Meet the pffice of time travel. The new trailer for Marvel’s Loki series has the God of Mischief being pressed into working for the Timekeepers to fix history.
As Marvel comics fans know, even Loki may have met his match in such a powerful organization.
What is the TVA?
In the Marvel Universe, time travel can cause scores of headaches, from creating alternate timelines to entirely different realities. Even experienced time travelers like Kang the Conqueror and Immortus can barely keep them straight.
Enter the Time Variance Authority, who first appeared in Thor #372 in 1986. Walt Simonson created the TVA as a tribute to fellow writer Mark Gruenwald, famous for being an expert in Marvel history.
The TVA established itself as an organization dedicated to ensuring timelines function properly and “streamline” how these realities exist. In reality, they’re as clogged and overblown as any other bureaucracy, simply on a cosmic level.
This means that if an emergency in time happens, it’ll take a long while for the TVA to clear the red tape to do anything about it.
The main agents are the chronomonitors, the office drones who are literally faceless. Several managers (all of whom look like the late Gruenwald) keep watch over them. They operate out of a pocket dimension nearly limitless in its office space.
The TVA can be harsh in their methods as they often have no problem erasing someone from history or even extinguishing an entire timeline and its trillions of inhabitants if they decide it’s too “troublesome.” This has led to some conflicts with the heroes of the Marvel Universe.
While they claim to have unlimited power, the TVA is often shown out of their league when it comes to a powerful time traveler such as Kang.
Who are the Timekeepers?
While the show makes it seem that the TVA and the Timekeepers are the same thing, the comics are much different.
The Timekeepers are shown as a trio of cosmically powered beings created at the end of time itself. They serve as living batteries to power the TVA while keeping a close eye on history.
While they claim to be merely the “custodians” of history, the Timekeepers constantly manipulate it. This includes a convoluted series of events meant to ensure humans never leave Earth, or else they’ll “disrupt” the rest of the universe too much.
The Timekeepers used Immortus as one of their agents while setting on a plan to purge countless timelines to find the “perfect” one. This caused a huge conflict between Immortus and Kang, which ended with Kang destroying the Timekeepers.
What this means for the show
The trailer indicates the TVA is the bureaucracy of the comics utilizing Loki as their agent to fix some issues with history.
Yet the mentions of the Timekeepers indicate they may end up being the secret power behind the TVA and the possibility that they’re using Loki to foul up history for their own ends.
This becomes more interesting with buzz that Kang himself will be part of Ant-Man: Quantumania. Given his long beef with the Timekeepers and his own history of messing with time, the series may actually be setting up Kang’s debut.
As Endgame pushed time travel as a big deal in the MCU, the TVA may play a larger role in future projects to showcase even the MCU heroes aren’t immune to paper-pushers.
Loki debuts on Disney+ June 11.