Loki head writer Michael Waldron recently said that while he believes that all the Marvel Cinematic Universe is " required viewing," shows such as Loki can still be enjoyed "if you've never seen an MCU movie." However, Waldron did stipulate that watching Loki will "enhance your enjoyment" of other movies like Spider-Man: No Way Home and Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness .
Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige called Loki “tremendously important” and that it would have “more impact on the MCU than any of the shows thus far.”
So, it is only natural to break down exactly what MCU films and shows the Loki series will ripple across.
The most obvious influence Loki will have on the MCU is the next Disney+ series, What If...? which revolves around different realities. But, curiously, if the TVA was doing its job, none of these branching timelines should even exist, which has interesting implications.
Either the TVA isn't on par or something happens to the Time-Keepers by the end of Loki that prevents them from stopping all these new branches sprouting off the Sacred Timeline.
It could be that Uatu the Watcher is assembling his own team of heroes to form a new team to protect realities, possibly called the Guardians of the Multiverse , in the absence of the TVA. Yes, audiences could see TVA agents arriving by the end of these episodes doing their job, but that wouldn't explain multiversal mishaps still happening in other MCU films.
SPIDER-MAN: NO WAY HOME
The Spider-Man threequel is obviously going to involve the multiverse with the arrival of Peter Parker's greatest villains from other realities and even other versions of himself . All of them would definitely fall under the definition of variants but on two levels not yet explained by Loki .
Not only is the Sacred Timeline being breached by multiple variants, heroes and villains, but these are variants from completely different realities not meant to exist at all in the first place. This indicates that something has gone terribly wrong at the TVA for them not to have prevented this from happening.
Doctor Strange making an appearance speaks volumes because it points to that multiversal war, explained by Miss Minutes in Loki , potentially repeating itself. So, not only are variants and branches in the timeline created, but these variants are even entering the Sacred Timeline without being stopped by the TVA.
On the other hand, Strange will be too busy to help Parker dealing with more direct problems in his own sequel film with Wanda likely breaking the entire multiverse over her knee to find her children.
DOCTOR STRANGE IN THE MULTIVERSE OF MADNESS
At the end of WandaVision , the newly crowned Scarlet Witch is seen reading the Darkhold , a tome of unspeakable evil, in an attempt to find her two sons, Billy and Tommy, somewhere in the multiverse. No doubt, whatever Wanda attempts to do brings about the attention of Doctor Strange, but is the TVA aware?
The exposition from Miss Minutes in Loki could not have more blatantly been foreshadowing Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness . The talking clock explains that a Nexus event is when a variant steps off their intended path, which "could branch off into madness, leading to another multiversal war."
This isn't the first time that a Nexus has been referenced in the MCU, as a commercial in WandaVision revolved all around it in the form of an anti-depressant, something which was intended to be Doctor Strange trying to contact Wanda .
It could be that this Doctor Strange sequel will be the spark that ignites a new multiversal war that leads to the eventual adaptation of the comic book event Secret Wars .
ANT-MAN AND THE WASP: QUANTUMANIA
It has been rumored since last year that Kang the Conqueror would make an appearance in Loki which only intensified with the inclusion of his love interest , Ravonna Renslayer, played by Gugu Mbatha-Raw. So, in addition to his enemies, the Time-Keepers , acting as the leaders of the TVA, it seemed all but inevitable that he would appear or at least be mentioned.
However, few predicted that this time-traveling tyrant would be announced for the sequel to Ant-Man and the Wasp , played by Jonathan Majors. In Loki , it was made clear by Judge Renslayer that the Avengers were always meant to use a time machine to save half the universe. This is opposed to other variants who have done, comparatively, far less disrupting the time stream.
The time machine Tony Stark built in Endgame used Pym Particles to travel through the Quantum Realm, creating new branches in the timeline. However, the person who actually came up with the idea was Scott Lang. It could be the key reason Kang appears in this threequel, but what he plans to do with the insect-themed heroes is another question entirely.
It looks like the MCU is a powder keg ready to blow with another multiversal war on the horizon.
New realities and timelines are seemingly forming unencumbered, including one where Ultron killed nearly all the Avengers . Villains from other worlds that shouldn't even exist are trying to kill Tom Holland's Spider-Man. Wanda will likely create a Nexus event in the Doctor Strange sequel which will inevitably branch off into madness.
Finally, there's one of the most formidable foes of the Avengers, Kang the Conqueror, appearing in Quantumania and maybe even Loki . He is someone who may end up being the villain of the fifth Avengers film . So, wherever Loki may be leading the MCU, it certainly isn't anywhere good.