Loki: Episode 6 Event Report
You can’t get to the end until you’ve been changed by the journey.
For All Time. Always.
In Episode 6 of Marvel Studios’ Loki, “For All Time. Always.,” with Alioth enchanted, Loki and Sylvie travel to the Citadel at the End of Time. Hand in hand, they both step towards the unknown together as a singular force.
Will Loki and Sylvie uncover who is behind the Time Variance Authority?
• The Citadel at the End of Time
• High School, Fremont, Ohio, 2018
Beyond the Void, and Alioth’s guard, Loki and Sylvie discover a portal to an asteroid inhabited by an intense and desolate towering citadel. At its peak, the two spot an illuminated window. Someone’s home.
Loki and Sylvie trek across the treacherous asteroid and approach the Citadel. The timeline pulsates as a physical reality, a tangible force, around the asteroid. The two make their way to a grand door standing between them and the End of Time.
At the door, Sylvie questions Loki why he doesn’t discourage her from kicking down the door. Smartly, he retorts that his demands never made a difference on what she’s determined to do. She’s surprised that he has nothing to say; she tells Loki she just needs a moment to center herself. She’s been waiting for this moment her entire life. Suddenly, the doors open inviting both Variants in, which shuts behind them once they’ve entered the Citadel.
Welcome to the Citadel at the End of Time
Inside the dark atrium of the Citadel, Loki and Sylvie cautiously approach the dark and looming center. Materializing before them, and much to their surprise, Miss Minutes appears congratulating them on their long journey and welcoming them to the Citadel at the End of Time. The pair have impressed He Who Remains — He who has created all and controls all — “at the end, it is only He Who Remains.” The sentient time clock tells Sylvie and Loki that the man behind the curtain wants to offer them a deal. After making a few creative adjustments, He Who Remains has made it possible for both Loki variants to be reinserted on the Sacred Timeline, to exist on the timeline together without disrupting anything.
Framing the win-win scenario, Miss Minutes explains the Time Variance Authority (TVA) can continue its vital work, and they both can live the lives they’ve always wanted. Loki can win—against the self-righteous Avengers, against Thanos. He can have both the Infinity Gauntlet and the throne of Asgard. As for Sylvie, she no longer has to be on the run, all alone. She can now look forward to a lifetime of happy memories. Pausing at the hopeful scenario presented to them, Sylvie lets out a sigh believing it to be fiction; that it can’t work. Loki declares that they’ll write their own destinies now. Miss Minutes disappears following their refusal.
Back at the TVA, Judge Renslayer downloads a number of files to her TemPad as she rifles through stacks of case files. She glances over to the side of her chair spying the rings left by her old friend Mobius after years of sharing drinks together. Miss Minutes appears apologizing for her delay; the files are all nearly downloaded. As Renslayer scans through her TemPad, she tells the TVA spokesperson that these were not the files she requested. Miss Minutes confirms they’re not, but He thinks they would be more useful. She vanishes when the judge asks, “Who?”
He Who Paved the Road
With their weapons drawn, Loki and Sylvie push forward through the Citadel. In the Hall of Heroes, Loki questions if He Who Remains is even still alive; the hall abandoned, in a state of disrepair and negligence. The two are startled when they hear an elevator suddenly operate.
The elevator door opens and He Who Remains emerges, in awe, standing before two variants side-by-side, nothing how unnatural the scenario is. When Sylvie refers to him by his name, He Who Remains laughs, amused that Miss Minutes is still referring to him that way. He knows it’s a creepy moniker, but he likes it. He invites them both into the elevator, to accompany him to his office.
He Who Remains asks if they’re disappointed, that he wasn’t what they were expecting? He’s just a man made of flesh and blood. Sylvie remarks this just makes him easier to kill as she swings her machete at him. However, He’s quick with his far more advanced TemPad, moving swiftly out of the way as the variants attempt to overcome him.
In his office, addressing both variants as Loki, He offers them a chair and coffee to hear his proposal.
Friends Across Time
Upon reviewing the files, Renslayer rushes to grab her briefcase and files. However, there’s a knock at the door. She turns as Mobius announces his return. The judge is relieved to discover her longtime friend has found a way to return home from the Void. Dismissing the hurdle, Mobius quips, “One man’s Void is another man’s piece of cake.” The fleeting moment of levity between friends is gone. Clocking the Time Stick in his hand, Renslayer questions if he’s going to prune her.
Renslayer reaffirms the choice she made; she couldn’t let Mobius get in the way of their mission, which the agent responds with a disgusted chuckle. Their mission isn’t real — the Time Keepers are fake; they’re all variants. Renslayer refuses to believe this was all for nothing. She pulls her TemPad to summon Hunter D-90 to her office. Mobius tells her it won’t work this time now that he knows her secret, revealing her Franklin D. Roosevelt High School pen he had once questioned if it was a keepsake from another favorite analyst of hers.
On the Sacred Timeline, Hunter B-15 has lured Hunter D-90 and his troop of Minutemen to following her to a high school in Fremont, Ohio. Hunter B-15 draws the militant hunter into the vice principal’s office, asking him to wait a beat and listen to her. Angered, Vice Principal Rebecca Tourminet emerges asking who they are, and what they’re doing in her office, her school. The school administrator is confused when Hunter D-90 refers to her as “Judge Renslayer.” Hunter B-15 tells her colleague that the person before them is not Renslayer, and that they have a lot to talk about.
In Renslayer’s office, Mobius tells the judge that everyone’s ready to hear the truth now – the TVA is a lie. Renslayer argues that it’s a necessary one. Someone created the Time Keepers, they created the whole organization, and they gave them purpose. Mobius tells her no; he’s seen the horrors at what awaits people when they’re pruned, and there’s nothing necessary about that. Renslayer tells her friend that if they didn’t prune the timeline, it would be death and chaos. When Mobius states free will, she laughs him off as the only person who gets free will is the one in charge. Finished with the argument, Renslayer continues to pack her briefcase.
Recalling the celebratory conversation they had following the conclusion of the Loki case, Mobius brings up Renslayer’s hollow sentiment, “Friends across time, allies until the end,” feeling betrayed by her actions. Hurt and angered, Renslayer lashes out telling Mobius he was the one who betrayed her; that he threw away their eons of friendship “for a couple of Lokis.” Absorbing her words, Mobius pleads that they can’t take away people’s free will, and does not understand why she can’t see that. Renslayer opens a Time Door with her TemPad; Mobius begs her to stay and for them to rebuild the TVA into something better, together. As he lights up the Time Stick, Renslayer tells him that he’s no danger to her before knocking him onto the ground taking his Time Stick. Unable to prune him a second time, she leaves through the Time Door telling him she’s in search of free will.
The Multiversal War
In his office, He Who Remains remarks on their long and painful journey to get to him. The variants are perplexed by his casual demeanor, nonplussed by the scenario at hand — He lost, they found him. Determined to convince the pair that they can’t kill him, He pulls out a stack of papers that detail all their current and future dialogue; He knows what’s going to happen. He knows it all, and he’s seen it all; reassuring them he witnessed everything they’ve ever done, ever said, ever schemed, even their shared moment on Lamentis by the crater lake. He even knows of things that the TVA doesn’t. They never managed to get out of His game; every step they took (Lamentis, the Void), He paved the way for them. They simply just walked down the road he laid out. Cementing the fact, He pulls out another handful of paper revealing it contains what will happen. He tells Loki and Sylvie that there is only one outcome to this discussion. Livid, Sylvie questions why they’re even here. He Who Remains reminds them, “You know you can’t get to the end until you’ve been changed by the journey. This stuff, it needs to happen.” To get them in the right mindset to finish the quest, He asks Sylvie if she can really trust Loki, is she even capable of trusting anyone at all?
He Who Remains tells the Lokis He understand their moral objection to what the TVA does, and recognizes his methods are deceptive, but his mission never was. Without him and the TVA, everything burns. In a moment of vulnerability and honesty, He reveals He’s afraid of himself. To help them get the scope of who He is, He shares he’s been called many things: a ruler, a conqueror, He Who Remains, a jerk, but who He is isn’t as simple as a name.
Using his modified TemPad, He pulls up a projection to better belabor the point. A variant of himself, a scientist who lived on Earth in the 31st century, discovered there were universes stacked on top of his own. Other versions of them were discovering the same thing around the same time. In an effort to share knowledge and technology, the variants started making contact and traveling around to help others improve their own. They all lived in peace for a while, but not every version of himself was so pure and shared the same values. A variant viewed a new universe as a new land to be conquered. As such, the peace between realities erupted into all-out war—a Multiversal War—as each variant fought to preserve his own universe while annihilating the others. It was nearly the end of everything.
Diverging from the dogma, He explains that the first variant, the scientist, encountered a creature that was created from all the tears in reality—Alioth—capable of consuming time and space itself. He harnessed that temporal beast’s power and began experimenting on it. He was able to weaponize Alioth and end the Multiversal War. Once He did that, He isolated his timeline, managed the flow of time, and prevented any further branches. With that, he created the TVA—the Time Keepers and a highly efficient bureaucracy. Thanks to him, we all can enjoy eons of cosmic harmony. He’s not the devil; he’s the one that keeps them safe. And if they think what He has done is evil, He warns that his variants are worse. Those are the two options: stifling order or cataclysmic chaos. If they kill him, something far worse will fill that void. He’s been through every scenario; this is the only way. The TVA works.
Following his history lesson, Sylvie argues that all of this was a lie; that He is a liar. Loki questions if He will continue to prune innocent timelines. He Who Remains counters, no, they will. Representing the two options, He tells the duo they can kill him and destroy all that He has built, resulting in an infinite number of devils to contend with; or two, they can run the whole gamut themselves. He’s willing to give up control and power because He has been doing this for a very long time, and He’s tired. He’s old and “this game is for the young, the hungry.” He’s been searching for a replacement for a long time, and it turns out, that replacement came in two—the two of them. If they kill him, they’ll expose the Sacred Timeline, or they can now be in charge and lead the TVA however they want, as benevolent leaders if they wish.
Frustrated with Sylvie’s refusal to understand the greater stakes, He reminds her that pruning her timeline wasn’t personal; it was practical, and she needs to grow up. Before any of them acts self-righteous, He reminds Loki and Sylvie that they’ve all done terrible and horrific things — as hypocrites, liars, murderers — but this time, they can do that for good reason.
The New Unknown Universe
Crossing the threshold in time, He Who Remains reveals that He had fibbed earlier. While, yes, He did know how things were going to pan out, He only knew everything up to a point, and that point literally just passed. In raw candor, He explains anything that happens now is all unknown time, and as the person who spent eternity knowing everything, this is thrilling. Outside the windows of his office, the sprawling Sacred Timeline starts to have small branches deviate off the main path. Excited by the unknown, He allows Loki and Sylvie to decide his fate, casually remarking, “What’s the worst that can happen? You either take over and my life’s work continues, or you plunge a blade into my chest and an infinite amount of me start another Multiversal War, and I just end up right back here anyways. Reincarnation, baby.” To further prove it’s not a lie or manipulation, He removes his TemPad from his wrist, ecstatic over the fresh start.
With He Who Remains exposed and unprotected by his TemPad, Sylvie lunges at the puppet-master just as Loki leaps up to stop her, protecting He Who Remains. He is astonished and surprised by this great unknown as Sylvie and Loki erupt into an all-out brawl; He didn’t see it coming! Loki believes in He’s reasoning of a necessary evil for the ultimate greater good, whereas Sylvie does not buy what He Who Remains is peddling. As Loki blocks every strike of Sylvie’s blade, He Who Remains hurries them along as the timeline’s branching.
Hurt that Loki would betray her in the final moments, Sylvie incredulously remarks that Loki simply just wants the throne. Loki pleads that’s not the case; he knows that the TVA has hurt them both, but the universe hangs in the balance. He’s not ready to unleash something far worse if they remove He Who Remains off the board; he simply just wants them to take a minute to weigh out the options. Sylvie questions if this was all a long con, echoing Mobius’ earlier assessment that that was a Loki trait. Wounded, Loki wonders if that’s what she really thinks of him; that he hasn’t grown or changed from their time together. Upset, Loki points out that she can’t trust, and he can’t be trusted. They’ve reached a stalemate.
Loki pleads that this choice is bigger than both of their experiences. Betrayed, Sylvie once again does not understand why they’re not seeing this the same way if they’re the same. As they continue to brutally brawl, Loki begs Sylvie to consider the cost if they get this wrong as He Who Remains is bewildered by the dramatic spectacle before him. Sylvie dares Loki to just kill her and take his throne, to which he refuses. Once again, Loki appears in front of He Who Remains saving him from Sylvie’s blade. He drops his sword, assuring her he knows what she’s going through and what she’s feeling. He’s been where she is; all he knows is that he doesn’t want to hurt her, he doesn’t want the throne, he just wants her to be OK. Both are overwhelmed with emotions with tears in their eyes. Sylvie drops her machete, and they pull each other close for a passionate kiss. When they finally let go, Sylvie looks into Loki’s eyes, and tells him she’s not him. She opens a Time Door behind Loki with He Who Remains’ TemPad, and pushes him back as he tumbles through a Time Door into…the TVA’s Time Theater. He sprints for the Time Door but it closes on him.
Back at He Who Remains’ office at the Citadel at the End of Time, Sylvie is now alone with the man responsible for all her pain and suffering—the moment she’s worked her whole life to arrive at. As she stalks towards him with her blade in hand, He Who Remains is eerily sanguine and amused by his coming death. The variant questions why he’s not begging for his life, to which He passes, as she plunges her blade into his chest. As his life drains from him, He Who Remains looks at Sylvie and promises to see her soon with a wink. After the long road she took to get to this moment, Sylvie receives no catharsis, no satisfaction. She slumps to the floor as, outside He Who Remains’ office windows, the timeline breaks as threads ripple off of it; new branches everywhere.
The New Analyst
Back at the TVA, Mobius and Hunter B-15 are in the Chronomonitoring Wing watching the monitor with rapt attention as the Sacred Timeline breaks into separate branches. Mobius notes there’s no turning back now, to which Hunter B-15 declares, “Who said anything about turning back?”
In the TVA Time Theater, emotionally and physically spent while sitting on the steps, Loki stares ahead at the empty space where the Time Door previously stood. Grief momentarily washes over him. Unwilling to not give up, and galvanized, Loki stands and springs into action, driven with purpose. As he emerges into the hallway, the TVA is bustling with activity. Everyone on high alert as a squad of Minutemen rush past him.
Making his way to the TVA Archives, he finds Mobius and Hunter B-15 monitoring the diverging timelines on a TemPad. Alarmed at the number of branches spiraling out of the timeline, Mobius wonders how they can stop it. Loki interjects that they can’t, “It’s done, Mobius. We made a terrible mistake. We freed the timeline.”
He explains that he found He Who Remains, beyond the storm, at the Citadel at the End of Time. As the agent and hunter try to process what they’re learning, Loki pleads that this mastermind is terrifying — he’s seen everything, he knows everything, and he’s planned everything. Distressed, Loki warns, “Someone is coming. Countless different versions of a very dangerous person, and they’re all set on war. We need to prepare.” As Mobius tries to calm Loki down, he asks Loki who he is, if he’s the new analyst, and what division is he with? Hunter B-15 and Mobius flag a team to head to the Archives. As profound dread overcomes Loki, he turns to the Time Keepers statue area; however, they’re no longer there. In its place likes a single statue of a man in a futuristic suit with the same face as the man Loki just encountered in the Citadel – one of the versions He Who Remains warned us about. This isn’t the TVA Loki knows.
LOKI WILL RETURN IN SEASON 2.
FOR ALL TIME. ALWAYS.
All six episodes from the first season of Marvel Studios' Loki are now streaming exclusively on Disney+! Loki will return for Season 2.
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