Here are all the greatest theories regarding the end of Loki. There was a time when bringing the MCU to Disney+ seemed like a monumental gamble. This apprehension seems very unwelcome today, since WandaVision, Falcon and the Winter Soldier, and Loki have all enjoyed success in streaming, and the God of Malice maybe even more so than Wanda, Vision, Sam, and Bucky. Just out of the Battle of New York (immediately after the 2012 film The Avengers), Tom Hiddleston’s Loki is picked up by the Time Variance Authority, which decrees that the villain should have been detained by the Avengers and sent to the Asgardian prison as planned.
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Warning, this article contains spoilers about the Loki series
Since then, Loki has discovered a whole new world with his own variants, which he fell in love with, as one would expect. Together, Loki and Sylvie have sown havoc within THE TVA, revealing that the Sacred TimeKeepers are inanimate androids, proving that each employee is just a brainwashed variant, and discovering what actually happens when a timeline or person is pruned. Today, the pernicious duo has gained the upper hand over Alioth, the watchdog of the Kingdom of emptiness, and has found a kind of castle on the other side. They assume that this is where the truth lies behind vat interference.
During the first five episodes, Loki took turns that fans hadn’t necessarily anticipated, leaving a multitude of possibilities for the end. There is no shortage of theories, but here are the most exciting and intriguing paths that Loki could take as he approaches the end.
Theory #1: Loki and Sylvie meet Kang
The first agenda of episode 6 of Loki is to reveal the person behind the curtain – or, more precisely, the person inside the castle. Loki and Sylvie head straight to the top, bypassing Alioth to meet the mysterious force at the center of the TVA, and Kang the Conqueror is currently the big favorite. Loki left many clues in Kang, from the presence of Ravonna Renslayer to the sign of Qeng Industries spotted in the Void. In Marvel comics, Kang is a villain of the future who travels back in time and uses an awesome intellect and advanced weapons to rule a time empire. Not only would it make sense for Kang to manipulate the MCU timeline through VAT, but the character has already been chosen for Ant-Man & The Wasp: Quantumania, with Jonathan Majors in the role.
If Loki and Sylvie enter the citadel of the other world presented in episode 5 and discover Kang sitting on the throne, it can be assumed that they will be unable to defeat him. Kang still has to worry about Paul Rudd in 2023, and can’t look weak for his debut in the MCU. Kang could, however, explain his true purpose by creating VAT, perhaps revealing that his plan has already come to fruition despite Loki’s recent interference. Kang would then fly to unknown times, ready for a later appearance.
Assuming that the Kang of action is motivated by the same thirst for conquest as its counterpart in comics, the creation of VAT could have helped it achieve its goal in several ways. By carving the multiverse into a “sacred timeline,” Kang could have shaped the story to his advantage as a precursor to a large-scale invasion. This would explain why TVA believed that its three guardians of time were working on an idyllic “end” for the sacred timeline, and would also correspond to a popular theory that VAT exists in the quantum realm. It may also be that Kang used truncated timelines to procure the best weapons and warriors for his personal forces, once again in preparation for a temporal war. In either of these scenarios, revealing that Kang is the mastermind of VAT would make Loki a prequel to Ant-Man 3 – and perhaps also establish him as the franchise’s “new Thanos.”
Theory #2: He Who Remains unveils his plan
If Loki sticks more closely to Marvel comics, we can expect the man in the castle to be the one left. Like Kang, the one who remains inhabits a citadel at the end of time, a description that corresponds to the mysterious place imagined by Sylvie in episode 5 of Loki. The one who remains is also the creator of The Guardians of Time and the secret director of VAT in the continuity of marvel comics. The last vestige of a previous universe, The One Who Remains serves as the guardian of time, attempting to divert our current universe from the mistakes made in past cycles. Thor and Jane Foster visit the Remaining One and explain to him how his actions harm the timeline, which encourages the wrinkled elder to change his approach as guardian of time and space.
Mirroring this scenario, Loki and Sylvie could swap places with Thor and Jane in a pleasant moment of redemptive symmetry. The two Loki would enter the citadel of The One Who Remains and explain how cruel and destructive the current treatment of the variants is – including the snatching of young children from their families without properly explaining to them the crime they committed. Facing the Asgardians, the one who remains could find a better way to preserve the timeline, something that does not involve condemning entire worlds to Nothingness.
Of course, this would mean that VAT and the Time Guardians were not created out of malice and that the true intention of the one who remains was to protect the timeline and prevent a cataclysmic event from ending the universe (even if some details distort the truth). This is not necessarily what Loki has been aiming for. By hiring hypnotized staff and carving with carefree abandonment, VAT has a palpable sinister side, suggesting that its leader is not just an old man charged with protecting reality. Moreover, why should the one who remains hide behind three omnipotent fictional beings since the dawn of time when that is precisely what he is anyway?
Theory #3: Loki’s real enemy is a variant of Loki.
In the words of Owen Wilson’s character Mobius, throw a stone into nothingness and you’ll stumble upon a Loki. According to this logic, the man behind the curtain could be another version of the God of Malice, and the VAT is only a gigantic and infamous plan to conquer all space and time… or something like that. The MODUS OPERANDI of VAT seems consistent with the plans of a Loki, the organization being specialized in witchcraft (the effects of magic are canceled at the VAT HQ), manipulation (the propaganda of the TimeKeeper), and lying (just about everything). Thanks to Richard E. Grant’s classic Loki, the Disney+ (Encanto, Black Widow) series has also demonstrated the true potential of Loki’s witchcraft, which goes so far as to enchant minds and create gargantuan illusions of life. By pushing Loki’s power to its natural conclusion, TVA’s brain could be the strongest variant to date.
According to Mobius, TVA sizes Loki more than any other character in the story. While it’s natural to assume that this is due to Loki’s unpredictable mischievousness, the real reason might be that the “end boss” Loki knows that the greatest threat to his reign is another version of himself – especially if their power is allowed to grow unchecked. Loki and Sylvie could team up to defeat their evil variant in a thrilling final battle for the destiny of all time. Episode 5 has already shown how Loki and Sylvie’s powers complement each other, and two Loki lovers could be enough to defeat the evil timekeeper Loki.
Loki and Sylvie’s fight against another version of themselves is thematically appropriate to close their Disney+ series solo (duet). Emotionally, the entire narrative has seen Tom Hiddleston’s Loki grapple with his own self-destructive tendencies, whether it’s selfish invasions or betrayal of the people he loves. Now that the Loki of the MCU has completed his journey of self-discovery, it makes sense that his last challenge is to overcome the evilest Loki has seen so far.
Theory #4: Loki releases the other variants (and himself?)
In addition to revealing the TVA puppeteer, Loki’s finale must also address the fate of all variants, both in the Void and in VAT. Many theories predict that the Disney+ series could end with Loki and Sylvie releasing all those who have been cut. One way to do this is to restore all nexus events and everyone in it, moving away from VAT’s “one timeline” rule to create a multiverse filled with alternative realities. President Loki returns to his world, child Loki in his own, etc. Even Throg is restored to the crazy alternative timeline from which he came out. Almost everyone wins in this scenario, with the exception of Loki and Sylvie, who would be separated in their respective worlds of origin. The heartbreak of being separated could give Episode 6 of Loki its emotional boost – releasing the variants is the “right” thing to do, but it comes at a significant personal cost for both protagonists.
Another potential way for Loki to save the situation would be to create a separate world in which all variants could live in peace, outside the main timeline. Not only would this preserve the continuity of the MCU by minimizing secondary realities, but Loki and Sylvie (and Mobius) could live happily together until the end of time. The decision depends entirely on whether Marvel Studios wants Loki to return to the MCU itself, or whether the death of the God of Mischievousness in Avengers: Infinity War must be honored.
Anyway, viewers need Mobius on a jet ski before the end credits. This could happen either in the 1990s timeline of Mobius, or in the pocket universe that Loki could create for himself and the other variants.
Theory #5: VAT ends, the madness of the multiverses is triggered
Whether Loki and Sylvie drive Kang away, convince the rest of him to change his habits or defeat an evil variant of Loki, the future of VAT looks bleak. After the revelation of the real head of the organization, the whole operation collapses, and with Mobius promising to “burn everything”, a strike by VAT workers seems very, very likely. This means that nexus events are no longer pruned until a divided timeline is created, and with no one to prune it, the sacred timeline suddenly turns into a myriad of contradictory realities. Spider-Man: No Way Home and Doctor Strange In The Multiverse of Madness will both plunge into quantum madness, and the disappearance of VAT could be the trigger.
This assumes that the explanation of the sacred TIMELINE of VAT was not part of their rhetoric. Some theories claim that the MCU already exists in a multiverse and that VAT has only pruned some divergent timeline, not all. Even if a multiverse is already in place, the sudden influx of different realities after the dissolution of VAT could still catch Stephen Strange’s attention.
Theory #6: VAT (and Nothingness) is reformed
With the first two series of the MCU airing on Disney+, efforts were made to limit the scale of the changes to the franchise landscape. This avoids alienating fans who are still only interested in the big screen, and if Loki follows the same path, viewers should not expect the finale to be directly related to marvel’s next films, Spider-Man and Doctor Strange. In order for Loki to remain relatively autonomous and avoid triggering a multiverse, it is possible that vat will be reformed, rather than abandoned. Maybe Mobius or Loki will take the lead of the organization, throw out the propaganda of the Time Guardians and start recruiting variants openly instead of brainwashing them to subdue them. And while TVA previously pruned Nexus events according to the Doctrine of the Time Guardians, the newly created authority might only prune timelines that lead to dangerous or apocalyptic results. Under a new leadership, VAT could be a real force for good.
In this way, the structure of the MCU remains virtually unchanged (Kevin Feige will have to find another way to instill his multiverse madness), and the remaining variants, including Loki, are all offered a new goal under a fairer diet – such as when Lotso is fired from sunnyside nursery at the end of Toy Story 3, but with Mobius instead of Ken. Sylvie, however, could prove to be a sticking point. Even after the eviction of the current leaders, Sylvie will never be able to bring herself to work for the organization she has spent her life hating. This difference in orientation would put Loki and Sylvie on different paths, but with the possibility of crossing one day in the future (or the past).