Spoilers Loki season 2-- spoilers and discussion

Discussion in 'Science Fiction & Fantasy' started by Turtletrekker, Sep 18, 2023.

  1. Rich Watson

    Rich Watson Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Would this season have worked better as a movie? About half the running time felt like padding and you could easily fit the actual story into two hours.
     
  2. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    I'd say no, because the problem is more fundamental than that. A movie should be a big, meaningful story. This season's story wasn't really meaningful at all, because it was just spinning wheels until it circled back and essentially redid the ending of season 1, rather than making any major advance beyond it. Sure, it did nudge a few characters further, but not in a really substantial way. It made a major, permanent change in Loki's life, but nothing leading up to it really seemed to earn it, because Loki spent the whole season just reacting to the plot rather than having any real character arc. So the whole story feels hollow and redundant. A movie followup to season 1 should be bigger than season 1, not just a tacked-on epilogue to it.

    The only way this season would've worked better is if it had told a different story entirely, one that was actually driven by character and ideas the way season 1 was instead of just being a shaggy-dog story about solving a single plot problem.
     
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  3. thribs

    thribs Vice Admiral Admiral

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    It’s just a shame it was just a variant of Loki. It wasn’t the “real” Loki at all.
     
  4. Set Harth

    Set Harth Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I'm sure he was the real Loki from his own point of view.
     
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  5. Saul

    Saul Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Definitely felt like padding. But would it have worked as a movie? It might not be a riveting 2 hour film.

    I'm sure Thor would feel the same if he saw him again and would equally be pissed off that Loki seems to have fooled him again into believing he was dead.
     
  6. thribs

    thribs Vice Admiral Admiral

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    It’s a shame we never got a Thor appearance, if this is going to be Loki’s last hurrah
     
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  7. Guy Gardener

    Guy Gardener Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Double done on Richard E Grant, because he will work for food.
     
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  8. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    A specious distinction. He's only a "variant" because he split off from the original at the end of The Avengers, thanks to the time travel in Endgame creating a new branch. Up until that moment in 2012, they were exactly the same Loki. They're both equally "real," in the same way that the two forks of a split branch are both equal parts of the same branch.

    I mean, you're missing the whole thematic point of both seasons, which is that the so-called "variants" are just as real as the people they branched off from, that their existences are just as valid and it's wrong to assume they have less right to exist. The whole "variant" label, like the "Sacred Timeline" label, was wrong, a false belief system created by He Who Remains to prioritize his own existence over those of his counterparts.
     
  9. Commander Troi

    Commander Troi Geek Grrl Premium Member

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    I disagree. I think, taking both seasons as a whole, they took Loki on an amazing arc. And without everything he went through in both seasons (and all the loops), he could never have become the person he needed to in order to save everything.

    At the beginning, he thought he should be a king because he was born one. In the end, he learned about love and sacrifice and earned being a king.
     
  10. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    But all that character growth happened in season 1. Here in season 2, he started out as the guy who wanted to save the TVA, and he ended up as the guy who wanted to save the TVA. His only arc was a problem-solving arc -- first he tried to get his time slips under control, then he spent four episodes running around after a red herring, then he learned to control his time slipping, which gave him the power to do whatever the hell vaguely defined thing he did at the end there. He spent the whole season mostly just reacting and trying to fix the problem, and his own distinct personality got kind of swallowed up in that, to the point that you could've substituted just about any generic hero character in his role.

    More to the point, the second season's story was nothing more than an extension of the first season's climactic arc, which is why it wouldn't have worked as a movie, unless it were just a 2-hour series finale. If you're going to build from a series into a movie, like WandaVision to Multiverse of Madness, Ms. Marvel (and WandaVision, and theoretically Secret Invasion though apparently not really) to The Marvels, or Falcon & Winter Soldier to Cap 4, then the series needs to be a prologue to the bigger, more self-contained story of the movie.
     
  11. MikHutch

    MikHutch Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Just watched Ep6

    Damn
     
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  12. eschaton

    eschaton Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I'd actually argue that Loki's arc this season was to stop cosplaying as a human, realizing that, ultimately he was a god, and should man up and be one if that's what it took to save his friends.

    It could have been done a lot better, but there were hints dropped. Like seeing the wood carvings of the Norse gods and being reminded, "oh hey, he is actually a deity." Or his straight-out telling Sylvie that it was okay to play god, because they were gods.

    I think the reason he got swallowed up in the plot machinations to some extent could be read as being because he became so used to not using his powers; he just started seeing himself as the same as Moebius and the others. He was approaching the problems of the season as a human, working together with other humans collaboratively. But it was only once he had deity-level powers (and recognized his status as a deity) that the problem could be solved.
     
  13. Awesome Possum

    Awesome Possum Moddin' Moderator

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    That was a hell of an ending, I loved it.
     
  14. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    I just don't think that came across well, because the story was so preoccupied with plot and problem-solving that there wasn't much exploration of the characters. You're having to string a bunch of disconnected fragments together and extract a coherent character arc from them.


    Part of my problem was that I could never buy into the arbitrariness of the whole Loom thing. Why the hell should there even be a Loom? Timelines ramify naturally. They're an intrinsic phenomenon of the universe. They shouldn't need a device to regulate or maintain them. So all this desperate running around to fix the Loom just felt like busywork. And of course, its purpose turned out to be artificial and arbitrary after all, because it was just HWR's failsafe, so the whole thing became just an afterthought to season 1's story.

    It also didn't help that their driving quest was mostly about a thing rather than a person. They should've focused more on the conflict between Dox's purists trying to continue pruning timelines and the reformers trying to reorient the TVA to a more benevolent goal. That was where the story should've been, not revolving around fixing a piece of hardware.
     
  15. theenglish

    theenglish Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I just finished watching the series today--and although I have mixed feelings about it as a whole, I did enjoy the last couple of episodes.

    The final scene with Loki becoming Yggdrasil leaves the character in a place that sets up the next Avengers movies. Based on what we know from the source material, it would seem that Loki has chosen to maintain the multiverse knowing that it will be destroyed in a multiversa war. Presumably, we will see this in Kang Dynasty with Secret Wars being set on Battle World. Doesn't this make He Who Remains on the side of good in this story as the one timeline (according to him) being the one way to prevent the actual destruction of the multiverse? And Loki's actions seem to set up the war, making him on the side of evil.

    I am now looking forward to how this story plays out at the end of Phase 6, although at this point I'm wondering if we'll see the publication of A Dream of Spring before we see The Kang Dynasty.
     
  16. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    I would, say, rather, that Loki has chosen to maintain the multiverse in hopes of preventing the destruction that He Who Remains believes is inevitable. By trying a new, different approach, he hopes to find a solution that HWR was too trapped in his own confrontational paradigm to consider, one that's more about protecting all the timelines rather than pitting them against each other.

    No, he just thinks he is, but anyone whose solution is "destroy every universe except mine" is hardly a hero, just a narcissist making excuses for a genocide that makes Thanos's look tiny. The problem with the Kangs is that they're too egotistical to tolerate competition from other Kangs, so they perceive the multiverse as a zero-sum Highlanderesque battle where only one can prevail by destroying all the others. He Who Remains is every bit as trapped in that "me or them" way of thinking as all the other Kangs; he just spins a benevolent-sounding excuse for why he has to be the last Kang standing, as I'm sure many of the other Kangs would if you asked them.

    Villains usually think they're the good guys. That doesn't mean you're supposed to accept that the way they define the situation is objectively true.
     
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  17. Jedman67

    Jedman67 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I partially agree with Christopher that there was quite a bit of padding.
    I think the whole Loki story could have worked as a single 10 episode season; nonetheless while S1 was a lot stronger than S2, l think they really nailed the ending.

    Part of Loki's development was that he needed to learn what it meant to be a god.
     
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  18. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    I'll give you that. He learned that power is not something you use for yourself, it's something you use for others.
     
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  19. Xerxes82

    Xerxes82 Captain Captain

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    Depends. Does being a genocidal tyrant who doesn't want to kill literally everybody, so long as their is no one to oppose you make one a good guy? Is it enough that the lives within the Sacred Timeline are free from the horrors of one particular war? Even though they are an oppressed population? Does it matter that they don't realize they are oppressed? Do the ends justify the means? Can absolutism ever be a social good?

    On the other hand, does supporting free will, freedom, and the right to, you know, even exist make one evil if the result includes struggle, pain and war? Does the answer change when the obvious conclusion of the story, though not yet reached, is some kind of multiversal Avengers team that will likely see all timelines free of Kang once and for all? Is one responsible for the choices of all if you are the one who gave them the world in which they could make that choice? At what point does Loki's culpability in any forthcoming war become his sole responsibility and not that of the actors whose choices bring those events about, in defiance of the common welfare?
     
  20. Mr. Adventure

    Mr. Adventure Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    I never got the sense that HWR's actions were from any sense of benevolence even from his own POV.
     
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