Originally Posted by Surfer
Exactly, I think this makes the most sense. Thor returns with Loki. Loki goes to prison. Odin tells Thor he's ready to be king and gives him the crown. Both Earth and Asgard are attacked during his short reign as King and are equally in danger. Thor is forced to make a decision and returns the crown to Odin, so he can come to the aid of Jane Foster and defend the earth from evil. He saves Jane Foster and the earth, but on Asgard maybe Frigga dies (which creates a rift between him and Jane) as he feels responsible for leaving his home in it's hour of need to protect us and her. Basically every time he see's Jane he is reminded of his mom's death. Setting up an out for Natalie Portman and opportunity to begin exploring the Thor, Sif relationship.
I just don't see them killing off Odin though, or them taking his crown and giving it to Thor at least not long term. So, I think this is the most realistic solution.
I agree with your assessment.
I'm not entirely sure where they're going to go with Sif and Thor, though. I think the deciding factor on the fate of Odin and Jane Foster in this movie series all boils down to how much "staying power" Anthony Hopkins and Natalie Portman have with the franchise. Neither seem like the type of actor to want to extend their stay past Thor 2, but who knows.