Marvel Studios Conquers TV With A Stellar ‘Loki’ Finale – Recap
Marvel did it. This is the first great season of MCU TV (and it only took them three tries to nail it).
This isn’t to say that WandaVision or The Falcon and The Winter Soldier are bad by any means. In fact, WandaVision. scored 23 Emmy nominations and Don Cheadle was recognized for around 98 seconds of screen time in the Captain America spin-off. So far, each of the Feige-backed series on Disney+ has been good television, but Loki delivers something that many superhero flicks miss, a satisfying ending.
Fine I’ll Do It Myself
We’ve talked long enough not to say his name. Kang is in the MCU and holy s***, what an entrance he made. Jonathan Majors is likely our next Thanos-level threat. He can show up anywhere and at any time. What more could you ask for in a major (pun intended) villain?
We could throw out a dozen superlatives to describe Majors’ performance but it must be said, this is one of the most unique and confident arrivals in any franchise. It rivals the best performances Marvel has ever had on screen.
What a wild choice to have a single showpiece performance anchor this season’s final episode. Majors has the most lines of anyone in the finale and he’s mostly spewing plot in monologues. For whatever reason, this performance just works. Majors is wise and knowing, but clearly unhinged in every line. Even in the face of excellent scenes from the whole cast, Majors breaks out his ‘do it yourself kit’ and births Marvel’s next big bad.
Journey Into Mystery
After weeks of speculation such as “Who is the Power Broker?” or “When will Mephisto show up?”, one of the rabbit holes led to a world-changing movie-level event. The Multiverse has arrived and it’s almost more satisfying after the smaller stakes from the other series. The final must-see moments of Loki got to fully surprise while paving new expectations for what a small screen Marvel series can be. It’s a new day for the MCU on TV or maybe we should call it the Marvel Cinematic Multiverse now that Sylvie has changed everything.
Speaking of the ladies, let’s touch on Miss Minutes pulling an “Agatha All Along”. What a sneak, and a hell of a turn for her at the citadel at the end of time. Offering everything exactly the way they’ve always wanted. Talk about a chilling and brutal scene starring a cartoon clock. A real change in tone for Tara Strong’s character was somewhat expected but still a fun moment.
Speaking of wolves in sheep’s clothing. A friend pointed out that the best thing about Kang’s playful portal is that when we get a ruthless variant of “He Who Remains” it will deliver that same shock. Majors gets to pull out more tools in his kit to deliver a new performance the next time he pops up. Unrelated – Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania is now one of my most anticipated MCU films.
We’ll stop gushing about Kang soon, but for as plot-heavy as Kang’s origin story was, damn was it effective. A great, yet simple animated story (akin to the tale of the Deathly Hallows) that quickly painted a major origin in a blisteringly short time. The look and feel of that animation hinted at future battles but looked good while doing it. There’s greatness to be found on all levels of production for these Marvel series, but The Citadel at the End of Time brought things to a whole new level.
For All Time, Always (or at least in season two)
There are many questions still to be revealed. What did Kang give Renslayer to read? Where is she off to before Kang’s TVA takeover? Where will she ‘search for free will’? Is our Mobius M. Mobius gone or did he and the woke B15 survive somewhere else on the timeline? The TVA Loki returns after his fight with Sylvie could be a branch or did Kang reset his pals?
It’s no coincidence that the best MCU series thus far is the only one that is confirmed to have a second season. Even with a sudden stop cliffhanger, Loki has vaulted up the charts to become some of the best Marvel content in any medium.
We would be fools to leave without praising the title character. Tom Hiddleston is as synonymous with mischief as Hugh Jackman is with bushy sideburns and the word “Bub”. Calling back to the Shakespearian tragedy of his first appearance in Thor. The line delivery of the ‘You can’t trust and I’m not trustworthy’ scene is a peak for our favorite trickster god. The fight itself was amazing, but the journey and growth for this character is even better.
I Just Want You To Be Okay
The best part of Loki returning for season two is that we get more. Not just more episodes but more mystery, more Majors (probably), more Renslayer, and MORE MOBIUS!! This series is like a magical elixir; reviving interest and delivering levels of hype many didn’t think Marvel could hit again after Endgame. Feige and team have paved an incredible road, we’re just walking down it. Can’t wait to watch a crazy Infinity Saga-like conclusion in 10 more years.
Secret Wars here we come.