Tom Hiddleston’s Loki is one of the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s most popular characters – and even though he seems to have died permanently at the hands of Thanos in Avengers: Infinity War, his return is still a regular demand from fans. While Loki may not come back to the big screen (aside from his Avengers: Endgame cameo – more on that shortly), he’ll remain in the Marvel Cinematic Universe in his own Disney+ solo series.
With Disney+’s Falcon and Winter Soldier starting to take shape, it’s only a matter of time before new details of Loki – the series we currently know the least about – will come to light. But right now the premise of the show is almost as mysterious as the god of mischief himself.
So far, all we really know is that Loki stars Tom Hiddleston reprising his role – but we actually don’t know where or when the show takes place. Given Loki’s death in Infinity War, the show could be a prequel, perhaps set in the thousands of years of Loki’s godhood prior to his involvement with the Avengers.
But Endgame opened another likely door for Loki to explore – an alternate universe created by Loki’s theft of the Space Stone during Iron Man and Ant-Man’s mission in the Battle of New York. The creation of an alternate timeline brought on by the theft of the Space Stone, a drastic change to an immutable past, was confirmed by Endgame directors the Russo bros. following the film’s release.
“Loki, when he teleports away with the Space Stone, would create his own timeline,” Joe Russo told Business Insider. “It gets very complicated, but it would be impossible for [Cap] to rectify the timeline unless he found Loki. The minute that Loki does something as dramatic as take the Space Stone, he creates a branched reality.”
Could Disney+’s Loki be the first Marvel Studios property set officially in an alternate universe?
Taking Mysterio at his word in the most recent Spider-Man: Far From Home trailer (a dicey proposition at best, but given the other information here, we’re following the clues), he’s from a different reality – one like the core 616 Marvel Universe but with key differences, like one extra Mysterio and one less Spider-Man. So there’s a chance we’ve already seen the first cross-dimensional traveler. Could Loki be the first property to go the other direction – to focus on a world-shifted view of a core-MCU favorite?
Disney+’s animated What If? is predicated on alt-views of key moments in MCU history (like its comic book namesake), so we know idea of putting a new lens on the MCU is in the air at Disney+. If Loki takes place in the space between the Battle of New York and an alternate course of events where he escapes instead of being imprisoned in Asgard, it could constitute a more focused take on such an idea – dialing in on just Loki as he escapes to … somewhere.
We’re not suggesting Loki’s gonna go all over the MCU and start a fully-fleshed out side universe – there’s a chance and an option in his escape being undone by the end of his series. Endgame’s branching timeline theory wouldn’t necessarily allow the events following his escape to be undone, but with Captain America also out there in that “space between” for an undetermined amount of time on his quest to return the Infinity Stones, there’s a chance the loop could be closed.
But where would Loki go? Given his ambitions for the Asgardian throne in Thor: The Dark World, there’s a solid chance he’d go straight back to Asgard, possibly even giving Marvel Studios a chance to call on Sif, Frigga, and other Dark World-era players who either didn’t get their due or might be due for a bit of a fan-service moment.
And like we said, Captain America is still out there with not just the Infinity Stones, but The Dark World timeline’s Mjolnir – meaning he’s gotta go back to Asgard, oh, right about the time Loki might be storming the gates. With Mjolnir in hand. And a universe-preserving mission.
Joe Russo did say Chris Evans wasn’t quite done as Cap – is a cameo filmed during the Endgame shoot for the Loki show out of the question?