Loki premiere recap: A Not-So Glorious Purpose, After All

In the Loki Premiere, “Glorious Purpose,” the God of Mischief makes his escape from the Avengers in 2012, only to find himself trapped by the mysterious TVA.

Thanks to the Disney Plus show, the fan-favourite Loki has been given a new lease on life. Of course, this isn’t the Loki who earned a redemption arc through three Thor films, eventually sacrificing himself for his brother.

This is a very annoyed variant Loki who just wants to go home and conquer a realm or nine. Can he escape the TVA as he has escaped so many other situations?

Loki premiere – What is the TVA?

Loki (Tom Hiddleston) in Marvel Studios’ LOKI exclusively on Disney+. Photo by Chuck Zlotnick. ©Marvel Studios 2021. All Rights Reserved.

As Loki is dressed down—quite literally—and prepared to face trial in the Loki Premiere, he is given a short, animated history lesson about the Time Variance Authority, aka the TVA.

Narrated by Miss Minutes (Tara Strong), the video explains how there used to be a multiverse of chaos—or madness?—before the three Time Keepers brought order to the timeline.

The Keepers have been able to keep time in check, but every so often, somebody strays out of their designated timeline and becomes a variant. To ensure that these variants don’t cause more chaos, the TVA was created.

So, what does the TVA do to restore time? Minute Men track where and when variants appear—Loki escapes 2012 New York with the Tesseract and lands up in the Gobi Desert. Once the Minute Men capture the variant, they use a device to reset time to remove any residual effects of the variant’s arrival.

Once inside the TVA, Loki is given a uniform to wear, he has to sign a document confirming everything he has ever spoken in his entire life, and he has to walk through a security device that will confirm if he is or isn’t a robot.

Then, Loki is taken to his trial. Loki rightfully insists that it is not his fault that he is a variant. It was the Avengers who travelled through time, resulting in a variant version of Loki existing at all.

But before Loki is sentenced—apparently to death—someone comes to his aid. Finally, some good fortune for Loki. Or is it?

Loki premiere – Greatest Hits

Mobius M Mobius (Owen Wilson) has been working at the TVA for a very long time. He isn’t sure how long exactly because time in the TVA moves differently than it does anywhere else.

Without explaining to Loki why exactly he’s taken him away from his trial, Mobius attempts to start a conversation with the God of Mischief in the Loki Premiere. It doesn’t exactly go as planned.

Loki loves talking but he talks in riddles. He is also completely obsessed with himself and his purpose, while at the same time vilifying himself as a villain. Mobius doesn’t see Loki as a bad person—but he does want to know why Loki does what he does, which is hurting people.

Taking Loki through his greatest hits—mostly flashbacks from The Avengers as well as a new scene that claims Loki was the infamous DB Cooper—Mobius establishes that Loki loses a lot. He’s not wrong.

But then Mobius deals a low blow—he shows Loki the events that transpired for the original Loki. How that Loki sent the Dark Elves after Thor in Thor: The Dark World, but accidentally pointed them towards his mother, Frigga, ending in her death.

Loki is distraught—he’s killed people and he can be ruthless, but Loki always loved his mother. Watching more than he should, Loki not only learns that Frigga is gone, but so is Odin. As for the original Loki, he died by Thanos’ hand.

Loki premiere – A New Purpose

So, what is Loki to do now that he has no existence? We learn in the Loki Premiere that the TVA has been dealing with a mysterious murderer who has been targeting Minute Men throughout time.

Mobius investigates the sixth such murder—that the TVA knows off—when he visits France in the 1500s. He also manages to speak to a child who claims the devil is behind the murders. According to director Kate Herron, this is not a nod to Mephisto, so Marvel fans can stop asking.

By the end of the episode, the hooded antagonist has killed three more Minute Men—who weren’t very good at their job considering they were doing the bare minimum to keep the timeline intact.

So, who is this villain if it isn’t Mephisto? Turns out, Mobius already knows who it is, and he needs Loki’s help to stop the bad guy. Because who better to stop Loki than Loki himself.

Wait. The mysterious time-travelling Minute Men-murderer is Loki himself? This just got more sinister and more interesting.

Final Thoughts – The Loki premiere is a slow start to what appears to be a complex show

As excited as I am for this series, the Loki Premiere was far more plodding than I expected. A great deal of time was spent revisiting scenes we had already seen before.

Loki himself is a delight to watch—he’s sarcastic, annoyed and annoying, and he’s completely out of his depth which makes for great viewing. It’s only the first episode and Tom Hiddleston and Owen Wilson already have great chemistry for what is surely to be a fascinating partnership.

I loved Mosaku’s Hunter B-15, a no-nonsense, trigger-happy TVA agent who is going to be a thorn in Loki’s side. I would have liked to have seen more of Mbatha-Raw, but she only had the one scene in this opener.

Eugene Cordero’s Casey was a delightful surprise. A typical office worker in a not-so-typical office, Casey brought humour to the show and I hope we see more of him in upcoming episodes.

I’m interested to see where Loki goes. We have the first inklings of the story and of Loki’s quest but there are so many questions that need to be answered. We’ll have to wait till next week to find out what those answers are.

Loki is streaming weekly on Disney Plus.

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