Each week, Darren from @darrenmoviereviews will be recapping the most recent episode(s) of Loki and the show’s overall connection to the larger Marvel Cinematic Universe.
All you need is love on the latest episode of Loki…and an anulax battery would have come in handy too! This week around, Loki and the Variant are forced to team up and have some deep conversations while trying to figure a way out of the situation they find themselves in.
As with the first two episodes of this miniseries, the writers keep giving us just enough information to keep the theories swirling in our mind for a week in between each episode as to what is really going on. But that is not where the similarities end with the first two episodes. The show has been largely dialogue heavy, with the majority of the scenes being scenes between two characters talking. And that is what we get with Loki and Sylvie this episode. It’s dialogue heavy, but the writing is phenomenal. I never found myself wishing for an action set piece, and when we finally got the two in the second half of the episode, I wanted to be back with the dialogue between Loki and Sylvie. Hiddleston continues his great performance as Loki, but it’s Sophia Di Martino who was the standout of the episode. Sharing the screen with Hiddleston’s Loki is no easy task, but Di Martino steals the show the entire episode, matching Hiddleston’s energetic performance from start to finish. While I’m sure these two won’t be allies for long, I cannot wait for more of the interactions in the rest of the season.
And into spoiler territory we go. If you have not seen this week’s episode of Loki, stop reading now. If you have, keep on reading to find out what we learnt in this week’s episode…
The episode begins with C-20 enjoying a margarita in a bar. Her drinking partner: the female Loki variant. Turns out they are old friends, chatting about brain freeze. As the female Loki variant says, brain freeze is just memories frozen in place due to the synapses being frozen, which prevent the individual from answering questions. C-20 doesn’t believe her, so the female Loki variant asks her a question to test out the theory: how many individuals are guarding the Time-Keepers. Clearly, this is not a typical topic between old friends as C-20 senses something is wrong. It suddenly changes to night. Clearly the female Loki variant is pretending to be a friend to get information from C-20, which C-20 catches onto. We then cut to the female Loki variant at the Roxxcorp store, using her magic on C-20 to get information about the TVA and the Time-Keepers. She then asks where are the elevators? C-20 responds that the elevators are gold, as the female Loki variant sees Loki and the TVA team arrive at the Roxxcorp store on the security camera.
We fast forward to where the previous episode ended: with the female Loki variant travelling through the Time Door. Her destination: the TVA. The female Loki variant disintegrates TVA agents she encounters on her search for the gold elevators, and Loki catches up with her after getting his knives from his storage locker. He confronts her at the gold elevator, and questions whether she truly is a Loki as, in his opinion, she lacks vision as she won’t agree to work with him. At this moment, Renslayer appears with two TVA guards. The female Loki variant threatens to kill Loki if Renslayer and her guards do not stand down, but Renslayer tells her to go for it. Before the guards can attack, Loki uses the TemPad to open a Time Door beneath himself and the female Loki variant, safely transporting them out of the TVA.
Lamentis-1. Year 2077. Loki and the female Loki variant end up on a moon that is about to be destroyed by an apocalyptic event. The variant tries to use the TemPad to open up a new Time Door to get off the moon, but the TemPad’s battery is dead and needs to be recharged. The female Loki variant tells Loki not to ever call her “Loki”. She tries to enchant Loki, but is not able to and pulls a sword on Loki. Loki suggests a truce to get the TemPad recharged and off Lamentis-1. However, the female Loki variant informs Loki that he interrupted a plan years in the making, and once the TemPad is charged, she will complete her plan. The two of them then embark to find a power source on the moon powerful enough to charge the TemPad to allow them to travel through space and time.
As they head to the nearest town, the variant tells Loki her alias is Sylvie, and that she is not a Loki. Loki probes Sylvie to try and find out what her plan is, but he is unsuccessful. As they enter the town, Loki sees a neon light and suggests using its power source to charge the TemPad. Sylvie agrees and tells Loki to give her the TemPad to charge it, but Loki refuses to. Sylvie then admits that the power source of the light is nowhere near enough to charge the TemPad, and that she was in fact just trying to get the TemPad from Loki.
Loki and Sylvie continue on past the town and find a house, with an older woman in it. Sylvie breaks down the door, however the woman has a weapon and hits Sylvie with a surge of power, sending her flying. Loki, ever the charmer, takes the form of the woman’s husband and begins sweet talking her. However, this is met with the same success as Sylvie’s attempt as apparently, this woman’s husband has never been so nice in the past 30 years. Loki too is met with a blast from her weapon and sent flying. Loki and Sylvie then ask the woman where everyone is, as she is the first person they have encountered on Lamentis-1. After calling them devils (Marvel’s weekly devil reference to keep the Mephisto theory alive and well), the woman tells Loki and Sylvie that everyone has gone to the Ark, trying to escape the planet before it is destroyed. Loki and Sylvie guess that the Ark will have enough power to recharge the TemPad, and as a result head off to the train to travel to the Ark.
At the train, Loki and Sylvie find inhabitants of Lamentis-1 lined up trying to get onto the train, with soldiers allowing only those with tickets to board the train. This leaves the poor begging for a chance of survival while the wealthy are welcomed onto the train. Loki disguises himself as a guard escorting his prisoner, Sylvie, onto the train and Sylvie enchants the guard checking tickets, allowing them to board the train.
On the train, Loki and Sylvie find a booth in the bar car. After some slight bickering as to which spot they will sit in, they begin to discuss the origins of their magic. Loki recalls Frigga teaching him magic at a young age. But when Loki asks Sylvie if it was her mother that taught her magic, Sylvie tells Loki that she does not remember her mother and that she knew she was adopted (unlike Loki who did not know). Sylvie continues to tell Loki how she taught herself magic. Loki, noting how powerful she is, changes the conversation to romantic interests by asking Sylvie if there is a lucky guy waiting for her at the end of her mission. Sylvie says there is a postman that she has managed to keep up a long distance relationship while travelling across time, but confides in Loki saying the relationship was merely to keep her going…not sure I’m buying this. She then flips the question on Loki, in which Loki discloses he has had lovers of both sexes, as he suspects she has. The conversation then moves to what love is, with Sylvie expressing that love is mischief, while Loki thinks it is something he needs another drink to think about…
Well, after that next drink and Sylvie falls asleep, she wakes up to Loki dancing and singing with the other passengers in their car of the train. However, while this is happening Sylvie notices one of the passengers look at Loki then slip out of the car. Once he is done his song, Loki gives Sylvie the answer to her question of what love is: love is a dagger, a weapon to be wielded from far away, something you can see yourself in and how beautiful it is until it makes you bleed. But when you reach for the dagger…Sylvie finishes the line by saying “it isn’t real.” At that moment, the man who left the car returns with a group of guards, who ask Loki and Sylvie for their tickets. A fight breaks out, which ends with Loki being thrown off the train through a window and Sylvie jumping off after him to keep within reach of the TemPad. However, Loki’s landing breaks the TemPad. Sylvie is visibly upset by this, as she sees Loki not taking their efforts to get off Lamentis-1 seriously, which prevents her from completing her mission.
With the TemPad broken, Loki and Sylvie change their plans: instead of using the Ark to recharge the TemPad, they are now going to hijack it to escape Lamentis-1. As they walk to the city with the Ark, Loki tries to figure out how Sylvie’s enchantments work. However, Sylvie won’t tell him how. Loki wants to know more about Sylvie, so he knows whether he can trust her. Hearing this, Sylive explains that her enchantment works when she makes physical contact with a subject, which allows her to grab hold of their mind. She then uses her power to create a fantasy from the subject’s memories, with those with stronger minds being more difficult to enchant.
Sylvie then drops the biggest reveal of the episode: what she learnt from controlling C-20. She tells Loki that C-20’s mind was messed up, which she learnt from pulling from her memories before the TVA. Loki questions this, because as he was told all the agents of the TVA were created by the Time-Keepers to serve the TVA. However, Sylvie tells Loki that this is not true, but they are in fact like Loki: variants recruited by the TVA who do not remember their past. However, they can hear from the city’s speakers that the Ark leaves in ten minutes and they run off to the city centre.
Once they arrive at the Ark, they learn that boarding has stopped and they won’t be able to get past the guards. Loki and Sylvie try to find another way to the Ark as the planet about to crash into Lamentis-1 explodes, sending debris down on Lamentis-1. After getting past the guards and close enough to board the Ark, the Ark is hit by a piece of planet debris and explodes, stranding Loki and Sylvie on Lamentis-1. Sylvie walks away, with Loki left looking at the remains of the Ark.
Well…apart from our weekly devil reference that has me and the rest of the die hard Marvel fans screaming “Mephisto!”, we got one big reveal about the TVA agents and their past. It’s an interesting piece of the puzzle, suggesting something more sinister is afoot at the TVA. I’m sure we will find out in the coming episode who at the TVA is actually aware of this, but I have a funny feeling that Ravonna Renslayer knows given her close contact with the Time-Keepers.
The other important piece of the puzzle we got this week was the female Loki variant’s name: Sylvie. Throughout the episode, she denies being a Loki variant, but some of her lines from this episode and the previous episode suggest she is still like Loki. And the answer, most likely, lies in her name. In the comics, Loki used his magic to grant powers to an ordinary girl in Broxton, Oklahoma named Sylvie Lushton. Sylvie was not aware that Loki gave her these powers nor what purpose she was given these powers for, but she eventually joined the Avengers.
Given what Sylvie said in the episode about her powers and not knowing her mother, she could be Sylvie Lushton from the comics. It would make sense: being given these powers, Sylvie learnt how to use them herself, which would line up with her story in the comics. Plus, she makes no mention of her father, only saying that her plan has been years in the making. The version of Sylvie on this TV show could be carrying out another Loki variant’s grand plan against the TVA. Or, Sylvie could be someone else all together. The only takeaway: she is probably not Lady Loki as many of us thought after last week’s ending.
So what is Syvlie’s big plan? And where did she get her powers from? Check back in next week for my next recap of Loki to find out what we learn next.