Loki First Reviews: Trickster God Loses Some Mojo in Season 2, But It's Still the Best MCU Show, Critics Say

Find out what critics are saying about the Marvel series' second season.

by | October 3, 2023 | Comments

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The MCU’s God of Mischief returns in season 2 of Loki, and some critics are lamenting the loss of the character’s sinister strain. With 48 reviews counted, however, the new season was quickly Certified Fresh at 81% on the Tomatometer.

Star Tom Hiddleston returns along with Sophia Di Martino, Owen Wilson, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, and Wunmi Mosaku. Joining the cast are Ke Huy Quan, Rafael Casal, and Kate Dickie. Actor Jonathan Majors again appears as film-to-TV spanning MCU villain He Who Remains, though possibly in a reduced role following the actor’s legal trouble.

Here’s what critics are saying about Loki season 2:

How Does It Compare to Season 1?

With the multiverse teetering all around it, Loki is one strand of the timeline that is sustaining its originality and intention — and actually thriving. It’s about time.
John Nugent, Empire Magazine

It has taken Tom Hiddleston’s trickster god and stripped him of his devilish guile. The character is reduced to a bloodless cover version of the anti-hero audiences have come to adore. Welcome to hokey Loki karaoke.
Ed Power, Daily Telegraph (UK)

Sometimes you feel like you need a theoretical physics degree to understand it all. Strong character work makes up for some of that, as does a knowing sense of humor.
Brian Truitt, USA Today

“Loki” season 2 positions itself as the rare streaming show to learn some important lessons from its predecessor and take the next step.
Jeremy Mathai, Slashfilm

This show is still whip smart, fun, funny, ambitious, geeky, and compelling as hell.
Trent Moore, Paste Magazine

Tom Hiddleston’s Loki is back for more multiversal shenanigans, but the absence of director Kate Herron seems to have sapped the wily fun from his Disney+ spinoff.
Jarrod Jones, IGN Movies

Season 2 definitely doesn’t suffer from the pitfalls that would make people continue to question if superhero fatigue is real or not, but through characterizations, pacing, and too much self-awareness, it definitely feels like a very different show.
Nicole Drum,

Instead of digging into what makes Loki fun, the show’s second season doubles down on Season 1’s worst tendencies… It’s a drag when it should be thrilling, an exposition-filled trudge when it should be an exciting romp.
Belen Edwards, Mashable

Even better than Season 1, Marvel delivers their best storytelling since Endgame. Thrilling, epic, dark but also still funny, this new season makes Loki one of the best MCU characters.
Grace Randolph, Beyond the Trailer

Loki Season 2 feels like a return to form for Marvel and their Disney+ series. It’s expanding on a foundation that was already built within the first season without trying to surprise fans with unnecessary cameos or gotcha moments.
Paul McGuire Grimes, Paul’s Trip to the Movies

How Does It Fit into the MCU?

Ke Huy Quan, Wunmi Mosaku, Tom Hiddleston, and Owen Wilson in Loki season 2

Ke Huy Quan as O.B., Wunmi Mosaku as Hunter B-15, Tom Hiddleston as Loki, and Owen Wilson as Mobius in Loki season 2 (Photo by Gareth Gatrell/Marvel Studios)

Characters with compelling issues, high existential drama, quirky comedy and world-threatening action are blended better than in any other Disney+ show to date.
Bob Strauss, TheWrap

It’s the best Disney Plus original from Marvel Studios since … “Loki.”
David Betancourt, Washington Post

Season 1 was well-loved, and with a fan-favorite character like Hiddleston’s God of Mischief at the helm, Season 2 proves that the series not only hasn’t lost its touch but remains one of the stronger pillars of the MCU as a whole.
Therese Lacson, Collider

With Tenet levels of timeline layering to try and unpick, Loki season two wades deep in the weeds of the MCU even as it pokes fun at its own earnestness
Paul M. Bradshaw, NME (New Musical Express)

Season 2 of Loki is written and delivered in a way that avoids being plagued by the recent issues pertaining to franchise fatigue.
Danielle Solzman, Solzy at the Movies

Its convolutions overwhelming its charming personalities and freewheeling spirit of paradox-laden adventure, it’s another indication that the once-mighty franchise has lost its direction.
Nick Schager, The Daily Beast

Between the underlying existential tensions, the humorous asides and the eerie retro-futurism of the TVA, Loki seems to have more in common with ingenious sci-fi series Severance than recent uninspired Marvel outings.
Dan Einav, Financial Times

How Are the Performances?

The plot is so convoluted that the sense of fun rarely breaks through, but thanks to the sterling cast and some of the best production design on TV, there’s almost always something to hold your attention — if not to trigger any emotional investment.
Dan Fienberg, Hollywood Reporter

The enviable cast clicks, yet they’re largely squandered. The story never stops moving, yet it’s going in circles.
Ben Travers, indieWire

A masterclass in imaginative storytelling, Loki season 2 is the MCU at its best and a riveting new chapter in the Multiverse Saga that’s mind-bending, monumental, and utterly marvellous. And as a bonus, Ke Huy Quan is a scene-stealing delight!
Josh Wilding,

While there’s less time for emotional reflection in this batch of episodes, Hiddleston does well with what he has.
Fay Watson, Total Film

Quan is a fantastic addition while Wilson continues to deliver.
Grace Randolph, Beyond the Trailer

Ke Huy Quan is the perfect addition to the cast, bringing with him loads of humor and fun. So great to be back at the TVA!
Tessa Smith, Mama’s Geeky

Tom Hiddleston has never been better.
Eric Marchen, Untitled Movie Podcast

How Is Jonathan Majors as Kang and His Variants?

Jonathan Majors in a screencap from Loki season 2 trailer

Jonathan Majors in a scene from the Loki season 2 trailer (Photo by Marvel Studios)

As flat as the rest of the season can frequently be, the big problem is Jonathan Majors, who returns as yet another Kang variant. It’s not his performance, which remains a weirdly compelling live-wire act, full of odd, halting line deliveries and twitchy physicality. Instead, it’s the ugly real-world circumstances surrounding him. After the season was filmed, Majors was arrested and charged with domestic violence against his romantic partner, which led to Rolling Stone uncovering a pattern of alleged abusive behavior going back a decade. Majors was set to play the big bad for the next few phases of the MCU. Instead, it’s impossible to imagine him ever appearing in a Marvel project after this one.
Alan Sepinwall, Rolling Stone

There are things I liked about this season, and it is worth watching for Jonathan Majors and Ke Huy Quan, but it is another underwhelming entry in the once-flawless Marvel Cinematic Universe.
Alex Maidy, JoBlo’s Movie Network

The sole individual provided with an opportunity to act is Majors, playing a nascent nineteenth-century He Who Remains named Victor Timely who speaks and acts like an excessively eccentric genius. It’s not a particularly compelling turn and it feels too minor for a figure destined to be the Avengers’ titanic adversary. Yet it’s still better than the bland nothing that Wilson, Mbatha-Raw, and Di Martino are tasked with turning into something.
Nick Schager, The Daily Beast

Any Final Thoughts?

Loki season 2 key art

Loki season 2 key art (Photo by Marvel Studios)

It’s all a bit wearying.
Vicky Jessop, London Evening Standard

There’s so much to like here you almost forget it’s a Marvel show.
Brian Tallerico,

Building upon the groundwork laid in the first season, this new installment takes us on an even wilder ride through the multiverse, and it doesn’t disappoint, for the most part.
Neil Soans, The Times of India

Even while the God of Mischief has exchanged his prankster togs for a heroic skin (he does admit to throwing Tony Stark off a building), the second season of Loki is fun all round.
Mini Anthikad-Chhibber, The Hindu

More than anything, Loki has started to resemble what it truly is: an ill-advised spinoff in the old tradition. A too-bright spotlight for a side character who was never best suited to lead. A dinner comprising only hors d’oeuvres.
Louis Chilton, Independent (UK)

Loki season two is a jaw-dropping magical experience that will ultimately leave you clamoring for more, with high stakes twists and turns that’ll keep you on the edge of your seat!
Rohan Patel,

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