Loki has revealed its villain in the first episode of the new Marvel Cinematic Universe series streaming on Disney+. And while it is something of a surprise, it has actually been well-known for a while if you have been paying attention to certain reports. But what is interesting about this villain is that it looks to be setting up an even greater villain from the Marvel universe, and it is one that seems to be popping up in other Phase Four stories from Marvel. In fact, this new villain could end up being the new Thanos for this era of Marvel movies.
Obviously, spoilers ahead for Loki and the villain reveal in the first episode.
At the end of the first episode of Loki, we are told that the villain that has been jumping throughout time and killing officers of the Time Variance Authority is none other than a variant of Loki himself. However, the final shot of the episode does not give us a full reveal of this version of the God of Mischief. If it was just another Tom Hiddleston, that would not be something that would need to stay hidden, right? That’s because the surprise is that this is not Loki as played by Tom Hiddleston. As we learned from set photos, the variant version of Loki is actually a woman and will be played by Sophia Di Martino.
You can catch a glimpse of the Loki villain in the tweet below:
That alone is a pretty big reveal. But the decision to reveal the Loki villain actually included setting up another major antagonist in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. When we first learn about the murders of Time Variance Authority agents, lead investigator Mobius M. Mobius is told that the perpetrator looks like the devil. A young boy points to a stained glass interpretation of the devil and it immediately conjures up allusions to the Marvel universe’s version of the devil, Mephisto.
Now, it is worth noting that this version of the devil could be inspired by the Variant Loki traveling through time and establishing herself as a demonic figure. However, we have previously seen such specific devil imagery show up in WandaVision earlier this year. It certainly seems like Marvel Studios and Kevin Feige are playing the long game when it comes to sowing seeds for the eventual introduction of Mephisto. Now, we do know that Mephisto will not be showing up in Loki as the villain, but this does seem to be part of a greater attempt to plant Easter eggs for his inevitable inclusion into the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
And with Loki getting weird with timelines and multiverses, a villain of Mephisto’s magnitude has got to be getting the Big Bad treatment in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Between this, WandaVision, and the upcoming Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, it looks like the extra-dimensional demon is slowly but surely making his way into the lives of the Marvel characters. We can’t wait to see him arrive.