The finale of Disney+’s MCU series Loki ended on a cliffhanger and a promise of the second season, the first for any MCU TV series. The episode, titled For All Time. Always., may not have ended the series definitively, it was chock full of surprises, shocks and excitement.
Here are our five key takeaways from the episode:
Kang the Conqueror
It was not a surprise as fairly obvious hints were there. Although not revealed specifically, and referred to as He Who Remains, the character that Loki and Sylvie find in the Citadel at the End of Time played by Lovecraft Country’s Jonathan Majors is actually Kang the Conqueror, or at least one of his gentler variants. We think the real Kang, who will appear in Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania, will be a more nefarious variant. So who is Kang the Conqueror? In short, originally Nathaniel Richards, Kang the Conqueror is a 31st-century scholar who becomes a powerful entity that likes playing with time. While usually conquerors like to take over worlds, Kang prefers temporal dominions and casually enters different time periods to meddle, subjugate or whatever that suits his fancy. He even rewrites his own history so his backstory is always dynamic. He has been in conflict with the Avengers in comics and defeated them pretty easily, so he may turn out to be the next big villain to replace Thanos.
TVA and the multiversal war
TVA might have been revealed to be a bogus organisation populated by variants whose minds have been wiped, the purpose of the organisation was not fake, which was to prevent the next multiversal war. If we take He Who Remains’ claims as face value, and he does seem to be speaking the truth, the multiversal war did happen, and it was due to the shenanigans by Kang’s more evil variants who want control over the entire multiverse. What does it mean? It means that TVA is a necessary evil, and as far as He Who Remains knows, who has been around for millennia, there is no other way to keep the multiverse from descending into chaos than using the TVA to watch over variants — essentially subduing free will.
Kang offers Loki and Sylvie a choice. He asks them either to kill him or rule the Citadel at the End of Time and by extension TVA and the multiverse. Sylvie eventually chooses the first option, while Loki, unsuccessfully at the end, argues with her to think about it. Sylvie has been on the run since she was a kid and is less forgiving for the person responsible for her troubles. Loki’s travails with the TVA are more recent so he has the luxury of thinking about the greater good. Sylvie kills Kang and now it appears the multiversal war is on.
What’s Ravonna Renslayer’s deal?
Ravonna is a person whose existence, or the part she remembers at least, has been centred around the TVA for so long that she cannot imagine that it was all in vain. That Time-Keepers were stand-ins for a greater power was news to her as well, but she anyway wants to continue doing her duties as this is the only “truth” she has known, and denying it herself even when the real truth is staring in her face is too terrible for her to contemplate.
Mobius and Hunter B-15’s amnesia
Well, Mobius and Hunter B-15 are not really amnesiac. It’s just that in their minds, as they deal with the branching of the Sacred Timeline, they have never met Loki. It must hurt the God of Mischief as he had come to treat Mobius as a friend. Sylvie has likely sent Loki to another timeline of TVA, where Mobius never encountered any Loki or his other variants. In place of the Time-Keepers he sees a statue of Kang the Conqueror, suggesting that in this version of TVA, Kang did not bother to install androids as fake Time-Keepers. Also, in this particular timeline, Mobius did not pursue any Loki variant as they did not create trouble.