Loki: “Glorious Purpose” Review

2021 has been quite the year for Marvel fans.  After a year and a half long drought of content, we’ve been treated to 3 new series in the span of just 6 months.  WandaVision intrigued the internet and fueled countless fan theories, The Falcon and the Winter Soldier gave us a fitting sequel to Civil War, and now Loki seems to be tackling the multiverse itself in its premiere episode alone!

Spoilers Ahead – You’ve Been Warned

Not Quite the Endgame…
Picking up immediately where Endgame left off, we see Loki grab the tesseract and use to transport himself to the middle of the Gobi Desert in Mongolia.  However, his victorious escape is short lived, when a team of what can only be described as Time Cops apprehend him and bring him to the Time Variance Authority.

Loki 7
They’re sort of like Interpol meets Cloud City.

First appearing in the comics in 1986, and now in live action form, The Time Variance Authority (TVA) ensures the overall continuity and stability of the single timeline.  And given that Loki broke his own timeline by disappearing with the Tesseract, he’s been labeled a “variant” who must now stand trial for his many crimes.

Meanwhile Agent Mobius (Owen Wilson) deals with a series of massacres across time, seemingly being committed by a rogue variant.  Just before Loki can stand trial, Mobius recruits him, believing he can help.

From there, Mobius attempts to break Loki down emotionally, and get him to give up his ego (which is no easy task).  The one thing that really gets to him is seeing the events of Thor: The Dark World and Avengers: Infinity War, particularly his own death and the death of his mother Frigga.

Loki 3
Not sure what’s worse, seeing his own death, or getting a transcript of everything he’s ever said…

Eventually, he agrees to help and Mobius drops the bombshell that the reason he was recruited is that this rogue variant is also Loki…

Not the Loki We Know
The first thing to remember is that Loki is still dead at the hands of Thanos in the regular timeline.  So this version of the character is coming hot off of his attempted takeover of Earth in the first Avengers film.

So it does feel a bit strange that this isn’t the same character who went through all the growth and reconciliation with Thor in both The Dark World, Ragnarok, and his brief scene in Infinity War.  Obviously it would have been preferable to get this version of the character, but from a narrative standpoint, there really wasn’t any other way to do it.

Loki 6
As a result, he’s a bit more smug, like the character was in Thor and Avengers.

That said, it was pretty obvious from that scene in Endgame that its sole purpose was to set up this series, and continue preventing Loki from ever having a permanent death in the MCU.  Though we do get to learn a bit more about  his past, particularly an anecdote where he turned out to be D.B. Cooper (which we definitely need to know more about)!

Theories Galore
Much like WandaVision, Loki is definitely going to a be series that comes with fans theorizing and debating online. In just this first episode alone, we get references to the “madness of the multiverse”, as well as a painting of the devil, which is surely to inspire ideas among fans that this series is setting up the next Doctor Strange film, or Mephisto himself (again).

Hopefully this series doesn’t fall into the same trap of using the audience’s expectations against them, but only time will tell.  Overall it’s off to an intriguing start.  Tom Hiddleston absolutely owns this character and it’s just fun to watch him.  Plus he has great chemistry with Owen Wilson, who it’s fun to see playing the “normal” character for once.

Loki 8
He’s an interesting addition to the series, who lends some A-list comedy gravitas.

What did you think of this week’s episode?  What do you hope to see next week?!  Let us know in the comments!

Loki is streaming exclusively on Disney+

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