When Does Thor: Ragnarok Take Place?

While so much of phase 3 hinges upon Thor: Ragnarok’s timeframe, most timelines place it incorrectly, for a simple, yet understandable mistake. This is part 17 of a 20 part video series discussing when each film in the MCU takes place. So when does Thor: Ragnarok take place?

“Voice activation required.” “Banner.” “Welcome, Strongest Avenger.” “Uhhh what?”

Thor: Ragnarok is unique in that it is the first film to literally give us no dates or years whatsoever. But there are big clues we can use to determine when it takes place. The biggest clue? “Banner, Listen…” “What?” “Sokovia, Ultron; that was 2 years ago.” “What’re you saying? Uhh? I’ve been Hulk for 2 years?” Banner reiterates his frustration at the fact that it’s been 2 years later in the film. “Maybe the fact that I was trapped for 2 years inside of a monster made me a little weird!” “He-he-hey! It’s okay.” So, as we determined in Part 11 and 13 of this series, the events in Sokovia occurred in the Summer of 2015. Two years from this date would be sometime in 2017. It’s generally assumed that the film occurs in November of 2017, considering the weather and attire in New York when Thor and Loki visit. And I have no qualms with that. We know that a good amount of time has passed since the main events in Doctor Strange, as he’s now fully adept at his powers.

But the confusion comes in with the mid-credits scene, which clearly occurs just before the start of Infinity War, which you’ll note that in Part 19, definitely takes place in 2018. So how can we reconcile this? There’s clearly what appears to be a 5-7 month gap between the end of the film and the start of the mid-credits scene. And why not? There are plenty of mid and post-credits scenes that don’t occur during the main timeframes of the films they’re attached to. This movie is no different. Many months pass between the end of Ragnarok and the start of the mid-credits scene.

And what about Sakaar? Are we to assume that Sakaar messed with the timeline of the film? After all, “time works real different around these parts.” This line may have been introduced to help explain the time disparity we discussed earlier, but as we mentioned, we don’t think that’s necessary. Also, Thor and Hela’s timeline never diverges in any meaningful way, so why complicate it when it’s already so clear? So all said, 99.4% of the film takes place in 2017, and .6% in 2018.

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