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First thoughts on 'Loki' 1.01 and 1.02

Loki... you little scamp.

Tom Hiddleston and Owen Wilson in "Loki" on Disney Plus.
(Image: © Marvel Studios)

Our Verdict

The first two episodes of 'Loki' will grab fan attention with ease. Everything you want from a show featuring the Trickster is on full display here.

For

  • 🐐 Stellar performances from Hiddleston, Wilson and Mosaku.
  • 🐐 A good balance of funny, fun and emotional.
  • 🐐 The first third of the series gets a lot of the time travel nitty gritty out of the way.

Against

  • 🐐 Fingers crossed Wunmi Mosaku gets more to do than just brood this season. She's got the range, use it!

This post contains our first thoughts on Loki. Full reviews to follow weekly.

The God of Mischief’s popularity — so far as the Marvel Cinematic Universe is concerned — has always been rooted in Tom Hiddleston’s charisma. He’s able to bring a complexity to the character that we rarely see from the MCU’s villains, whether he has a full scene to work with or merely a few moments. That magnetism is on full display in the first two episodes of Loki as we see the character forced to reckon with his past while pondering what his most recent decisions will mean for his future.

There’s a procedural nature to the first third of the series as we learn about the Time Variance Authority (TVA), the rules of time travel within the MCU, and just how much Loki messed up by stealing the Tesseract in Avengers: Endgame. This bodes well for Loki, as we should be avoiding any penultimate episode exposition dumps as things start to heat up. There’s enough tidbits in the first two episodes to keep fans interested, and enough logistical explanations to set the groundwork for whatever time travel shenanigans the series has up its sleeve for the future. 

Hiddleston’s Loki is undoubtedly the draw for many fans coming into this new series, but it’s actually Owen Wilson’s Mobius that’s been Loki’s low-key MVP so far. His optimism serves as a stark contrast against Loki’s anti-hero shenanigans and the bitterness and bureaucracy of the TVA. Wunmi Mosaku shines in everything she does, but here’s hoping her no-nonsense captain gets the opportunity to do more than just brood before the season wraps up. We love a strong woman! We love a strong woman with dimensions more!

In the first two episodes alone, we see an upwards of five separate times as the TVA and Loki work through their mission. Don’t expect any absurd costumes ala Legends of Tomorrow, though. The TVA marches into its missions looking like some kind of weird paramilitary force and do nothing to ensure the locals aren’t vexed by their presence. They clean up once they’re done, it’s just odd to see everyone sticking out like a sore thumb on purpose throughout the chapters.

As always, Loki’s proclivity for mischief is both his greatest weakness and most hilarious character strength. It’s made clear early on that Mobius is capable of seeing through the nonsense from time to time, but he’s not always prepared for the Trickster god. Then again, there are times when even Loki’s not quite sure what shenanigans he’ll get up to next, so how can his new Time Keeper buddy be expected to keep him in line?

Throughout their adventures in these first two episodes, the TVA and their new Asgardian pet hunt down a Variant (someone who busted time) who has been hunting down Minute Soldier units and killing them off one by one. The character reveal will come pretty quick in episode one, but we don’t learn everything right off the bat. You’ll have to wait until the end of the second episode to get additional details on their messy adversary, and I suspect the knowledge we get then hardly scratches the surface.

So far, Loki pretty much fits the bill for what folks are looking for in a series featuring the Trickster. It’s funny, it’s fun, and when you’re not paying attention it will knock you to your knees with an emotional gut punch. Fans needn’t be concerned about this “new” character progressing in the same way the original timeline’s Loki grew throughout his tenure in the MCU. That’s handled pretty early on and features some exceptional scenes from Hiddleston.

Loki premieres on Wednesday on Disney+. Chances are you’re going to have a good time.