Where do people go when the TVA prunes them? We found out in Episode 5 of Loki, titled “Journey into Mystery.” As we learned in the post-credits of last week’s episode, the place called “The Void” is loaded with Loki variants. Lokis survive. That’s just what they do.
Loki (Tom Hiddleston) and Sylvie (Sophia Di Martino) are just the tip of the dagger. Get ready for much more with Boastful Loki, Kid Loki, Alligator Loki, and the legendary Richard E. Grant as Classic Loki. The magical madness doesn’t stop there, not even close. Saddle up, buckaroos!
***WARNING: From this point forward, there will be major spoilers for Episode 5 of Loki. If you haven’t watched yet, portal yourself out of here.***
When the TVA prunes a timeline, it isn’t destroyed. It’s moved to the end of time (to the Void) where it won’t bother anyone or anything. This area is full of the wreckage of the past, Easter eggs like Thanos' helicopter and Frog Thor, strange walking birds that have floating balls for heads, and, as we said, Lokis aplenty.
The Void is guarded by Alioth, a giant cloud beast. In Marvel Comics, the character is portrayed as being the first entity who broke free of time. Here, Alioth is more directly connected to whoever is behind the TVA. The Time Keepers were bunk, so everyone from Sylvie to Ravonna (Gugu Mbatha-Raw) wants to know who the real puppet master is. Sylvie prunes herself in order to get to the Void for answers, and is picked up by a still alive Mobius (Owen Wilson) driving a pizza delivery vehicle. Wow!
Loki tries to get the other Lokis to help him defeat Alioth, and they just laugh. They’ve been here much longer, and if there was a way to do it, they would have done it. Not even Kid Loki (who killed his Thor) has a plan. They hide in a bunker (underground, past a discarded lunch tray and a Mjolnir), drink from goblets (Kid Loki drinks from a juice box), and try to stay away from other Lokis.
Classic Loki (wearing the most comic-accurate costume of the lot) has the backstory that is most prone to having an arc completion. He got further than our main MCU Loki did and survived. As he says, “I cast a projection of myself so real, even the Mad Titan believed it. Then hid as inanimate debris. After I faked my death I simply drifted in space. Away from Thor, away from everything.”
“Everywhere I went, only pain followed,” he adds. The TVA found him when he got lonely.
“We, my friends, have but one part to play: the God of Outcasts.”
They all toast to that, and we have a new addition to our list of favorite all-time MCU moments. Loki tells them about Sylvie and says that he’s going out there anyway, but that’s when a different murder of Lokis arrives, led by “President Loki.” Boastful Loki betrayed them to this other group, and a Loki fight erupts. Loki gets out of it with Classic Loki, Kid Loki, and Alligator Loki. They’ll help him get to Alioth because he believes in Sylvie as much as he does.
(We should mention that Alligator Loki bites off President Loki’s hand and we loved it.)
They connect with Mobius and Sylvie, with Mobius noting, “You throw a rock out here, you hit a Loki.” Sylvie’s plan isn’t to kill Alioth, it is to enchant it in order to see the one behind the TVA. She’s driven to figure this out, and the imprisoned B-15 (Wunmi Mosaku) has observed that Ravonna is too.
Loki and Sylvie take a moment before the battle to… figure themselves out? Honestly, we can’t believe we’re shipping them but we didn’t think a battleship would drop out of the sky either and it did. Loki conjures a blanket for them (definitely not a tablecloth), Sylvie says that she has no idea how to have a friend, and Loki promises that he will not let her down.
The other Lokis screw off, as they only agreed to help get them close to Alioth. Mobius returns to the TVA using the spare TemPad, saying that he’s going to burn the place to the ground. He hugs Loki, and whispers to Sylvie that she is his favorite.
Loki (with a flaming dagger in hand, courtesy of Kid Loki) and Sylvie then approach Alioth. Loki distracts while Sylvie enchants, but it only works for a moment. Alioth starts to go for Sylvie, and that’s when Classic Loki returns and conjures all of Asgard.
“I think we’re stronger than we realize,” Loki says to Sylvie, who has decided that he will help her enchant Alioth even though that’s not in his skill set. Alioth goes for the giant Asgard recreation as the score from Natalie Holt mimics “Ride of the Valkyries.” Another Ragnarok happens (kind of) when the image breaks down, and Classic Loki is left laughing his butt off, shouting “glorious purpose!”
Alioth takes him out, and all that remains is his classic Loki helmet. He’s given the others the time they need, however, because the enchantment works. Alioth goes green and still, and a structure is seen beyond his cloudy girth. Loki and Sylvie walk towards it.
The identity of the being behind the TVA will have to wait for the show’s finale next week, but at this point we’d put serious money that it is Kang the Conqueror. We’ve said it before, but Jonathan Majors is already set to join the MCU as the character. In the comics, Ravonna has major ties to him. We’d be surprised if it turned out to be anyone else, though it would be hilarious if Marvel pulls the rug and has Agatha (Kathryn Hahn) once again be behind it (all along).
We’ll know next week, but until then we can watch this inspired bit of lunacy many more times. In one inspired moment, Classic Loki asks (of another Loki), “Is he a coward or being brave?” That’s the thing, with a Loki we never really know.
No two Lokis are ever truly the same, so like a box of chocolates, you never know what you’re gonna get. We just made that up, pretty good, right? Mobius believes that it's never too late to change, so here's hoping that holds true for the God of Outcasts.
The final episode of Loki hits Disney+ on Wednesday.