Tessa Thompson captivated audiences as the Valkyrie in Thor: Ragnarok last year, in a take on the character whose origin story had some significant differences from the comics. Now, Marvel has figured out the perfect way to bring Ragnarok’s Valkyrie to comics as well: She’s joining the Exiles.
The Exiles are one of the more unique superhero teams at Marvel, a handful of characters from different Marvel timelines and parallel earths, brought together by a trans-dimensional entity in order to hop through different realities, fixing problems in each one. Think Sliders, crossed with Quantum Leap, populated entirely by Marvel characters — a perfect way to make a nod to the Marvel Cinematic Universe without actually crossing them over.
The new Exiles series, set to release its first two issues in April, is being drawn by Javier Rodriguez and written by Saladin Ahmed. The book will feature team leader Blink, the pink, teleporting mutant; Khan, an older version of Kamala “Ms. Marvel” Khan; Iron Lad, a younger version of Kang the Conqueror; Wolvie (pictured above), a transplant from the chibi-fied X-Babies universe; and, of course, Valkyrie.
“Valkyrie’s a character who’s always appealed to me,” Ahmed said in a Marvel Press release. “Her iconic warrior-woman look — spear! sword! flying horse! — but also the juxtaposition of a kickass ancient fantasy hero operating in contemporary New York City. She’s a classic Marvel heroine.”
The version of Valkyrie appearing in his Exiles will be somewhat different, a “tankard-draining, maiden-wooing, giant-slaying thunderbolt of a woman” known as the Lone Defender of Asgard.
“Though she’s not technically from the Marvel Cinematic Universe reality,” Ahmed said, “she’s basically the literalization of the larger-than-her-physical-frame swagger that Tessa Thompson displayed in Thor: Ragnarok, turned up to 11.”
And that includes her queered sexuality, the writer confirmed on Twitter, if “maiden-wooing” was not clear enough. Valkyrie is canonically bisexual in Marvel comics, an element of her character that was eventually cut from the final edit of Thor: Ragnarok.
Exiles #1 will hit shelves on Apr. 11, with its second issue following only two weeks later, on Apr. 25.