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Just rewatched Episode 2, and some spoilers coming soon.

So, please don't read this article unless you've seen it

Ready? Let's begin.

I'm more convinced than ever that the TVA is a complete con job. I'll trust Loki's gut for recognizing a con, and I was having my doubts a week ago.

If this was, as they claim, all about rationality and planning and making sure things go right - they've got a lot of religious imagry and language around. "Sacred" timeline. All those statues of the Time Keepers - they're not just leaders, they're positioning themselves as Gods. And since the Time Keepers created all this, they put up those icons and statues. It wasn't "we helped these people and they started worshiping us".

And things have to be pretty messed up when LOKI is your voice of moral authority, recognizing the mass killing that goes on. The Marvel University is pretty much built on a concept of Good and Evil, and I can't see the casual destruction of sentient beings to be a mark of the good guys. (It's also big on the power of heroism, so "it's all as it was meant to be" means that the Black Widow releasing all of Hydra's secrets including her own wasn't heroic, just "what she would do" doesn't ring true)

And most improbable of all - the judge, says that what happened to the Avengers was meant to be, so the current Avengers were meant to steal the case, current Stark was meant to walk away with it, he was meant to be slammed by that door when the Hulk pops out, the case was meant to slide in front of Loki, his guards were meant to release him and be distracted, the Tesseract was meant to be land at Loki's feet - but in the normal course of time he was supposed to shrug and wait to be taken to Asgard? Is there >ANY< variant of Loki who wouldn't have grabbed the Tesseract and escaped?

So now, Episode 2 we're into the investigation into the other Loki's actions. It's all reasonably low-key (no, that's not a pun) (well, maybe now it is). Teams aren't taking extra Hunters, better armed, more prepared. They know that this other Loki has been collected alternative reset bombs, but no discussions of "what can the variant do with them". Even when one of their own is taken, with all her gear, nobody is putting pieces together.

The only two who are being proactive about the hunt for bad Loki are Moebius and our Loki. But Judge Renslayer is trying to push Moebius away from dealing with Loki. Even when Loki discovers a HUGE hole in the TVN's security, throws all their confident assumptions about how they can track variants out the window, something that went undiscovered for all time (always), she doesn't say "Great work, you're getting results, keep going", she tries to talk Moebius into "erasing" Loki and going on without him. (Oh, and we find out she's in contact with the Time Keepers but nobody else we've seen has ever met with them.)

So yeah, I'm positive that the TVN isn't remotely what it says it is, and the next four episodes will be revealing what it was (as well dealing with whatever bad Loki did with all those reset bombs that shattered the time zone).

But let's speculate. What >IS< going on?

There's an obvious villain here. Kang the Conqueror. In the comic book, his story relates with Renslayer and he's been cast to appear in Ant Man: Quantumania. (The quantum realm of course being the way the Avengers did their time travelling.) The TVN is trying to prune time streams into one where Kang is all victorious. Lady Loki may be a variant of Loki that helped the Avengers fight Kang in the future, so she's trying to break all his toys and undo things while Kang is particularly worried about Loki and wants to make sure his story ends with his neck being snapped by Thanos. Renslayer works for Kang for reasons unknown.

An obvious villain. Maybe... too obvious. Renslayer wasn't an ally of Kang until the very end, instead she was the daughter of the King of the last holdout against Kang. So maybe she's trying to come up with a timeline where Kang cannot come to power. Which sets up a final defiant "You fool, you've played into Kang's hands!" (or The Conqueror's hands for a figleaf of "who", or His Hands to try to be very cryptic).

We'll see if I'm right. But I will be very disappointed is the TVN is what it claims to be.

Posted on June 16, 2021, 2:20 pm

Donald Brown

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