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As is often the case when new rumors surrounding the Marvel Cinematic Universe surface, the internet and social media was ablaze about Christian Bale. The former Batman actor is rumored to currently be in talks with Marvel for a role in Taika Waititi’s next movie with the comic book titans, Thor: Love and Thunder.
Thor 4 will feature the return of Jane Foster played by Natalie Portman, who will take up the mantle of the God of Thunder. Also returning is Tessa Thompson as Valkyrie and Chris Hemsworth as Thor. Very little is currently known about the plot outside of Jane Foster somehow inheriting the powers of Thunder.
With Christian Bale possibly attached to the project it’s led fans to start speculating who he could possibly be portraying. The most popular choice so far is Beta Ray Bill. If you’re not familiar with Bill, that’s ok, we have you covered.
Who and what is Beta Ray Bill? Created by Walk Simonson, Bill was first introduced in Thor #337 in November of 1984. He’s from an alien race known as Korbinites which look like humanoid horse-people. He was first introduced when SHIELD detected a spacecraft and Nick Fury asked Thor to investigate. The ship detected Thor’s power and thinking he was a threat brought Beta Ray Bill out of stasis and the two did battle. Though they were equal in strength and fought to a stand still Bill ended up striking Mjolnir and being bestowed with similar powers and armor to that of the God of Thunder. Throughout the 1980s Beta Ray Bill served as a side character and ally to Thor several times.
Beta Ray Bill has continued to appear throughout Marvel media in the 1990s, 2000s and 2010s. For those who may think he’s just a Horse-headed version of Thor, his powers and abilities are described as coming from his advanced genetic engineering. His equine-like body wasn’t his original as his life force and consciousness was transferred to that body by scientists. He was bionically restructured into the Cyborg form of Beta Ray Bill. He possesses superhuman strength, speed, stamina and durability. He also has a much longer lifespan. Finally, Stormbreaker, which Thor currently owns as of Avengers Infinity War was originally Beta Ray Bill’s weapon. Finally, Beta Ray Bill also commandeers an advanced, sentient warship named Skuttlebutt.