Lady Loki (Sophia Di Martino) bombed the Sacred Timeline with stolen TVA reset charges, seemingly creating countless branches and undoing the timeline cops' work. She told her male counterpart (Tom Hiddleston) her plot wasn't about him, which probably intrigued him enough to abandon his TVA pal Mobius (Owen Wilson) by following her.
Not that Mobius will have much time to get bored -- the agency went into high alert as a result of Lady Loki's attack.
Let's follow a new branch into a spoiler-filled timeline, for episode 3: Lamentis.
Don't call her Loki
The female Loki Variant snaps at her male counterpart for calling her Loki, having apparently left that identity behind. She prefers "Sylvie," which certainly makes it easier to differentiate between them. It also seems like a reference to comics character Sylvie Lushton, who became the second version of Asgardian god Enchantress after Loki gave her powers.
Her years-in-the-making plan to reach the Time-Keepers is interrupted by Loki, and he teleports them to the moon Lamentis-1 in 2077 -- one of the apocalypses Sylvie had preprogrammed into her time-hopping TemPad so she could evade the TVA.
We don't learn much about Sylvie here, but she apparently stepped off the Sacred Timeline quite early in life and clearly had a different experience to Loki. It seems like she wasn't adopted by Odin at all, so she didn't have the same bond with Loki's adoptive mother Frigga. She also learned of her Frost Giant heritage in a different way.
They're both bisexual, though, based on her question about Loki's romances: "Must've been some would-be princesses or perhaps another prince?" "A bit of both. I suspect the same as you."
"From the moment I joined @LokiOfficial it was very important to me, and my goal, to acknowledge Loki was bisexual," she wrote in a tweet. "It is a part of who he is and who I am too. I know this is a small step but I'm happy, and heart is so full, to say that this is now Canon in #mcu."
Sylvie reveals that the TVA workers are all Variants, but they don't know it. It makes sense that the Time-Keepers would recruit people who've stepped off the Sacred Timeline, but they apparently wipe the Variants' memories to some degree.
However, it seems like fragments of their past lives remain. When Sylvie enchanted Hunter C-20 (Sasha Lane), she used the TVA worker's love of margaritas to manipulate her into giving up the Time-Keepers' location. Mobius' passion for jet skis and reference to the early '90s is likely a remnant of his old self too. Maybe he jet skied off the Sacred Timeline and into the TVA's clutches then.
How will the TVA people react to this? I suspect it'll vary, but hopefully Mobius at least will rebel against the Time-Keepers and help end their tyranny.
Trapped in an apocalypse
The episode ends with Sylvie and Loki apparently stuck. In 2077, the moon Lamentis-1 is about to be wiped out by a falling planet and the ark they'd planned to hijack and escape on has been destroyed. So they're doomed?
Their original plan was to recharge the TemPad and jump to a different point in time, but the device was broken when Loki was thrown off the train. Or was it? Given his penchant for trickery, it's possible the TemPad is still functioning or at least fixable. Mobius could also track them down, he seems like a last-minute save kinda guy.
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The guards are named Private Hudson (Ben VanderMey) and Corporal Hicks (Jon Collin Barclay) in the credits -- an apparent reference to Bill Paxton and Michael Biehn's characters in 1986 sci-fi classic Aliens.
Loki preferring not to go backwards on a train is relatable, but I'm glad he got over it.
"It all seemed impossible. But she told me one day I'd be able to do that too, because... because I could do anything." Loki's monologue about Frigga is quite touching.
Loki smashes his glass on the floor when he demands "another" drink at the bar, much like Thor did in his 2011 movie.
You might remember Loki controlling people like Hawkeye's minds in previous MCU movies, much like Sylvie's enchantment. He needed his Mind Stone-powered scepter for this, so he's intrigued that she can do the trick without it -- we'll likely see him try her technique in a coming episode.
The tracking shot as Loki and Sylvie move through Shuroo is epic.