Rating: 4/5 – It’s Loki Against Loki.
by ComicSpectrum senior reviewer Shawn Hoklas.
With the impending Secret Wars event closing in, many of Marvel’s titles will be ending or changing including Loki: Agent of Asgard. This issue of Loki is the penultimate chapter before changing over to “Last Days of Loki: Agent of Asgard”. In what’s been a very strong series that has had the longtime Thor baddie which includes the younger and older versions straddling the line between hero and villain, you get the sense that things are coming to a head with this series. In issue thirteen, we see the older and evil version of Loki telling the younger version how he’ll eventually “grow up” to become him, and there’s nothing he can do about it. It’s a strong issue that seems to be leading into what could be the series’ conclusion.
First of all, the art by Lee Garbett is extremely satisfying. The older version of Loki looks downright sinister. His wrinkled face has elongated and defining features that Garbett uses brilliantly to show Loki’s emotions and smug confidence in his victories. We also see scenes throughout Loki’s history and future that includes a wonderful half page splash of an Avengers team rising from their graves. It’s a fantastic panel that shows Garbett’s talents as well as just being a great looking image. Garbett is able to balance the serious tones of a scene like this and the light tones of a young Loki and Thor sharing a cup of mead throughout this issue that makes young Loki’s tale all that more tragic.
In terms of the writing, Al Ewing has written two different versions of Loki throughout this series and it’s the Loki that most fans are used to that gets the spotlight in this issue. Ewing will make you feel bad for the younger Loki as we see how he’s unable to escape the inevitable. We all know that he grows up not to be Loki: The Agent of Asgard, but Loki the god of mischief, trickery and lies. We see how this “title” affects Loki and his mindset. Although there’s a few references to other current Marvel titles like Bucky Barnes: Winter Soldier and Angela that may leave some readers confused, the strength of the majority of this issue will make this seem like a minor complaint.
Although the future of this series is still up in the air post Secret Wars, it’s comforting to know that this isn’t quite the end for this version of Loki. Ewing and Garbett have created too smart a character to see him fade away. I’ll always prefer the more evil version of Loki over the “attempting to change his fate” Loki, but it’s made for a compelling read and an interesting take on a character trying to escape his predetermined fate. Loki is one of Marvel’s most powerful villains, and this issue and the series as a whole has been a great examination of just what makes him so treacherous.
Reviewed by: Shawn Hoklas
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