This post contains spoilers for the third episode of Loki.
Marvel’s new series Loki took us into a whole new world by introducing the Time Variance Authority. The agency, empowered by a trio of cosmic beings known as the Time Keepers, are tasked with preserving what is known as the Sacred Timeline. Whenever a time-traveling Variant steps out of their destined path in the timeline, they stop the Variant, reset the timeline, and thus prevent the appearance of any timeline branches, which would otherwise result in the creation (or resurgence) of a multiverse.
So far, we’ve been led to believe that everyone working for the TVA was created by the Time Keepers, giving them their own sense of “glorious purpose,” as it were. However, the third episode of Loki this week revealed a game-changing detail about the TVA that may hint at the potentially more sinister, power-hungry nature of the Time Keepers…or someone else entirely.
The TVA Employees Confirmed as Former Variants
On last week’s /Film Daily spoiler discussion podcast about the second episode of Loki, we theorized that employees of the TVA like Mobius (Owen Wilson) may be former Variants who can’t go back to their timeline because it’s been reset. It’s exactly how Loki (Tom Hiddleston) was recruited into the TVA, and it would help explain why Mobius has an inexplicable obsession with relics of the ’90s. Not only has Mobius been seen slurping ’90s drinks like Josta Cola in the first episode and the adult juice box known as Boku in the second episode, but he also has a passion for jet skis, one of the most ’90s vehicles ever. Well, it turns out our theory was right on the money.
The third episode of Loki, titled “Lamentis,” confirms that all the employees in the TVA are actually former Variants. Loki learns this from the other Loki Variant, or Sylvie (Sophia Di Martino), as she calls herself. While talking about how she enchanted the female member of the Minutemen at the renaissance fair in Oshkosh, Wisconsin in the second episode, Sylvie reveals that she had to reach all the way back into a memory from before the woman was part of the TVA. That means the Time Keepers didn’t create everyone in the TVA in such a grand fashion.
This revelation comes as a surprise to Loki, and it should serve as a warning sign to us that the Time Keepers’ preservation of what has been dubbed the Sacred Timeline may not actually be in the best interest of the universe. Rather than preserving the timeline for the good of existence, perhaps they’re only doing this to stop anyone from threatening their control over time, the universe, and, well, everything. If the Time Keepers have the ability to see into the future, then why wouldn’t they do anything they could to keep themselves in power? After all, in Marvel Comics, the Time Keepers were previously known as Time-Twisters, beings who were meant to save the future but ended up destroying it from the past.
What Could This Mean for the MCU?
If the Time Keepers have been stopping Variants from creating new timelines that potentially threaten their control over time, then what happens to those Variants if the Time Keepers are no longer able to keep the Sacred Timeline in check? Considering what we’ve just learned about the Variants, this feels like a hint that the TVA may crumble by the end of Loki, and all these Variants will end up going to the various multiverses that will be spawned by the destruction of the TVA, perhaps even their own timelines. Maybe we’ll see Mobius cruising off on a jetski in the final episode of the season, no longer worried that he will be destroying the Sacred Timeline.
Another thought that I can’t shake is that the Time Keepers may not even be around anymore, and someone else might be behind the TVA. We’ve yet to hear who Richard E. Grant is playing in the series, and the prevailing theory is that he’s playing and older version of Loki. It seems rather convenient that Sylvie explained exactly how enchantments worked if we’re not going to learn that someone on the series (or maybe multiple characters) have been under an enchantment this entire time. Perhaps the entire TVA is one big enchantment and Old Man Loki is creating the maximum amount of mischief in the universe.
Finally, there are those theories about Kang the Conqueror possibly lingering in the background of Loki. If the Timekeepers are still around, and they end up losing control of everything, then perhaps that will provide the origins for the famed Marvel Comics villain, who is confirmed to appear in Ant-Man and The Wasp: Quantumania. Conversely, maybe the Time Keepers are already out of commission and Kang was one of them who has now been banished to the Quantum Realm.
We’ve got three more episodes of Loki to see how this all pans out. Stay tuned.
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