If you're one of those Avengers fans who only watches the actual Avengers films and the individual movies of your favorite hero, you may have missed out on the secondary characters of one particular branch's films. Idris Elba's Heimdall, who originally appeared in the Thor films, is one of those Marvel characters that gets lost in the shuffle when you focus on the happenings of the Avengers films, but he's due for an appearance in Avengers: Infinity War, and fans are thrilled. Popular among viewers, Heimdall finally gets to play with the big dogs in Infinity War, so for fans who may not be familiar with his character, who is Heimdall?
Known as the all-seeing and all-hearing Asgardian, Heimdall has appeared in all three Thor films as a loyal subject to Odin, the former King of Asgard and Thor's father, and the guardian of Bifrost Bridge, the portal to the other planets in the Nine Realms and other planets in the universe. After having little to do in the first two films, Elba finally had his time to shine as Heimdall in Thor: Ragnarok. When we last saw him, he was watching the Avengers fight against Thor's sister Hela, left to carry other Asgardians to safety while Thor and his team tried to extinguish evil. At the film's end, he and Thor decided to bring the remaining Asgardians to Earth.
Although we don't know what kind of role he'll play in Infinity War, Heimdall will hopefully assist the Avengers in stopping supervillain Thanos and tracking down the Infinity Stones. If you want to figure out more about him before seeing Avengers: Infinity War, here are four things you should know about Heimdall before spotting him in Infinity War's epic lineup.
1. His All-Seeing And All-Hearing Gifts Helped Him Guard The Bifrost Bridge
Heimdall's gift failed him in Thor when he didn't sense strangers intruding upon Odin's vaults, but the turn of events led to Thor also requesting to pass on the bridge and interrogate officials in the intruders' home country. Heimdall allowed them to pass, but immediately told Thor's father about their whereabouts. I like to think of him as a king's sidekick in the spirit of Sebastian from The Little Mermaid — just me?
Heimdall even stuck to his loyalty when Odin's adopted son Loki forced himself upon the Asgardian throne and demanded him to obey him. Heimdall agreed to follow Loki's orders, but eventually turned on him, causing Loki to freeze him in a block of ice.
2. He And Thor Eventually Rebuilt the Bifrost Bridge After Its Destruction
After the bridge was destroyed, the prelude of Thor: The Dark World showed Thor and Heimdall using the Tesseract to rebuild the Bifrost. Using the portal to cross paths into other planets continued for the Asgargians, and Heimdall maintained his faithful position overlooking the borders of Asgard. The specifics of his job also kicked off the sequel's plotline of Thor trying to track down his human girlfriend Jane Foster, as Heimdall admitted to Thor that he had lost track of her whereabouts on Earth somehow.
3. Heimdall Was A Protector In 'Thor: Ragnarok'
When Hela began her evil reign in Asgard in the third Thor film, Heimdall began to look after Asgardian citizens, organizing a secret refuge to help people flee the city. Hela eventually found out about Heimdall's mission, but he sensed her approach and began evacuating refugees. Some of Hela's soldiers soon blocked his path, prompting Heimdall to fight against them and Valkyrie and the Hulk to eventually join him in the mission.
4. Idris Elba Wishes He Had A Bigger Role In The Marvel Universe
You'd be hard-pressed to find movie fans who don't love Idris Elba, and while he's normally in more gritty, dramatic films, it seems that he has always enjoyed his time on Marvel projects and would like to do more with the studio. Speaking to Entertainment Weekly last October, he revealed:
I like that I have a little part in Thor. I’m neither movie star or day player. It allows me to do other things I love. The last one [Ragnarok] was fun. The others weren’t fun. They’re work. But on this one, Taika [Waititi, the director] was great. I wish I was more present in the Marvel family. I like what I have, but I also wish that I had a bigger character in the Marvel universe. It’s been great, but I kinda think I need a bit more. I want to be a superhero. I like the idea of that.
Again, we don't know the extent of Elba's role in Avengers: Infinity War, but surely simply being Idris Elba scores him a big scene with the entire Avengers team, right? It sounds like Heimdall will be Earth-bound with Thor when the film opens, so fingers crossed that he'll meet the other Avengers ASAP and get the screen time he deserves.
Avengers: Infinity War hits theaters on Friday, April 27.