The Loki trailer reveals the timeline is still broken after the events of Avengers: Endgame and how many branches there might be after Loki broke it.
The Loki trailer hints at how many branching timelines exist in the MCU after the events of Avengers: Endgame. The fourth and (so far) final Avengers movie introduced time travel to the MCU. The MCU’s temporal mechanics are still relatively clear, to the extent that the writers and directors of Avengers: Endgame have different views on how time travel worked in the same film.
According to the Ancient One, the Infinity Stones control the flow of time in the universe. Removing the Infinity Stones creates a branch in the timeline, an alternate Earth in which history progressed in a very different direction; the Avengers sought to seal the timelines they created, which is why Steve Rogers took the trouble to return the Infinity Stones at the very end of Avengers: Endgame. Unfortunately, there was one timeline they were unable to close off, because in that version of 2012 Loki successfully stole the Tesseract.
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The Loki from this timeline, referred to as a “variant,” is the star of the upcoming Disney+ TV series. Marvel has just released a new trailer for the Loki series, and it strongly suggests the Ancient One was oversimplifying when she explained how alternate timelines are created to the Hulk. In one scene in the trailer, Loki is shown an image of the timeline, with multiple branches revealed, confirming that there could be at least thirteen different branches.
The implication is that Loki himself is responsible for the creation of these timelines – or, rather, that other variants of Loki are. The image shows at least thirteen branches in the timeline, presumably all indicating moments when the Loki who took the Tesseract intervened in the history of Earth. This explains why the Temporal Variance Authority, or the TVA for short, believes the timeline needs to be protected; one single alteration in history can create this many alternate timelines. It suggests the timeline is a lot more vulnerable than the Ancient One suggested; she was presumably oversimplifying for the Hulk’s benefit.
The TVA has recruited one variant of Loki in the hopes he can close off the other branches. That presumably means the Trickster God will be going up against other variants of himself. No doubt Loki will quite enjoy testing his wits against such capable opponents, and he will be helped by the fact his other selves would have no reason to expect this particular opponent. It remains to be seen whether Loki can put the timeline to rights, or whether he will cause even more chaos in the attempt. Merchandise has shown dialogue, presumably linked to Loki, in which the main character insisted “the timeline wants to break free,” suggesting Loki will prove to be an unwise ally for the self-appointed Time-Keepers – and the MCU timeline may be changed even more as a result.
More: Theory: Loki Has A Timeline Where The Collector Got The Infinity Stones
- Black Widow (2021)Release date: Jul 09, 2021
- Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings (2021)Release date: Sep 03, 2021
- Eternals (2021)Release date: Nov 05, 2021
- Spider-Man: No Way Home (2021)Release date: Dec 17, 2021
- Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness (2022)Release date: Mar 25, 2022
- Thor: Love and Thunder (2022)Release date: May 06, 2022
- Black Panther 2 (2022)Release date: Jul 08, 2022
- Captain Marvel 2 (2022)Release date: Nov 11, 2022
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