Marvel Studios’ Loki has finished its six-episode Disney+ debut with the highly consequential events of the final installment, leaving fans wondering what could possibly be next for the confirmed second season of the show.
With the appearance of Jonathan Majors’ He Who Remains and his seemingly effortless rule over the Sacred Timeline being revealed, the implication that Variants of him like Kang the Conqueror are making their way to the MCU is haunting, to say the least.
The sheer power behind the character is daunting, and it took a lot to communicate that properly through the Disney+ show.
The Direct sat down with the composer of the hit streaming series to find out just how she and her team approached writing the score for Marvel’s latest menace as well as what could be next for the character leading into Season 2 of Loki.
LOKI'S NATALIE HOLT CHATS WITH THE DIRECT
The Direct sat down with Loki composer Natalie Holt to talk about her work on the show’s big reveal, Jonathan Majors’ He Who Remains, and what it meant to her to build the series around the score for the new, menacing MCU threat.
Specifically, the final shot in the series showed Loki looking out at a slightly different TVA than the one he remembered. Holt explained that “that piece was there from the beginning” and that “everything’s been leading to that moment” of Loki seeing he’s been transported to a version of the TVA ruled directly by a variant of He Who Remains:
“That piece was there from the beginning. That was my Kang theme that I came up with. So I knew that everything’s been leading to that moment. You hear that TVA theme, and you realize who it really belongs to.”
Admittedly, the new MCU composer “loved bringing that moment together,” describing it as “really fun” to build around this score she had started with in the show’s finale.
Holt also mentioned that her work was so complex that it took “ages to mix,” even admitting that her “engineer had to get a different license for pro tools because there were so many tracks.”
The Direct asked the Loki scorer what the main emotion was that she wanted to evoke through the theme music for He Who Remains. Holt described what she wanted to communicate as “a majesty” and “a superpower” with “a beauty to it as well:”
“There’s like a majesty, like a superpower to it. This kind of god, he’s got this kind of… yeah, this super-being that’s in charge of time. I don’t think you can get bigger than that. And there’s a beauty to it as well.”
She then went on to add that she took some input from Marvel Studios’ creative producer Kevin Wright on how the theme should feel, who wanted to show the audience that “you’re looking in the face of God:”
“I think when Loki looks out at the TVA in the first episode, and I remember Kevin Wright - the creative producer of the show - just saying, like, ‘I think I did something different there.’ And he was like, ‘when he looks out and sees the TVA, it needs to be like you’re looking in the face of God. And there’s beauty there, and there’s horror. There’s like this double-edged thing.’ And that moment where he looks out, he was like ‘I think he needs to feel kind of the beauty of it in that moment.’ So I felt like that’s a facet of it, too.”
Holt also made mention of how impressed she was with Jonathan Majors’ performance in Loki, praising the fellow MCU newcomer’s “playfulness” that contributed to “such an amazing performance:”
“And the way that the character (He Who Remains) that we now know who’s playing it and how he’s playing it with that kind of playfulness as well, I think it’s just… Yeah, (Jonathan Majors) is such a great actor. Such an amazing performance. I want to see what he does with that character.”
When asked if she would be returning for the confirmed second season of Marvel Studios’ Loki, Holt wasted no time exclaiming that she “would love to be” involved. And although she admitted that her potential return is “all up in the air,” this didn’t take away from her experience on Season 1 being “so much fun:”
“Fingers crossed! I would love to be. It’s been so much fun, and obviously I think it’s been confirmed today that Kate [Herron, director of Loki] is not continuing on either. So yeah, it’s all kind of up in the air, I guess. And what on Earth it’s gonna be about is all up in the air as well!”
Regarding what new elements Holt would bring to Season 2 of Loki if she returns, she jokingly suggested she would “do the whole thing on a theremin:”
“I could just do the whole thing on a theremin! Like, solo theremin for the whole score. But I think everyone might get a little bit tired of it.”
The new MCU composer also took the time to commend the team at Marvel Studios for treating her well, citing that “the executive producers... all personally called to thank (her):”
“What I think of Marvel is just... I just love them. The executive producers were so sweet. Like, they all personally called to thank me, which, you know, you would just not expect people with that much on their plates to take the time out to do that. So yeah, they’re a nice bunch.”
Holt also thanked her own crew — the musicians that made the Loki score possible — describing “the music team and the Marvel music editors” as “a crack team of people in the music department:”
“I think, as composers, we’re only as good as the musicians that we have playing our music as well, so I’m so thankful for everyone that played and contributed. And the music team, and the Marvel music editors. I just had a crack team of people in the music department.”
WHAT’S IN STORE FOR LOKI SEASON 2?
It’s not uncommon to hear that Marvel treats its team well, but each individual thank-you was well-deserved for the Loki composer.
Natalie Holt worked almost entirely backwards on the Loki series, starting with the theme for the show’s biggest reveal and working all the way back to the smallest intricacies in the God of Mischief’s earliest Disney+ moments.
Working the theme music for He Who Remains into each episode of the show and hiding his presence within the TVA score was brilliant, giving further credence to Jonathan Majors’ hit character being there every step of the way — whether Loki or his companions realized it or not.
With a confirmed Season 2 of Loki on the way, fans are eager to learn even the slightest details for what the next batch of episodes entail since so much was left “all up in the air.”
Considering Kang the Conqueror still isn’t set to make his theatrical MCU debut until 2023’s Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania, it’s possible that Jonathan Majors’ next Marvel outing will be in the God of Mischief’s second Disney+ run.
If that’s the case, then Holt and the Marvel team will have much to build upon as they’ll be tasked with maintaining the level of interest and hype for He Who Remains until he makes his presence known to the rest of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
Natalie Holt did an incredible job bringing out the awe and emotion of one of Marvel's biggest villain introductions in years, so hopes are high that her talents will be brought to a second season of the Disney+ show. And surely, we can’t be the only ones excited for more of Holt's work on the theremin.
Check out the MCU composer’s work in all six episodes of Marvel Studios’ Loki, streaming exclusively on Disney+.