The hero has faced his worst fear, encountered death and lived. This will always bring about a transformation and there is often a reward. This stage of the journey is also called Seizing the Sword. The hero takes possession of the thing he was really after, not the thing he thought he wanted.
The reward could be something like a weapon or an elixir, or just special knowledge or experience that helps the hero to understand himself or the world better as he continues on his journey. After all, we’re not out of the woods yet…
Thor doesn’t languish in S.H.I.E.L.D.’s prison for long. Erik Selvig, Jane’s friend and colleague, shows up with some fake I.D. and talks Agent Coulson into letting Thor go. Despite realising the I.D. is fake, Coulson agrees to free Thor – he wants to have him followed. On his way out of the complex, Thor grabs Jane’s notebook – despite everything, at least he can keep his promise to her.
Thor and Erik visit a bar in town to share drinks and stories. Thor talks about how he let his father down. He recognises his father was trying to teach him something but he was too stupid to see it. For the first time in his life, he says, he doesn’t know what to do. As the drinks go down, things start to get competitive and the night ends with Thor returning a hammered Erik to Jane’s campervan.
Thor and Jane sit outside, warming themselves by a fire in the darkness. Thor returns Jane’s notebook and encourages her to continue her research, apologising that he couldn’t get more of her stuff back. Thor explains how the Nine Realms of the Cosmos are all connected by the branches of the World Tree – Yggdrasil. He is from Asgard and Earth is Midgard. Later, as Jane sleeps, Thor thanks her and watches over her.
This is a huge transformation.
Thor is more humble, more human than we’ve seen him yet. He is starting to grow up. But there is more fighting to come…
Next: Thor takes the Road Back