'Loki' Season 1: Ending Explained, And How It Sets Up The Future Of The MCU

Here's what happened at the crazy ending of the 'Loki' Disney+ series and how it affects the upcoming projects in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

Loki Season 1

Loki's six-episode Disney+ series has ended, and as expected, the show has brought so many things to discuss.

Unlike 'WandaVision' and 'The Falcon and the Winter Soldier,' the God of Mischief will certainly have more troubles to sort out on the streaming platform.

Loki's final episode has unveiled the person behind the Time Variance Authority (TVA), but the show's conclusion has literally branched out more catastrophe to the MCU.

Let's examine the ending of 'Loki' and analyze how it sets up for the rest of the MCU, including the upcoming films like 'Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness,' 'Spider-Man: No Way Home,' and more. 

Loki and Sylvie meet He Who Remains

The Many Variants Of Kang the Conqueror

Loki and Sylvie step into the citadel at the End of Time and come face to face with no other than-- He Who Remains (Jonathan Majors). He never said his name and only calls himself a "conqueror." We already know that Majors will be playing the villainous role of Kang the Conqueror in 'Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania'. But don't get too excited because this might not be the exact version that will wreak havoc in 'Quantumania.'

As He Who Remains explained, the TVA serves as a failsafe. In the 31st century, the scientist Kang discovered the other realities and decided to explore them. He met with other versions of himself and soon started collaborating. Unfortunately, not all Kangs share the same vision. He soon met villainous Kangs, and trouble arises. Timelines started going to war against each other, but He Who Remains (the version Loki and Sylvie met) rises above all the other versions of himself. He created the TVA and ordered to only have a single timeline to prevent his evil selves from rising and causing unimaginable chaos.

He Who Remains has carried a huge responsibility on his shoulders, but now, he is tired of getting in charge. He gave Loki and Sylvie two options: take over Kang's work and prevent the timeline from branching and creating a dangerous multiverse, or kill him and let the multiverse branch out, bringing to life the other versions of Kang. If they choose the first option, there will be no free will for anyone except for Loki and Sylvie. 

Loki and Sylvie

The Choice That Restored The Multiverse

At the beginning of the series, Loki wanted to just seize the Time-Keepers and rule over everything. Sylvie, on the other hand, just wants to exact revenge and destroy it all.

Loki stuck to his original plan and chooses to rule, but his choice is no longer out of selfish interest. He fears the other versions of Kang and genuinely wants the greater good, including keeping Sylvie safe.

Unfortunately, Sylvie doesn't share Loki's principles. Revenge and free will weigh heavier to her than Loki's idea of safety. The difference ensued in an epic fight, which ended in a kiss. Sylvie then throws Loki back to the TVA and kills He Who Remains, causing the timeline to branch out like crazy. Now, the many versions of Kang, including the nefarious variants, ran amok across the multiverse.

Loki knows the catastrophe that awaits. He tries to run to the TVA to warn them, but he is too late. 


The Future Of The TVA

Loki runs through the TVA and passes by the officers, who didn't pay him any attention even though he is a fugitive. He sees Mobius and Hunter B-15 and tells them about what happened, but the two just looked at him with confused eyes. Loki looks around and sees the gigantic Kang statue. Soon he realizes that he arrived in a completely different timeline, one that branched out after Sylvie killed He Who Remains. In this timeline, he has never met Mobius and Hunter B-15. 

Judge Ravonna Renslayer and The Search For Free Will 

He Who Remains has given Judge Renslayer confidential information. It seemed like she believes in Kang's ideals, but when Mobius confronts her in her office, she rejects his offer to rebuild the TVA and goes into a portal saying she will be on "the search for free will."

We learned that Ravonna used to be the principal of Franklin D. Roosevelt High School before she became part of the TVA. Her real name is Rebecca Tourminet, as seen on the Ohio State University diploma hanging above her desk.

It appears that the Ravonna we saw exiting through the portal is still the Ravonna we saw all through the series and is not part of the new TVA timeline that Loki entered at the end of the show. The same thing with the B-15 who finds Renslayer at FDR High School in 2018. That B-15 also seems to be the "real" B-15 we've followed throughout the series, but the B-15 Loki approached in the new timeline is not.


How The Ending Sets Up The Rest Of The MCU 

The return of the multiverse has paved the way for the upcoming MCU projects.

In case you didn't know, Marvel is trying a new type of storytelling that will tie the MCU films and the Disney plus shows. On August 11, 'What If' will arrive on Disney+. The series follows Uatu the Watcher as he tells us about alternate timelines and their outcomes-- say, "What If Peggy Carter gets the super-soldier serum"? The show's premise wouldn't make sense if Sylvie didn't kill He Who Remains and restore the multiverse.

As mentioned earlier, emperor Kang will appear in 'Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania', which will release in theaters on February 17, 2023. The Kang that will appear in the film is highly likely to be one of the evil versions that got unleashed following He Who Remain's death. 

Spider-Man: No Way Home (December 17, 2021) and 'Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness' (March 25, 2022) will both be exploring multiverse timelines, too. 

'Loki' Will Return For Season 2

Perhaps, one of the biggest surprises during the finale is the confirmation that 'Loki' will have a second season! The show confirmed this in the post-credit scene through a stamp that hits Loki's file. 'Loki' is the first Disney Plus live-action MCU to get a follow-up season. Both 'WandaVision' and 'The Falcon and The Winter Soldier' were designed to be miniseries only. Also, we've seen a kid version of Loki, hinting that MCU might explore a narrative following young Avengers in the future.