This Wednesday, we watched the second-to-last Loki‘s episode premiere – and this time, the God of Mischief’s Variants is in trouble on a desolate world located at the end of times. As our beloved villain gets closer to discovering the truth about who is behind the Temporal Variation Agency (TVA), he must face a monstrous and mysterious being.
Taking the form of a large cloud filled with thunder, Alioth is the fifth episode’s main antagonist. The “character” is featured prominently, being fought by some of Loki’s Variants while proving to be very powerful and violent.
So if you watched episode 5 and wondered where they got this life-eating pile of smoke from, rest assured! I’ll explain everything. Here, you’ll find out everything you need to know about Alioth!
Alioth in the Loki Series
Loki episode 5 introduced some more concepts to the already complicated idea of timelines and alternate realities that the series has been building.
Following the last episode, Loki awakens in a “new world” surrounded by Variants of himself, such as Classic Loki, Kid Loki, Alligator Loki, and President Loki. Those who are “pruned” in the Temporal Variation Agency do not die, as was believed, but are sent to this place called “The Void.”
The Void is the world at the end of time where the Temporal Variance Authority (TVA) discards all those who are pruned and cannot create new temporal branches. And it is there that we discover that the real person responsible for erasing everything and everyone is Alioth.
Like a cloud-like creature, he is depicted as a great storm that advances on the Void newcomers to feed on their matter and their temporal aura. This is made very clear in a scene where a ship falls into this world, and its crew is entirely devoured by the creature.
More than that, we find that he prevents the Variants that have been pruned from escaping there. He’s also the guardian that protects the big guy responsible for the TVA.
Sylvie – while still on the TVA – formulates the theory that Alioth is not a major threat. Instead, he would be just the “watchdog” of whoever is really behind the temporal agency. Soon, she uses the agency’s device to travel to this end of the world, where she meets Loki. Together, they devise a plan to stop the creature.
While Classic Loki distracts the creature, Sylvie and Loki try to charm it. The job is difficult, and someone ends up sacrificing themselves in this move, but in the end, the plan works, and Alioth is mentally overpowered. Slowly, he dissipates, and we can see a large opening to an unknown location – which proves Sylvie’s theory: he was actually guarding the location of the actual creator of the Temporal Variation Agency.
The curious thing is that no one expected this being to make an appearance in the series, even though the character was taken directly from the pages of the comics. Despite this, he is still unknown to many readers, although his origin is linked to one of the villains that everyone expects to see in the final episode of Loki.
Alioth in the Comics
As seen in the series, the Alioth from the comics is also a colossal smoke whose existence is linked to time travel – not coincidentally, he is known as the Supreme Being of Time. His first appearance was in Avengers: The Terminatrix Objective, initially published in 1993. Later, he also appeared in the Avengers: Forever arc.
In this mini-series, the villainous Kang the Conqueror is in suspended animation, and Ravonna Renslayer takes over the time-city of Chronopolis. And while trying to expand her domains, she finds out about the existence of Alioth.
This is where it is explained that Alioth was the first being to break the barriers of time, and therefore his temporal domains are much larger than Kang’s. It is somewhat confusing, but it is because of Alioth that the time-traveling villain never extended his temporal empire to before 2,000 BC. In Alioth’s case, his influence goes back to the very beginning of life.
All this makes him a compelling character – and for this reason, little used in the comics. In the few stories he appeared in, it was shown that his abilities and behavior are very similar to those we saw in Loki: devouring matter and energy from everything he touches, with the difference that he can create temporal disturbances and advance through dimensions.
It is so dangerous that Kang has set up barriers in Chronopolis to prevent Alioth from invading his domain. In the mini-series, Ravonna overturns these restrictions and allows the storm monster to invade the city. In this scenario, the Conqueror is revived and, with the help of the Avengers, manages to overcome Alioth – and then uses the creature to attack other temporal empires.
In the comics, Alitoh is a “trans-temporal” entity, existing across different timelines, and is a vast cloud that destroys everything it touches, creating temporal disturbances and devastation across dimensions. As it consumes more of the time travelers’ bodies, it grows in size and mass.
When it occupies a temporal period, Alitoh spreads out to absorb adjacent realities. However, he can also negate temporal energy, preventing time travelers from traveling to a time before he exists, causing those who try to do so to be absorbed.
Future and Theories
This inclusion of Alioth in the Loki series may indicate something that many have long theorized: that in the last episode, the big villain and creator of the TVA will be none other than Kang The Conqueror (or some of his temporal versions). This makes a lot of sense if we consider that the character will also have appearances in other Marvel productions in the future, such as Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania.
While the series’ version of Alioth is infinitely less powerful than his counterpart in the comics, it’s already a great indication of what Marvel is doing – and it makes perfect sense since many of the ideas presented in Loki are directly associated with Kang the Conqueror. Just think of Ravonna herself and all the “Time Variants” ideas.