Loki Episode 6 For All Time Always

MarvelVision: Loki, Episode 6 – “For All Time. Always.”

MarvelVision podcasts

It’s the season finale of Loki, and Loki and Sylvie finally figure out who is behind the TVA as we recap episode 6, “For All Time. Always.” Looking to have the Loki finale explained? Spoilers past this point, but we break it all down, from Loki and Sylvie’s big conversation with Jonathan Majors’ He Who Remains, aka Kang the Conqueror, how the show sets up Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania, as well as Doctor Strange 2, teases and speculation for Loki Season 2, and so very much more.

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Full Episode Transcript

Alex:                 Welcome to MarvelVision, a podcast about Marvel, the MCU, and right now the Loki finale. I’m Alex.

Justin:              I’m Justin.

Pete:                I’m Pete I guess.

Alex:                 Oh boy. This is going to be interesting.

Justin:              He doesn’t know who he is.

Alex:                 He’s not sure. Everything about his life is wrong, because we are going to be talking about Loki episode six, the season one finale, For All Time. Always. Don’t forget the periods in there. It’s for All Time period Always period.

Justin:              Well said. Well Shakespearean paused [crosstalk 00:01:11].

Alex:                 Exactly. This is wrapping it up, and, as revealed at the end of the episode …

Pete:                [crosstalk 00:01:16]

Alex:                 … minor spoiler in case you haven’t watched it, there is going to be a season of Loki, as long suspected, as long rumored. That was confirmed in the mid-credit scene of the episode. Not much of a spoiler there, but there you go.

Alex:                 But actual spoiler warning here, because huge things go down in this episode that we’re definitely going to talk about. Go watch the episode on Disney+ if you haven’t. Here’s a broad overview of what happens.

Alex:                 We pick up where we left off with Loki and Sylvie at the door to the citadel at the end of time. They’re trying to find out who is behind the TVA. Walk in, encounter Miss Minutes. She gives them a warning about he who remains. It turns out he who remains is none other than Kang the Conqueror, though he’s not called that exactly at any point in the episode. He is referred to repeatedly by he who remains. But he is played by Jonathan Majors from Lovecarft Country, who we know is going to be playing Kang officially in Ant-man and the Wasp: Quantumania, which is filming right now. You can consider that confirmed even though they don’t call him Kang or Immortus or Iron Lad or Mister Timely or King or anything else there.

Justin:              I appreciate that, because Kang goes by many names. To not use the name Kang I think was cool. I liked it.

Alex:                 Just to finish up the brief recap here, though, most of it is a conversation where Kang is laying out pretty much the entire history of time. We discover that the multiverse war was more specifically a multiverse war between Kangs from different timelines. There were some ones who wanted to bend official things for other timelines, but others who were those Kang the Conquerors, and ultimately he is the one Kang who remains at the end of time, guiding the sacred timeline, leading the TVA in order to make sure no Kangs ever crop up.

Alex:                 He passes the Rubicon by the end of the episode after offering the candy factory over to Loki and Sylvie, saying, “You can run the TVA for me. That’s cool. I’m old. I’ve been doing this for a while.” He passes the point where he doesn’t know what’s going to happen next.

Alex:                 In fact, what happens is that Sylvie and Loki, after a brief smoocherella, Sylvie kicks Loki through a door back to the TVA. Sylvie kills Kang. The timeline fractures into an infinite number of branches, and back at the TVA Loki discovers Mobius, who, by the way, confronted Ravonna. Ravonna left. We’ll probably loop back to that in a second. Confronts Mobius and Hunter B-15, and not only does Mobius not know who Loki is, but now, instead of three space lizards in the lobby of the TVA, it is straight up Jonathan Majors as a statue, as Kang the Conqueror in the classic costume, minus the helmet, mind you. He doesn’t have the helmet. But that’s where we leave.

Alex:                 Then our only end-credit scene is the tease that in fact there is going to be a season two.

Alex:                 I can tell by your face and general attitude and what we talked about before, you’re pretty upset about this, Pete. I’m curious to talk about that in a second. But first, Justin, it sounds like you’re a little more positive about this. Why don’t we start there? What was your takeaway from the episode, and how do you feel about the season as a whole?

Justin:              This show had some great action sequences, and we get a nice fight here between Loki and Sylvie at the end, but this show has been built around conversations, and that’s what we get here in this episode, and it’s an interesting one.

Justin:              I really liked Jonathan Majors’s performance. I thought it was cool, a little weird. He’s a bit goofy. The fact that the end of the episode and the season is building towards not a fight against a big bad … In fact, this Kang was the good Kang, maybe the best Kang. While he’s eliminated free will in some ways, he’s trying to stop a worse Kang from coming about, and that’s what happens at the end of this.

Justin:              I was surprised there weren’t more revelations at the end of this episode. It really was a “Nope, season two is where we’re going to deal with this, and all the Marvel movies.” Maybe that’s some of where your frustration … Again, I’m only basing this on your anger, the fact that your beard has turned a bright red, and the I want to say steam coming out of your ears, Pete, blasting your headphones out like some sort of cartoon. I get that, because I was surprised by that. I thought there would be more here.

Justin:              But, in general, this show satisfied what the first five episodes …

Alex:                 Wait, before you talk, Pete, can I take a guess? Can I take a guess? Do you want to turn it over to you for your probably expletive-ridden rant about the episode? My guess is it has nothing to do with Kang that Pete’s upset about. He is actually upset about Sylvie betraying Loki. Is that what’s going on?

Pete:                Partially. That’s partially it.

Justin:              Let me just say, if this is laden with swear words, we’ll go back and TBS style drop in some Melon Farmers and Shoot Cans to make sure that this is all above board.

Alex:                 Because, as we know, children listen to this podcast. We try to make it as appropriate …

Pete:                They should.

Alex:                 My children listen to this podcast.

Pete:                No they don’t, because, if they did, they would hate you.

Alex:                 Wow. That’s the reason?

Pete:                You throw your kids under the bus all the time. If I was your kid and I listened, I would be like, “My dad hates me.”

Alex:                 They’ve got to get tough skin, otherwise what if a bus really runs them over? You know what I’m talking about?

Justin:              Alex misread what school was. It’s where you throw your kids … He thinks it’s under the bus. You actually put your kids on the bus.

Alex:                 And because I never went to school I’m never going to bother to learn the correct answer.

Justin:              You went to podcast university, the only schooling you need.

Alex:                 It’s an Ivy League. It’s an Ivy.

Pete:                What the fuck? What was all that? Why did we go through all this if that’s where you’re going to leave us? You know what I mean? We went on this journey for you. There was amazing moments. I had so much fun in the episode before. I was having the time of my life. You tease this image of the two of them holding hands as they walk through this magical world, which you could see where all the budget went. Holy shit, that opening shot was unbelievable. So much high hopes that these two of the same person, whatever, whatever, that was so weird, had a chance because of the way they lit up around each other. Kang even lectured them: “You’ve got to go through the journey. You’ve got to change. You haven’t changed yet.” And she didn’t change. Their love didn’t matter because fuck it. Let’s just stab the only one who’s ever been honest with us our whole fucking lives.

Justin:              Let me throw out a theory I have. This episode put a lot of pepper on the idea that they are both Lokis. I think in the next season we’re going to find out that she is in fact the Enchantress and not at all a Loki and has been playing Loki this whole time, because I think the end of this episode positions Loki as the hero of the time stream, as the only person outside of Sylvie and the Kangs that know what’s going on, and it’s up to him to save everything. I think he’s going to do that in the second season but then be betrayed by Sylvie’s confession that she is not Loki at all, that she was enchanting him and making him into something that he wasn’t, in love with her, and that’s going to put him back on the bad side of things.

Pete:                I just sit through six hours to get kicked in the nuts at the end, and then I watched Loki get kicked in the nuts. It’s too much. You’ve got to give me something.

Alex:                 Pete, not to interrupt, but I’m pretty sure he got kicked in the nuts in episode two or three, not in this episode.

Pete:                An in episode one he got slow-motion punched in the face, which was very enjoyable.

Pete:                But I had so much fun in the last episode, and here we got to see Loki go through some things, and then the betrayal was so heart-wrenching. Then you’re like, “Okay.” You see Loki just sitting there beaten down, and then, when he gets up, there’s this moment of “Holy shit, he’s going to keep fighting.” Even though all this happened to him, he gets back up to get back in the game. I was like, “Yeah! Yeah! This is going to be great! You can do it Loki!” Then he gets over to Owen Wilson, and Owen Wilson’s like, “Who are you?” Then we see Kang as the timekeeper. It’s just such a sad place to leave us.

Pete:                Then, at the end of the credits, you’ve got to stick through because you’re like, “Marvel, don’t completely fuck me.” Then they’re like, “There’s a little bit of hope. Here’s a little bit of hope.” It’s just what did we do this for. What did you do to me? Why would you [crosstalk 00:10:01]

Justin:              Pete, I feel like you’re like, “Wait a second, all this cocaine is drugs? I thought this was fun! I’m addicted to this stuff? Oh no!”

Alex:                 A couple of thoughts, and I’m going to try to respond to some of the things you said in particular, Pete, because I understand where you’re coming from. I’ve certainly seen a lot of people on the internet reacting the same way to this finale. There’s a lot of mixed reactions, people who love it, people who hate it. That’s always going to happen with a finale.

Alex:                 But, again, I understand where you’re coming from here. I was very hesitant about this episode. I’ve been pretty open about not wanting it to be Kang all along in this finale here, even though I feel like I hit a little bit of a waffle point in the last episode …

Justin:              Ah, yes, the waffle point. Very famous a place.

Alex:                 The classic waffle point.

Alex:                 I wanted it to be Loki all along. That’s the thing that thematically made sense to me, to have a Loki behind the TVA. But what I think they did really well in this episode is make it work for Kang as the big bad behind the TVA. Again, going in, when I saw him, I was like, “That’s a bit of a bummer. I was looking forward to something that really ties into this more, ties into Loki, ties into Sylvie, versus an unrelated person that we’ve never seen before.”

Alex:                 But, like you said, Justin, Jonathan Majors was great, just very weird, not what you expect from the Kang the Conqueror who just stands there with his arms behind him, floating on a thing, saying, “Yes, Avengers, I am master of all time.” I think we will get that. I think we are going to get a lot of different variations of Jonathan Majors now throughout the Marvel cinematic university as we go forward. But this was a really interesting, very purposefully Willy-Wonka-inspired unhinged performance there at the end, and I was into that.

Alex:                 I was also into the explanation of laying out how the multiverse worked.

Alex:                 Then, beyond that, I do think structurally, and this was the thing that I was getting at with the last episode, when I started to realize last episode that we do actually have a villain of the week format on this show … It’s not always a villain. Sometimes it’s a planet exploding and falling. But Alioth really drove that home for me where we had Alioth come in. That was a one-episode thing, and then they dispatched it. Yes, you could have a Loki at the end here, but I didn’t hate Kang coming in as much as I thought I would because it still feels like, okay, this episode stands on its own. Like you said, Justin, every episode has a major conversation right at the heart of it, and that’s essentially what it was.

Alex:                 The place where this episode got a little waffly, if you will, for me is I understood what was going on with Loki and Sylvie, and this is what I want to get to to comment specifically on what you’re saying, Pete, but I don’t think they made their motivations work quite as hard through the writing as they could have. I think the acting did a lot of work in terms of showing the intensity there, but Sylvie was like, “I want to kill you because you [inaudible 00:13:01] from the timeline I’ve been running my whole life. I get that, and I logically get that, but it didn’t feel quite as strong a motivating factor as I would have wanted it to, and same thing for Loki where he was along for the journey. Maybe he wanted to rule. Maybe he didn’t. But he’s very much at this change point like they talk about in this episode. Hold on, Pete.

Alex:                 What I think worked here, though, by the end is I was personally really emotionally affected, particularly by Tom Hiddleston’s performance and his change there. When he stops Sylvie from chopping off his head, and you can see the tears welling up in his eyes, and he’s telling her, “Just stop. Just stop,” he’s literally saying that to himself to stop and think and not just act, not just do what he does in the Avengers movie. There’s that line, which is a very Joss Whedony line, where Thor says, “Come on, you don’t have to do this. You can turn around,” and he says, “No, there is only the war.” That’s what defined Loki throughout the MCU, is he’s always moving forward like a shark. He can never stop these schemes. He’s stuck in these patterns. What this season did I think really successfully over the course of six episodes is the only thing it really needed to do, which is change Loki, get him to a new place as a character, and that’s exactly what it did.

Alex:                 By contrast, the reason I think the choices they made with Sylvie work here is she wasn’t able to change. She wanted to, and you can see that, but our Loki has made those steps to become a different person, whether it’s knowing Mobius, whether it’s knowing Sylvie, the experiences he’s went through. Sylvie has not. Despite her longer life experience, like she calls out in the episode, she hasn’t reached that change point, and she is stuck in the violence and the death and the betrayal. That’s why she makes the choice there at the end. Even though you see when they cut back to her after she is stabbed, he who remains, she knows she did the wrong thing. She knows she failed, but she’s a Loki and she can’t stop herself. That’s ultimately why it worked for me.

Alex:                 Then you get to that end thing, which is a gut punch with Mobius. I went, “Oh no,” out loud when that happened. But it’s a cliffhanger. That’s how TV works.

Pete:                Don’t give me that shit.

Alex:                 They’re teasing the second season. They’re teeing up the things. That’s how the MCU works over 23 movies.

Pete:                Don’t fucking give me that shit, “That’s how TV works.”

Alex:                 That’s serial storytelling. I don’t know why people are so upset about a cliffhanger happening at the end of an episode.

Justin:              It is how the MCU works. Even after the first phase of movies, it’s all been cliffhangers giving us the next mountain that we’re headed toward.

Alex:                 That was fine.

Alex:                 I think, again, just to sum up, and Pete’s done with me at this point, but I think they were very successful in terms of the look of the series over the course of six episodes. This is the most successful Marvel Studios Disney+ series so far in terms of actually creating a TV series with an episodic structure. Like I said, it took you on an emotional journey. The goal from the very beginning was who is in the charge of the TV. They resolved that, and then they set up the next conflict for season two. I thought it was a great season of television, quibbles aside.

Pete:                Okay. That’s good for you.

Pete:                A couple things I want to talk about, all right. You say, “Loki can’t change,” but we saw a Loki change. What sucks is she lit up around him, and there was magic between them that she ignored to go with some flimsy idea that she had that even Loki was like, “Stop. This is not right.” She wouldn’t hear it.

Pete:                If you’re going to go through something like that, give us something. Say she goes, “You know what? This might be the right way, but I can’t.” She just fought and just kept fighting, which is her deal, but it was just heartbreaking to see her choose her pattern after she saw Loki making a smarter move, making the thing. The fact that Loki was fighting for them and she didn’t want to do that was the gut punch, and she got what she deserved when she crumpled to the ground after she stabbed Kang and then realized, “Oops, I was wrong.” That’s a hard way to leave an episode of television.

Pete:                I understand what the cliffhanger is, dick, but I’m saying that it would be nice if you gave us a little hope after you kicked us in the nuts. You widened out, and you were like, “You think it’s this bad? No, it’s actually this bad.” He’s not back where he can make things happen. He’s in a completely different world, and he’s got to start all fucking over. I’m saying that.

Alex:                 What if the statue was half the size? Would that have been better?

Justin:              A smaller statue.

Alex:                 A smaller statue.

Pete:                The statue size has no relevance.

Alex:                 If Mobius was like, “I know you’re a Loki, but I don’t think we’ve met before,” if it was splitting the difference there.

Justin:              If he was more like, “Hey, you can come to my wedding, but you’re not going to be in the wedding party.”

Pete:                When Owen Wilson’s like, “Hey, who are you?” it’s like, “What did we do this for?” We’re starting all the way over anyway. This whole series didn’t even exist.

Justin:              But, Pete …

Pete:                It was just too much. After such a great episode, and a lot of hope, to take all of that hope away was too much at the cliffhanger.

Pete:                I know what a fucking cliffhanger is. I know you tease another season. That can be very fun.

Alex:                 Pete, I’m not just talking to you.

Pete:                But there’s a way to do it that gets people to come back for more. I don’t want to come back. I’m so angry at the way it ended it hurts you next season. That shouldn’t be the goal.

Justin:              Let me agree with you for a second, Pete, because here’s where I think you’re right. I do think Marvel, specifically the Marvel television, has started to rely on everyone knowing their formula. “Don’t worry. This is going to be picked up in the movies, in Doctor Strange and Ant-Man, and the next series of Loki.” That is not necessarily a satisfying television product, because you want to end your show with “That’s a complete thing.” This show definitely did not do that.

Pete:                It did not.

Justin:              It leaves all of your characters in a fraught place. There’s, what, almost no finality.

Pete:                Worse than when we started.

Justin:              Yes. I don’t mind that, them being a worse place, but there’s no “This is a complete idea.” When we just physically leave the shots of Sylvie, she’s in the middle of feeling how bad she is. We don’t get any finality, like, “I messed up.” Everything is still progressing when it’s all cut off, and I understand why that’s so frustrating, and I think that’s something that they’ve come to rely on maybe to their detriment.

Justin:              But I do think I find that satisfying, because I think the clues were there to give us some stuff to think about in relation to where we leave the characters, like lines like “We’re all villains here.”

Pete:                That was a great line.

Justin:              Sylvie saying, “I’m not you,” as she kicked Loki out the door. “You can’t trust, and I can’t be trusted.” These are lines saying, “Hey, they all are villains at their core, despite the fact that they’ve been played as heroes here.” I think “I’m not you” is her saying she’s not a Loki. She’s someone else. She’s been playing everything. I think maybe she does have feelings for Loki, despite the fact that she …

Pete:                You can’t have feelings for somebody after you kick them through a door and stabbed the guy.

Alex:                 No. That’s why she did it.

Justin:              You can.

Alex:                 That’s why she did it, 100%.

Pete:                No, that’s not …

Alex:                 The kiss was real, absolutely.

Pete:                No. No, it wasn’t.

Justin:              She kissed him.

Pete:                I saw it.

Alex:                 Yes. She did exactly what you were asking for earlier on, Pete.

Pete:                But you can’t kiss somebody and then do the opposite of love. She kissed him to be like, “I’m sorry. I’m going to fuck you, but, here, let me give you a kiss so maybe it’ll make it a little bit better.”

Alex:                 She removed him from the situation so he wouldn’t go down a dark road with her.

Justin:              Pete, I would challenge you to look at that again.

Pete:                How is Loki ever going to love again after he put himself out there like that? It was too heartbreaking on too many levels to end a show right then, right then. You could have gave us a little bit after to give us a little bit of hope, but all you did was kick us in the nuts over and over again and then rolled credits.

Alex:                 If there was something like Mobius pulled up on his jet ski and was like, “I’m going to take you guys on a date. You need to go on a date. Go to that margarita place. Wow.”

Pete:                Don’t try to Owen Wilson your way out of this.

Justin:              Do you think Owen Wilson’s jet ski makes that “Wow, wow, wow?”

Alex:                 Here, I will say my one big disappointment with the episode, and I understand there was literally no place for whatsoever, is that we didn’t get the jet ski.

Justin:              I 100% agree. I feel like they’re saving that for … I think the way they’ve looked at this show is a two-series show. Our actual fun ending stuff will be at the end of the next season.

Alex:                 Go ahead.

Justin:              I’m just having more predictions, so you go.

Alex:                 I was just going to say, on that note in terms of the structure of the show, who knows what exactly this means, but I was looking back. This is several steps removed, but there was an interview with Clark Gregg from May 20th, 2020, which is about when they were starting to film Loki. I think they started in January 2020. They were already well in it. He was talking about Agents of Shield, but the interviewer, I believe it was on Variety, asked him about how he felt about these Marvel Studios shows happening just as Agents of Shield was ending, and he said, “Look, I would have loved to have their budget and resources and all of these other things,” and he mentions that he was talking to Tom Hiddleston. Tom mentioned on his show they’re doing 10, 12 episodes, something like that.

Alex:                 There was this rumor going around today, which I don’t think is true, that the season got split up because of COVID and they were supposed to originally do 12 episodes. What I’m guessing he meant is that Tom Hiddleston was contracted for 12 episodes of the show, and that’s probably the conversation.

Alex:                 Yeah, I think, to the point that you’re making, Justin, what they probably planned out even at that early point is they probably had a rough outline of 12 episodes, two seasons, “Here’s how we’re going to do this.” We’ll get that one more season and get that resolution that I do think a lot of people are missing when they have watched this episode, including several people on this podcast.

Justin:              It keeps your peas and your carrots separate in that we set up Kang here but nothing has happened with him. This evil Kang can come in clean for the movie side of the universe and then maybe come back for season two. That will focus more on the TVA, and Kang is maybe going to be just on the outside?

Alex:                 Really? I feel like he’d still be the big villain for season two at this point.

Justin:              You’re probably right, but I think more stuff will have happened with Kang.

Alex:                 Sure. That’s the other thing, is we don’t know exactly when, but I believe the rumor is that Loki season two isn’t going back to production until January 2022. Given their production schedule from the last time, this might not come out until Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania, which is coming out … although let me check my actual days here … February 17th 2023, which is the next time we know for sure Jonathan Masters is showing up as Kang, it’s possible Loki season two might not come out until mid-2023 at some point, which is crazy.

Justin:              That’s my prediction. I think this will circle back after Kang has been used there. It maybe a different Kang we’re dealing with, a Kang with a defeat you’ve got to assume, or something changed from where we are leaving the evil Kang in charge.

Alex:                 Or just a different Kang. This is the thing that also made me very hesitant about Kang as villain, even speculating when we were talking about earlier episodes, is his history in Marvel comics is nonsense. It is all over the place insanity of people trying to justify previous decisions about time travel that make absolutely no sense.

Alex:                 I think part of the thing that won me over about this episode is, as usual, they did a good MCU job of streamlining exactly who Kang is and what he means, but, as we continue to introduce more variance of Kang in different aspects of the timeline, I do worry that normal people watching this, and I specifically think about my wife, who hates time travel and is like, “I don’t want to watch this. This drives me absolutely insane,” if you have a different Kang from earlier in the timeline in Ant-Man: Quantumania, that starts to get confusing for people. But if he’s later in the timeline or mid-timeline or another variant, there’s a potential there for it to go off the rails. I trust them enough after a decade to get it right, but it definitely sets off alarm bells in my head a little bit.

Justin:              I think they’ll keep it a little bit tight and they won’t do a bunch of Kangs, because I think they’ll save multiple Kangs for the reveal of Iron Lad in Young Avengers.

Alex:                 That’s a lot of stuff to throw out there right now, but I don’t disagree with you.

Justin:              That’s what I’m saying. They can’t have multiple villain Kangs and also introduce a teen Kang. I think that muddies it too much. I think that reveal is a fun … This is, for those of you who don’t know, based on the comics, the comic Young Avengers. It’s revealed later on that the young Iron Man character is actually Kang from the future who’s sent back in time.

Justin:              I think if they start to have multiple Kang, that reveal has less of a punch, and I think that’s an important reveal if we are truly building the MCU toward the Young Avengers.

Alex:                 Here’s what I think everything is building towards, which is something we were talking about on our live shown just last night. I think this is eventually leading, and we’re talking years down the road, Avengers: Endgame, except it’s going to be Kang, and it’s going to be the portal scene but it’s just Kangs pouring out of the portals, good Kangs, bad Kangs. There’s no other characters, just Jonathan Masters in different costumes, thousands of them. That’s it.

Pete:                Let me ask you guys something. If you’re at the end of time and you’re trying to figure out how things …

Justin:              Pete, are you at the end of your time? You sound like you’re in a dark place right now.

Pete:                Yes, I am. Yeah.

Pete:                I’m just wondering if somebody said, “Here is a couple pages of paper, and this tells you how this is going to end,” wouldn’t you stop, sit down, and read before you continued? It was driving me nuts that they had the ending [crosstalk 00:27:51]

Alex:                 That Loki and Sylvie didn’t read it?

Pete:                Yeah. They were just like, “Yeah, this isn’t important.” I was like, “Actually, that’s probably the most important thing anyone could ever hand you ever in your life.”

Alex:                 Yes, you’re right. Of course I would read that, absolutely. But I do think what Loki and Sylvie are motivated by is …

Pete:                It might be even in [inaudible 00:28:08] book form, which would be a lot easier.

Alex:                 That would be really fun.

Justin:              Dope, yeah.

Alex:                 I think they’re motivated by the fact that they are pushing free will. That was the big discussion in this episode in particular, is free will versus predestination. We reach a point of course where even Kang, he who remains, whatever you want to call him at that point, suddenly enters this space of free will and he’s very excited about, but Loki and Sylvie, even though they’ve been shown multiple times that they are being manipulated, they are being led down this path like Kang says, they don’t want to believe it. They want to believe they are their own Lokis and they’re controlling their own destinies. That is ultimately at least …

Alex:                 If you look at this way, I think what Loki does is he does control his own destiny. Sylvie thinks she’s controlling her own destiny, but she’s still following the predetermined path for herself. Maybe that’s one of the things that they’re driving home towards the end of the episode.

Alex:                 To get back to the paper, I think the reason they don’t read it is because they’re Lokis. That’s it. That’s the end point there.

Justin:              And I would say that, based on what Kang said, it hits the threshold where he doesn’t have control. I think that script would have ended at that point.

Justin:              But let me throw this out to you, and, Pete, tell me if this makes it at all better. I think that Kang is basically a Loki who took the time to get things right, a meticulous Loki, especially this Kang that is killed here. He spends all of his time pruning the timeline so that, if the timeline doesn’t diverge, then he knows all of the events that will happening, making him more powerful. That’s how he can predict when he’s to dodge the blades and everything, because the timeline’s been pruned that nothing can change. When that freedom leaves, despite the fact that it’s making a more evil Kang in charge, it also takes away a lot of his ability to know the story going forward.

Justin:              Loki doesn’t have that sticktoitiveness to do that. He likes to get into his evil plan and just fuck around.

Justin:              I think at the end of the next series Loki, having been betrayed by Sylvie, Enchantress, at some point in the next season, will want that power and will develop the ability to be that meticulous villain that he hasn’t been before. His journey for this series is from the beginning to come to hero at the end of season one, to become the best villain Loki that we could have at the end of season two, setting him up as a big MCU Marvel villain going forward. That’s what I think.

Pete:                That’s … I don’t know how you could, after getting kicked to the nuts, be excited to line up to get kicked in the nuts again.

Justin:              I think you need a new metaphor just for how you’re feeling in general.

Pete:                Somebody hands you a shitty pie, and you’re already thinking, “Man, this next pie is going to be unbelievable though.”

Justin:              I like the pie. The pie is good.

Alex:                 I love pie.

Justin:              The pie is interesting. It’s not a shitty pie. It’s just a chocolate pudding. You’re just tasting it. You have to taste it.

Alex:                 I wanted to talk to you guys to jump all the way back about the beginning of the episode, which I thought was such an interesting way to …

Pete:                Crazy new Marvel flip. It was like, “Hey, we’ll give you something awesome, but then, after that, nope.”

Alex:                 You are really on it about the Marvel flip. That’s not what I’m talking about.

Pete:                You’re not talking about the newest, greatest Marvel flip?

Justin:              Who’s chatty?

Alex:                 Okay. Let me just talk through this top of the episode for a second, because I want to jump back to a part of it and ask you guys a question, something that I’m not 100% sure what’s going on there.

Alex:                 We start off with this great thing. Over the Marvel Studios logo we get all of these MCU quotes as if we’re going through the whole history of the MCU. It’s all the movie stuff. Then the Marvel Studios logo hits, at which point we get the big bang. We get universes exploding. We zoom into one of the universes, follow the sacred timeline. When we’re doing that, we get a mix of real-world quotes, people like Neil Armstrong, Greta Thunberg, Nelson Mandela, and others, mixed with I believe it’s only quotes from the Disney+ shows actually. We get the “What is love but grief persevering?” We get something from Sylvie. We get something from Falcon and the Winter Soldier that I’m blanking on. It’s all, interestingly enough, underscored by It’s Been a Long, Long Time, which is the song that Steve and Peggy dance to at the end of Avengers: Endgame. There’s a lot of stuff going on there, which is super neat, before we finally get back to Loki and Sylvie standing at the edge of the citadel at the end of time.

Alex:                 But here’s my question: after the big bang, we see two universes, or what I assume is two universes. They zoom into the right one, and that’s the one that we’re following into the sacred timeline. There’s another universe there.

Pete:                But then Kang gets into talking about how there’s different universes stacked on top of each other.

Alex:                 But I guess my question is, if we’re looking at that as we’re following not just the history of real time but also the history of the MCU, the MCU is that sacred timeline that we’re jumping into that universe. What is that other universe, the one we don’t jump into?

Justin:              DC universe.

Pete:                DC, yeah.

Justin:              The Aquaman shit. We don’t have to go there.

Alex:                 Okay. Let’s just not talk about it.

Justin:              No. I don’t know. It could be a bunch of things. I think it could be the other side of Marvel television, if it was being very cute about it. It could be our universe, where we watch the MCU and do that. Or perhaps maybe best it is maybe something that we’ll get call on. Maybe there is a core universe that we’ll see later on in the Loki series that Loki will go to to learn something about. Maybe that’s the universe where the Loki is the pure villain that he must become.

Alex:                 Perhaps some ultimate universe is over there.

Justin:              Interesting. Was Miles Morales in that side universe at all?

Alex:                 Yeah. He was just swinging on by.

Alex:                 Maybe it’s some new universe.

Justin:              Yes. That’s what people want. It’s the ultraverse from the mid-90s.

Alex:                 Maybe … I don’t know. I don’t think this is true at all. What if it’s the Fox universe?

Justin:              Wow. X-men? That’s the X-Men hanging out?

Alex:                 X-men, Fantastic Four, they’re in that universe. It could be.

Justin:              Bring it on.

Alex:                 Maybe.

Alex:                 I do think ultimately it probably actually is exactly what Pete was saying at the beginning, that it is just the multiverse and it’s a weird way of doing that, but I stared at it for far too long trying to figure out was anything going on.

Pete:                It was just proving Kang’s point, that universes are stacked on top of each other, and we got to see that as we drove into this sweet castle at the end of the timeline.

Justin:              But I would argue, if what Kang has been saying is true, there is no multiverse at that point. He pruned them all down to where it was. That shouldn’t exist, unless it’s something outside of Kang’s perception or something he purposefully left there to be discovered later.

Alex:                 I think that’s a possibility as well, just because, again, visually what happens is they zoom into the universe on the right, go around the corner, follow the sacred timeline, and then we see very specifically the citadel is outside of the sacred timeline, watching it, but unable to see that other universe, if that is another universe. I don’t know. I may be spending too much time on this, but, again, I thought it was interesting.

Pete:                What I’m worried about is the fact that, like your wife, when there’s time travel or there’s multiple universes …

Alex:                 I do like my wife. Thank you, Pete.

Pete:                I get disinterested. I’m worried a little bit about having multiverse fatigue going into two, three, four movies about the multiverse. Do you know what I mean? If this is going to be a huge thing going forward, and I’m already upset about it, I’m hoping it’s not going to suck.

Alex:                 This gets back to the thing I was saying about Kang, is I think it is very difficult to keep this stuff simple for a normal audience. I say that not in a derogatory way, but you want to get people who are casually interested in the MCU or this is their first movie for Marvel or the first TV show to be able to watch something and not be like, “Geeze, I’ve got to watch 23 movies before this?” Multiverse is tough. They did a great job in Into the Spiderverse of distilling it down. But the more they layer on and the more takes on time travel and multiverse and different universes and things like that, we know it from reading comics for decades at this point: it gets tricky.

Justin:              I think multiverse of madness.

Justin:              Go ahead.

Pete:                I wanted to get back to what it is. We’re all focusing on one universe and a bunch of these heroes and that’s what matters, because if, now there’s multiverses, who cares if so-and-so dies? There’s a ton of other ones that can come to this earth and replace it. Do you know what I mean?

Justin:              Yeah. I think, to your point about fatigue, if we have a multiverse of madness, Doctor Strange, I feel like we’re going to see a lot of Doctor Stranges in that.

Pete:                What if …

Justin:              Then we have What If …? I’m just talking about on the movie side of things. Then you have Quantumania, which I think will be time travel based I guess, so it’s different than multiverses.

Alex:                 It’s going to be quantum realm based, whatever that is.

Justin:              Right. If Kang’s the villain, I feel like there has to be something in there that will be like multiverse but different enough that it’s not doing the same thing. [crosstalk 00:38:07]

Pete:                Then there’s Eternals, which is …

Justin:              They live forever.

Alex:                 Okay, just to run through the ones … Let’s hold off on too much of that speculation. Let’s talk about that at the end of the vision board section, because I just want to wrap up with this episode itself.

Alex:                 A couple of other little notes. He Who Remains is actually an unrelated character to Kang or potentially I think maybe a mentor to Kang introduced in Thor 245, but he’s not Kang. He’s one of the few characters in the Marvel Universe who is not Kang. Almost everybody is Kang.

Alex:                 The citadel at the end of time is Kang’s stronghold from the comics. It looks a little bit different, but they’re calling that out particularly.

Alex:                 There was one thing that I believe I mentioned in the last episode I had done from a day job, a, interview with Natalie Holt, the composer of Loki, and she had said this very weird, very intriguing thing to me about how she wrote the TVA theme, the main theme song for the TVA that’s played over the titles, episode six first and then worked backwards. She said it would be immediately obvious when you heard it why she did it that way. I believe what it is is … I wrote down the time code. At 22:22 exactly on the show, that’s when Kang finishes his explanation and says, “Amen,” which resolves the main TVA theme in the episodes. I don’t know. I just thought that was a neat little note there.

Pete:                Didn’t you also say it was Loki’s mom’s theme?

Alex:                 That was a different thing. She mentioned that Sylvie’s theme was based on Frigga’s theme, because she thought Loki was looking at Sylvie like her mom. As it turns out, as we discovered over the course of the episode, Pete, it’s not romantic at all. They’re not interested in each other at all. In fact, he thinks of her like a mommy.

Pete:                That’s awful, what you just said.

Justin:              Mommy.

Alex:                 Mommy.

Alex:                 One thing I did want to mention about Kang that I thought they were setting up in the beginning, and maybe this is a little bit of backseat writing, so it doesn’t count at all, but I think this came through in Jonathan Masters’s performance a little bit. He almost felt a little bit like a viewer of the MCU. It felt like they were skirting that, or maybe there were drafts where they pushed that a little harder potentially in his dialogue. I would’ve wanted to see that a little bit more, get a little meta about this guy who’s like, “You’re two Lokis. I’ve watched all of your stuff. I love you guys. I’m a huge fan.”

Justin:              That’s funny.

Alex:                 He gets into that a little bit, but they don’t hit it very hard. I wanted a little bit more.

Justin:              I hear that.

Justin:              A couple of other things that we haven’t talked about. What’s up with Ravonna? She goes off in search of free will. Is she going to be a little bit more of a hero? I thought it was interesting they positioned her as a real believer in the TVA, not a villain really, like I had predicated anyway, but someone who just believes in the mission so hard. I feel like she might come back as a hero in the second season.

Pete:                It was cool the way she handled Owen Wilson. I really appreciated the fact of Owen Wilson can’t fight. Let’s not pretend otherwise. That was a fun moment I thought.

Alex:                 That was an interesting scene to me, because she spent most of the theme saying that free will isn’t good. She doesn’t believe in free will. Then her last line is that she’s going in search of free will. My assumption was to eliminate it, not to find it for herself. Did you guys take that away as well?

Justin:              I think so. I think that’s right, but I don’t know what that means for her. I thought it was funny that she was a principal, also someone who’s trying to eliminate free will, when they revealed her. But I don’t know. The way she walked off felt like she’s going to come back at a moment with something helpful to Loki.

Pete:                Hopefully helpful to Owen Wilson, because that was cold as ice.

Alex:                 It was cold as ice.

Alex:                 But I love that relationship, and I think both of them played those scenes so well.

Alex:                 Also, I love the turn from Miss Minutes, just turning into this very ominous, very scary clock creature when she’s at the citadel at the end of time, and then coming back and lying to Ravonna. She’s been playing the long game as well.

Justin:              I love Miss Minutes in this episode. What’s her deal? Is she working for Kang or something else ultimately?

Alex:                 I think she’s Kang’s assistant. She’s Kang’s flunkie. She was created by Kang and doing his bidding all along.

Justin:              Here’s exactly the comparison that I thought was most apt: Peppermint Butler from Adventure Time.

Alex:                 Yeah, that’s a good one.

Justin:              Evil, funny, not sure exactly what’s going on.

Pete:                I thought you were going to say the candlestick from Beauty and the Beast.

Justin:              Interesting.

Alex:                 Lumiere?

Justin:              Very sexual. Miss Minutes is having sex with another appliance.

Alex:                 Before we talk about what’s coming forward in season two, any other notes on the episode that you guys want to call out, or the season in general?

Pete:                It had a lot of promise. There was a lot of opportunity to do something great. Could’ve been one of the great shows of all time.

Justin:              Pete, like a coach whose team really let him down in the big game, coming out of this with an L.

Alex:                 I respect your opinion, Pete. This was my favorite Disney+ Marvel show so far.

Pete:                You are such an evil fucking …

Alex:                 It’s not evil. I thought it was incredibly done …

Pete:                You love evil shit.

Alex:                 … and gorgeously directed.

Alex:                 One of my big requests for season two is … Obviously, Michael Waldron is coming back as head writer. They’ve already been working on it.

Pete:                Tell Michael to get some goddamn love in his life. Stop writing women in negative ways. What the fuck?

Alex:                 Oh my god. What?

Justin:              That is not …

Pete:                All the women betrayed the people that they were supposed to be closest to in this show.

Alex:                 Hunter B-15 worked with Mobius.

Pete:                I’ll give you Hunter B-15.

Justin:              I would argue Ravonna didn’t betray Owen Wilson.

Pete:                Seems like it.

Justin:              She was always doing that.

Pete:                She pruned him.

Justin:              He changed. He was the one that changed there.

Pete:                Yeah, because his eyes were open. He was like, “Dude, we’re all variants. What are you doing?”

Justin:              Her eyes were not open. She’s been a believer this whole time. She did not betray him. She stuck to her guns.

Alex:                 Sometimes literally.

Justin:              I thought this season … I agree with you, Alex. I really enjoyed it. I think, despite the dark place we end up in and the unfinished place, I really liked the journey of this series. Visually very cool. Built around great conversations. Got in some philosophical things. I think they put a lot of clues in the dialogue that will be borne out in the future, and I appreciate that.

Alex:                 Let’s rank them real quick. There’s only three, so it should be relatively easy. I’d put Loki at the top, Wandavision second, Captain America and the Winter Soldier third.

Alex:                 Justin, where are you? Same rankings?

Justin:              Ditto.

Alex:                 Pete?

Pete:                I think the opposite.

Alex:                 So Captain America and the Winter Soldier first, Wandavision second, Loki third?

Pete:                And then DuckTales, TailSpin, any Disney show that’s ever existed, and then, at the bottom, if you’ve got time, it’s this.

Justin:              I will say, if we’re throwing TailSpin in there, I’m going to have to look at my rankings a little bit.

Alex:                 We’ll work on this and get back in the next episode.

Alex:                 Let’s move forward to our vision board where we look at what is coming forward. Obviously, this is the last episode. We’ve already talked about a lot of speculation, but I was very surprised there wasn’t actually a traditional mid-credits or end-credits scene at all, fully expected that to come into the show. Very surprised that we just got the title card teasing season two, though it is nice to know that we are getting a season two. As mentioned, we don’t know when that’s happening, but it might not be for a good long while.

Alex:                 We started to talk through the schedule, but real quick we’ve got What If…?, is coming out on August 11th. It seems very clear why that is coming directly after Loki now. We’re going to explore the multiverse in all of its forms. Be very interested to see if Kang shows up in that. Even though it is seemingly the side animated show, of course we’ll be coming it in some form here on Marvel Vision.

Alex:                 Spiderman: No Way Home is going to be dealing with the multiverse. December 17th that comes out.

Alex:                 Doctor Strange and the Multiverse of Madness starring Benedict Cumberbatch and Elizabeth Olsen, picking up off of Wandavision, but there’s certainly some pretty strong rumors that I believe Tom Hiddleston is in it as well. We’ll be curious to see if Jonathan Masters shows up. That’s coming out March 25th, 2022.

Alex:                 Then there’s Thor: Love and Thunder. I throw this in here because this doesn’t have multiverse stuff, but it ties into Loki. There’s going to be May 6th, 2022. Maybe there will be some tie in there or something.

Alex:                 Ant-Man and Wasp: Quantumania is the big one, February 17th, 2023. We know is Kang is going to be showing up there. That’s his next confirmed appearance, even though, as we said, we expect potentially some more things coming down the road.

Alex:                 But the other one that I wanted to throw out at you that we touched on a little bit earlier, I think there’s a pretty good chance we could see Kang again in Fantastic Four. What do you guys think?

Justin:              Yeah. If the Fantastic Four are going to come through and become linchpins to this phase of the MCU, I think Kang is definitely there. He’s a tailor-made villain for them to tangle with.

Alex:                 Well, particularly because, not to get too far into the Marvel Comics continuity, because, as we mentioned earlier, it’s nonsense, Kang’s real name in some iterations is Nathaniel Richards, and either he is a descendant of Reed Richards, he’s somebody who was inspired by Reed Richards and took on the name, he’s a descendant of Dr. Doom. There’s a lot of different potential connections there that they could run with in whatever MCU way that they want.

Alex:                 But I think at the very least that is the thing that could tie in and start to build something bigger for this phase and for the next decade in movies in some way.

Justin:              I would love it.

Alex:                 With that said, on the vision board, what do you want to see in Loki season two, whenever that comes out? Justin, what’s on your vision board?

Justin:              I think we all want to see a jet ski, probably not at the beginning but later on.

Justin:              I touched on this earlier, but I want to see my prediction borne out. I think Sylvie is the Enchantress, is not a Loki, and I think I want to see her betray Loki and reveal herself as this villain but in a way where she actually does care for him. They’re a little bit star-crossed lovers in that way, because I do think this episode specifically sets that up.

Pete:                But if Kang is the all-knowing up until that one point, he would know who she is, and he called her a Loki.

Justin:              I think he did. He said, “We’re all villains here.”

Alex:                 But he also called them two Lokis at the same time is I think what Pete is saying.

Pete:                Loki offered coffee. Loki, two sugars.

Justin:              I think he’s playing along. Maybe. I just think she’s used the word enchant an obscene amount of times. What is the point of this?

Alex:                 I think she is the MCU’s version of the Enchantress who happens to be a Loki just for expediency. That’s what I think is going on there.

Justin:              We don’t need expediency.

Alex:                 But I also thought under no circumstances Kang would show up in this show, so why listen to me?

Pete:                I agree with Justin. I agree with what Justin said. What is the point of this? I think the point of this better be in season two. The only way I’m coming back is if you give me Throg and Alligator Loki and nobody else. That’s all I want.

Alex:                 After feeling like everything didn’t resolve at the end of season one, you don’t want to see any of the characters anymore?

Pete:                No. It’s all dead to me. Go fuck yourself with all that. That’s ridiculous, just an awful way to end anything, and the only way I’m coming back is if it’s Throg and Alligator Loki, because that’s the only good thing you did. Although the classic Loki was also really amazing.

Justin:              Nice. Let’s just say you will be back though because [crosstalk 00:50:14]

Pete:                I don’t think so.

Alex:                 You always come back. There’s going to be some cool car in the trailer or something like that.

Pete:                Don’t you fucking do that.

Alex:                 You’re like, “I’m back in. Car Loki! He’s an Autobot.”

Pete:                Aw man.

Alex:                 Is he an Autobot or a Decepticon? That’s what I want to know.

Alex:                 The big thing that I want out of season two, and this is a very meta, external thing, but I want them to finish it. I want six more episodes and to wrap things up. I think Loki is in this incredible emotional place. Like I had mentioned, I legitimately teared up when Tom Hiddleston revealed himself to Sylvie towards the end of the episode. The Mobius thing, like you said, was such a gut punch in a really beautiful and heartbreaking way. I want them to wrap up the story of the series. I don’t necessarily need multiple seasons of the show. Six more episodes, finish the story, and finish the story of Loki, because, opposite of what you’re saying, if they do end up at a place where he becomes the perfect villain, that’s fine, but I do think there’s an opportunity here to really end the story and have Tom Hiddleston as an actor end the franchise on a really high note, and I think that would be a really beautiful story to tell.

Pete:                But why would they do that?

Alex:                 Will it happen? I’m not very confident about it, but that is what is on my vision board regardless.

Justin:              Marvel doesn’t do endings. Have you read a comic book?

Pete:                Why would they do that?

Alex:                 No, not yet. Are they good?

Justin:              You should try them. They’re like movies, but you turn the page.

Alex:                 The only thing that I watch is Simpsons episodes.

Alex:                 By the way, you guys haven’t commented on my hat. I have a hat for …

Pete:                You get a hat. Cool swag all the time. We’re not going to fall for your trap.

Alex:                 This is the Simpsons, the good, the Bart, and the Loki. It was a whole tie in.

Justin:              You’re going to get years of wear out of that hat. You’re going to love wearing that hat at all your special occasions.

Alex:                 It’ll be like, “I remember that short that was on Disney+ tying it to Loki. That’s my favorite one.”

Justin:              I love the Bart. I love the Bart.

Alex:                 The Bart, the I always say.

Alex:                 All right, folks, before we wrap up here we will mention Loki is done, so obviously we’re done talking about that for the moment. But we are going to keep the podcast going.

Justin:              Let’s just be fair. We’re not done talking about it. Pete’s going to rant about it for months.

Alex:                 Obsessively.

Alex:                 But we will be talking about What If …? when that comes out as well, us starting to go through the phase-two movies. If you go back on the podcast feed, we talked about the phase-one movies. That was a lot of fun. We had some guests on. We’re going to be doing the same thing with the phase-two movies as we go through as many of them as possible, and we’ll see where we get to.

Alex:                 But, yeah, stay tuned to Marvel Vision. We’ll be back.

Alex:                 Then, in the fall of course, at some point, there’s going to be Hawkeye. There’s going to be Ms. Marvel. It’s never going to stop. Marvel all day err day, as I like to say.

Alex:                 If you’d like to support this podcast, pateron.com/comicbookclub. Also, we do a live show every Tuesday night at 7:00 PM to Crowdcast and YouTube. Come hang out. We would love to chat with you about Loki or any part of the MCU.

Pete:                No we wouldn’t.

Alex:                 iTunes, Android, Spotify, Stitcher, or the app of your choice to subscribe and listen to the show. @MarvelVisionPod on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook. Comicbookclublive.com for this podcast and many more.

Alex:                 Until next time, stay mischievous.

Justin:              Oo, we are all villains here, kid.

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