WARNING - This article contains spoilers for the premiere of Loki.
The broad concept of the Loki Disney+ series has been relatively clear for some time. Tom Hiddleston's villain will escape from the post-Avengers timeline and team up with the Time Variance Authority to solve time-related crimes.
Time-travel was first introduced to the MCU in Avengers: Endgame, but Loki has shaken up the concept completely, specifically concerning the concept of timelines. Miss Minutes explains that an ancient group of Timekeepers initially defined what is now known as the sacred timeline, which is protected by the TVA.
When Loki escaped capture in the 2019 blockbuster ensemble, he created an alternate branching timeline, making him what is known as a variant. His rogue run as a variant didn't last long however, as the TVA quickly brought the variant God of Mischief into custody to stand trial, consequently destroying the branch altogether.
With such a quick apparent resolution, it has remained unclear who the main antagonist of the six-episode series. After a long wait, the premiere episode of Loki has finally revealed the surprise villain of the Disney+ series that Tom Hiddleston's Loki and Owen Wilson's Agent Mobius will be hunting in the crime thriller.
LOKI PREMIERE REVEALS A SURPRISING ANTAGONIST
Following a premiere episode full of interrogation and informal therapy, Loki finally opens up to Mobius regarding his actions' motivations.
This conversation leads the time-traveling detective to ask for the trickster's help in hunting a fugitive that has been killing TVA agents. After asking who this fugitive is, Mobius reveals it's someone Loki will be particularly familiar with.
MOBIUS: A fugitive variant has been killing our Minute Men.
LOKI: And you need the God of Mischief to help you solve it?
MOBIUS: That's right.
LOKI: Why me?
MOBIUS: The variant we're hunting is...you.
LOKI: I beg your pardon.
Following the revelation, the episode concluded with a scene taking place in 1858, Salina, Oklahoma, showing a hooded figure with a lantern burning grass around a group of TVA agents.
Interestingly, the mysterious killer achieved this by using the lantern to set fire to a ring of oil that was poured even before the Minute Men's arrival, suggesting the act was premeditated.
AN EVEN MORE EVIL LOKI ARRIVES
Fan theories surrounding the true villain of Loki have ranged broadly on the run-up to the Disney+ premiere.
From realistic picks like Kang the Conqueror or Enchantress to wild ideas like Doctor Doom, speculation ran wild about the show's antagonist. Given that the version of the God of Mischief currently leading the series is already at his peak villainy, it'll take an extremely evil version of Loki to serve as a powerful antagonist to the lead.
It's been speculated for some time now that Hiddleston's solo outing would finally introduce fans to Lady Loki, a female version of the character that exists as a result of the trickster's shape-shifting abilities. A recently released teaser for the series has only supported this theory as a TVA document confirmed that Loki is gender fluid in the MCU, meaning that he has no specific gender.
While it had previously been predicted that Loki's female counterpart would simply take over the leading role from Hiddleston for an episode or two, it's possible she may be the hooded villain of the Disney+ series. Even with the viral love for Tom Hiddleston, it would be a bold decision from Marvel to have the British actor play both the protagonist and antagonist, so the murderous Loki being played by another actor could simplify things as a whole.
Whoever plays this hooded killer, it's clear they have a bone to pick with the TVA as they are going to great lengths to entrap and kill the Minute Men officers. As of right now, there isn't exactly a clear place another Loki variant could have appeared from, so it's likely the backstory of this antagonist will be revealed as the series goes on.
The first episode of Loki is streaming now, exclusively on Disney+.