As Loki premieres on Disney+ Hotstar Premium, all you need to know about the God of Mischief
From Loki's depiction in the comics, the character's treatment in MCU, to the standalone Disney+ Hotstar Premium series releasing today, here's a comprehensive guide to the show led by Tom Hiddleston.
After watching Wanda finally transform into Scarlet Witch in WandaVision and Bucky Barnes and Sam Wilson take on masked enemies in The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, it's safe to assume we're wondering what's next in Phase Four of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. The third in the line-up is Loki, the standalone series on the God of Mischief releasing on Disney+ Hotstar Premium today.
Loki: The character
Loki is the offspring of Frost Giant and was adopted by Odin. Since he grew up under Odin's care as an Asgardian, alongside his real son, Thor, there was always underlying tension between the two stepbrothers. Odin continued pacifying the two, assuring them the throne of Asgard one day. Even though they appeared human-like, they were essentiallyÆsir — the aliens who dwell as Asgard and are depicted as gods in Norse mythology.
One of his first greater mischiefs was when Loki tried to jeopardise Thor's coronation by allowing the invasion of Asgard by the Frost Giant. Throughout his journey, Loki as a character has always tried to hide the fact that he was the foster son of Odin.
Loki's origin in comics
The present incarnation of Loki first appeared in Journey into Mystery #85 (October 1962). Touted as the "God of Mischief", Loki was portrayed as a master sorcerer who could trick people's minds into believing what he wanted them to believe. Loki's powers cover a wide range - from making his subjects perceive reality the way he wills, to seeing him appear as someone else (courtesy of his shapeshifting abilities) or becoming completely invisible.
Loki through MCU - Thor and Avengers franchise
Two of the most effective ways through which audiences have had a glimpse of Loki's character, is through the Thor and Avengers film franchises.
While Loki's character was introduced in Thor, as merely the Asgardian scion's jealous younger brother, in the next few films, the character's arc gains momentum and viewers get a deep insight into the origin story of Loki. Thor: The Dark World saw Loki step out of his villainy and perform an act of sacrifice to be declared quintessential hero when Thor calls on him for help to defeat the dark elves.
Ragnarok brought him back in the running and audiences were told he faked his death earlier (something the Asgardian prince is infamous for doing...multiple times).
While Infinity War depicted Loki (in the first five minutes of the film that too) as the proverbial fallen hero with a click of Thanos' wrists around his neck, Endgame brought in a "variant" version of the God of Mischief. During the time heist, Loki manages to escape his ruinous death and goes scot-free.
Loki in Norse mythology
Unlike the film portrayals, Loki, in Norse mythology, has always been shown as a cunning aid to Thor and Odin in their attempts to safeguard Asgard. But being a God of Mischief, Loki's ways are shown in an unconventional light, someone who achieves the good but always with a pinch of embarrassing faux pas.
The other narrative that stands out in the mythological representation (and is acutely missing in his onscreen portrayals) is his antagonistic behaviour towards the gods. Loki was supposed to have sneakily entered a private banquet, being hosted by the gods, and demanded a drink. As a form of punishment, he was bound to a rock - bringing in strong resemblances with Prometheus and Tantalus.
Loki: The cast and crew behind the Disney+ series
Created by Michael Waldron, the Disney+ Hotstar Premium series begins after Avengers: Endgame. Tom Hiddleston reprises his role as the God of Mischief, while Owen Wilson is introduced into the Marvel Cinematic Universe as Mobius M Mobius, a Time Variance Authority (TVA) agent who supervises investigations of notorious time criminals, charged with hurting people through their alterations of timelines.
Gugu Mbatha-Raw plays Ravonna Renslayer, another TVA agent who oversees Loki's investigation. Wunmi Mosaku is also seen in the series as TVA agent Hunter B-15.
When and where to watch Loki
Loki premieres today on Disney+ Hotstar Premium at 12:30 pm.
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