‘What do you think it is about Loki that people seem to really love, more over Thor?’ an audience member at Comic Con asked. Tom Hiddleston gave an honest answer that I will come back too, but this question made me think. It is after re-watching the movies again that I realised why I haven’t been able to say who my favourite Avenger is, it is because I am one of the many fans who have gotten behind the God of Mischief. Why is this the case though? While a lot of people may say that it is just a lot of Tom Hiddleston fangirls, which for some of the case it is; however, for many people including myself, there is something within Loki that we can connect to on a deeper level.
There have been many people who have felt betrayed and hurt by the ones you love and that claim to love you. It is in the first movie, although not the main character, that Loki gets introduced as the younger brother of Thor. From a few moments in, you can see that Loki is the lesser son. It is upon Loki’s discovery of his true heritage in which it shows us raw, human emotion. Although betrayed by Odin, Loki is whiling to destroy his own people so he can prove to his father that he is a worthy son, furthermore he tells Thor, ‘I never wanted the throne, I only ever wanted to be your equal.’ It is upon letting go of his sword after Odin says he could never have beaten the Frost Giants for him that Loki lets go and falls into a black hole. By doing this fans feel that although Loki may be a villain he is a very misunderstood one.
Loki is a villain; however, it can be debated whether he is truly evil or if it is just an outcome of his circumstances that make him this way. I side with that latter and when asked the question whether Loki was really evil or is it just a jealous façade, Tom responded, ‘Every villain is the hero in their own mind and people make choices and they always justify their choices no matter how misguided their motivation…. He didn’t start out that way. A young prince who was brought up believing in his right to a throne, his Asgardian inheritance is a lie. He was adopted and left to die on a frozen rock, and that essential is what breaks his heart and all of his villainy and all his bad guy credentials come from something deeply vulnerable.’ No matter who you are, there is at least one time in your life where you have felt vulnerable. These characteristics in Loki make him flawed and thus, make him more relatable to the common man.
A particular reason that I love Loki, is that as well as being the villain he is also where a lot of the comic relief comes from. As the God of Mischief, it is only natural that he is the natural comedian. Although we are introduced to him in Thor, it is not until The Avengers and Thor 2 that we see Loki’s silver tongue and sarcastic tone flourish in all its glory. When his response to when Thor gets pushed away by Iron Man, moments after saying ‘Listen to me well brother.’ Loki just stands there, waiting replying with the simple line, ‘I’m listening.’ In the second Thor movie, the dialogue between the adoptive brothers is great. When Thor smashes a nose god statue, Loki points out the obvious by saying, ‘Well done, you just decapitated your grandfather.’ It seems that everybody loves a funny guy, and Tom Hiddleston’s ability to deliver these lines with such conviction also helps greatly.
Finally, Loki may be getting a lot of love because apart from being the yang to Thor’s ying, he has an internal ying/yang personality. Tom stated, ‘I find him a fascinating prospect because he’s a mixture of playfulness and charm and mischief. That’s his monarchy, he’s the God of Mischief so there’s a playfulness to him. But he is such a broken character, he’s grief-stricken, bitter and jealous and angry and lonely and proud….’ at Comic Con the question of why people love him more appealing over Thor. Loki is a cocktail of mixed traits that make him, I believe, the most complex character in The Avengers Universe. Fans understand he is a villain; however, because of his backstory, we can’t help but sympathise with him on some level.
It was at that Comic Con interview that Tom Hiddleston pinpointed why so many of us have fallen for Loki and have us rooting for him. Deep down we all fear rejection and losing what we believed was rightfully ours. No matter how adult we may become, there is always a bit of playfulness inside us all. For me and another friend I know for sure is that we are attracted to Loki because we can understand what he is feeling, although Loki may be a Frost Giant, we see him for who we all are at some point in our lives: scared, battling a world with whatever it throws at you.