LOKI Episode 3 Review - Warped Factor - Words in the Key of Geek.

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LOKI Episode 3 Review

Hannah Lament(i)s-1 weeks wait until the next episode of Loki…
Episode 3 of Marvel’s latest TV Venture found Loki and our hunted Variant on Lamentis-1, catching a high-speed train away from the impending apocalyptic event before seemingly sealing their fate by missing their flight. The LGBTQ+ community cheered as Loki’s sexuality was confirmed and, we finally have a name for our hunted variant, and we found out the TVA may not be exactly what it seems. A whole lot of plot squeezed into little over half an hour.

The opening scene gave us a frightening look at the full extent of Sylvie’s powers, able to manipulate people’s memories in order to gain information. The more I watch Sophia Di Martino’s characterization of Sylvie, the more it feels like she’s deliberately trying to emulate Jodie Whittaker’s Doctor. Her accent and colloquialisms are damn near identical, and I don’t think this is an accident. I know we all joked about this being Marvel’s Doctor Who, but it’s becoming a little too real now.

The cinematography really jumped up a notch in this episode as well, from the dramatic cut between day to night in the opening scene to the dizzying angles of their fight with and subsequent escape from the TVA, it’s nice to see Autumn Durald Arkapaw stretch her legs and bring some indie cinematography to the mainstream. The final shot of Loki staring, desolate at the destroyed ship as Dark Moon kicks in the background is just…. bravo.

With the reveal of our variant’s preferred name, it has somewhat (but not completely) confirmed my suspicions from the previous episode. Sylvie is a character who already exists in the MCU and has strong ties to Loki. However, whilst this is her chosen name, the more we learn about Sylvie through the episode, the more it seems she might in fact be a Loki Variant, or perhaps a meld of the two? It’s not unusual for the MCU to shake up their existing characters in some way, Bucky Barnes is a recent and relevant example of this.

One of the most important things that is happening with every episode of Loki is that we are learning more and more about Loki himself, in this episode we see how deep his admiration for Frigga resonates as him and Sylvie have a heart-to-heart on the train, which makes the scene in which he finds out he was the cause of her death even more heartbreaking. It’s interesting that despite having retconned Loki’s redemption arc, there are more than a few glimpses of the post-redemption personality in this iteration of Loki. It gives his and Sylvie’s relationship almost a Doctor-Master feel. Another deliberate nod to Doctor Who, or am I just imagining things now?

Finally, the TVA reveal, this reveal was particularly interesting in how anti-climatically it was presented. Dropped into the middle of the episode and immediately moved on from, despite how huge a revelation it is. Directly contradicting Miss Minutes training, the idea that TVA agents had a life before joining the TVA opens up a whole barrel of questions. Why would the Timekeepers want their agents to believe they were created with the sole purpose of policing the sacred timeline? I’m running on the theory that when the TVA arrest a variant, if they have particular skills that the TVA desire, they are cloned, given new names and put to work after their original is destroyed. It would give an element of truth to the idea of the agents being created, but also explain why they have memories pre-dating the agency. Just a theory.

I would love to talk about Loki’s canonical sexuality, but as I understand it, some parts of the internet are still terribly angry at this reveal. If you happen to be one of those people, I urge you to go read up on the actual Loki on which our antihero is based; Loki being pansexual is the least of your worries…

Loki is streaming now on Disney+

Preferring the company of fictional characters to living, breathing people; it should come as no surprise that Hannah is a connoisseur of all things geek. Whilst their body resides in the capital of Wales, their heart resides in Middle-Earth and their mind remains firmly lodged in the memory of that embarrassing thing they did when they were eight.

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