Loki Episode 4 recap: Existence is Futile in the TVA

(L): Judge Renslayer (Gugu Mbatha-Raw) in Marvel Studios' LOKI, exclusively on Disney+. Photo by Chuck Zlotnick. ©Marvel Studios 2021. All Rights Reserved.
(L): Judge Renslayer (Gugu Mbatha-Raw) in Marvel Studios' LOKI, exclusively on Disney+. Photo by Chuck Zlotnick. ©Marvel Studios 2021. All Rights Reserved. /

In Loki Episode 4, “The Nexus Event,” we learn more about the TVA and the agents who would die to protect the Time Keepers. But where do the Loki Variants fit in?

The Disney Plus show has been teasing the Time Keepers for the first three episodes. Having ended on a massive cliffhanger in the previous episode, the show goes all out in revealing its secrets, while throwing in a few more unexpected twists.

We do get Sylvie’s origin story, finally, and how it intersects with Ravonna Renslayer’s. The fearless judge was once an agent, tasked with bringing in the Loki Variant. But Sylvie was only a child, terrified of being ripped from her life. She escaped, but lost her way of life, nonetheless.

Why was a child ripped from her home by the TVA? And what consequences will the TVA face for this crime? This episode is not going to go the way we think it is.

Loki Episode 4 – End of the World

Loki Episode 4 recap
(L-R): Sophia Di Martino and Loki (Tom Hiddleston) in Marvel Studios’ LOKI, exclusively on Disney+. Photo courtesy of Marvel Studios. ©Marvel Studios 2021. All Rights Reserved. /

When last we saw Loki and Sylvie, they were stranded on Lamentis-1, watching helplessly as it was destroyed, with them still on it. In Loki Episode 4, the pair begrudgingly accept their fate. Sylvie’s belief is that Lokis are destined to fail, which is a bit fatalistic, but also true.

Loki, still full of his own self-importance, disagrees with Sylvie. But there’s more to it. Loki seems to have grown really fond of Sylvie. As they hold hands in the face of impending doom, that connection, whatever it is, begins to cause a new Nexus event, one unlike anything the TVA has seen.

It ends up alerting Mobius of Loki and Sylvie’s location and the pair are brought in. Mobius is charged with interrogating Loki, while Sylvie is kept under the supervision of a huge guard detail. Loki is insulted by this, but he isn’t seen as much of danger here.

Mobius is still hurting from Loki’s betrayal. The kid gloves are off—Loki will get the full punishment he deserves. Mobius will have it no other way.

Loki tries his tricks again, but he does drop a truth bomb on Mobius—the TVA has been lying to all of them. Mobius doesn’t believe Loki—he does lie even without reason—and sends Loki to a time cell.

The time cell is in Asgard, which isn’t all that bad. But then Lady Sif (Jaimie Alexander) appears, holding a lock of her hair, recently cut off by Loki. It’s a funny memory for Loki, and he even takes being punched and kicked in stride.

Until the same scene plays again. And again. And again. With barely any time for Loki to recover from Lady Sif’s formidable punches. But that doesn’t hurt nearly as much as Lady Sif’s words—that Loki deserves to be alone, and will be so forever. That got deep.

Loki Episode 4 – Lying to Yourself

Loki Episode 4 recap
(L): Mobius (Owen Wilson) and (center): Sylvie (Sophia Di Martino) in Marvel Studios’ LOKI, exclusively on Disney+. Photo by Chuck Zlotnick. ©Marvel Studios 2021. All Rights Reserved. /

Mobius doesn’t believe Loki but the God of Mischief has a way of worming his way into people’s heads. Mobius can’t stop thinking about what Loki told him. And when he starts doing some digging in Loki Episode 4, Mobius begins to realize that he’s being kept in the dark about some things.

For one, Mobius isn’t allowed access to Hunter C-20. After some amount of complaining, Mobius gets Ravonna to reveal what happened to C-20. Apparently, she’s dead. An after-effect of being enchanted by Sylvie. That seems a bit sudden, even to Mobius.

When Mobius interrogates Loki, his suspicions only grow. Loki is evasive, at first, insists he planned this whole caper with Sylvie years ago, and that Loki would dispose of Sylvie when the work was done. Loki did evil things but he was never this heartless.

Mobius knows that. He turns the table on Loki by telling him that Sylvie has already been “pruned.” Loki is shaken, though he pretends not to be. Mobius has studied Loki well—he knows Loki cares about Sylvie. Is this love, Loki Variant?

It’s clearly something because Loki reveals to Mobius that the TVA agents are all variants and that Sylvie can unlock their memories. Mobius doesn’t want to believe this but he verifies as much by stealing Ravonna’s TemPad. Hunter C-20 revealed the same during her debrief.

Mobius isn’t the only one questioning his existence in the TVA. When Sylvie enchanted Hunter B-15, she saw something—a life before the TVA. She was certain the memories were false, but she needs to know for sure.

Breaking the rules, B-15 takes Sylvie back to the Roxxcart apocalypse and asks for the truth. Sylvie shows B-15 her life before. A life where B-15 was happy. B-15 isn’t going to stand by and let the TVA pretend she’s only ever existed as a number.

Loki Episode 4 – The Time Keepers

Loki Episode 4 recap
Hunter B-15 (Wunmi Mosaku) in Marvel Studios’ LOKI, exclusively on Disney+. Photo courtesy of Marvel Studios. ©Marvel Studios 2021. All Rights Reserved. /

Ravonna isn’t a fool. She knows Mobius is too close to Loki. She can also see that her dodging Mobius’ questions about Sylvie aren’t helping. And then her TemPad goes missing.

Mobius tries to sweet-talk his way out of the situation and immediately gets pruned right in front of Loki. Loki Episode 4 just killed a main character. And he won’t be the only one. Loki is in visible tears over Mobius’ loss.

Ravonna takes Loki and Sylvie straight to the top—the Time Keepers themselves. They’re huge and imposing and they have no kind words to say to either Loki variant. But if these two are so inconsequential, why have the Time Keepers spent so many resources on them?

There’s no time to think of that—Hunter B-15 arrives, frees Loki and Sylvie and joins their fight. Unfortunately, she doesn’t last as long as the two Loki variants, who hold their own against the guards.

On the precipice of victory, Sylvie manages to lop off the head of one of the Time Keepers. The other two fall by the wayside as a result. That’s it! They’ve won.

Except the head of the Time Keeper is metal and wires. They were androids. So who is running the TVA and this whole operation?

Sylvie is devastated—her life taken away and no one to hold responsible. Ravonna doesn’t even remember what Nexus event Sylvie would have caused—thanks, Ravonna.

Loki takes this moment to try to reveal to Sylvie how he feels about her. Only to be pruned by Ravonna partway through his confession. Is this the end of Loki? Again?

As Sylvie and Ravonna face off, Loki awakens somewhere. It’s not Hel, but it is filled with other types of Lokis. At least he’s alive!

Final Thoughts – Loki Episode 4 Ramps Up the Suspense

Loki Episode 4 didn’t turn out that way I expected it at all. I’m relieved that Loki is alive and that Mobius and B-15 may also still be alive.

I don’t know how to feel about Loki and Sylvie as a romantic couple. I’m feeling the romance from Loki, but nothing from Sylvie. Didn’t she say she was with a postman? Was she joking?

And also, it’s kind of weird for Loki to fall in love with a female version of himself. He’s such a narcissist that it makes complete sense, but it’s still very strange.

With just two episodes left, I don’t know if there’s enough time to learn about the other Lokis and find out who is really running the TVA. I wish the first two episodes had been a bit more plot-oriented now. But I can’t wait to see what the show has in store for us next week.

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Loki is streaming weekly on Disney Plus.