Owen Wilson and Tom Hiddleston in Loki Season 2

Loki Season 2 Review: More Fun Shenanigans in the MCU’s Sacred Timeline

Hiddleston effortlessly slips back into his role as the god of mischief in the Disney show's second outing.

Everyone’s favourite Marvel anti-hero is back in action. Loki remains one of the most popular Marvel Cinematic Universe characters, and for good reason: he is wonderfully portrayed by Tom Hiddleston, he’s written to be super fun, and the first season of his titular Disney+ series was actually good. It’s great news, then, that hijinks in the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s sacred timeline continue to be fun in the show’s second outing.

Season 2 picks up immediately where season 1 left off: Loki has returned to the Time Variance Authority after Sylvie (Sophia Di Martino) kicked him through a time door and killed He Who Remains (Jonathan Majors). The TVA looks the same and has the same employees, yet no one seems to remember him. The reason for this may not be exactly what you would expect, but suffice it to say some timey-wimey shenanigans are required to get things back to the status quo. 

Ke Huy Quan in Loki Season 2

These shenanigans involve a few new characters, most notably Ouroboros, played by recent Academy Award-winner Ke Huy Quan. Quan brings the same unphased-in-the-face-of-absurdity energy he brought to Everything Everywhere All At Once and fits right into the weirdness of the TVA like he was there the whole time.  

Of course, the status quo isn’t precisely quo, and thus begins another time-hopping adventure to save the universe. At the same time, Mobius (Owen Wilson), Hunter B-15 (Wunmi Mosaku), and a new character played by Kate Dickey also grapple with the revelation that everyone at the TVA is a variant, calling into question everything they ever believed in. Each of them handles it differently and believably. Wilson, in particular, has a beautiful nuance to his performance of a man who presents a stoic front to hide a nagging doubt.  

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Sophia Di Martino in Loki Season 2

Eventually, we meet Victor Timely, a 19th-century inventor and Kang variant, also played by Jonathan Majors. To address the issue head-on, yes, Jonathan Majors is in this show. He is not in every episode we have seen (Disney supplied Episodes 1 through 4 for review), but he is present in a not-insignificant way. He is a good performer and his turn as Timely is a novel and different approach than his previous portrayals of Kang the Conqueror’s many variants. However, it’s a little astounding that he’s present at all, given the real-world assault charges he is facing.

Writers and actors strike notwithstanding, Disney is the largest media company in the world and certainly has the resources to have made a different choice here, especially when Gugu Mbatha-Raw is already on hand as an antagonist. Her journey this season continues from the last as well, with her diving deeper into the questions of her true nature and that of the TVA, the answers to which will undoubtedly have consequences for our heroes. It would be easy and believable to shift her character slightly into a variant of Kang, take over the role entirely, and position our new self-serving not-bad-but-not-good character Brad Wolfe (Rafael Casal) into the new secondary antagonist spot. It’s a weird blemish on the show, and I suspect some will have difficulty getting past it.

LOKI, Season 2

For his part, Hiddleston slips back into Loki like a glove he’s been wearing all his life, this time with more concern for both Sylvie and the universe at large. Di Martino as Sylvie gets to play with relief and frustration as she’s dragged back into the fray. Their relationship after last season’s betrayal has changed, but watching them as opposite sides of the same coin is interesting, as they both effortlessly convey that complexity. Their chemistry is one of the show’s strong points – second only to Hiddleston and Wilson’s brother-like energy – and it’s great to see that continue.

The consequences for the MCU are also something to consider, as the fate of the sacred timeline and its new branches are in the balance. That said, part of the show’s strength is that you could also watch the season (nearly) in isolation, which wouldn’t detract from it or any other Marvel property (yet). The new season feels less consistent with a team of directors (including Benson & Moorhead, who helmed some of the stronger episodes) instead of a single voice, but the production design, effects, and music are all as great as they have ever been. If you like the retro-future, fun anti-heroes, or timey-wimey storytelling, this show remains made for you. 

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Loki premieres Thursday, October 5 exclusively on Disney+. New episodes premiere every following Thursday.



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