Lost Legends

'Loki' could make this thousand-year-old mythological weapon Marvel canon

“Damage twig?”

Let us not forget that Loki is an adaptation of an adaptation. First, there are the hundreds of storylines featuring the character throughout Marvel Comics canon, in all forms: Lady Loki, Kid Loki, and the most fearsome of all, hokey 1950s villain Loki. But behind that lore is ancient Norse mythology stretching back millennia, which details the exploits of gods Thor and Loki in more detail despite lacking the color and pop of Marvel’s stories.

One weapon stretches between both comic-book and more historied versions of Loki, which means it need only appear in one more arena to achieve a holy media-representation trinity: the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Thankfully, there’s a perfect opportunity for said weapon to appear in Loki’s own spinoff.

Laevateinn is the name of a mythological sword forged by Loki in Norse mythology. It was first created, according to the myths, to slay a rooster named Víðópnir. But the sword’s legacy far exceeds its original purpose. Its name, Laevateinn, is even still a point of contention throughout its appearances, especially in Marvel.

“Lae” could mean “cunning,” “deception,” or “injury,” and “vateinn” means both “wand” and “stick.” This strange naming mechanic is lampshaded in Laevateinn’s most recent appearance in the comics, in Loki: Agent of Asgard #4. When ancient hero Sigurd challenges Kid Loki to a fight, he summons Laevateinn, only to be admonished by Sigurd. “Your ancestral blade is called damage twig?” he scoffs, before the two leap into some Princess Bride-inspired dueling.

Lost Legends is an Inverse series about the forgotten lore of our favorite stories.

Sigurd mocks Loki’s weapon in Agent of Asgard #4.Marvel Comics

Laevateinn is Loki’s ancestral blade, so he can summon it whenever he has access to his powers: including, it would seem, on field missions with the TVA throughout the on-going Disney+ series Loki. Considering the time-travel bureaucracy’s reluctance to give him any weapons, this glowing sword could be the answer Loki is looking for when it comes to overthrowing the Time Keepers.

A specific weapon rooted in Marvel Comics and Norse mythology may seem like too minor a reference to count on, but a well-timed screenshot in an international ad for Disney+ reveals Loki holding a flaming sword, presumably at some point in Loki. Could Laevateinn be this glowing sword? That a sword will fall into the trickster god’s hands at some point makes his record of wielding Laevateinn too much of a coincidence to ignore.

Loki in the Disney+ ad wielding what looks like Laevateinn. Marvel Studios

Additionally, the sword’s most recent appearance was in the hands of Kid Loki. We’ve seen one Loki variant in Loki so far, but with the massive bombing that character, Lady Loki, just caused across the Sacred Timeline, it’s only a matter of time (if you’ll excuse the pun) before other Lokis start popping up from various alternate universes.

Among them, hopefully, will be Kid Loki, whose characterization could draw extensively upon Loki: Agent of Asgard. Perhaps along with that variant, the blade will make its screen debut, and an army of Lokis with an armory’s worth of glowing swords could overthrow what (seemingly) is the single most powerful institute in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

That’s a lot of pressure for one weapon but, then again, Laevateinn is a sword backed by over a thousand years of history. We think it’s up to the challenge.

Loki is now streaming on Disney+.