Loki’s time travel-centric plot makes it a perfect stepping stone to the inevitable MCU debut of Kang, a notorious time traveler. Meanwhile, the additional presence of the Time Variance Authority only adds further fuel to the Kang rumors surrounding the show since the two parties have a contentious history with each other in the comics.
Those aren’t the only Kang connections in the Loki premiere either. In fact, one of the show’s supporting characters happens to have a very close relationship in the comics with the incoming MCU villain.
Who is Judge Renslayer in Loki?
Gugu Mbatha-Raw’s screen time in the Loki premiere is fairly limited, but she makes a strong impression nonetheless. As Judge Renslayer, the highest TVA official seen in Loki up to this point, she shows no tolerance for Tom Hiddleston’s God of Mischief and comes very close to having him “pruned” from existence.
She’s talked out of that decision by Owen Wilson’s Mobius M. Mobius and then doesn’t have much of a presence in the rest of the Loki premiere. But Marvel fans shouldn’t be fooled by Renslayer’s small role in the episode — she’s a character who could very well have a part to play in Marvel Studios’ mysterious Kang the Conqueror plans.
Ravonna Renslayer and Kang
In the Marvel comics, Ravonna Renslayer has a long and turbulent relationship with Kang the Conqueror. The daughter of a king from an alternate, future version of Earth, Ravonna caught the interest of Kang when he was attempting to take over her father’s kingdom. He fell in love with her and — after some time — she not only returned his affections but also sacrificed herself in order to save his life.
That wasn’t the end of their relationship though, as two versions of both Kang and Ravonna were eventually created (through the kind of storytelling twists you can truly only find in comics). That led to one version of Kang and Ravonna living happily ever after together, while their duplicates went on to have a much more tempestuous relationship.
All of which is to say that Ravonna Renslayer has a deeply intimate bond with Kang in the comics, which makes her inclusion in Loki interesting, to say the least.
Now, it should be noted that the MCU version of Ravonna may not end up having any connection to Kang whatsoever. That’s a legitimate possibility, and for what it’s worth, it wouldn’t be the first time Marvel has totally rewritten an established comics character for the MCU.
That being said, Ravonna’s inclusion in a Marvel Studios show about time travelers still feels important. No matter how different the MCU and comics versions of the character end up being, there’s room for Ravonna’s role in Loki to tie into Kang’s story in some way. At the very least, it’d be a fun way for the studio to pay homage to Kang’s comics history.
The Inverse Analysis — We know that Kang the Conqueror is going to be in Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania, and we know that he’ll be played by Lovecraft Country star Jonathan Majors. However, no details have been revealed yet about what Kang’s role in Quantumania will be or how the film may set him up to have an ongoing role in the MCU.
That’s largely the reason so many fans are looking to Loki for answers to some of their Kang questions. The show’s heavy use of time travel and the TVA so close to Kang’s alleged debut in Quantumania makes it feel primed to introduce either the character himself or a plot point that’ll later involve him. That’s not to say Loki is definitely going to set up Kang, just that the odds of it doing so are extremely likely.
The presence of Ravonna Renslayer in the series makes those odds even greater. After all, as one of the most powerful members of the TVA, she’s in the perfect position to be either a great ally or enemy to Kang. We’ll just have to wait to see which one she ends up being.
Loki is streaming now on Disney+.