Loki and Sylvie lost more than their fair share of Variants when they elected to liquidate good Kang out of existence. Series director Kate Herron is also stepping out of the Citadel for good and will not be returning for Loki Season 2, she tells Deadline on Friday.
“I’m not returning,” she reveals. “I always planned to be just on for this, and to be honest, Season 2 wasn’t in the — that’s something that just came out, and I’m so excited. I’m really happy to watch it as a fan next season, but I just think I’m proud of what we did here and I’ve given it my all. I’m working on some other stuff yet to be announced.” Herron is responsible for the show’s spanking visuals, and for bringing showrunner Michael Waldron’s writing to life in less than seven episodes. With her no longer steering the wheel, so to speak, Loki Season 2 is left with is an Asgard-sized void where she used to stand.
It’s a shame, because Kate Herron may be the only filmmaker Kevin Feige could unequivocally entrust with Loki Season 2. The Sex Education alum was the first Phase Four director to deliver her own spin on the growing Marvel multiverse, and for a largely experimental take on the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s new franchise MacGuffin, she pulled it off magnificently. The Variants comprise the next major arc in the MCU and being in charge of setting that up is no small feat. It’s a monumental task assigned only to those willing to take risks, and hers is definitely a tough act to follow. She and Waldron played off of each other’s quirks like Loki and Mobius and gave fans an overture to remember. Given how seamlessly she blended into the MCU, Herron would be a shoo-in for future installments.
She may not come back for Loki Season 2, but there’s certainly ample room for her in a second season of WandaVision, a third Doctor Strange, or a follow-up Spider-Man trilogy to Tom Holland’s first. There’s a subtle sensitivity to her directing style that allows sequences to feel as epic as they are intimate, a trick shot she accomplished building an airtight emotional arc from a massive premise involving Time-Keepers, branching realities, and the consequences of what happened in Avengers: Endgame. Unfortunately, this is it for her when it comes to all things Marvel. It’s not just Loki Season 2, it’s everything. “No, I’m just focused on my own stuff at the moment,” she admits. “I love Marvel and I’d love to work with them again, but my outing with Loki is what I’ve done with them.”
The last episode of Loki Season 1 closed off with a bang, literally, as Sylvie’s (Sophia Di Martino) murder of He Who Remains (Jonathan Majors) resulted in the sacred timeline branching off into disparate, yet conflicting realities. It’s a lawfully chaotic ending befitting a God of Mischief and adequately sets up the events leading up to Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness and Spider-Man: No Way Home. Following good Kang’s big reveal as the true mastermind behind the Time Variance Authority, and the revelation that the TVA agents are all brainwashed Variants, Loki (Tom Hiddleston) races back to HQ to warn Mobius (Owen Wilson) of Sylvie’s choice, only to discover even his version of the TVA has been significantly altered. Loki Season 2 is already shaping up to become even more of a game-changer.
Jonathan Majors plays the Immortus counterpart of Kang the Conqueror in Loki and may reappear as his naturally sinister Variant (or should we say, the original) in season two, depending on when it airs — before or after Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania, which will also be introducing a Kang. Majors will be reprising the role, but which iteration we can’t be sure. The one featured in Loki Season 1 already let slip that his Variants are almost universally evil, so either way, our heroes are due for a bumpy road ahead. Which Variant of Kang the Conqueror are you looking forward to seeing: the good, the bad, or Iron Lad? (Diehards will get it.) Loki was renewed for season two on Wednesday. The first season is currently streaming on Disney+.