LOKI 102: Ego-Death in AGENT OF ASGARD
Welcome back to Loki Academy, Marvel Blog True Believers! By now you’ve all gotten your scores back for the first pop quiz. Were you satisfied with your grade? If not, the solution is to hit the books! Today’s class is going to be covering a topic that may become very important later in this season of Marvel Studios’ Loki on Disney+: ego-death, as depicted in Loki: Agent of Asgard!
Ego-Death for Doctor Doom
The concept of ego-death is first brought up in Loki: Agent of Asgard #6 by Al Ewing, Jorge Coelho, Lee Loughridge, and Clayton Cowles. In this issue, Latvarian leader Doctor Doom travels to the distant, post-apocalyptic future, where he encounters King Loki (see LOKI 007 for more on King Loki).
King Loki is accompanied by a flaming, floating skull, who informs Doom that ego-death is coming for him. This turns out to be true, as in the months after this issue, this more familiar version of Doom is replaced with an All-New, All-Different incarnation of Doom in Infamous Iron Man by Brian Michael Bendis and Alex Maleev.
So What Is Ego-Death?
“Ego-death” means that, although a character might nominally have continuity of existence, their identity (or ego) has been so drastically altered that they could fairly be said to have “died,” having been replaced by the “new” version of themselves. This new version may not possess any of the memories of the previous incarnation, and they may be distinct in crucial ways from their predecessors – sometimes to the point of being unrecognizable.
In fact, as Loki: Agent of Asgard works its way through its seventeen issue run, our protagonist – a more heroic Loki than the one with which we are familiar, who works as an agent on behalf of the Asgardian All-Mother – soon encounters a prophetic bird who informs Loki that he will be facing ego-death himself.
Could This Spell Doom for Our Loki Variant?
But what does that mean for the Loki Variant we’re following on the Disney+ adaptation of Loki? Maybe not great things!
If these “alternate versions” of Loki can see how their stories ended (in other words, if they can die no matter how badly they want to be freed from the yoke of destiny), then it seems likely that our Variant Loki could meet the same fate.
Is that Miss Minutes, or is the clock counting down for Loki? We’re dying to find out, Marvel Blog True Believers…