**WARNING THIS ARTICLE CONTAINS SPOILERS FOR EPISODE 1 OF LOKI**
After going all of May without any MCU content Loki comes in to save us all from our loathing and despair. Loki is back to shake things up in the MCU as he’s always had since his introduction in 2011’s ‘Thor’. The episode kicks off with Loki’s escape as seen in 2019’s ‘Avengers: Endgame’ albeit much quicker than how it actually played out in the original film. After a fortunate escape, Loki is found crash landing in a Mongolian desert. A scene heavily reminiscent of Tony Stark in 2008’s ‘Iron Man’, only to be greeted and apprehended by the Time Variance Authority.
The Time Variance Authority informs Loki that his escape from the 2012 timeline has caused a branch in the Sacred Timeline and he must pay for his crime. Of course, the God of Mischief shrugs it all off as if it’s some sort of joke because in his eyes he’s not doing anything that’s not out of the ordinary for him. After his apprehension, the TVA restores the timeline in order to fix the branch Loki created since it was exponentially expanding (more on this later).
Once Loki arrives at the TVA we’re given a slew of Easter Eggs and references to past moments of the MCU centered around Loki himself. Most importantly, however, we get Miss Minutes (voiced by Tara Strong) giving us the rules of the multiverse, the origin of the Time-Keepers, how the Time Keepers created the Sacred Timeline after they witnessed a multiversal war, and how the Time-Keepers created the TVA and its Minutemen to keep the Sacred Timeline intact in order to prevent another Nexus Event. Prevention of a Nexus Event would cease the creation of any alternate timelines.
Nexus Event…Multiversal War? Both sound all too familiar as Wanda Maximoff aka Scarlet Witch was confirmed to be a Nexus Being who has the power to affect time and reality and in the process, just like Wanda did in WandaVision, create alternate realities that should not exist. The Time-Keepers micromanage and oversee the Scared Timeline to make sure everyone stays on the path they are meant to be on.
While the Multiversal War that was mentioned could be a direct setup or nod to Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness it could point to many other things like Secret Wars. But we’ll put a pin in that for now until the show further develops this specific plot thread as Loki has been rumored, confirmed, and then hinted at being directly connected to the aforementioned Doctor Strange sequel. Pair all of that will the events of WandaVision, Loki, and the rumored but nearly confirmed appearance of previous Spider-Men and their respective villains in Spider-Man: No Way Home, there’s a multiversal war that’s bound to happen…oh let’s not forget America Chavez and her universe and reality hoping powers.
Loki is informed of his violation which is violation 7-20-89, a potential nod to Thor #405 a comic book issue that stars the Fantastic Four, the Negative Zone, and Mount Wundagore. The Fantastic Four are making their way to the MCU in a couple of years and as many comic book readers know, Reed Richards has a huge connection to the Negative Zone as he is the person who first found it and created the first-dimensional portal in which he used to travel to and from.
During the final moments of WandaVision’s finale, we see Wanda in an isolated mountainscape which many believe to be Mount Wundagore the place where Chthon wrote the book known as the Darkhold, a book introduced in WandaVision, first used by Agatha Harkness and later seen in the possession of Wanda as she was reading it herself. Wundagore also has ties to the High Evolutionary and Jessica Drew and Twin Mutants Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch…we’ll spare you the details.
Loki pleads his case that he is not in the wrong, but instead, that The Avengers are indeed the criminals as they traveled back to 2012 and then back to the year 2023, which according to the TVA was all part of the plan, Loki escaping, on the other hand, was not part of the plan and that is why the TVA intervened to apprehend him, in hopes to reset the timeline.
Mobius M. Mobius played by Owen Wilson brings Loki up to speed on what his original self’s live is supposed to be and the chaos and pain he has caused throughout the years due to his mischievous ways. We see Loki in different moments throughout the MCU from The Avengers, Thor: The Dark World, Thor: Ragnarok, the death of his mother Frigga and how he was the unfortunate cause of her death by thinking he was leading the Dark Elves to Thor. We see Loki as D.B. Cooper and learn that this stint only happened because he lost a bet with Thor and ultimately his own death at the hands of Thanos.
The most interesting part of this specific moment is seeing how much Loki actually cared about those around him no matter what kind of trouble he brewed or what kind of mischief he willingly or unwillingly conjured up. Additionally, it adds more gravitas and gives those moments a much heavier sense of emotional weight that they might have not had before. A moment that truly highlights who Loki is as a character and sheds light at what makes Loki tick.
This past week Kevin Feige revealed that Loki will have a much bigger impact to the broader MCU than WandaVision and The Falcon and The Winter Soldier (Captain America and The Winter Soldier) would. That is proven evident in one key scene in which Loki sees a drawer filled with Infinity Stones. Seeing how they have no power while inside the TVA they’re rendered useless and many of the TVA employees use them as casual paperweights.
The interesting part of it however is the passerby comment of multiple variants wielding said Infinity Stones. In the comics each universe or reality has its own set of Infinity Stones and while the MCU explored a way of keeping the Infinity Stones relevant with time travel, this scene in particular shows that Marvel is sticking to the source material and will have alternate realities with their own respective set of Infinity Stones. This is a perfect way to have multiple wielders of it and also leaves the door open for a potential reappearance of Thanos down the line. The Avengers killed Thanos twice, who’s to say they won’t do it again.
After learning about the real reason Mobius wants Loki to work with the TVA, reason being is that the TVA is hunting down another Loki variant, is that essentially, only Loki can stop Loki. So we meet who we can only assume is a more evil version of Loki in 1858, this Loki variant not only kills the TVA’s Minutemen but also stops them from resetting that alternate timeline. What kind of implications that will have remains to be seen.
Overall, Loki’s slow start is simply for the purpose of world building and world expansion and setting up those connective tissues to previous events and the events that are to come. While we don’t need a deep character study on Loki, getting that slight character study on him in this episode and most likely the remainder of the season is more than welcomed. As a fan favorite that’s even more reason to get fans coming back to watch every week. Needless to say, this is the best series premiere for a Marvel Studios/Disney+ Original series yet and I can’t wait to see how things unfold.
Want to discuss things further? Hit us up on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram. And for more film, gaming, anime, and TV news, trailers, and updates make sure to keep it locked right here at The Nerdy Basement. While you’re here, please consider supporting us on Patreon! It’s an easy way of supporting us so we can keep proving you with your Nerdy News!
Founder/Editor-in-Chief of The Nerdy Basement.