Today, most people know Loki as the brother of Thor within the MCU. Interestingly, however, the God of Mischief actually appeared in Marvel Comics before his flashy sibling did. Although the character and his surroundings would be subject to major changes in the years to come, Loki’s first appearance is thought to be in a 1948 issue of Timely Comics’ Venus Goddess of Love.
Several key aspects of the character were already in place at this time, too. For starters, he was an actual god. Second, he played the role of antagonist, and third and perhaps most important, he was a fan favorite in spite of his being a big bad.
In case you’re wondering whether this stuff is actually legit, Timely Comics was the name of Marvel Comics before it would change its name into the moniker that everyone around the world knows today. And characters like Loki, and later Thor, were instrumental in this change.
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The fact that Loki appeared before Thor should not come as a surprise, either. After all, in the first two Thor films, the God of Mischief was much more popular than his sibling, with the former’s carefree and rebellious nature standing out favorably against the latter’s boring stoicism.
In a way, the MCU almost changed in Loki’s favor. Starting with Guardians of the Galaxy, Marvel films became more fun and lighthearted, building on comic relief moments in the first Avengers movie which Loki – as its main villain – helped facilitate.
Thor himself eventually followed suit, of course. After the lacklustre reception that The Dark World received, Taika Waititi’s Thor: Ragnarok essentially presented Asgard as if it were directed by Loki himself. This change turned out to be for the better, too, as Ragnarok remains one of the most beloved Marvel films to date.
Circling back to Loki, though, and we’ll next see him in his own Disney Plus show, with an appearance in Thor: Love and Thunder said to be on the cards, too.