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"We're not just looking for a Time Criminal. We're looking for a Loki. A variation of this guy. A type we should all be very familiar with, because the TVA has pruned a lotta these guys, almost more than any other Variant. And no two are alike. Slight differences in appearances, or not so slight."
Mobius M. Mobius

The Variant is the second episode of the first season of Loki.

Synopsis

Mobius puts Loki to work, but not everyone at TVA is thrilled about the God of Mischief's presence.

Plot

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Minutemen respond to a Nexus Event in 1985 Wisconsin. They search for the renegade Loki variant, but the mission goes awry when Hunter C-20 is brainwashed, causing her to attack her own unit. When she eventually passes out, the renegade Loki variant takes her captive and passes through a Timedoor of their own. At the TVA office, 2012's Loki receives lectures from Miss Minutes about how Nexus Events function. He learns that there is a set amount of time before the TVA cannot reset the branched timeline, leading to the collapse of said timeline and reality. Mobius M. Mobius calls Loki up to respond to the ambush. However, Hunter B-15 and the others are reluctant to work with a Loki, with thousands of his variants pruned by the TVA already. Mobius, wary about Loki's traitorous nature, offers him a meeting with the Time-Keepers should he cooperate with them to take down the Variant.

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They rejoin the 1985 Wisconsin branch and discover no traces of the Variant. While attempting to scout out leads, Loki tries to inform them of a Loki's mischievous behavioral patterns, warning them of potential traps. However, this turns out to be a stalling tactic, which forces the Minutemen to retreat, pruning the timeline as the branch nears the point of no return. Meeting with Ravonna Renslayer, Mobius explains to her that by understanding their Loki ally, the TVA can understand and capture the Variant. Renslayer gives Mobius one chance to use Loki, noting that the Time-Keepers have their full attention on the case.

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Mobius takes Loki to the library and has him scour through various files regarding the Variant, hoping to utilize his "Loki perspective." Loki meets a librarian at a desk, attempting to retrieve files about the emergence of the Time-Keepers and the beginning and end of time. However, since those files are classified, he is instead handed more files about himself. After finding information about Ragnarök from the Sacred Timeline, Loki concludes that the Variant is hiding in apocalyptic events. He reasons to Mobius that as long as the intended outcome of the apocalypse still occurs, no branches will emerge as all variances would be destroyed. Mobius reluctantly follows Loki to 79 A.D. Pompeii, where he advises him to create minuscule disturbances. Instead, Loki loudly warns the locals of the impending eruption of Mt. Vesuvius. Despite Loki's efforts to create a town of variants, no branches are formed. The pair return to the TVA as the village is destroyed, now knowing that Loki's theory is correct.

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Loki asks Mobius how Time is supposed to end, learning from him that the Time-Keepers are unraveling the future from its infinite branches, while the TVA protects what came before. Once Time fully concludes, so does the TVA, creating order across time. Loki tells Mobius of a saying that no one is ever truly good or evil, attempting to create doubt about the Time-Keeper's intentions. Recalling his encounter with a boy in 1549 France, Mobius retrieves the Kablooie candy he had taken from him. As Kablooie was sold between 2047 and 2051, the pair go through natural apocalyptic disasters that occurred between those years, such as the extinction of the swallow in 2050 and Krakatoa's 2049 eruption, in search of references to the candy. They arrive at 2050 Alabama, where a catastrophic hurricane would wipe out Haven Hills, a corporate town owned by the Roxxcart superstore.

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Renslayer reluctantly approves Mobius' bid to send a Minutemen unit to Haven Hills. B-15 briefs them about the superstore: due to the hurricane, a large number of civilians are taking shelter inside, allowing the Variant to hide in plain sight. Arriving at Roxxcart, Loki accompanies B-15 on her order. Unbeknownst to them, the Variant is already aware of their presence, controlling B-15 to interact with Loki before knocking her unconscious. A civilian worker who touched B-15 begins to menacingly approach Loki. Recognizing that the man was the Variant, Loki reveals his plan to overthrow the Time-Keepers unto the Variant. He attempts to recruit him to his cause, but the Variant rejects this offer. Loki eventually loses sight of the worker and is attacked by another man controlled by the Variant, who collapses after attaching a timed TemPad to an apparatus. Elsewhere, Mobius' unit is searching for stolen reset charges when they find a catatonic C-20. She reveals that she has surrendered the top-secret location of the Time-Keepers.

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Loki soon comes face-to-face with the cloaked Variant, who reveals herself as a female Loki. The timer expires, and her reset charges are sent scattered across the Sacred Timeline, creating a wide array of branching timelines. The TVA is startled by the mass occurrences of Nexus Events, forcing Renslayer and other Minutemen units into action. The Variant leaves Roxxcart through a Timedoor. Loki gives chase, leaving Mobius behind.

Cast

Main Cast:

Guest Stars:

Appearances

Locations

Events

Items

Vehicles

Sentient Species

Creatures

Organizations

Mentioned

Music

Song title Artist Location(s)
Plague of Roses/The Build Master's Gigue John Debney
  • 1985 Renaissance Faire
Holding Out for a Hero Bonnie Tyler
18 Morceaux, Op. 72: No. 2, Berceuse (Arr. for Theremin & Piano) Clara Rockmore & Nadia Reisenberg
  • Mobius and Ravonna talk in her office.
Air On the G String, from Orchestral Suite No. 3 in D Major, BWV 1068 Johann Sebastian Bach
  • Loki requests the TVA files from the Archivists.

Videos

To be added

Trivia

References

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External Links