Marvel’s Loki was one of the studio’s most ambitious Disney+ TV shows yet. It completely redefined the Marvel Cinematic Universe, introducing Variants and the Multiverse and bringing in already beloved characters like Judge Renslayer, Kang, Mobius, and Sylvie.
Above all else though, it was perhaps the most stunning project that Marvel Studios has ever produced. Visually it was extremely special, playing with a complex array of colors in their palette and utilizing both CGI and practical effects, sets and props in order to create an authentic and beautiful world. These shots are varied in their style, tone, and setting but represent the diversity of the cinematography.
10 The Time-Keepers
The Time-Keepers are Deities from the comics who try to manipulate the flow of the timeline to suit their own ends. The MCU iterations of the characters showcase them as nothing more than androids, controlled by the mysterious He Who Remains at the edge of reality.
The Time-Keepers were one of the most talked-about elements of the show, so their eventual appearance was something to behold. The shot demonstrates their mysterious nature, surrounded by smoke, and their alien origins are on full show. The main characters look up at their sheer presence, with the scene blocked brilliantly to convey the emotion of the moment and lit to put the focus on the God-like beings.
9 Classic Loki’s Creation
Classic Loki was introduced alongside the other Variants, but no one expected he would be so powerful. Much older than the other iterations, this was a Loki who learned to harness the full capabilities of his powers, which he used in his final battle.
In this stunning moment, Loki conjures up Asgard, the home he always wished he could return to. The shot beautifully mimics Thor’s homeworld but is also clearly a mirage considering its created from Loki’s mind. The costume design and the green glowing energy adds to the image of his demonstrating his power and the lightning bolt is a wonderful reminder of his beloved brother.
8 The Nexus Event
One of the most pivotal moments in Loki sees the God of Mischief and the Variant Sylvie sit together at the end of Lamentis. It’s a moment that sees a Nexus Event created, with the two somehow falling in love with each other as the planet says its final goodbye.
The lighting of the scene, the framing of the duo in the center, and the quiet moment amongst all this destruction are breathtaking visuals. The planet itself is doused with a purple hue that contrasts well with the fiery red of the explosions that are about to wipe out life. It’s a harrowing and somehow calm image.
7 The Time Stream
The time stream is very complex and the Kang Variant’s realm at the edge of reality is perfectly positioned for him to overlook the single strip of time that continues to circle again and again. In terms of capturing what that could look like, this shot does it perfectly.
The asteroid in the center looks like the head of a Celestial, which is deliberate in nature. The time stream is somehow beautifully created here in a way that’s easy to understand. The comic colors of the galaxy emphasize the unknowns that lay past the time stream into the beyond. It’s an image that seems to hold power and gravitas and is important for Marvel’s cosmic future.
6 Sylvie’s Revenge
Sylvie and Loki are rarely on the same page, so a shot like this is important to ground them as a team, before Sylvie’s eventual betrayal. Their violence and power is showcased here through the use of swords in the shot and the arguably best Variant Sylvie is far more angry since this is the moment she has been building towards.
The characters are dressed in quite familiar clothing, which contrasts well with the backdrop of this cosmic castle. The use of color here is also stunning, matching the purples that have been seen throughout on Lamentis, and also indicates a link to Kang himself. It’s a visual of a united front, in an unfamiliar landscape and the emotions are beautifully portrayed in the body language alone.
5 The Variant Reveal
It was an exciting moment for fans to finally get to see some of the Loki Variants in all of their glory and with the backdrop of the reality in which timelines go to die, this was an effective image. These survivors are immediately given more authority thanks to the apocalyptic setting.
The diversity of their costume stands out especially, with the bright colors of Classic Loki contrasting well with the golds of Kid Loki. The addition of the original Boastful Loki and Alligator Loki are surprising twists, with the CGI pulling off the look well in the latter. The staging of this shot feels very much like a presentation to the audience and it works stunningly well.
4 Renslayer’s Doubt
Judge Ravonna Renslayer is often limited to office spaces and other locations in the TVA and therefore hasn’t been given the opportunity to be in shots that take full advantage of the show’s cinematography. However, this shot expertly demonstrated her difficult position in the TVA.
It’s framed with the Time-Keepers watching her every move. There’s a low level of lighting so that Miss Minutes truly stands out and Renslayer is impacted by her glow; a telling piece of imagery. The emotions on Renslayer’s face is one of confusion and anger, but they have been placed on the same level to demonstrate an equality of minds between the pair. It’s an effective piece of storytelling.
3 A Pompeii Picture
It was a moment that had been teased in the trailer, when Loki and Mobius take advantage of their time-traveling abilities by visiting Pompeii. While it’s all part of the mission, the God of Mischief takes great pleasure in watching the destruction of the city.
This shot encapsulates the dynamic between Mobius and Loki, with the former always willing to go with the latter’s mad plans. Loki seems to be actually enjoying himself, with the set designers having painstakingly created such a realistic iteration of Pompeii. The visual effects are also stunning here, with the image becoming powerful in its display of destruction.
2 Kang’s Arrival
Kang The Conqueror has been one of the most anticipated characters for the Marvel Universe so far. The villain was initially brought into Loki under the guise of He Who Remains, one of the many Variants of the time traveler. This shot is a beautiful way of showing his influence on the universe.
He is backlit which often shows power, but with a window into the very center of the timeline. He is simplified by a desk and books, suggesting he is more man than God, yet his odd clothing choices link to the imagery of Deities. The color palette is very familiar for the series, with its uses all foreshadowing the arrival of this character.
1 Burning Through Time
The introduction of the villain of the piece was an interesting moment for fans. The Variant that was creating these changes in the timeline happened to be a Variant of Loki himself. It was Sylvie in disguise, but audiences didn’t know that at the time.
Their first image was one doused in the fires of hell. It was religious in nature, playing off of what had previously been seen in the church scene. The darkness of the cloak is perfect to hide the identity of the murderer, with the flames indicating the danger they are to create for Loki. It’s a striking piece of cinematography and beautiful in its simplistic design.