Wayne Rock, Comic to Screen Head Writer
Hey fellow Loki fans, that Long Halloween review took me out for a while, but I’m back with a big, bombastic, action-packed review.
With a Nexus event-sized SPOILER ALERT let’s dive right in:
Episode 3: Lamentis
Episode 3 begins with an action-packed sequence in the halls of the TVA as both Lokis…sorry, Loki and Sylvie (as we later find out she prefers to be called) attempt to get to the Time Keepers. They soon are overwhelmed and Loki desperately relocates them to a random apocalyptic event on the planet Lamentis, where the device runs out of battery, stranding them there.
This episode is really fast-paced, and while it does have some slower scenes for breathing room, it’s mostly constant moving towards the next point. This is largely due to the ticking clock of Lamentis’ impending apocalypse which threatens Loki and Sylvie’s very existence. So far we’ve gotten a lot of Tom Hiddleston playing against Mobius and I’ve spoken a lot about how good their chemistry is, but that’s nothing compared to the electric tension between him and Sophia Di Martino. What I really enjoyed about this episode is sharing Loki’s growing frustration as he tries to prod, poke and extract details from Sylvie about her life and backstory, perfectly mirroring what we, the audience were clearly feeling as she constantly avoids giving a straight answer.
A lot of natural humour results as we see both Loki variants employ their drastically different approaches to problem solving even as they discover their similarities. This episode also very much threw me for a loop as I was pretty sure I knew exactly what was going to happen at the end of the episode, and when that didn’t happen, the actual ending left my jaw on the floor. Having the episode take place on a planet about to be destroyed by its own moon resulted in a very effects-heavy 45 minutes, but I don’t say that as a bad thing. For one, I’m no longer distracted by the awful brownish hue covering everything, although it is still present and I always notice it at least once per episode. Also, it’s always nice seeing movie-quality special effects in these Marvel TV series that, and I mean this with all the shade, frankly make CW’s effects look like something a 15-year-old threw together in his basement.
The folks over at the TVA don’t really get much to do as they are mostly focusing on finding and capturing both variants, but we do get a slight peek into Mobius and Renslayer’s relationship. There is a huge reveal about the nature of the TVA which no doubt will have huge consequences on the story going forward and so I went into episode 4 with my anticipation on max.
Wayne’s Lamentis Score: 7 out of 10
Episode 4: The Nexus Event
If Episode 3 of Loki was a fast-paced, non-stop train ride that quickly went off the rails (sorry I had to), Episode 4 “The Nexus Event” is the complete opposite. Picking up where we left off with Loki and Sylvie about to be destroyed by Lamentis’ apocalypse event, we see them start falling for each other. It’s strangely fitting that Loki in all his glorious narcissism would fall for another version of himself, but apparently the universe found this too weird to allow as this event creates a nexus event so sharp that it leads the TVA straight to them.
Now back in the TVA’s clutches, the episode slows all the way down to allow for the brilliant writing, character development and dialogue to really shine. I saw a few critics throwing shade at this episode, calling it boring, but I disagree very strongly. The episode indeed is a lot less frenetic than the previous one, but that isn’t to say that absolutely nothing happens. We get to see a lot of ramifications and payoff from things that were set up since the beginning.
The impact of Loki’s discovery of emotion and true connection is on full display, carried masterfully by Tom Hiddleston’s amazing performance. There is a lot of heart and depth in this episode and jamming it full with unnecessary action would have hurt the story that Kate Herron is trying to tell here. If seeing Loki almost break down after hearing that the one being he was able to fall in love with was pruned doesn’t tug at your heartstrings, well maybe you don’t have a heart.
There are so many character moments in this short episode, from Renslayer’s betrayal, to Mobius’ defiance, to Loki’s reaction, to B-15’s genuine sadness at losing a life filled with authentic happiness. The episode was paced really well, with excellent comedic timing in between moments of tension, and some very surprising reveals and events including a post-credits scene that you do NOT want to miss. I really would have liked to see more from a specific character that was basically just thrown into the episode as a glorified cameo, and if you know that character’s history in the comics with Loki, it is a true shame. Other than that, all this episode did is make me hungry for episode 5 to find out just what in the Hela is really going on in this show. Overall a very enjoyable episode.
Wayne’s The Nexus Event Score: 8 out of 10
In breaking Red Mango Reviews news Wayne has just been pruned by the TVA! It must have been something he wrote. But fear not; we have a strike team headed to The Void to rescue him. In the meantime I, your valiant Editor Jules, will be stepping in to review Episode 5. This one’s for you my brother!
Julien Neaves, Editor
Episode 5: Journey Into Mystery
Now I may not be a comic book expert like Wayne (whose safe return from The Void we continue to work on) but I do know that the episode title is a reference to the comic book Journey Into Mystery where Marvel’s version of Thor first appeared as well as Marvel’s version of Loki (issue #85 to be specific). The episode picks up with Sylvie and Renslayer at the TVA and as much as I adore Sophia Di Martino and Gugu Mbatha-Raw their scenes together didn’t do much for me. I mean, of course Renslayer was going to betray her and of course Sylvie was going to get to The Void to try and rescue Loki. Not exactly any surprises here.
I, and I suspect most other fans, wanted to see what happened with Loki on this mysterious planet, which we later discover is called The Void, is at the end of time and is stalked by a destructive cloud-like creature called Alioth (a play on Goliath I believe, and way better looking than the fart cloud in Green Lantern). The special effects overall for this episode were pretty good. And while I had christened the three variant Lokis as Old Loki (Oki), Child Loki (Choki), and Black Loki (Bloki) they are actually Classic Loki (Cloki), Kid Loki (Koki), and Boastful Loki (still Bloki). My favourite was easily Cloki, played with such panache by veteran actor Richard E. Grant and of course wearing Loki’s classic costume. Oh, and I forgot Alligator Loki (Aoki?) who was just totes adorbes.
Things only get crazier when the crew of Lokis get attacked by a marauder gang of Lokis led by President Loki (Ploki). I believe there was a Ninja Loki in there too (Noki) but it was a whole lot of Lokis. And of course Bloki betrays the crew and then all the Lokis betray each other. It really couldn’t have gone any other way. And the scene where Aoki bit off Ploki’s hand was hilarious.
While I enjoyed the Multi-Loki shenanigans, the pleasant scenes between Sylvie and Mobius, and the emotional scenes between Loki and Mobius and Loki and Sylvie, this episode felt like mostly set-up for the finale. And yes, it did get me super-excited for the finale, but I felt the past two episodes had better pacing and the writing was slightly tighter. But overall still a very good episode and I have faith they will deliver with the final episode next week. And I believe by then Wayne should have been returned from The Void and back to our time. Please do keep him in your thoughts.
Editor Jules’ Journey Into Mystery Score: 7 out of 10
So what did you think of the past three episodes? And what are you hoping to see in the finale? For more Loki (and of course you want more Loki) you can check out Wayne’s previous episode reviews below:
Loki Episode 2 ‘The Variant’ Gives Insights and Builds the Mystery
Loki Premiere Delivers an Intriguing Start to the Anti-hero Series
Wayne loves to complain, and that was an unintentional rhyme. When I’m not watching movies, TV, anime or trophy hunting on PS4, you can usually find me deep in my thoughts preparing my next scathing review of a bad movie. I think Zack Snyder’s take on superheroes is terrible and that The Quick and the Dead is actually a decent movie. I re-watch Death Note every year. Unlike the other fine writers on this site, I’m not a critic, but I can definitely Rock a review…(Read More)
Julien “Editor Jules” Neaves is a TARDIS-flying, Force-using Trekkie whose bedroom stories were by Freddy Krueger, learned to be a superhero from Marvel, but dreams of being Batman. I love promoting Caribbean film (Cariwood), creating board games and I am an aspiring author. I say things like “12 flavours of awesome sauce”. Read more.