Hiddleston isn’t holding back in Slowburn Marvel mystery
With Hiddleston’s assured performance at the center, Loki gets off to a promising start with meandering mystery and fascinating world-building.
After the nostalgic journey through the grief of Scarlet Witch in WandaVision and the buddy world adventure that was The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, Marvel Studios is once again pivoting in a new direction with Loki, his latest Disney + series. Arriving as the third project in the MCU’s Big Phase Four, the curvy streaming show will break with tradition and arrive on Wednesday, a move that perhaps fits the title character quite well. Tom Hiddleston plays Loki again in what is arguably his biggest MCU showcase to date, and based on the first two episodes, he’s not holding back. Directed by Kate Herron and written by Michael Waldron, Loki is quite different from the MCU Disney + shows that came before, and that’s a good thing so far. With the assured performance of Hiddleston in the center, Loki gets off to a promising start with winding mystery and fascinating world-building.
Loki starts with a quick return to Avengers: Endgame, when an incident caused by the time traveling heroes allows the God of Mischief to catch the Tesseract and escape. Loki’s freedom is short-lived, as he is quickly apprehended by members of the Time Variance Authority. This omnipotent bureaucratic organization is responsible for maintaining what is called sacred chronology; as Loki’s escape violates this, he has a lot of problems. However, VAT agent Mobius M. Mobius (Owen Wilson) sees an opportunity in Loki. Mobius has been on the trail of a dangerous variant and he could use Loki’s help.
But LokiJust like other MCU shows has ties to the larger Marvel Universe, there are times specifically in the second episode where the series feels less attached to the Avengers and their adventures as it builds its world. Loki’s new entanglement with TVA, a fascinating organization shrouded in the monotony of a bureaucratic office, allows the series to move in a new narrative direction while still being grounded in the MCU and Loki’s story. The different aspects of VAT, from the way it was created to the way their hunters tackle timeline malfunctions, could prove to be tedious if introduced in any other way. Fortunately, Herron and Waldron have found some nifty ways to help TVA make a good impression from the first moment Hunter-B15 (Wunmi Mosaku) hits the screen. Interior designer Kasra Farahani also contributes with the understated but unique design of the organization’s offices. On paper, VAT might seem the least convincing part of Loki, But its solid introduction and potential future impact on the MCU is the foundation of the series.
LokiThe premiere quickly establishes the mystery at the center of the series, but the episode quickly drifts into more character-driven territory. For longtime admirers of Hiddleston’s fan favorite character, that won’t be seen as a bad thing. Already, the series is finding new depths for Loki, in large part thanks to Mobius’ psychological probing. The second episode finally takes the mystery forward, culminating in a twist that is sure to surprise some viewers. In terms of action, Loki has yet to live up to its Marvel predecessors. In fact, it might just be the most brainy MCU project yet as Mobius and Loki engage in a few in-depth conversations. It’s a fascinating route, but one that could prove fragile if Loki cannot deliver on the ambitious conflict he has set up. The second episode ends with a drastic cliffhanger, and we just hope it manages to hold the landing.
Loki Already has a lot going in his favor, but if there’s one major star it’s Hiddleston himself. At this point, the actor has been playing Loki for 10 years and he’s been wearing the role like a glove. Loki wouldn’t always be here without Hiddleston’s effortless charm, and this series has already given him multiple opportunities to bring new nuances to a character who could have been a note in someone else’s hands. As a frequent stage partner, Wilson is in great shape. The MCU may have found their dream new duo in Wilson and Hiddleston, as their jokes and evolving working relationship gradually become the core of Loki. Additional supporting players like Mosaku and Gugu Mbatha-Raw as Judge Renslayer have also slipped easily into their characters, though they haven’t had as much play time as Hiddleston and Wilson with their characters yet.
Judging a television series over two episodes is a tricky task, especially when it comes to a series that has to take several dramatic turns. LokiThe more cerebral approach of might turn off some viewers, but its central mystery and exploration of the God of Mischief himself will surely appeal to even more. After years of being in Thor’s shadow, Loki is finally coming into the limelight, and he’s one who promises to be as unpredictable as he is. Chaotic, fun and deeply intriguing, Loki is a solid MCU input. The next six weeks are going to be very interesting.
More: Watch The Loki Trailer
Loki premieres Wednesday, June 9 on Disney +.
Let us know what you thought of the show in the comments section!
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