Tony Stark once said to Loki, “there is no throne, there is no version of this where you come out on top.” But he was wrong.
Loki may have appeared to screw up royally in The Avengers, but by the time Thor: The Dark World concluded, he was proudly perched exactly where he wanted to be all along – the throne of Asgard.
So far as we know, he is still there. Not only does Loki now have access to the Tesseract, the Infinity Gauntlet, and every other precious shiny thing in Odin’s vault, but he holds the highest seat in the whole nine realms. All to himself.
And while the world speculates on whether Ragnarok will be a key element of Thor 3 (yes, the whole entire world is wondering this. It’s a big important question mark for everyone.) I’m drawn towards the hope that we see the hand of Thanos in this movie.
Unless you’ve been sleeping on ice for the past 70 or so years, you’ll know that Thanos wants the Infinity Stones. The Tesseract is one such treasure, and not only is it in Asgard, but it’s currently powering the Bifrost*. Then there’s the Infinity Gauntlet, which is the glove all these pretty lil’ stones fit into. That too, is in Asgard. Safely tucked away in the vault.
With Loki now in the perfect position to give Thanos both of the Things. It’s really just a matter of time before the Mad Titan – or rather, one of his lackey’s – comes to collect that which was promised to him in The Avengers
What I want to know is, will Loki actually be daft enough to hand over these relics when the time comes? Will he try to outplay Thanos? Will he be forced to team up with Thor for one final anti-heroic (on Loki’s part at least) battle against something even more malevolent than himself?”
Let’s just sit back for a moment and imagine how this could go down in Thor 3. We can even give it a bit of Ragnarok twist if you so wish.
Option 1 – Redemptive character arc be damned! Loki is still in cahoots with Thanos, and has every intention of playing the villain once more in Thor 3!
Regardless of whether climbing atop of Asgard’s throne at the end of Thor 2 was Loki’s plan all along, or just a case of him seeing opportunity waving like a stray $50 note on the sidewalk, we can be pretty damned sure he will now do whatever it takes to keep himself there.
So will Loki be the villain in Thor 3?
At a glance, it seems likely that yes, Loki will again be the bad guy (or rather, one of the bad guys.) He has loads of power at his disposal, he owes a hefty debt to Thanos, and… Well, he’s never really going to be what anyone would call a “good guy” by any stretch of the imagination now, is he?
As speculated previously, there’s a reasonable chance that Loki’s capture in The Avengers was simply part of a larger scheme to deliver Thanos both the Tesseract and the Infinity Gauntlet while gaining for himself a nice shiny gold chair. If that is the case, then… Well done Loki. You have succeeded. You have succeeded in destroying the very universe you yourself live in. You great big dumbass.
Let’s just get totally side-tracked and talk about Thanos and his lady love Death for a moment.
Once Thanos gets hold of all six of the Infinity Stones and affixes them to the Gauntlet, he’s going to have the power to extinguish universes. He will in fact, have the power of the universe itself.
Now, there’s no saying it’s going to go down this way in the MCU, but in the comics, the guy’s kinda enamored by an entity called Death. She’s done a pretty good job of cock-blocking him so far… By demanding that he sacrifice every last life in the universe to her!
Of course, Guardians of the Galaxy director James Gunn has already made an attempt to distinguish the difference between comic and movie continuity:
“Here’s the thing, truthfully the Marvel Cinematic Universe takes out of both the 616 and Ultimate Marvel Comics universe, and then they recreate some elements themselves. What Thanos wants in the comics is not necessarily what Thanos wants in the movies; we don’t know yet.”
Whether or not Death is Thanos’ driving force, I doubt he’s on a quest to collect up the most powerful relics in all of creation simply because he wants to make a pretty ornament for his dining table centerpiece. No. One way or another, that big purple bad guy is out to see all of us done and dusted.
Now back to Loki.
Loki may never stop being a scheming little bastard (and why should he? We love him that way!) but I’m not sure he will happily sit back and watch Thanos wipe out existence just so he can sprawl all over his golden chair up in Asgard and be the Powerful Overlord of Nothing Because It’s All Been Destroyed.
Do you remember in Guardians of the Galaxy, when Rocket Raccoon asked Peter Quill why he’d want to save the galaxy, and Peter said “because I’m one of the idiots who lives in it!” ?
I’m pretty sure Loki’s going to taking a page out of Star-Lord’s book when push comes to shove. See, self-preservation isn’t just about keeping yourself alive in the face of the current threat, but keeping future threats at bay. Like the annihilation of the very universe you live in. Duh.
Besides, Marvel reaps far more enjoyment out of dangling the never-quite-achievable Redemptive Arc before us, to turn Loki into a 100% percent villain any time soon. And given how almost every critic review of Thor: The Dark World agreed that the dynamics of the Brodinsons** was probably the best part of the movie, I think it’s safe to say that regardless of whatever chaos Loki unleashes in Thor 3, he will try and make right his wrongs by the end. Aibeit with a great deal of reluctance, I’m sure.
Which leads me to my second and final (for the moment) theory for Loki’s involvement in the Thor 3 plot….
Option 2 – Thanos vs Loki vs Thor vs Thanos again (via Thanos henchman) with a Ragnarok Twist!
In this theory, we see Thanos (or one of his cohorts) making a beeline to Asgard, and Loki cobbling together all the resources he can find in attempt to protect himself.
Will Loki be able to hold his own against Thanos? Of course not. Maybe he’ll enlist in Thor’s help right off the bat, either under the guise of Odin, or by coming clean about his deception. (Doubtful.) But he’ll more likely try to wing it without his brother by enlisting in the help of the completely wrong crowd of people – thus creating an even bigger mess for Thor to have to come in and clean up.
Like, inadvertently triggering Ragnarok or something…
I mean, let’s just play around with comic canon a little, and say Loki strikes a deal with Surtur, the Fire Demon of Muspelheim. In comic-lore, Surtur is an ancient and extremely formidable enemy of Asgard. But Loki is not of Asgard, is he? So he might be able to rustle up a sweet deal for Muspelheim’s finest. Maybe he’ll offer up Thor or even Asgard itself, in return for Surtur providing an army against Thanos, and a great big flaming sword to defeat him with.
Of course, whatever terrible deal Loki makes, he’ll have no intention on actually keeping his end of the bargain. He doesn’t want to see either Asgard or Thor destroyed, but he will promise (with fingers firmly crossed behind back) whatever needs promising, in order to try and save his own skin.
Unfortunately, for all Loki’s alleged cleverness, his plans have a tendency to backfire. As soon as he allows the Fire Demon in, he’ll find out – all too late – that Surtur is already in Thanos’ pocket, and – having walked into a trap – he’s now armpit deep in far more shit than he can possibly dig himself out of….
Cue Thor to the rescue!
Because this is, after all, Thor’s film.
Loki won’t be happy about Thor’s involvement, and he’ll probably try to stop his brother from interfering. (My mother likes to refer to that as “cutting off one’s nose to spite one’s face.”) It won’t make a lick of difference, because eventually he’ll have to team up with Thor to help repel the threat. But with something akin to Ragnarok*** now in motion, chances are good that they’ll lose the Tesseract and Infinity Gauntlet to Thanos anyway, even if they do manage to save Asgard itself from destruction…
Now there’s a hundred in one loose ends in this speculation. Will Loki still be disguised as Odin in Thor 3? What of Lorelei? Does she have a role to play?
Of course I have theories on these questions! But I’ve already rambled far too long and the more I try to proof-read this and remove some of my babble, the more I just end up adding in more. So, I’m going to stop now. Once I’ve added the footnotes…
* This lil’ snippet of info was given out in the Thor: The Dark World Prelude Comic #2.
** Brodinsons is a coin termed for the non-romantic but compelling dynamic that exists between Thor and Loki. Not to be confused with Thorki, which is the term you’d use if you float the Thor/Loki boat. And actually, if you’re not already on Tumblr and well versed in Thorki-ism, you might just wanna… Leave that one alone.
** * “Something akin to Ragnarok” but not necessarily Ragnarok itself. Or at least, the MCU’s own take on it – none of this ‘Thor gouges out his own eyes and lops his brother’s head off because that’s how it goes in the comics’, thank you very much.
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