Regarding improving this thread, a question I have is, "What does a successful post look like?" Having something specific to strive for would help me achieve it, I think.
Rock Sexton, if you are still out there, I realized overnight that you have stuck with us for at least 33 pages of this thread. Thanks for that! Considering that, I suppose there must have been some parts of it that you found rewarding. Are you able to articulate what has worked for you in this thread? Perhaps I will be able to focus on doing more of that in the future.
Elizah had suggested putting the bulk of the post in spoiler tags with summary statements outside the tags. I had the same idea overnight. It would be like reading the headlines on a news website. Someone could get a very brief idea of what the poster is thinking. If they think, "Oh yeah, that makes sense," then they can move on. If they think, "Wait--what??", then they can open the spoiler button to see why the poster thinks that way.
Elizah expressed the concern that it might be time consuming. Perhaps not. We could compose the post as before, and then write headlines for each section. Then we highlight and click the spoiler tag icon.
Here is an example using (somewhat) current topics of discussion:
I think the damage to the right side of Malekith's face is due to some sort of blast.
I think Loki's arc is more likely to be tangled up in a Ragnarok prophecy than the Kurse-Malekith arc.
Spoiler!!! Click to Read!:
I do like the idea of there being a non-specific prophecy, such as "the tyrant will be felled by his own right hand". Lots of prophecies leave themselves open to multiple interpretations. What I just proposed could mean the tyrant could commit suicide, or it could mean that his trusted adviser turns on him. In this case, they could set Algrim up in the place occupied by Wormwood in the Simonson telling: as Malekith's lieutenant. Then, ultimately, Algrim/Kurse kills Malekith and--oops--that part of the prophecy is fulfilled. This puts the good guys in the odd position of trying to protect Malekith. So I like those surprising turns of events.
Malevolent forces also could use that idea to think, "Well, Odin has been a tyrant all these millennia. What has Asgard ever done for us? Let's topple the tyrant. If it brings on Ragnarok, so be it. It's Asgard's prophecy anyway, so it probably refers just to the destruction of Asgard." So that would play into the idea we've been kicking around here of not everyone being satisfied with how Asgard has been running things.
But as Elizah said, Malekith is kind of small potatoes in the grand scheme of things. Plus, there sadly have been many, many tyrants, probably in all the Nine Realms, many of whom have been toppled by underlings or by their own doing, both of which would fulfill this prophecy. So it doesn't seem to fit as well in my mind.
THe original, mythic, prophecy has the death of Baldr triggering Ragnarök. So something involving one of Odin's sons seems closer to the original material. Plus, I have this vague recollection that in a recent book there was a prophecy involving Loki, and that Odin felt compelled to rescue him as an infant. So we are tied into the Marvel mythos by involving Loki that way.
Finally, Hiddleston has been suggesting that there might yet be a turn-around for Loki. So having him tied up in something along these lines might fit the bill.
So Jon (and Rock Sexton, and whomever else), I ask you whether you think something like the above example would achieve the desired effect. Elizah noted that there do not seem to be many people who are reading this thread. I hope that is not a sign that it is already too late. I hope we can make the discussion more robust.