Warning: Full spoilers follow for Loki: Episode 5.
With only one more episode of Marvel’s Loki left, the need for answers has reached a critical point!
Good thing there’s Slackin’ Off, the feature where we share our own harebrained theories and guesses about what’s going to happen next, straight from IGN’s own Loki Slack channel. Just causal questions and speculation about the next big plot twists on this super-duper Doctor Who-style series.
In the absolutely overflowing with Easter eggs Episode 5 of Loki, “Journey Into Mystery,” Loki found himself in the Void, a place where “pruned” realities wind up, waiting around to be consumed by a massive smokey Zuul-type beast called Alioth. It’s also a realm that just so happens to have more Loki Variants than anyone else because, well, Lokis tend to survive. No matter what.
Together, with a gang of only slightly devious versions of themselves, including an alligator, Loki and Sylvie figure out a way to double-enchant Alioth in order to get through it and over into the world beyond – a world seemingly being protected by the monster and which houses a huge space mansion. But who lives within those walls? Who is behind the TVA’s curtain?
Meanwhile, Judge Renslayer also claims to be after this mystery manipulator. But how much of the truth is she really telling? Is she truly in the dark about the TVA’s creation or does she know exactly who’s in that castle? With only the finale remaining, it’s time to crack open “Journey Into Mystery” and muse about where it’s all headed. Here are some of our thoughts and theories. Oh, and be sure to drop your own take on Loki’s premiere in the comments — and don’t forget to vote in our poll at the bottom of the page!
Leftover Question: What Is Ravonna Renslayer’s Deal?
We asked this in a slightly different way last week, but what’s the Judge’s angle here? We expected Sylvie to enchant her this week and learn all of Renslayer’s secrets, but that didn’t happen. So when did Renslayer figure out the TVA was a giant con (or in the very least that the Time Keepers were now, if not always, robots)? Does she know who’s behind it, or is she actually after the shadowy puppet master just like Sylvie is? Last week, she basically presented Loki and Sylvie to the robots so that they could be killed and it seemed like she had no plan at all. How was she ever going to find out the truth if she was just going to execute those two like normal?
So because so much of her story doesn’t quite line up, and she was caught lying to Sylvie this week, we don’t know where she stands. Or even if she’s actually Renslayer. Maybe there’s a Polyjuice Potion situation happening here and Renslayer’s in that mansion!
Theory: The Cosmic Castle Being Guarded by Alioth Is a Prison… for Kang
The show has us, and our main heroes, believing that Alioth was guarding that castle because the show’s Big Bad lives there.
And while that’s a great theory, and might still be true, Alioth could have been blocking passage to that zone because the person in there is being held captive. And because of this, Loki and Sylvie may actually be about to accidentally release someone they’re not supposed to. As in, Alioth was helping contain a destructive force, and the TVA is actually an expansive galactic mechanism that was created to keep some extremely powerful tucked away.
Like Kang the Conquerer. If Kang was the villain in the first Multiversal War then the TVA may have been made to keep him locked up.
But it could go the other way too. Loki and Sylvie could stumble upon a prisoner who’s being held by a bad guy. By a Kang-type character. It stands to reason that these two heroes, who have good intentions, are going into a situation they’ve misread. Naturally, like we’ve been wondering for a few weeks now, the overall controller here could still be some sort of Loki. Especially if we’re willing to entertain that Renslayer isn’t actually who she claims to be. Heck, maybe Kang himself IS a Loki Variant of some sort.
But yeah, we’re still ringing the Kang bell. Not only will he definitely be part of the MCU when Ant-Man 3 rolls around, but this week added a whole new Kang-connected character in Alioth. And that big fortress could be his Castle Limbo.
Theory: Kang Will Be an Uneasy Ally
Okay, so maybe Kang’s coming, even as soon as next week, but… he’s not the villain.
We’re all so eager to pick out the next Thanos for the franchise, but maybe it’s not Kang (as multiverse and time travel-tethered as he is). Maybe Kang is an important, but lesser, villain. Maybe he’s a sort of chaotic neutral ally. Or a villain who becomes an ally – like Loki once did in the MCU. Or even an ally who winds up becoming a villain, or a problem, later on. So if Kang isn’t the next Thanos…who might it be?
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Theory: That’s Castle Doom
Look, it’s hard to know that the Fantastic Four is on the MCU horizon and somehow not be on the lookout for Fantastic Four clues. It’s what excited minds do. Just like how we wondered if the engineer who Monica Rambeau contacted in WandaVision was Reed Richards (that was never answered, by the way).
So, suffice to say, it’s challenging to see a medieval-styled palace, as we head toward the likely reveal of a new major character, and not wonder if it’s Victor von Doom. If we’re theorizing about big Marvel characters who someone would either want to lock up at the end of time and space, or who’s simply lording over all reality at the end of the universe, Doctor Doom is a natural go-to.
Question: Was President Loki Losing His Hand to Alligator Loki a Star Wars Reference or a Peter Pan Reference?
Given that most MCU movies contain a Star Wars reference in them, it’s fun to assume that President Loki losing his trusty backstabbin’ hand was a nod to The Empire Strikes Back. But given that the hand was lost in the chompy maw of Alligator Loki, on the orders of a kid, makes it feel more like Peter Pan.
Either way, it’s Disney, right? And hilarious.
Question: Do the Real Life Mysteries Included on the Series Like the USS Eldridge Mean Anything?
In the first episode of Loki, we found out that famous ’70s plane hijacker “D. B. Cooper” was actually Loki himself. And that he wasn’t somehow arrested by the TVA for this crazy stunt. Loki being D. B. Cooper was apparently part of the Sacred Timeline.
But in Episode 5, the USS Eldridge and its entire crew wound up in the Void. This ship was part of a purported 1940s naval military event called The Philadelphia Experiment, where the vessel turned invisible thanks to cloaking technology. In our reality, the whole thing turned out to be a hoax, but the show is certainly playing around with these yesteryear conspiracy stories. This USS Eldridge, however, violated TVA protocol and got reset to the Void. So apparently that wasn’t meant to happen.
Do these bizarre American myths mean anything or are they just included for good fun? Will we ever find out what the bet was between Loki and Thor that made Loki go down to Earth and become a vanishing criminal?
Do you have any remaining questions or theories? Share them below, and vote in this week’s poll too! And for more on the show, check out the Loki release schedule, find out if there are Loki post credits scenes each week, and learn about how Loki evolved from Marvel villain to agent of chaos.
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