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How Lady Loki Is Different From Tom Hiddleston's Variant

WARNING: This article contains major spoilers for Loki episode 2.

Though Loki has revealed that Sophia Di Martino and Tom Hiddleston are supposedly playing different versions of the God of Mischief, there are a number of distinctions between the characters. Episode 2 of Loki finally shows that Di Martino is playing the Loki variant that’s been terrorizing the Time Variance Authority. She’s been taking out TVA agents, stealing bomb-like reset charges, and evading capture every step of the way. While Loki helps the TVA catch up to Lady Loki, they are too late to stop her from blowing up the Sacred Timeline. Now, he seems to be joining Lady Loki on the run, but there's a good chance they're not going to see eye-to-eye.

Everyone can be their own worst enemy, but Marvel takes that saying literally. Over and over again in the Marvel comics, numerous characters, including Loki, have faced off against alternate versions of themselves. The Marvel Cinematic Universe even introduced this concept in Avengers: Endgame, with Chris Evans' Captain America fighting a younger version of himself. But when it comes to these alternate versions, an inevitable question arises: "Which one is better?" In Loki, the question has already come up numerous times. Owen Wilson's Agent Mobius even uses it as motivation to get Loki to track down Lady Loki. “You’re here to help me catch the superior version of yourself," he says in episode 2, playing into Loki's insecurities.

Related: Loki Revealed Its Evil Variant Attacked Thanos' Planet (Before The Avengers)

So which Loki is better? When comparing Lady Loki and the original Loki, some things immediately jump out. The characters have their own unique powers, they have different pasts, and—quite obviously—Hiddleston and Di Martino are not the same person. In fact, unlike the other Loki variants shown in the Disney+ show, Di Martino looks nothing like Hiddleston. This stark contrast in their appearances may actually hint at a deeper truth. Perhaps the question shouldn't be about which Loki is better, but rather if Di Martino is playing Loki at all.

Throughout his time in the MCU, Loki has showcased a variety of powers, including telekinesis, shapeshifting, illusions, and duplication casting, which means he can create life-like duplicates of himself. The God of Mischief uses these powers over and over again to manipulate, trick, and generally get on people's nerves. While it remains to be seen if Lady Loki has similar powers, there is already one big change.

Lady Loki in the Marvel comics is just another form Loki uses, so the pair have the same powers; in the comics, she simply refers to herself as "Loki," not "Lady Loki." In Disney's Loki, that's not the case. Episode 2 features one of Lady Loki's powers in particular, and it's an incredibly advanced mind-control enchantment. Di Martino's character has the ability to completely possess someone, taking over their body, speaking through them, and using them for whatever purpose she wants. And, similarly to Wanda Maximoff's mind control, the horrified looks on her victims' faces indicate they may have had visions or been shown something shocking while in their entranced state.

This mind control may be a big clue. Loki also uses mind control in the MCU, but it's not quite the same. In The Avengers, Loki uses the Scepter, which contains the Mind Stone, to control Clint Barton and Erik Selvig. Otherwise, the God of Mischief’s mind-controlling ability is more about manipulation and the power of suggestion. And while that's useful, Lady Loki’s mind control is more like the experience of Jordan Peele's Get Out. The victim's personality is completely suppressed. It can also be passed from person to person through touch, showing it's an entirely unique ability. It's a power that's very different from Loki's, but it's not very different from another Marvel character named Sylvie Lushton, who shared the same powers as Enchantress.

Related: Loki's Powers Explained In Full: How Each Ability Is Different

Lady Loki’s different looks from Hiddleston’s Loki could simply hint that she’s shedding her past. While there are a number of Loki variants shown in episode 2 of the series, they all appear to have some resemblance to Hiddleston. Di Martino’s Lady Loki does not. She’s smaller with blonde hair, and the only real similarities to Hiddleston’s character are a horned headpiece and the colors of her outfit. It’s possible Di Martino's character had a makeover to separate herself from who she used to be. Lady Loki is all about blowing up the past in the Disney+ show after all. She even rejects the name when Hiddleston’s character refers to her as Loki. “Ugh. Don’t call me that,” she says through a person she’s possessing. 

Or on the other hand, she could look different because she's not Lady Loki at all. The TVA is pretty positive that Di Martino's character is a powerful Loki variant, even listing her name as Sylvie Laufeydottir on her paperwork, meaning that, like Loki, Laufey the Frost Giant is her father. But the TVA could be wrong. Perhaps her appearance in the show indicates that she's actually Enchantress. In the Marvel comics, Sylvie Lushton gets her powers from the God of Mischief, so, even if she's not specifically a Loki variant, the characters could still be connected.

There are a number of differences between Di Martino's character and Hiddleston's Loki. While Loki just learned about the TVA, Lady Loki has been manipulating the agency long enough to steal dozens of reset charges while always evading capture. Her mind control is more like Scarlet Witch's than the God of Mischief's, who is more into trickery and deception. Additionally, Lady Loki isn't bound to her past and clearly has no problem burning everything to the ground. For Hiddleston's Loki, his past defines him. Still, these differences aren't necessarily advantages. In truth, you can't really compare the two.

Di Martino's Loki variant is about as similar to Hiddleston's as John Walker is to Steve Rogers. Sure, both Walker and Rogers were Captain America, but that's about as far as any likeness goes. While Di Martino's character and Hiddleston's are both called Loki variants by the TVA, everything from their powers to their overall demeanor is completely different. At one point while fighting a person possessed by Lady Loki, Hiddleston's Loki even says, "I would never treat me like this." If Di Martino isn't secretly playing Enchantress, she's at least trying to separate herself from all aspects of her Loki past.

Related: Why Loki Follows Lady Loki At The End

When Mobius tells Loki that he's there to help catch the "superior" version of himself, the God of Mischief replies, “I’m not sure ‘superior’ is actually quite the right word." Really, which Loki is superior isn't even the right question. At this point, only one of them is acting like a Loki. The other seems to be someone else entirely.

More: Why Loki Laughs When He Sees His Infinity War Death

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