Spoilers for Avengers Infinity War, but if you haven’t seen it by now we figure you’re just not that interested.
Infinity War starts things off with a bang, with Thanos attacking, killing half of the Asgardian refugees and claiming the Space Stone for himself. Victims of this cleansing include Idris Elba’s Heimdall and Tom Hiddleston’s Loki. The deaths definitely set the stage for the rest of the film tonally, as it proved that no one will be safe this time around. But upon rewatching the movie at home, I began to wonder if there was more to Loki’s death than meets the eye.
Loki was actually a minion for Thanos in the first Avengers film back in 2012. After falling through space, he ended up in Thanos’ camp and joined his army. Loki promised Thanos the Earth and was given the Mind Stone in a powerful sceptre to complete his mission. He was also supposed to recover the Tesseract, AKA the Space Stone and use it to bring the Chitauri to Earth for the invasion. Of course, Loki failed at conquering the Earth and lost both of the Infinity Stones in the process. Thanos would not be happy. But Loki knows fully who Thanos is and what he’s capable of, so being a prisoner in Asgard suits his needs from then on out.
So it’s a little strange that Loki thought he could take Thanos with nothing but a knife while the Mad Titan is equipped with the Power Stone. The move almost seemed…suicidal. Surely Loki didn’t actually think he could assassinate Thanos with a dagger, right after he mopped the floor with the Hulk? It definitely appeared that way, but I think Loki is actually up to his old tricks. Let’s take a look at the evidence.
I don’t think Loki was fully redeemed at that point in time. It had only been a few hours prior when Loki tried betraying Thor yet again in Ragnarok, right after their amusing “Get Help” scene. But at the start of Infinity War, he’s giving his brother little-coded messages about familial bonds before he tries to kill Thanos? To me, it doesn’t quite add up and I don’t buy that Loki was being honourable and selfless at this point, based on his characterization over the MCU and his very recent history.
I think Loki willingly got himself killed in such a way that Thor would believe his adopted brother is truly dead this time and that his last moment was one of redemption. And I think that Loki did indeed die; the scene wasn’t an illusion like his death in The Dark World. But it’s been heavily theorized that time travel will play a part in the fourth Avengers film to help undo all that was done in Infinity War. That or the Avengers, namely Thor, realize that they are suitably underprepared to fight Thanos and have to find a way to bring Loki back. My theory is that this is exactly what Loki wants. Face to face with Thanos, he sees a galaxy without the potential for him to rule it. So he accepts defeat but rationalizes that Thor and his friends won’t roll over and will try to reset Thanos’ actions. If they go back in time or go to Hel, the realm of the dead that Thor’s sister Hela ruled and rescue him, Loki survives.
Not only does Loki survive, but Loki gets a second chance at dominance. Let’s say that Loki remembers everything that happened to him and if they acquire the time stone and start re-writing history, then Loki could abandon the Battle for New York and take the two Infinity Stones and hide, forever changing the course of history and making Loki the real villain of the fourth Avengers film. Assuming that Loki would still want to be a villain, perhaps he can now be considered an anti-hero?
Is it a long shot? You bet ya, but as we await any scrap of news on the untitled fourth Avengers film, it’s more fun to theorize than to wait. What do you think though, is there any chance Loki could come back? If so, how do you think it’ll happen? Or is there no way that it can happen, Loki is no longer a threat in any present timeline. Let us know and check out our next entry in our 1001 Movies series and our prediction on the future of online streaming.