What comes into your mind when you hear the term “God of Mischief”? If your answer is Loki Odinson, you are a man (or woman) of culture. Loki is a fictional character created by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby for Marvel Cinematic Universe. He appeared for the very first time in August 1949. Since then, Loki has been the main character in several comics, movies, and TV shows.
The character of Loki is based on a god from Norse Mythology of the same name. In Marvel’s universe, Loki is Thor’s brother. While Thor is a superhero, Loki has been a complicated character with the characteristics of a villain and antihero at the same time.
It was revealed later that Loki was adopted by Thor’s father Odin, king of Asgard, during a raid – a battle between Asgardians and the frost giants from Jotunheim. Odin found Loki as a baby hidden in a frost castle. Loki’s biological father, Laufey, had hidden him away because of his tiny size, unlike other frost babies. Odin took baby Loki and raised him as his own alongside his actual son Thor.
Loki had a troubled childhood as he was always jealous of his brother Thor and how everyone in Asgard hailed him. Since Loki did not have any strength like Thor, he spent his time practicing magic and using his wits to conjure new tricks. Although Loki is a high-level genius and has been responsible for a great deal of destruction, Thor always managed to keep one step ahead of him and save the day like every superhero.
As a notorious God of Mischief, Loki has been a part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe for a long time. His storyline takes all kinds of twists and turns simply because his character has a lot of flexibility. Among many of his powers, Loki can shapeshift at his will. He can transform himself into other humans as well as animals. He can fool masses with the power of his illusions. Since Loki has many forms, three forms among them caused many commotions and proved him to be a powerful villain.
Following is a breakdown of his three variants:
Note: The article may contain spoilers.
1. Lady Loki
Recently, Loki got his own Marvel show by his name. It is getting worldwide praise, especially for Loki’s new form – a woman. The Lady Loki has come as a surprise for people who are not aware of the Marvel comics. In fact, the showrunners have introduced Lady Loki as Sylvie, an entirely new variant suggesting a multiverse in the long run.
The show may have taken a different twist presenting Lady Loki, but in the comics, it is completely different and more in-depth. It was the aftermath of the events of Ragnarok when Asgardians were into human forms until their awakening. After waking up, Thor searched for his fellow companions only to find out that not everyone can be woken up. He got a big surprise when he saw his brother Loki reborn as a female. While Lady Loki insisted that her female form is devoid of any mischief and evil, there was little doubt that it was one of Loki’s tricks.
Lady Loki took advantage of his time-bending and manipulation abilities and banished Thor from Asgard. He also put Thor’s other brother, Balder as king of Asgard. He then continued his malicious ways by making allies with villains like Doctor Doom, Osborne, and others to deal the final blow on Thor.
Lady Loki revealed that he actually stole Thor’s friend Lady Sif’s body so that she could not be awakened. Loki turned back to his actual form and left Sif to die. From then on, Loki crafted great schemes and even managed to fool the Avengers by transforming as Wanda Maximoff, the Scarlet Witch.
By the end of this story arc, Loki had underestimated his allies as Osborne tried to destroy Asgard completely as opposed to Loki’s original plan. As cunning and devious as he was, Loki could not lose Asgard and fought Osborne alongside the Avengers. He died fighting, but his death was only the beginning.
2. Kid Loki
It should not be a surprise to know that Loki was resurrected again. His last fight with Norman and his minion Void proved to be quite significant. That is why he came back to life in the body of a child, with no memory of his past life. He had no account of his mischiefs, but he got nightmares often.
Although he was devoid of his old ways, he still used tricks over people and lived as a hustler. When Thor found him, he was playing tricks on a crowd of people in the street while his partner was busy pickpocketing them.
Kid Loki’s return to Asgard had been eventful as people blamed him for the destruction he caused in the past. Even his adopted father Odin was wary of Loki. The essence of the “older” version of Loki came back to manipulate Kid Loki, but he banished him completely by turning him into a bird, Ikol.
If you think this was the end of Kid Loki, you are mistaken. The Marvel comics have extremely complicated timelines and family trees woven into the story arcs. Many layers of manipulation and story branches later, Kid Loki once again managed to set up a huge trap that included his brother Thor, Thor’s sister Hela and many other powerful beings.
Kid Loki partnered with Leah, the sorceress, and defeated Nightmare. They won, but Kid Loki took a toll on himself and later gave up in front of his former self. He ate the bird Ikol and assumed a new identity, resulting in yet another resurrected Loki form.
3. Loki, the Young Avenger
Loki’s new resurrected form was not any different in appearance. He was still a child, but this time, he had all the memories of the past. A new team of Young Avengers had been formed by now, including Wanda Maximoff’s son, Wiccan, Hawkeye, Hulkling, and Miss America.
During a supernatural attack, Wiccan and Hulkling were captured by a parasite. Loki ran to help them and freed them from their prison. Confused about trusting Loki, Wiccan and the others decided to give Loki a chance as a member of the Young Avengers as they needed Loki’s help in defeating the parasite.
While on their way to New York, the team was attacked by angry New Yorkers who were seemingly under hypnosis. Loki told his teammates that they have no choice but to kill Wiccan or let him have Wiccan’s powers for a while. Hesitatingly, Wiccan granted Loki his powers after which, Loki disappeared, leaving his teammates to die.
While teleporting, his Kid form woke up again to knock some sense in him and made him realize what he has done to him and Leah. Loki went back to New York and saved his teammates just in time. It was revealed that it was originally Loki’s plan to set the parasite loose so that he could take advantage of Wiccan’s powers.
Later, when the team faced Mother, Wiccan had to age Loki so that he could boost up his powers. The plan worked, and Young Avengers were victorious. The Young Avengers threw a celebratory party which was funded by Loki in secret. Feeling heavy with guilt, Loki left the scene without saying his goodbyes. He knew at heart that lies and mischief was in his nature, and he could not get rid of them no matter how hard he tried.
He decided that it is best in everyone’s interest if he leaves. In the end, Loki was shown smiling at a group photo of him with his mates from Young Avengers.
Loki Odinson – A Complicated Character
Like many Marvel characters, Loki has been designed with exceptional complications and complex storylines. In one arc, he was portrayed as the cruelest villain, and in another, he would play as a sensitive antihero. Either way, Loki’s story has been a roller coaster ride for everyone who loves supernatural fiction.
Many of us love Loki more than Thor simply because of his intellectual and mischievous ways. In the future, we hope to see his various forms in movies and shows so that we, as fans, can understand him better.