If there’s one thing Loki Episode 4 isn’t in short supply of, it’s surprises.
Coming off its relatively plotless third installment, Loki kicked things back into high gear this week. The latest episode of the Marvel series (titled “The Nexus Event”) makes some bold choices across its 49-minute runtime — saying hello and goodbye to characters both new and old while also confirming some major Loki fan theories along the way. It’s a massive episode of television and ranks quite easily as Loki’s most shocking chapter to date.
That’s in no large part thanks to its brief but fantastic post-credits sequence — the show’s first — which sets up a team-up the likes of which the Marvel Cinematic Universe has never seen before. Here’s everything you need to know to understand the ending of Loki Episode 4.
Major spoilers for Loki Episode 4 ahead.
Loki Episode 4: Welcome to Hel?
Loki Episode 4 concludes in truly stunning fashion, with Ravonna Renslayer pruning Loki from existence just before he’s able to confess his feelings for Sylvie. It’s a shocking moment and one that just adds further intensity to the rivalry between Sylvie and Ravonna. To make matters worse, it’s not even the episode’s first major character “death,” coming just a few minutes after Loki is forced to watch Mobius be pruned by his fellow Time Variance Authority agents.
For what it’s worth, Loki’s “death,” while tragic and unexpected, would have been a perfectly suitable moment for Loki Episode 4 to end on. Fortunately, “The Nexus Event” has one more surprise up its sleeve with its post-credits sequence.
The scene sees Hiddleston’s Loki waking up in a grassy field, wondering aloud if he’s dead and in Hel. A nearby voice answers his questions, forcing Loki to look around at his surroundings for the first time. And who does he see standing over him?
None other than four more Loki variants.
Loki post-credits: Meet Your New Lokis
Marvel fans have been speculating for well over a year now that Loki would feature more alternate versions of the God of Mischief than just the ones played by Hiddleston and Di Martino. Loki Episode 4’s end credits scene finally proves them right.
While the sequence doesn’t reveal much about who these new Loki variants are, or what their roles in the last two installments of Loki will be, just the shot of them all standing together tells us quite a bit about them.
Standing on the far right is acclaimed character actor Richard E. Grant, a Loki cast member fans have long been waiting to see. He’s dressed in a very comics-accurate version of the character’s costume and is listed in the episode’s end credits as playing Classic Loki.
On Grant’s right is Jack Veal as Kid Loki, a live-action version of the Loki variant of the same name from the Marvel comics and a potential future Young Avenger. Meanwhile, standing to the immediate right of Veal is actor Deobai Oparei as yet another Loki variant.
Oparei is credited in the episode as playing “Boastful Loki,” and he’s seen holding a golden hammer of some sort. Does that mean Oparei is playing a variant of the character who was worthy of wielding Mjolnir? Or a Loki who decided to forge his own version of the powerful hammer? It’s unclear right now, but either way, it’s a detail that will no doubt come into play in Loki’s next episode.
The scene’s final Loki variant is a small crocodile that wears its own pair of golden Loki horns and can be seen in the arms of Veal’s Kid Loki. While the character, known for now simply as Crocodile Loki, appears to be an original creation of the Disney+ series, his presence in Kid Loki’s arms could very well be a reference to the time another alternate Loki took on animal form in the comics.
Loki’s Return to New York
Loki Episode 4’s end credits scene isn’t just notable for its new Loki variants but also for its location. In this case, the scene very clearly takes place in a destroyed, post-apocalyptic version of New York — as evidenced by the destroyed Avengers Tower that can be seen behind the new lineup of Lokis.
The environment was glimpsed very briefly in one of the early Loki trailers, but it’s unclear right now why Tom Hiddleston’s Loki woke up there after being pruned by Renslayer. Does this mean that the TVA’s weapons don’t actually “prune” variants but simply send them somewhere else? Or did someone (possibly Mobius?) tinker with the weapons to ensure that they transported variants rather than deleting them?
Either way, here’s to hoping that the continued survival of Hiddleston’s Loki also means Wilson’s Mobius somehow managed to survive his pruning. We just can’t accept him dying before getting to go for a ride on one of his beloved jet skis.
Loki Episode 4’s other surprise cameo
In almost any other episode of a Marvel TV series, the surprise appearance of Jaime Alexander’s Lady Sif in Loki Episode 4 would be a major post-show talking point. However, as great as it is to see Alexander reprising her role as the beloved MCU character again ahead of her return in next year’s Thor: Love and Thunder, the “deaths” of Mobius and Loki and the introduction of new Loki variants do take away a bit from Lady Sif’s cameo.
Still, Lady Sif’s return does carry some weight, especially given everything else that happens in Loki Episode 4.
The episode opens with Loki and Sylvie stranded on a collapsing Lamentis-1, but things take a turn when the pair hold hands and in doing so, seemingly, create a Nexus event powerful enough to alert the TVA to their location. Later on in the episode, Loki finds himself trapped in a time cell forced to continuously relive a memory — one in which he pranked Lady Sif by cutting her hair and she retaliated by beating him to a pulp.
“I hope you know you deserve to be alone and you always will be,” Sif says to Loki. It’s a statement that, to her credit, has been true for most of Loki’s life. But it may not be anymore, now that Loki and Sylvie have found each other. Indeed, their connection could very well be what ends up saving their lives and freeing the multiverse from the TVA’s stranglehold.
But will love actually be enough to save the day? We’ll just have to wait and see. For now, go ahead and take another listen to Brenda Lee’s “If You Love Me (Really Love Me),” which plays over Loki Episode 4’s end credits.
Loki is streaming now on Disney+.