making his MCU debut.
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