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    "Loki" Is Completely Rewriting The Marvel Cinematic Universe — Here's Where It Can Go From Here

    We thought WandaVision would be the show to break the multiverse, but it looks like Loki will be the culprit.

    Loki is turning out to be the biggest TV show in the Marvel Cinematic Universe so far.

    Loki and Mobius
    Disney+/Marvel Studios / courtesy Everett Collection

    The premiere brought in more viewers than The Falcon and the Winter Solider and WandaVision. The mischievous Norse god avoided his fate in Endgame during a time-traveling mishap that allowed him to escape capture between the events of Avengers and Thor: The Dark World.

    The first two episodes of Loki spent a great deal of time using conversational exposition to explain time travel, the TVA, the multiverse, and variants.

    Disney+ / Via giphy.com

    It's the MCU's way of catching those who don't read the comics up with the idea of a multiverse and how that can impact individual characters. 

    Now, how will that change the future of the MCU? Let me explain.

    First, let's talk about Loki's growth.

    Disney+ / giphy.com

    Initially, I was worried about how they would make Loki a "good" guy. He has done quite a bit of growing since Avengers. Thor: The Dark World, Thor: Ragnarok, and Avengers: Infinity War gave Loki a nice rounded story where we saw him shed his evil skin to become a vulnerable anti-hero of sorts. However, how would the MCU give Loki all that character progression in a six-episode series that needed to build other characters? By making Loki watch all those movies, of course!

    It wasn't what I was expecting, but it worked. Loki was able to progress through his own emotions and grow just by watching all the highlights of the moments that caused that very same growth for us in real time over the last decade. Now, that's brilliant and easy!

    Then, there's Lady Loki.

    Lady Loki or Enchantress?
    Disney/Marvel / Via Disney +

    Well, are we REALLY dealing with Lady Loki? I'm still not 100 percent sure, although I'm not too skeptical. It's just hard to trust Marvel after that Quicksilver switch that led to nothing...anyway. 

    A tweet showing that the Castilian Spanish dub for the show lists the character's name as Sylvie has fans going crazy. Sylvie was the second Enchantress in the comics. That incarnation of the Enchantress was a regular Earth woman who is gifted powers by Loki after the Asgardians take over her town. 

    However, the variant file seen in Loki shows Sylvie's last name as being Laufeydottir, which would disprove the Enchantress theory. 

    Will the MCU follow Scandinavian culture?

    paperwork that says "Sylvie Laufeydottir"
    Disney+ / H/T Twitter: @616sLOKI

    In many Scandanavian cultures, male kids are named using a mix of their father's last name and "son." For example, Thor is Odin’s son, so his name is Thor Odinson. Loki's father was a frost giant named Laufey, but he was adopted by Odin. So Loki goes by Laufeyson.

    For females, instead of "son," the last name is fitted with "dottir" (daughter) at the end. So Sylvie Laufeydottir would have to mean that she is the daughter of Laufey, aka Lady Loki. This would kill the Enchantress theories, unless the MCU is twisting her comic origin to make the Enchantress Loki's variant in the MCU. The "mind-controlling" powers the Lady Loki variant has definitely fits in with "enchanting" someone, so it can go either way.

    And what about other variants?

    loki with a political pin
    Disney+

    Gugu Mbatha-Raw's character Ravonna explains that Loki variants are somewhat of a plague to the TVA. This information was not dropped for no reason. The second episode went out of the way to show us several variants, all of which exist in some universe or timeline. That means we literally cannot trust any of the trailers or images we have seen. Any Loki you have seen could potentially be another Loki, including the President Loki from the TV ads. Does this mean we'll get a 100-Loki battle at some point? I hope so.

    Let's also not forget about Kang.

    A Kang statue gets a long shot in the second episode of "Loki"
    Disney+ / Via Disney+

    Loki has also gone out of the way to show us Kang several times now. Kang the Conquerer is set to be the MCU's next Thanos, although I doubt he will die as quickly (if at all). Kang may be an ongoing menace in the sense of the Joker...he just doesn't go away. Jonathan Majors is set to play Kang in Ant-Man: Quantumania; however, I'm 100 percent sure he'll pop up in person before then. 

    Kang is shown in the center of the Time-Keepers almost every time they are shown. When Miss Minutes explains the TVA to Loki in Episode 1, Kang is front and center. Also, in Episode 2, we see a long solo shot of Kang's statue in Ravonna's office. Fun fact: Ravonna is also Kang's love interest. 

    Loki spending so much time setting up the idea of timelines, the multiverse, breaking the multiverse, and nexus events all while shoving Kang in our faces is just the biggest tease for fans. I will be shocked if Kang, in some form, doesn't show up in person soon. 

    Let's also not forget that Kang is Nathaniel Richards, an alternate universe descendant of the famed Reed Richards (although some records claim he may also descend from Dr. Doom). This means Fantastic Four ties are already being laid down, and it's interesting to see that Richards is Black. Will this affect how Reed Richards or Dr. Doom are cast? Possibly. Kang travels back and forth within his own history so much and spawns so many variants that we should assume the Kang in the MCU is Prime Kang. I'm sure we'll see variant Kangs as time progresses. 

    Speaking of nexus events...

    still from WandaVision
    Disney+

    Remember that Nexus "commercial" in WandaVision? In the comics, Wanda is a nexus being. Nexus beings are essentially timeline anchors that are crucial to the stability of the flow of time. Nexus beings can also travel along timelines and universes easier than normal heroes. That may be how Wanda is able to get her children back...but that's another story. 

    Loki is showing us that nexus events are occurrences that can break the timeline. Mobius tells us that the events of Endgame were supposed to happen, which also means Captain America's offshoot timeline (where he exists with Peggy), was not erroneous. Why didn't the TVA snatch up variant Cap? Does this mean he was supposed to travel back in time and create the offshoot timeline where he lives his life out with Peggy? If so, why? Kevin Feige is somewhere laughing maniacally right now. Regardless, we know that nexus events and possibly nexus beings are in the MCU. Don't be surprised if we're introduced to other nexus beings in the near future (Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness should touch on this more). 

    Plus, the destinations of the bombings that Lady Loki set off are truly telling...

    a screen tracking a the multiverse timelines
    Disney+

    At the end of Episode 2, Lady Loki sent TVA "bombs" to places along the timeline. The places include Vormir, Ego, Sakaar, Titan, Hala, New York, Xandar, Madrid, and more. A lot of these locations should ring a bell, as they are pretty famous locations throughout the MCU's history so far. Why bomb Sakaar, the planet where Hulk and Thor reunited? Or Vormir, the site of the Soul Stone? How about Hala, the homeworld of the Kree where Captain Marvel was trained? Titan is Thanos's homeworld and it's in ruin...so the bomb must be sent to a time when the planet was popping. Is there a connection to killing off the Avengers and Thanos, or is Lady Loki trying to prevent the entire Endgame story by preventing the stones, Thanos, or the Avengers, or all of thee above, from uniting? These locations will be important, but how so is still a mystery.

    What does this all mean for the future of the MCU though?

    Disney+ / giphy.com

    We all thought WandaVision would be the series to show the break in the multiverse. Nope! It makes sense in hindsight, though. Wanda never really got an origin story (and neither did Sam). It makes sense that her show, and Falcon's show, would give these heroes growth and backstory. Loki, on the other hand, has had tons of growth and backstory. That gave Marvel more freedom to play with the MCU at large, since they didn't have to focus as hard on solidifying his character in this series.

    Consider the fact that we are meeting multiple Lokis opens the MCU wide open. We've seen Sony introduce this concept in the Into the Spider-Verse animated film; however, the MCU is just entering this territory. Does that mean we'll see a female Tony Stark from another universe? What about a female Black Panther? A good Thanos? A Hydra Captain America? The idea of variants makes the possibilities endless.

    Loki will change the MCU forever, and the ripple effects will certainly play out in Spider-Man: No Way Home. We all wondered how villains from other universes would join Tom Holland's Spider-Man. Well, it can all be as simple as a TVA teleport door, leaving the villains with "No Way Home" to their original universes. Loki's tampering is set to break the multiverse and start the domino effect that will see Kang step into the limelight. Are you ready for the multiverse madness?