#loki tv series critical
OMFG...I do not understand this new trend of hiring people who actively dislike the source material to write/direct the material. The more quotes from Waldron I see the more flashbacks I get to JJ Abrams bragging about how he never liked Star Trek...while promoting his new films that he wrote and directed for Star Trek. D:
smh. I don't get it. is it too much to ask that people respect the thing they're working on and the fans? even if they're gonna do something very different they can still be respectful about it and be cognizant of the fact that there are people who love the original version and found it meaningful.
I don't know anything of course, but I suspect in the case of Mike Waldron, Disney hired him because even after 10 years they dismissed and underestimated the interest in Loki. I think they kind of viewed him as a played out character that maybe had some potential for a total reboot. They figured Loki probably had a few squealing teenage fangirls as fans who would watch anything bc clearly they mostly just cared about the actor so as long as the names Loki and Tom Hiddleston got slapped don the project it would be fine. And beyond that they thought there wasn't large scale interest in the character so they could use the show as a training ground for a brand new director who'd never done a major solo project before and a band new writer who'd never headed a writing room before to try out some new stuff.
Then the first trailer came out and it drew 18 million views because Loki actually DOES have mass appeal. Those 18 million people clicked that trailer because Loki is a fascinating and entertaining character and they were excited to see more content about him and interested in a show exploring him. Unfortunately by that point the show was already made and Loki's character had been utterly destroyed by an abysmal script and story written by somehow who had no interest in or understanding of the character. That's why later trailers were getting in the 2 million view range. Because most people probably didn't like what they saw. The character in the trailers isn't Loki. He's something entirely different and far less entertaining. And a lot of people unfamiliar with Loki would also be turned off by the subpar writing and painfully unfunny "humor."
Like even if you leave aside the ooc stuff and the toxic and deeply dangerous messaging of the show, it's just not good. It's painful to watch. It's badly paced. It's badly written. And it's extremely unfunny. It's odd because I guess it was in part supposed to be a thriller? But it's not thrilling at all. You can have humor in a thriller but if you set the tone as slapstick comedy then it's not a thriller; it's a parody. Also a thriller requires tension, which again, this lacks. (I mean it COULD be a thriller if they leaned into the fact that the TVA are horrifically evil instead of presenting it as a cutesy joke and encouraging audiences to sympathize with them.)
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It's painfully obvious Mike Waldron spent years working on a cartoon show- because literally everything about it comes across like a cartoon, right down to the OOC expressions, acting, and cringe dialogue. And I like animated shows, but not when it's supposed to be live action pretending it's a cartoon.
The whole thing is very cartoonish. Which makes sense since the head writer has very little experience outside cartoons. And also doesn't seem to have spent that much time acquainting himself with the tone and feel of the other movies Loki was in. Given that he didn't remember that it was Loki, not Odin, who killed Laufey, he may well not have watched Thor 2011 at all and instead just read a quick summary.
The whole show seems so fixated on declawing and humiliating and mocking Loki at every turn that it has robbed itself of tension or interest and also completely stripped him of his character traits to the point where I think of TV!Loki as Larry bc I don't see Loki. I just see Tom Hiddleston playing a different role.
Even if I just view the show as it's own thing I don't really enjoy it that much. I find the comedy to be very cringey and unfunny and I don't find Larry to be an interesting or entertaining character as he seems to caricatured to feel real. People wanted to watch this show for Loki. That's why the early trailers got 18+ million views. I don't know why they would give the show to a writer who wants to strip away everything that made that character popular. I think that's why only about 850K households actually tuned in to the show. (Let's assume some people pirated and call it 1.5 million; that's still a big drop.) Larry isn't Loki and he's not nearly as good or entertaining a character.
Which is a shame. I'm not even speaking as a Loki fan when I say this could've been a flagship show for Disney+. Loki became hugely popular bc he's such a versatile and cool and fun character. He can make you laugh (why oh WHY did they strip him of his great wit and turn him into the butt of slapstick jokes instead) and cry and is mesmerizing to watch and extremely complex (why did they retcon his motivations to just scaring people so he could feel better about himself, when that was never what it was about??!?!).
Loki is a bit like Tyrion on Game of Thrones - complicated characters, complex relationships with siblings, very witty, use their humor as both a sword and a shield, not appreciated in their societies because their strengths are not valued, very smart, very funny, very complex. Tyrion was hugely popular with audiences and Loki could've had that kind of broad appeal and a show that treated him with dignity and that was written by a competent writer could've done wonders and brought people flocking to Disney+.
But instead. We get this garbage. I think Mike Waldron doesn't understand Loki's character well and also has a weird dislike and resentment towards him. I think bc he didn't want Loki overshadowing his OCs. I also think though that he's not that talented of a writer. He talks about how he looked at other show for good things to "rip off" (his words not mine) and in every interview has talked about how he copied this or that thing from another show. I think he's not creative enough to come up with anything for himself so he apes things he thinks are good.
The problem is when you remove the context and just mix a bunch of disparate bits from various shows together the whole is less than the sum of its parts. I don't think he realizes that though. It's like when he copied the death stick scene from TR but change the context so it doesn't work nearly was well. Or like when he decided to base Loki's character on Steve Jobs. WTF??!! That's might've worked for the Steve Jobs movie but Loki shouldn't feel like Steve Jobs. He should feel like Loki.
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Did you notice the discrepancy in the Loki show with Loki’s last name? They call him Laufeyson a couple of times but his paperwork very clearly says "Odinson." Methinks somebody couldn't make up their mind until the last second and forgot to fix it so both say the same thing. Oof.
omggg. there’s so much sloppiness. Not only does the show get the big things wrong. It gets the little things wrong too, even tho those things should be so easy.
The show also makes a joke about people not understanding Loki when he speaks English, bc they forgot he doesn’t speak English, he speaks the Allspeak. And there’s a line in the DB Cooper bit where he says it happened when he was “young” even tho he’s 1500+ so a few decades ago wouldn’t be that long for him.
And they have his skin tone wrong - Loki’s supposed to be extremely pale. And his hair - they made it much frizzier than Loki’s hair, which even when short is pretty smooth and flat. And they say he weighs 500+ pounds but have him get shoved around easily and when he slams into things there’s no sense that he weighs more than you would expect.
I think it comes down to the writer not being very interested in his character and kind of disliking it bc he wanted to just write about his OCs and resented having Loki there. I wish they’d given the project to someone who had passion for the character and wanted to do him justice instead of make a mockery out of him.
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Sony’s Andy Serkis: Talks about how when he came to work on Venom 2 he worked closely with Tom Hardy and the head writer Kelley Marcel (who had worked on the first movie too) to ensure they stayed true to the characterization and tone of the first movie while also doing some new and creative things in the second movie. Seems to like the characters and be excited about working on them, and also respects them and the fans.
Result: An amazing trailer that feels like an exciting continuation of the first film and shows care for the characters and their fans.
Disney’s Mike Waldron: Forgets basic facts about Loki like that he murdered his biological father in one of the most climactic moments of Thor 2011 or that he speaks the Allspeak not English. Describes him as just “an ass” and seems to dislike his character because he draws attention away from Mike’s own original creations. Talks about how he based his characterization of Loki on...Steve Jobs???!
Result: A show that makes a mockery of its alleged main character and his fans and portrays him so wildly out of character that he is unrecognizable and it just feels like watching the same actor in a different role.
tldr; Sony thank you for my rights.
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Odin: *enslaves and conquers millions, kidnaps Loki and raises him to hate his own race and then goads him into suicide and when that doesn’t work imprisons him without trial after telling him him his birthright was to die*
Mobius: *works for a violent authoritarian organization dedicated to murder, genocide, torture, slavery, mass surveillance, and police brutality, tells Loki that his fears of being a monster by nature which drove him to suicide initially are accurate and psychologically tortures him*
Loki: *Is an incredibly complex grey character whose initial motivation was that he wanted to prevent a war and who has been a victim of torture and mind control and attempted suicide due to being taught to hate his own race*
Disney: yeah anyway clearly the misunderstood grey character who is unfairly branded a pure and simple villain and who deserves a spinoff movie to explore their motivations and backstory in a serious, dramatic, and sympathetic manner is the lady who skins puppies.
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so Disney’s making pro-authoritarian propaganda now I guess
So for anyone who doubts that the Loki Series is hero-coding the TVA despite the fact that they are a violent authoritarian self appointed police force that commits acts of genocide, torture, and enslavement, we have confirmation from the head writer himself.
“Mobius was somebody whose energy was totally different than Loki’s. And then also someone who was likable. Somebody who had a sense of inherent goodness.”
Mobius, despite his disgusting actions is not supposed to be the villain. Mobius, someone who works for a vile organization and who just psychologically tortured Loki last episode, is not good in any way. But the scene where Mobius berates someone who recently tried to kill themselves by telling them they are inherently evil (which is what drove them to try to kill themselves originally) is indeed not supposed to be horrifying.
Waldron also confirmed that the other Loki is the villain of the series. And he got more basic facts about Loki’s backstory wrong - he stated incorrectly that it was Odin, not Loki, who killed Laufey. So yeah. I think he actually may not have watched Thor 2011 and just gotten a quick summary or something. (x) He also said some really offensive things about how all people who are adopted have an inherent need to control others. And he said he based Loki characterization on Steve Jobs. (Wtf??!?)
The messaging and morality of this show is abhorrent. Even if I didn’t care about how clunky the writing is and how ooc Loki is I would still be beyond disgusted. This show is pro-authoritarian propaganda. There is no other word for it. And it’s working. Look at how many reviewers and fans are defending Mobius’s actions and echoing the idea that what the TVA does to Loki and others is acceptable because they need to or because their victims deserve it. This is the kind of message Disney is pumping out into the world. Not only is this show an utter betrayal of Loki character, it’s actively harmful.
Disney should be ashamed of themselves for putting this out, especially in this day and age. I do wonder, especially given the reference to lizard people which is a conspiracy theory founded in antisemitism, whether Mike Waldron is a rightwing extremist sympathizer. Either way. This show is simply unacceptable and deeply offensive and its narratives of victim blaming, abuse apologism, torture apologism, and authoritarianism apologism are dangerous and promote extremely harmful attitudes.
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Perhaps the most OOC moment in the episode for me was when Loki allowed himself to be emotionally vulnerable and openly honest about expressing his real feelings with Mobius. I know he had a long day and all, but... it happened too soon and too easily. I've always thought of Loki as a much tougher nut to crack. Everyone seems to be fond of this ("I don't enjoy hurting people") scene, but for me it just seemed very... un-Loki-like. Am I alone?
You are definitely not alone! I completely agree! I talked about pretty much exactly that here. They should’ve called the show Lokiless because I don’t see Loki anywhere I the show. Everything about him - his hair texture, his skin color, his way speaking, his personality, his mannerisms, his expressions, his affect, his cultural background, his backstory, his motivations, his style of humor, his way of moving, his fighting style, his aesthetic, the movements he uses when performing magic - has been changed. absolutely everything. so it’s not the same character.
And the new character they’ve replaced him with is a dully and one note character who is not as entertaining to watch as Loki was nor indeed entertaining to watch at all imho. The show fails as a Loki show and it fails on its own merits. Even you accept the retcon of Loki’s character, what the TVA did to him was still horrific. And also if Loki is evil then the TVA is far worse. If the TVA isn’t evil then nothing Loki did can be see as bad.
The messaging of the show is dangerous. Look at the way fans and reviewers are accepting the show’s messaging and talking about Mobius’s treatment of him in a positive light and buying into the victim blaming and authoritarianism apologism. Not a single review has criticize the TVA or Mobius. They’ve all characterized their treatment of Loki as acceptable and deserved. It turns my stomach. It’s so irresponsible and offensive of Disney to put out that kind of messaging.
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"Waldron is treating mobius the way a very young and inexperienced fanfic writer treats their beloved annoying self insert" I know, right? He does lack experience, with credits so laughably small and yet, here he is, being given a whole ass show to write. Rookie mistake also, calling a character a fan favorite when the show's not even out lmao lucky for him, casual viewers won't be looking for his interviews or tearing them down like we are lol but still, the unbothered arrogance of it all, sigh
Yup. Mobius has all the hallmarks of a stereotypical annoying Mary Sue OC in a fan fiction that takes over the fic and is the bestest ever and is framed as being able to do no wrong even when they are very clearly doing bad stuff. even in interviews Waldron couldn't stop gushing about Mobius. And he couldn't even pretend to be enthusiastic about Loki's character. It's a very odd hiring choice. Also he's not that experienced so like ??? And his experience is in cartoons. The show definitely comes across as extremely cartoonish.
And stuff like the TVA being extremely evil but getting a pass for it might work in exaggerated cartoon comedy but in a live action MCU show it creates complete dissonance. But yeah. He obviously really likes Mobius and wants everyone else to as well. That's why in the show Mobius gets to constantly tear Loki down and get the better of him bc Mike wants him to look cool.
In one interview he mentioned that he had a time travel detective show he was working on before he made this. So maybe Marvel had him adapt that for Loki the way Creulla was basically just a separate fashion heist movie but they made it be about Cruella for name recognition. So maybe bc Loki got shoved into Mike's original project he resents the character.
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[please blacklist spoiler tags: #loki tv series spoilers, #loki series spoilers, #loki spoilers]
I need to talk about the Avengers.
I just want to express how much I hate that the Avengers aren’t on the hook for all their time travel nonsense bc they were “supposed to” do it and Loki is on the hook bc he wasn’t.
I mean, I am glad that they addressed it right away - that Loki was inadvertantly caught up in the Avengers' time meddling, and that apparently they were doing what they were supposed to and that's why none of them were on trial, but - there are two things going on here that I have issue with. One is, of course, the scapegoating of Loki once a-fucking-gain, but the other is that there's a legitimate problem inherent in framing the Avengers' deeds as The Right Thing So There Are No Consequences, especially because it directly leads to Loki (and only Loki) being scapegoated since, apparently, someone's got to answer for all of this.
Why Were The Avengers Supposed to Undo the Snap??
Of all the possible options they could have gone with (such as reversing time back to just before the Snap happened), going back through time to gather the stones and use them to undo things five years later is, like, one of the worst?? Best case scenario, it implies that the TVA is ridiculously incompetent in managing the sacred timeline and worst case scenario, it implies that the TVA is ridiculously adept in managing the sacred timeline, if their goal is to have it be the worst possible timeline anyone could end up in.
The Avengers may have done an arguably good thing in undoing the Snap - I don't disagree that those people should've lived - but they also royally fucked over a lot of things in the process and left Earth (and presumably many many other worlds) in total post-Snap chaos while fucking off to die be with their families and/or start new lives.
This goes back to the plan itself. One of my many issues with Endgame is that not only is the plan convoluted and, frankly, stupid, but also I have a real problem with the concept of the Avengers just saving the world as they see fit, regardless of whether or not that's actually the best thing to do. (If the Russos hadn't done such a shit job with explaining what the Accords were actually supposed to do, then maybe this could have been addressed somehow - like, okay, together we may have the brains and resources to carry off this plan but does that mean we're the ultimate authority on whether or not we should? Maybe we should check with, like, the UN or something about this? [and it’s entirely possible the UN was mentioned and I have forgotten it bc I’ll be honest, I watched Endgame once and have bitched about it ever since.] I digress.)
The narrative in Endgame and into the MCU beyond plays like the Avengers only care about saving the world when they stand to personally gain from it (they want their friends and family back, they want to feel like they didn't fail, they have unilaterally decided that what they want is the Best Thing for everyone) and once the Good Deed is done and the smoke clears from the battlefield, there's no concern with saving the mess of the world they created.
TFatWS addressed so many of the problems with the post-reverse-Snap, which implies that the MCU (both in-universe and out) is aware that things are fucked up now. People's lives were literally ruined by what the Avengers did. Refugees are displaced. Humans are coming back to a world where they've been dead for five years and their loved ones have moved on and their homes have been sold and their bank accounts have been closed and they have no jobs. And that’s just on Earth. Yet no one (again, both in-universe and out) feels the need to hold the Avengers accountable for any of this.
Plus, what about the people who died as a result of the Snap but not from the Snap directly? What about the planes that fell from the sky when the pilots turned to dust? The cars that crashed and collided when the drivers poofed? Etc. Like, fuck all of those people I guess?
And who, exactly, is "supposed to" clean up the Avengers' mess now that the actual Avengers are either dead, old and living on the moon, or retired? Is it on Sam's shoulders alone (or, rather, Sam and Bucky's)? Is Peter Parker (yknow, the 15 year old Nick Fury went and recruited bc there was no one else) supposed to be fixing things?
The TVA takes responsibility for none of this. They sit back in their nightmare DMV-esque office and claim that all is as it should be but my question remains: please explain to me how the outcome of the post-Snap universe is ultimately satisfactory to anyone besides the Avengers?
There's also the fact that Loki figures out right away that the Avengers were engaging in some time travel shenanigans ("the cologne of two Tony Starks is hard to miss” lmfao Loki you snarky shit). Loki recognizes that there's been an opportunity created of which he can take advantage, but he isn't responsible for creating it. The Avengers messed up and created that opportunity so, even if they were supposed to be doing what they were doing, there are still no consequences for the fact that they made a mistake that allowed Loki to then branch off and create a new timeline.
Let's also say that we accept that the Avengers were supposed to undo the Snap exactly as they did. Okay, sure. BUT:
- Was Steve, then, also supposed to decide to fuck back off to the 1940s and marry Peggy (which created two Steves, right? The one who was married to Peggy all along and the one who was in the ice?? The TVA is just okay with two Steves?)?
- What is the actual point of Stephen Strange having the time stone and using the time stone both to gain the advantage over Darmammushumuuyourmom (I’m sorry, I can’t remember his real name) and to look at all the possible timelines to figure out how to defeat Thanos?
- How is it possible that there are 14 million potential timelines in which the Avengers failed if the TVA’s entire thing is that there can only be one true ring timeline to rule them all? The fact that Stephen can look ahead and determine so many outcomes based on the choices they're making would mean that people do have free will and that their actions aren't automatically dictated by what's “supposed to” happen. They had to make the right choices in order to get to the one timeline in which Thanos failed.
- What’s the point of Stephen having to protect the time stone, anyway, if there are presumably a few others in Casey’s drawer?
- On that note, if there are a lot of infinity stones hanging around in the TVA’s desk drawers, what makes the original six the specific, correct ones that Thanos had to collect in order to pull off the Snap and why is it then those specific six the ones that the Avengers had permission to go back through time to get in order to undo the Snap as the Timekeepers intended?
- And actually, in fact, if there’s only one sacred timeline and anyone who fucks it up without permission gets “reset” (aka made nonexistent, along with their timeline branch) then, again, why does Stephen have to protect the time stone? Either anyone who steals it was supposed to, or their timeline gets eliminated and the theft ceases to matter.
- Less significant but also still kinda significant is how Agents of SHIELD figures into all of this. The TVA knows that Loki killed Coulson but they don't know (or don't care?) that Coulson was brought back to life and proceeded, with his team, to go on and get heavily involved in time travel and going back and forth and bringing people from the past into the present? So the TVA is okay with Daniel Sousa leaving his timeline but not with Loki leaving his?
... I have literally confused myself with all of this, so if anyone followed my train of thought here, congratulations and maybe you can explain it to me lmao.
But here's my ultimate point: the sacred timeline that the TVA is tasked with maintaining is not sensical or linear. It's full of gaps and holes and people taking matters into their own hands to determine both their own fates and the fates of others. As a result, a lot of people suffer kinda needlessly based on the events in said timeline, and apparently it's perfectly fine for all of this nonsense to occur so that everyone else has some element of control -
- but Loki is literally the only one who is told uh, actually, no, you are supposed to live a shitty life and die a pointless death and there's not a goddamn thing you can do about it bc it's supposed to happen.
What in the actual fuck kind of logic is that???
Thus, either the TVA (and the Timekeepers) are grossly incompetent, or else they're extremely competent and also really fucking shitty beings who just enjoy the needless suffering of others.
And somehow this is all Loki's fault!!
And then Mobius has the fucking audacity to say, to Loki's face, “you only exist to prop up everyone else and you, Loki Odinsonson Laufeyson mischief god and king of space lol, do not have any inherent worth or value as your own person. You were born to be a scapegoat and you will die a scapegoat and there's no getting around that, if we have anything to say about it.”
To quote Loki, in a very twisted way - yes, it's funny. It's absurd.
Does, uh, does this make sense? At some point I crossed over from meta-writing into straight up ranting and so, well, here we are.
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Loki series initial reaction
Mixed opinions so far. I could write an entire essay on this, and maybe I will at some point, but here are my initial thoughts, starting with the negative:
I really despised the first twenty minutes. It’s so jarring. Loki’s dialogue, especially, doesn’t sound anything like Avengers!Loki. His speech patterns and entire dialect are suddenly different, much more modern and filled with too many Earth-specific terms with no explanation. There’s no easing the viewer into the difference, it’s just suddenly there and it’s horrendously whiplashy
The same applies to the presentation of his character. Avengers!Loki was grandiose and majestic and witty, even when he was being defeated. This Loki... isn’t. He comes across as juvenile, bumbling, over the top in more of a cringey way, and he’s the butt of the jokes that rely on his humiliation. He doesn’t feel like the same character from any of the movies to me, or, at least, not for the first twenty minutes
With the desert scene... Yes, it bugged me that his hair was suddenly shorter and didn’t just look like a messed up version of Avengers!Loki’s hair. And it also bugged me that Loki didn’t understand what the humans were saying in a different language. Was the Allspeak not working? Or if Allspeak doesn’t exist in the MCU, are we supposed to believe he studied the English language or that Asgard and Earth happen to share a common language?
I wanted Loki to put up more of a fight. I don’t mind him being defeated by people more powerful than him, but it felt like he resigned too quickly and allowed himself to be shoved around by them too soon. I wanted him to struggle more, it felt weird for him not to try harder to go all death and destruction and for it to not require more pain inflicted on him to get him to (reluctantly) go along with it
The humour in this show didn’t do it for me. It felt out of place and not even particularly funny to begin with. Yeah, yeah, I get it, they want their show to be irreverent and zany, whatever draws in the largest audience, right? But if they were going to go for that style of humour, it could be done so much better than how they did it here. And I’m reiterating please just let Loki be witty, please
Once it got to the part where Loki’s watching himself on the screen, everything got a lot more palatable for me and the last half has made me more hopeful
I’m liking Mobius so far. He actually tries to understand Loki and listens to him. He has empathy but he isn’t going to let Loki walk all over him either. Mobius sort of feels like a guide for viewers who are unfamiliar with analysing Loki’s character and not taking him at surface level, and he asks some of the right questions. I want to see where they’re going with Mobius and Loki’s dynamic
From the instant I saw Loki watching himself in the trailer, I was hoping he’d learn about his hand in Frigga’s death and his own death, and we got that! And more! We also got Odin's death and Loki and Thor’s reconciliation. I liked that they gave it time for the emotional impact to hit, this was the part that started giving me hope again. This was the first time when Loki’s character felt actually recognisable to me. Also, yes, I did enjoy the ouchies
The whole D.B. Cooper thing didn’t feel like something that Thor 1!Loki would have done in his past. It just didn’t. When I saw that in the trailer, I was hoping it’d be a variant Loki or our Loki having to be in disguise or something, but nope, it’s supposed to be part of our Loki’s past
Neat. By the sounds of it, Mobius will be ‘hiring’ Loki to help him catch a Loki variant. I was hoping for that and the play of Loki’s worst enemy being himself
He escaped faster than I thought the show would let him. I mean, he isn’t all the way out yet, and I don’t think he will be, but still, at least he managed to do something and tried to put up more of a fight. I’m still surprised there were no deaths though
The whole ‘we use Infinity Stones as paperweights’ thing... I get that they’re trying to establish the TVA as a more powerful entity than any we’ve come across in the entire universe, but at what point do you stop keeping having to one up the power of what’s already been established in the MCU? This isn’t so much a criticism as it is something I find interesting as a discussion point
On the bright side, at least most of the stuff I didn’t like in the trailers is out of the way now
I was hoping to come to a more solid conclusion about whether or not I’ll like the show after the first episode, but I’m still undecided. It’s so frustrating because a lot of the issues with it could have been so easily fixed. It’s set straight after Avengers Assemble, therefore Loki should feel like Avengers!Loki. I don’t know why that’s controversial. Just look at Avengers!Loki’s speech patterns and apply them! How hard could that have been? Even if they wanted more ‘accessible’ dialogue for him (and, yes, I’m tired of the anti-intellectual trend these days), they could have gradually eased him from the more Shakespearesque stuff to the dialect he has in Ragnarok, and that could have had an in-universe explanation of him picking up language/assimilating or whatever. But they didn’t. Just, bam, it’s different now because we said so and we don’t care if it doesn’t make sense. I’m so tired of things being constantly retconned and I still don’t know if I have the energy to justify it to myself to myself anymore.
But yeah, I think there’s a good chance of the worst being out of the way now. Could be famous last words, but my hope hasn’t been completely destroyed. The first half really didn’t sit well with me at all, but the latter half was far better, even if it wasn’t perfect.
And I’m sure I’ll think of a bunch of things I should have added to this list straight after posting, but oh well.
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I have seen the first two episodes of Loki which drop late tonight on Disney Plus.
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Loki: *is the only character in the MCU to have committed suicide on screen*
Disney: ah yes. the perfect candidate for a wacky slapstick comedy that turns him into the butt of every joke.
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Loki is an established MCU character and valuable IP
He's probably had like 20 different wigs
Disney has access to the world's best stylists
Why didn't one of them fix his goddamn tv show hairline?
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Disney really doesn't fucking know how to deal with complex and morally gray characters + trauma at all. i know everyone loved fatws and i did too for the way sam's character was handled but the blatant victim blaming bucky and the writers saying "he should feel guilty" is so damaging. and this new loki trailer just further amplifies that to the show producers, such things are just easily dismissible/comic relief. its disgusting and sends a very wrong message. i really expected so much out of both these shows but in some aspects im just disappointed
They really don’t! I haven’t seen fatws but I know some people raised issues about the handling of trauma in it. I certainly know the way Bucky’s trauma was handled in the MCU movies was a big yikes for me. MCU!Bucky isn’t a grey character. He really is a victim who did nothing wrong. And yet they treat him like a reformed villain which is bizarre. In Civil War the narrative frames him as someone who only Steve could be loyal to or have empathy for. They talk about him like a criminal on the run, not like a victim of torture and mind control even though we are explicitly shown in Winter Soldier that he had 0 agency and that as soon as he breaks free of Hydra’s control over him he stops killing. The Russos also said he had to go back into the ice at the end of that movie to “atone” for what he did. Like. What?!?! Atone for what? He didn’t choose to do any of those things. He literally had no power or agency at all. The framing is nonsensical. And it’s really bad messaging because it plays into the extremely harmful message that victims of torture are to blame. Which is. Gross.
And then again with Loki they ignore his trauma or turn it into a joke. And listen. I know lots of comedies have things in them where if it were serious it wouldn’t be funny. No one’s out there being like “OMG Gru was gonna shrink the moon and causes mass death due to flooding. he’s so evil’ because that movie is just a comedy. But like. It’s not a comedy specifically making fun of trauma. And also it’s presented as a comedy from the get-go. Loki (and his trauma) were presented and played seriously. And resonated with many, many people because of that. So to suddenly turn it into a joke once again sends a horrible message. It doesn’t send the message of “oh this is just a comedy it’s not too serious.” It sends the message that we should laugh at Loki’s pain because it’s Loki, because he doesn’t deserve better, because that kind of trauma is a joke and isn’t serious. The trauma of characters like Tony Stark or Thor was at least somewhat acknowledged...though again the MCU is very spotty with this and there are a lot of very bad moments with those characters too. But with Loki we never really get an acknowledgement of the trauma at all. We just get it minimized and retconned and ignored and laughed at. And it honestly feels sickening. And it begs the question: what is it about that character that his pain is a joke? The fact that he’s feminine/queer/other/ND coded makes it feel like the message is that people like that don’t deserve sympathy. Or dignity.
Marvel presents abusers like Thanos or Howard Stark as sympathetic. They encourage audiences to empathize with them and give them another chance and appreciate their “good sides” while also encouraging audiences to laugh at victims for being “weak” or “whiny”. It’s really quite perverse.
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Marvel is making me do this everyday these days
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Disney: Oh you don’t like Loki’s clothes in the new series? Here’s a brand new scene where he gets stripped naked and humiliated and it’s played as a joke. That’s what you wanted to see isn’t it? Because assault is funny right?
Sony: Here. Have a Venom trailer without any assault scenes where the protagonist’s suffering and humiliation is played for laughs. Honestly we didn’t think we needed to advertise that as a feature but apparently we overestimated our competition. Yikes.
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Loki’s line about “space lizards” felt a bit out of place because he himself is from an advanced spacefaring civilization that travels to many worlds. (Also do they even have lizards on Asgard?) It doesn’t really seem like something an Asgardian would say.
It felt like a line more fitted to a human just learning about the existence of weird aliens. And again ties into Loki feeling a bit too diminished and human in this trailer (and in the other trailers too).
In other movies he feels like a millennia-old magical alien space viking prince. There’s an otherworldliness and power and majesty to him. Here he feels more like a slightly sassy human guy who’s been thrust into the middle of a weird situation.
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Disney: omg Loki is so evil. he totally stabs people all the time (except on screen) and is constantly super evil and violent for no reason (except in canon).
Also Disney: the lady who skins puppies is just a misunderstood genius victimized by society. :(
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Sony: *Did their homework and made a fun trailer filled with little references to decades worth of Venom comics as well as nods to the movie fandom*
Disney: *Don’t realize that Loki stole the space stone not the time stone and that the Avengers were the ones who altered the timeline because they forgot to watch their own movie*
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