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Loki may pay off a very old debt in Infinity War

That took a while to resolve, didn’t it?

Loki Marvel Studios

Loki has played a crucial role in the long-term storyline of the Avengers films — and, by extension, much of the Marvel Cinematic Universe — having originally been sent to collect the Tesseract for Thanos in 2012’s The Avengers.

That didn’t go so well — which led to Thanos being told that the humans wouldn’t easily be conquered — but a new detail helps to shed some light on where the relationship between the two characters goes from there.

[Warning: The following contains spoilers for Infinity War.]

“Before the end of Thor: Ragnarok, Tom Hiddleston’s Loki managed to pocket the blue Space Stone locked away in Asgard’s archive,” Entertainment Weekly explains. “This is the object Thanos sent him to retrieve in the original Avengers, and he not only failed — he lost the staff that contained the yellow Mind Stone (now giving life to Paul Bettany’s Vision). We know Thanos collects the Space Stone early in Infinity War, so Loki has likely settled his account. Partially.”

Remember that it appears as if Loki and Thor bump into Thanos’ ship during one of the post-credits scenes from Thor: Ragnarok, and a scene from an Infinity War trailer shows Loki offering up the Tesseract in what looks like fear. It’s very possible that Thanos forced Loki to give up the stone, and this is one of the acts that kicks off the conflict on Earth.

Loki Avengers Infinity War
Here you go, Thanos (maybe)
Marvel Studios

The question is whether Loki gave up the stone willingly, or if he was forced to by Thanos’ overwhelming strength. This series likes to have it both ways by presenting Loki as a character who absolutely cannot be trusted while also having a relatively good heart underneath all the trademark trickery.

Avengers: Infinity War will be released on May 4, 2018.