Marvel just dropped 32 new character posters in anticipation of the release of Avengers: Endgame – which is quite possibly the most highly anticipated movie of all time – and among the characters included on these posters are those who are supposed to be dead. Or, at the very least, they turned to dust when Thanos snapped his fingers and we have no idea where they are or if they’re okay.
Even Loki has his own Endgame poster, and we saw him literally get killed in Infinity War. So, ahead of Avengers: Endgame, here are 10 Ways Loki Might Actually Come Back.
10 His redemption
Fans will forgive having to stretch their imaginations to allow Loki to come back if his return has some grand purpose for his character development. There’s one fan theory that while the Tesseract allowed Loki to influence people, it was also influencing him, making him evil.
If he’s really a good guy, then relinquishing the Tesseract to Thanos would break its spell over him and turn him from a deceitful villain into an earnest hero. If this can somehow be worked into Endgame, then it will be apt redemption for the character and the perfect ending for his MCU journey.
9 He got killed on purpose
Loki isn’t a genius, but he is smart enough to know it would take more than a knife to stop Thanos. He couldn’t have possibly thought that stabbing the Mad Titan would work out for him. But it is possible that this was all a part of some larger scheme that had to start with Thanos killing Loki, and possibly not seeing him as any sort of real threat.
It sounds pretty out there, but Loki has been known to pull the rug out from under both the audience and the other characters around him before. They don’t call him the “trickster god” for nothing.
8 He’s in flashback sequences with Thor
Not every character appearing in Avengers: Endgame has to necessarily be alive. Loki can appear in the movie and still be dead in the canon, if he appears to Thor in flashbacks. Thor and Loki have a 900-year history together, so there’s plenty to explore in flashbacks.
It’s unlikely that a movie like Avengers: Endgame, with a cast so massive and a story so epic, will have time to indulge in lengthy flashback sequences that develop the internal conflict of character. But if they did have time, it stands to reason that they’d use it for a really important character, like Thor.
7 He’ll be resurrected
Thanos may have uttered the meta, self-aware line, “No resurrections this time,” at the beginning of Infinity War, but Marvel isn’t above deceiving us with things like that. The Russo brothers outright told us that the fourth Avengers movie would not be called Endgame, and yet it did.
Thanos doesn’t decide what does and doesn’t happen. This was before he had a hold of the Reality Stone, so he couldn’t say with absolute certainty that there wouldn’t be any more resurrections. We lost Heimdall, and it doesn’t seem like he’ll be coming back, but if there’s one storyline that comic books have mastered over the years, it’s bringing dead characters back to life.
6 Doctor Strange hatched a plan with Loki
Given the fact that Loki and Doctor Strange both materialized their Infinity Stones in the same way for Thanos, and both got strangled by his Gauntlet hand, some fans have theorized that they are in cahoots.
At some unseen point in the MCU timeline, the theory states, Loki and Doctor Strange concocted some plan that will lead to the titular “endgame” in Endgame. As we all know, the movie is named after Doctor Strange’s grand plan to save the universe with his knowledge of the one-in-14-million scenario he saw in Infinity War. Perhaps Loki is also in on that plan.
5 He’s in the Soul World
The leading theory about what happened to all the characters who turned to dust when Thanos donned the Infinity Gauntlet and snapped his fingers is that they all went to the Soul World, the universe that exists inside the Soul Stone. Or, at the very least, Gamora went there after Thanos sacrificed her for the Soul Stone itself.
There are enough theories about the Soul World that it’s basically a given that someone will be in there. Maybe that’s where Loki went, and Thanos is keeping him there for the time being while he enacts his evil plan before getting revenge against Loki for his betrayal in the original Avengers movie.
4 He’s hiding out on Earth
When Loki presents the Space Stone to Thanos at the beginning of Infinity War, Thor tells him, “You really are the worst brother.” But then, right after Loki takes a swipe at Thanos and is about to be killed by him, he says, “I assure you, brother, the Sun will shine on us again.”
The Sun shining on Thor and Loki can’t be a metaphor, because the Sun only shines on Earth, scientifically. So, maybe Loki pulled one of his tricks to make Thor think he’d been killed, when really, he went to hide out on Earth. He could’ve hopped on the portal Heimdall opened to transport the Hulk to the Seventh Sanctum.
3 He appears in a dream sequence
It’s possible that Loki will appear in a similar sequence. For example, if Tony Stark starts to run out of oxygen or hydration when he’s on board the Milano drifting through space, he might hallucinate all the characters who have made his past ten years a living hell: Whiplash, Ultron, Justin Hammer, Aldrich Killian, the Mandarin, maybe even Trevor Slattery, and of course, Loki. It’s just a theory, but then so is everything.
2 The Avengers go back to see him via time travel
When Tom Hiddleston has been spotted on the set of Endgame, he hasn’t been wearing the present-day Loki gear – he’s been wearing the Loki costume used in 2012’s The Avengers. Chris Evans has also been spotted wearing the Captain America costume from this era of the MCU.
That, paired with Doctor Strange’s mastery of the Time Stone and Ant-Man’s free passage in and out of the Quantum Realm (and those neat new Avengers suits), seems to suggest time travel will play a large role in Endgame. If they travel back to when it all started and when Thanos first became interested in destroying the Avengers, it could bring Loki back into the fold.
1 He was projecting himself when he “died”
In the opening scene of Infinity War, we see Loki confront Thanos, stab him, and then killed get dispatched by the Mad Titan. Ever since then, we’ve taken it as a given that Loki’s been killed.
However, what if Loki isn’t actually dead at all? Some fans have noticed that the right-handed Loki stabs Thanos with his left hand, suggesting it wasn’t really him, but rather a projection, and Loki was in a safe, secure location the entire time. It could just be wishful thinking by fans of the character, but it does sound an awful lot like something Loki would do...