Screen Time: Loki (Season One)

Season One

Air Date: 9 June 2021 to 14 July 2021
Network: Disney+
Stars: Tom Hiddleston, Owen Wilson, Sophia Di Martino, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Wunmi Mosaku, and Jonathan Majors

The Background:
It’s hard to deny that the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) has evolved from humble beginnings into a nigh-unstoppable multimedia juggernaut. Although Marvel Studios dabbled in television ventures before with the likes of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (2013 to 2020) and their Netflix productions, the launch of Disney+ saw head honcho Kevin Feige produce a number of streaming shows that aimed to maintain and expand the continuity of the MCU going forward. Considering how popular Tom Hiddleston’s rendition of the Norse God of Mischief, Loki Laufeyson, has been since his first appearance in the MCU, it’s perhaps not surprising (or, dare I saw it, inevitable) that he was received his own spin-off series in which he would be revealed to have been causing mischief throughout history. The project was seen as the perfect opportunity to fill in some blanks in the MCU, expand Loki’s character and relationships, and help lay the foundation for Phase Four’s focus on exploring the vast multiverse and branching timelines within the MCU. Originally conceived of as a single-season show, Loki was extended into a second season to better develop the show’s intricate plot points, which explored the nature of Loki’s character and fate and the complexities of time and reality in the MCU. Loki’s debut episode was the most-watched series premiere on Disney+ the week it launched and the show was met with universal praise; critics loved the banter between Loki and Mobius M. Mobius (Wilson), the unique nature of its presentation and narrative, and the show’s focus on expanding the scope of the MCU beyond even the all-powerful Infinity Stones. While a second series is in development, the show’s fallout was established to have significant impact on the MCU’s fourth phase and immediate future thanks to establishing that time has been fractured and literally anything is now possible.

The Plot:
After stealing the Tesseract during the events of Avengers: Endgame (Russo and Russo, 2019), an alternate version of Loki is brought to the mysterious Time Variance Authority (TVA), a bureaucratic organisation that polices time. They give Loki a choice between being erased from existence due to being a “time variant” or helping to fix the timeline and stop a greater threat.

The Review:
It’s actually been pretty fun catching up with the 2021 Marvel Disney+ shows this year; I was a bit late getting to them because my television and service provider don’t carry the app, and it just isn’t the same watching on a smaller screen. Since it’s looking like we won’t get a home media release, this seems like as good a time as any to catch up with Loki since Thor: Love and Thunder (Waititi, 2022) releases tomorrow, though I will say that I wasn’t too excited at the prospect of Loki getting his own spin-off series. It’s not that I don’t enjoy the character, but his death in Avengers: Endgame seemed like a fitting end to his story and continuing one with his character like a decision geared more towards cashing in on Tom Hiddleston’s popularity more than anything else. As it turned out, though, Loki proved to be one of the most essential and important aspects of the MCU’s fourth phase thanks to it delving deep into the multiverse and exploring the scope of the time travel elements introduced in Avengers: Endgame that would become so important throughout subsequent MCU productions.

Loki is apprehended by the TVA and coerced into helping hunt down a dangerous variant of his.

Loki begins by reusing footage from Avengers: Endgame to remind viewers that an alternative version of Loki stole the Tesseract from the Avengers during their time heist, and goes on to show that he teleported to the Gobi Desert; however, his attempt to subjugate a group of Mongolians is interrupted by “Minutemen” from the TVA, who arrest Loki for “crimes against the Sacred Timeline”. Although he is a formidable opponent thanks to his Asgardian durability and powers of illusion and deception, Loki is completely baffled by the TVA, who are able to slow his personal perception of time to a crawl while still allowing him to feel pain in “real time” and “rewind” him whenever he tries to escape thanks to fitting him with a “Time Twister” collar. Confused and insulted at the bureaucratic and humiliating methods of his captors, Loki is nonetheless powerless to oppose them and forced to stand trial for his crimes when he’s brought before Judge Ravonna Renslayer (Mbatha-Raw) in what amounts to a kangaroo court. He’s given no representation, has little understanding of the crimes committed against him, and makes a good point that it was the Avengers who disrupted the timeline rather than him. However, his proposition to hunt them down as recompense for their actions is dismissed since they were “supposed” to travel through time, but he wasn’t meant to escape. Naturally, Loki finds this accusation ludicrous; after all, how was he supposed to know that he wasn’t meant to take advantage of that situation according to his nature? His requests to meet with the Time-Keepers are denied as their “busy” dictating the “proper flow” of the Sacred Timeline, and is found guilty of his crimes and sentenced to be “reset”, much to his outrage. However, he’s spared from this vague fate by the intervention of TVA analyst Mobius M. Mobius, who recruits Loki to help investigate a series of Minutemen killings across the Sacred Timeline perpetrated by a mysterious individual who has also been stealing the “reset charges” the Minutemen use to “reset the timeline” after a divergence. The somewhat jaded but nonetheless approachable Mobius interrogates Loki to get to the root of his selfish ambitions; Loki desires little more than to rule the Nine Realms and believes that all life is beneath him, and that only he has the power and wisdom to maintain order across reality. Mobius is disappointed that Loki wants to squander his vast potential on merely oppressing others and forces him to relive, through a movie projection, his subjectively-recent failure against the Avengers and the mischief he caused as D.B. Cooper. Loki rejects the notion that he’s not in control of his own actions or destiny, which he adamantly believes is to rule, but Mobius questions Loki’s violent and selfish ways as they’ve brought him nothing but failure and, to press this point, shows Loki the life that his mainline counterpart lived: in a harrowing moment, Loki’s devastated to view the footage of his selfishness resulting in his mother’ Frigga’s (Rene Russo) death.

Mobius is a loyal agent of the TVA, which polices the Sacred Timeline, but has a fondness for Loki.

Mobius confronts Loki with the truth: that he wasn’t born to rule, he was born to cause pain and suffering in order for others to be the best versions of themselves. Mobius admires Loki’s mischievousness and adaptability, but is adamant that he can provide much-needed insight into his investigation. The vast, brass-hued offices of the TVA headquarters exists outside of time and is where disruptive “variants” such as Loki are tried for their crimes. The interior merges out-dated technology and aesthetics with advanced time-altering devices and a reality-warping science-fiction exterior. The TVA is all about rules, regulations, paperwork, and bureaucracy; time “passes differently” there, so no one really knows how long they’ve been there, and no magic works there. The purpose of the TVA is explained to a baffled Loki by Miss Minutes (Tara Strong), the organisation’s chirpy and pretentious anthropomorphic cartoon mascot; a long time ago, a devastating multiversal war threatened to destroy all reality itself before the enigmatic Time-Keepers (voiced by Majors) amalgamated the infinitesimal separate timelines into the Sacred Timeline, and stood guard over it to keep time flowing in the proper order. When “variants” deviate from the Sacred Timeline, it creates a “Nexus Event” which could cause full-scale madness as the timeline splits into multiple branches and heads towards another multiversal war. Thus, the Time-Keepers created the TVA to maintain and police the Sacred Timeline, removing variants and setting the timeline back to normal; Loki is not only sceptical but finds the prospect of “three space lizards” deciding the fate of trillions of lives to be an absurdity. He sees the TVA as an illusion, a desperate attempt at controlling “the weak” by inspiring fear in others, but is convinced of their power after finding that the Infinity Stones are powerless there (which is a fun shorthand to show just how the TVA is far beyond anything we’ve seen in the MCU up until this point). Curious, he views more of his counterpart’s life and, over the course of an emotional and distressing sequence, sees all of the character progression the “prime” Loki went through, including grieving for his father, Odin Allfather (Anthony Hopkins), reuniting with his brother, Thor Odinson (Chris Hemsworth), and ultimately perishing at the hands of Thanos (Josh Brolin) to protect his brother and his fellow Asgardians. Having witnessed first-hand the potential for heroism and honour within him, Loki admits to Mobius that he doesn’t enjoy killing or hurting others; it’s just part of his own illusion to assert control of himself and others.

Hunter B-15 and Ravonna distrust Loki and question Mobius’ fascination with him even after learning the truth.

Since he can’t return to the timeline, Loki is intrigued to learn that Mobius’s target is another Loki variant who has been specifically targeting Minutemen, and he agrees to assist in the hopes of gaining an audience with the Time-Keepers. Neither Ravonna Renslayer or Hunter B-15 (Mosaku) approve of Loki’s involvement, seeing him as both a liability and an untrustworthy, insubordinate backstabber. Mobius, however, fully believes that Loki can provide unique insight into his counterpart’s thinking and methods and that anyone, even a Loki, is capable of change, despite this being directly against the Time-Keepers’ design. Ravonna is the only one in the TVA depicted as having met and communicated with the Time-Keepers, who are eventually revealed to be wizened, amphibious alien creatures who sit in a huge, foreboding stone chamber beneath the TVA and lord their presence and power by positioning themselves above all others. Ravonna is absolutely loyal to the Time-Keepers’ vision for stability and order; she enforces their will without question and, even when their true nature is revealed and she’s fully aware that she and everyone in the TVA (to say nothing of everyone ever) have been deceived and manipulated. She has a particular vendetta against Loki, whose variants have a reputation as troublemakers and has personally seen to it that many different versions of him have been “pruned” for violating the Time-Keepers’ laws. She has a close relationship with Mobius, one based on a shared belief in the TVA and on mutual respect; while he’s never met the Time-Keepers and is a little off put that she keeps trophies of his investigations in her office, it’s clear that they have a lot of faith in each other’s abilities, and she thus questions Mobius’s trust in Loki and the two even end up set against each other by the finale. After Ravonna literally stabs him in the back since she maintains that the TVA can’t have been for nothing, regardless of the truth, Mobius tries to appeal to her morals in an attempt to rebuild the TVA into something better to avoid stripping people of their free will, but she refuses and heads out to find her own purpose, clearly hurt that he threw away their friendship and mission in favour of Loki.

Sylvie is obsessed with bringing down the TVA and confronting whomever is behind ruining her life.

Still, Ravonna remains a vindictive, bureaucratic administrator; she had no qualms about arresting a female variant of Loki for “crimes against the Sacred Timeline” when she was just a little girl (Cailey Fleming) and guilty of little more than existing and playing with her toys. Although terrified, she swiped Ravonna’s TemPad and fled into the timestream, and Ravonna has been pursuing her ever since. Everywhere the variant went caused a Nexus Event as her timeline was erased and she wasn’t supposed to exist, so she found sanctuary at the ends of worlds and civilisations and, over time, grew to resent and hate the TVA for taking everything away from her. Renouncing the name Loki, she grew up to become Sylvie (Di Martino) and used the TVA’s own technology to hunt down their Minutemen and swipe their reset charges with the express purpose of “bombing” the Sacred Timeline and throwing the TVA into chaos. Unlike Loki, who relies on his daggers and illusions to combat and deceive others, Sylvie is adept at enchantment; through physical contact, she draws upon her victim’s memories to enthrall them with lifelike illusions. This power has the additional impact of revealing that Minutemen like Hunter B-15 and Hunter C-20 (Sasha Lane) (and, in fact, everyone at the TVA) are all variants who were plucked from their lives and turned into the Time-Keepers’ puppets. Although they are as condescending, narcissistic, and deceptive as each other, Sylvie is very different from her male counterpart; she’s more direct and brutal, for one thing, has a greater knowledge of the TVA and time travel, for another, and has a very different history thanks to Ravonna’s meddling. Not only was she aware of her true heritage from an early age, but she spent the majority of her life on the run from the TVA and thus wasn’t trained in magic by Frigga. Instead, she taught herself and, as a result, her powers and experiences are very different from Loki’s; like him, she is alone and finds it difficult to trust others, preferring to use and cast them aside as a means to an end, but she’s also become paranoid and self-reliant after a lifetime of running. Her goal is to infiltrate the TVA, tear it down from the inside out, and confront the Time-Keepers directly; a goal she succeeds at, only to learn that the Time-Keepers are merely mechanical constructs and part of a greater deception. Thus, she sets out to find the puppet master behind the Time-Keepers and is forced into an alliance with Loki to reach her goals.

In the ultimate narcissistic move, Loki falls for “himself” and throws the multiverse into chaos as a result.

Mobius knew that Loki wouldn’t be able to resist proving himself the superior of the two, but even he is astounded to discover that Loki has fallen for his female counterpart; although they are antagonistic with each other and constantly playing a game of one-upmanship against each other, especially in the early going, Loki and Sylvie are forced to rely on one another to survive. When trapped on Lamentis-1 and facing their imminent death, Loki delivers a rousing speech painting Sylvie as a survivor who was able to slip through the TVA’s fingers and almost single-handedly destroy their entire organisation and, when they hold hands and take solace in each other’s company, it causes a Nexus Event greater than anything the TVA have seen before. After being apprehended and subjected to a time loop where Lady Sif (Jaimie Alexander) repeatedly beats and berates him, Loki lies to Mobius in order to protect Sylvie and is visibly hurt when his former friend lies about her demise and relieved to learn that she’s still alive. Sylvie is furious when she learns that the Time-Keepers are mere puppets, and equally devastated when Ravonna appears to erase Loki from existence right before her eyes just as he was about to admit his true feelings to her. Since pruned timelines and variants are impossible to completely destroy or reset, they’re transported to the “Void”, a post-apocalyptic wasteland filled with relics from deleted timelines (it even includes Thanos’ helicopter!) and home to Alioth, a massive cloud-like creature that hunts and consumes all life. When Sylvie learns of this, she transports herself there specifically to reunite with Loki and to push past the Void and to the man behind the TVA; this involves a significant risk as Sylvie proposes enchanting the monstrous Alioth. As this venture could cost them their lives, Loki and Sylvie share an intimate moment beforehand, one made more awkward by their inability to properly express, trust, or connect with others; Loki promises that, despite this chequered past, he has no intentions to betray her even if he gained his coveted throne and they promise to figure out where they go next once they’ve achieved their goal.

The Void is home to the monstrous Alioth and a whole slew of Loki variants.

Loki takes the concept of multiple timelines and really runs with it; in the MCU, divergent timelines are created due to time travel or going against the Sacred Timeline, and this can lead to completely new universes and new variations on characters and worlds forming. The TVA is made up of these variants, who have no memory of their previous lives, and is built on a series of rules that dictate how the timestream works: Minutemen can’t just travel to before an incident occurred since Nexus Events disrupt the time flow and can only be pruned in real time, and variants like Sylvie can effectively avoid detection by hiding out at the worst Nexus Events in history, such as cataclysmic events like the destruction of Pompeii. Reset timelines and pruned variants are sent to the Void to be consumed by Alioth, and Loki is stunned to find this hellscape populated by more of his variants: Kid Loki (Jack Veal), “Boastful” Loki (DeObia Oparei), Alligator Loki (Wally), and Richard E. Grant in a 100% comic-accurate costume as “Classic” Loki! The variants encourage Loki to focus on staying alive rather than trying to escape and take him to their underground shelter and share their Nexus Events: Kid Loki killed his version o Thor, Boastful Loki claims to have defeated all of the Avengers and taken the Infinity Stones for himself, Alligator Loki(who the Lokis are able to understand presumably telepathically, though we never hear his thoughts) ate the “wrong neighbour’s cat”, and Classic Loki used his magic to fool Thanos with an illusion and was arrested the moment he tried to leave his a self-imposed exile. Loki is dismayed to see all of his worst attributes on show: Boastful Loki betrays his comrades to President Loki (Hiddleston) and his rag-tag group of variants, who promptly turn on him and cause them to waste their energies in petty squabbles and fighting. Classic and Kid Loki lament their fate to constantly lie and cheat and betray each other, and to be doomed to the Void as the “God of Outcasts” whenever they try to change their nature, but Loki remains determined to kill Alioth and bring down the TVA.

Quite unexpectedly, Loki forges some real friendships and relationships but is constantly judged for his past deeds.

Despite his untrustworthy and deceptive nature, Loki forms a bond with Mobius that quickly develops into an unlikely friendship; a self-confessed fan of Loki’s, he fully believes that there’s more to the God of Mischief than the Sacred Timeline would suggest, and he’s personally hurt when Loki appears to have betrayed him and joined forces with Sylvie, a notorious killer. However, when he learns of Ravonna’s deception and the true nature of the TVA, he and Loki reach an understanding of trust and true friendship, only for Loki to be left devastated when Ravonna seemingly erases Mobius from existence in a scene that has more than a few visual, thematic, and emotional parallels to Loki’s murder of Agent Phil Coulson (Clark Gregg). Thankfully for Loki (and the audience), Mobius is merely transported to the Void, where he has an emotional reunion with Loki before sharing a heartfelt hug with his newfound friend and heading back to the TVA to “burn it to the ground”. Loki also finds allies in his Void variants; while they refuse to leave the Void since it’s now their home and find the idea of challenging Alioth laughable, Kid Loki gifts Loki with a blade and Classic Loki, moved by Loki’s plight and ambition, uses all of his powers to distract Alioth with a full-scale recreation of Asgard at the cost of his life. Of course, his greatest and most unpredictable ally is Sylvie; although they are united in their desire to confront the one behind the TVA and in rejecting the idea that they’re not in control of their destinies, Sylvie is absolutely obsessed with getting revenge for her stolen life and refuses to make any compromises. Thus, the two come to blows since Loki has managed to change his true nature but Sylvie is unable to let go of her past. Seeing his intervention as a betrayal, she fights him in the Citadel at the End of Time with all of the multiverse in the balance, but he repeatedly tries to reason with her; he doesn’t want to hurt her, or anyone else, and tries to convince her that the situation is bigger than either of them but she sees it another of his deceptions to achieve his “glorious purpose”. Although Loki believes that he’s gotten through to her and the two share a tender kiss, he’s devastated when she uses the TemPad to send him back to the TVA and has her revenge on the one responsible for her pain.

Unable to let go of her pain, Sylvie kills He Who Remains and seemingly dooms the multiverse to all-out war.

This would be the enigmatic “He Who Remains” (Majors), an eccentric man clearly driven mad by untold aeons of isolation and the pressure of presiding over all of time and space in the Citadel at the End of Time, a surreal cosmic wasteland devoid of life where time has no meaning. There, the Sacred Timeline exists as a perpetual stream of boundless energy, like a concentric ring of water surrounding the ancient, decrepit, cracked citadel. Upon arrival, Loki and Sylvie reject his offer to reinsert them into the Sacred Timeline in a non-disruptive way and allow Loki to reign over all of his universe with the Infinity Gauntlet and give Sylvie the happiness she desires. He Who Remains is said to see all, control all, and be all that is left at the beginning and the end of time; accordingly, he’s easily able to avoid Sylvie’s attempts to kill him using a pre-programmed TemPad since all of life, our decisions, actions, and words, is recorded in volumes of typed up pages, like a movie script, providing him cosmic awareness. Although they’re angered and insulted at the idea of one man dictating the course of their lives, and everyone else’s, he admires their tenacity and adaptability but fully believes that his deceptive methods, and the TVA, were necessary to protect the Sacred Timeline from multiversal war and his far less benevolent variants. He reveals that, long ago, his variants discovered the multiverse and came together in narcissistic and self-congratulatory peace. Soon, some of them saw it as an opportunity to conquer new worlds and all-out war broke out; contrary to the Time-Keeper dogma, He Who Remains explains that he found Alioth (a creature “created from all the tears in reality”), experimented on it, and harnessed its power to consume all of time and space end to the mutiversal war. He then isolated his timeline and set up the TVA to not only keep divergences from arising but also keep his evil variants from creating more explicitly “evil” havoc. He then offers Loki and Sylvie two choices: kill him and risk something worse taking his place or take over as the overseers of the Sacred Timeline to ensure stability. Naturally, Loki and Sylvie are incredulous, but his explanation is simple: he’s tired and far older than his appearance would suggest and desires someone young and eager to take on the burden. Unable to see past that point in the conversation, and with the timelines beginning to diverge, he’s genuinely excited to see what path they choose. Fully aware that, eventually, he will end up back there as always, He Who Remains doesn’t resist when Sylvie kills him, resulting not only in the Sacred Time to rapidly and uncontrollably splintering into an infinitesimal number of branches but Loki finding all memory of him has been erased and a variant of He Who Remains has replaced the Time-Keepers as the overseer of the TVA!

The Summary:   
I was pleasantly surprised by Loki; as mentioned, I had become a little burnt out by the character (even though I initially believed that Avengers: Endgame would end with the revelation that he was still alive and causing mischief in the universe) because of how often he crops up and how popular he is, but Tom Hiddleston absolutely kills it in the role and it’s a joy to see him given more time to shine in this show. Like the other Disney+ shows, Loki’s presentation is absolutely top-notch and on par with that of its silver screen cousins; I initially wasn’t a fan of the multi-font title, but the shifting fonts really sold the idea of there being countless variants of worlds and characters and I absolutely loved the anachronistic, nonsensical presentation of the TVA. Nothing there makes any sense as there’s outdated computers and naïve office workers existing side-by-side with reality-warping technology and futuristic gadgets, all of which makes it very surreal and visually interesting. Even the sight of Loki garbed in a mundane shirt and tie and going through files of paperwork to get a lead on Sylvie ties into the bizarre nature of the show; for all their power, omniscience, and ability, the TVA is still reduced to filing paperwork and going through the motions of bureaucracy as dictated by an unseen corporate overlord. While it was jarring to have “Lamentis” (Herron, 2021) set largely on a train mid-way through the season, this allowed for a fantastic introspective discussion of Loki and Sylvie’s nature, differences, and characters and the show more than made up for it with the spectacle of Lamentis-1’s impending doom, the many visual Easter Eggs to spot scattered around the Void, and the cosmic eccentricity of the Citadel at the End of Time.  

Loki is full of great, and surprisingly emotional, performances from all of its cast.

As mentioned, it’s the performances that really help Loki to shine; although Hiddleston is playing a different, far less humbled and heroic version of Loki (this Loki was literally leading an alien invasion of New York City and causing untold death and destruction for his own ends mere moments before he was arrested), the implication is explicitly made that Loki has always been this misguided and tortured character. His issues go far beyond being overlooked in favour of his brother or undervalued because of his true nature as a Frost Giant and instead tie into the show’s overall themes regarding destiny. Loki believes it is his right to rule, to subjugate others to his will, but admits that he has no real desire to hurt or kill others; it’s simply part of the nature and the illusion of being in control he is projecting. His relationship with Sylvie and the other variants helps him to see the ugly side of his true nature almost as much as the noble end to his mainline counterpart and he very quickly grows beyond his own selfish desires. However, despite his growth as a character, he’s continuously judged because of his past misdeeds and his reputation as a trickster; even those closest to him, such as Mobius, Sylvie, and the other Lokis, have difficulty trusting that he’s not just playing some larger endgame to seize power for himself and, in the end, he has to prove it by physically opposing the one person he’s grown to care about (who is, ironically, “himself”). I was also surprised to find that Owen Wilson was a standout addition to the cast; I’m no fan of his but he excelled in his role, projecting a friendly and affable demeanour while also being somewhat conflicted. He truly believes in the TVA’s mission but also believes in free will and people’s capacity for change; little things like his desire for a jet ski and his loyalty to Loki above even the TVA help to make him an enjoyable character and I really liked the rapport between him and Loki.

Loki’s experiences see him change from a selfish trickster to fighting to ensure the stability of the multiverse.

Mobius and the other variants help to tie into another of the show’s themes, that of destiny versus free will. Even Classic Loki finds it difficult to believe that a Loki could ever be more than a conniving, backstabbing traitor, and Mobius is driven to reveal the truth of the TVA to Hunter B-15 and all of the Minutemen simply because he believes it’s not their right to take free will away from anyone, regardless of the will of the Sacred Timeline. Loki actively and adamantly resists the notion that he’s not in control of his actions; he recognises power, for sure, but not that he’s some mere puppet, even when the truth is staring him in the face. However, his desire to be free from the TVA’s machinations become secondary to the fate of all reality when he learns that killing He Who Remains will result in rampant timelines and the coming of an even worse, far less reasonable threat. He battles Sylvie not because he desires to be lord of all space and time but because he feels it’s their responsibility to keep the timeline safe and that they can be far more benevolent overseers of the Sacred Timeline. When the first trailers for Loki came out, I was concerned that it was going to be a throwaway show depicting Loki popping up throughout time to cause mischief but, instead, Loki greatly expands upon the idea of time travel in the MCU, showing that this rather mundane-looking organisation routinely prunes and maintains the Sacred Timeline but also opening up the possibility of different actors playing different versions of these characters. This not only gave us the great Richard E. Grant as a comic-accurate Loki but also opens the door for potentially limitless stories to be told now that the multiverse has been broken as a result of Sylvie’s actions.

Despite having grown close, Loki is unable to keep Sylvie from splintering the timeline into infinite paths.

Sylvie presented a unique opportunity for Loki to see himself in a new light and to discover new things about himself; primarily, how alone he’s been and his capacity for love. The romance between the two is volatile and chaotic, but it’s what separates him (both of them) from all their other variants. It’s something that simply shouldn’t be, and gives them the power to overcome Alioth and, effectively, confront “God” face-to-face. However, Sylvie has spent too much time alone and her nature is to be distrustful of everyone, even “herself”, whereas Loki undergoes significant character growth to form a true friendship with Mobius and to actually care about the fate of all reality. He’s aghast when he learns that Mobius and the others are variants who’ve lost their worlds and lives and his desire to expose the TVA is motivated as much by his own rejection of their dogma as it is his wish to open their eyes to the truth. While the other Lokis are content to live out their lives in the Void, he has something worth fighting for: his friends and, more importantly, Sylvie. When they come to blows over He Who Remains, he constantly tries to talk sense into her, which shows just how far he’s come, and is heartbroken when she sends him back to the TVA and seals the fate of the multiverse. His first thought isn’t for himself but to warn Mobius of He Who Remains’ malevolent variants, only to discover that his friend has no memory of him and that he’s too late: a variant of He Who Remains has conquered the TVA and Loki may be the only one aware of what’s happened to the multiverse as a result of Sylvie being unable to see the bigger picture. This ends the show with Loki in a unique situation; before, everyone judged him as a deceptive trickster but, now, people will have no reason to trust him because they have no idea who he is!

My Rating:

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Fantastic

Were you a fan of Loki? What did you think when the show was first announced? Did you enjoy seeing Tom Hiddleston take centre stage and what did you think to Loki’s character arc throughout this first season? Which of Loki’s variants was your favourite and what did you think to Sylvie and the romance between her and Loki? Were you surprised by the reveal of He Who Remains and what do you think will happen now that the Sacred Timeline has been disrupted? Are there any of the Loki variants you hope to see in the future? Feel free to sign up to drop your thoughts on Loki below, or leave a comment on my social media, and be sure pop back next Thursday (and next month) for more Asgardian content.

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