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Tom Hiddleston Gets Candid About Loki's Fluid Identity

The Marvel Cinematic Universe fandom is reaching a fever pitch, as Marvel Studios and Disney+ are set to release the third MCU streaming show, unleashing the Norse god of mischief on the world with the "Loki" series. Having escaped from the titular team's custody with the Tesseract — which contains the Space Stone — during events that took place in the first "Avengers" movie as a result of a mishap during the time heist in the last film, "Avenger: Endgame," Loki falls into an entirely different set of circumstances. Well, not entirely different; Loki's still in custody, now being detained by the Time Variance Authority, and must help Mobius M. Mobius (Owen Wilson) fix the damage caused by his escape or face deletion from reality. 

Luckily Loki, who's never low-key, has got a few tricks up the ol' sleeve, as a trickster by nature. Well, Loki's a jötunn by nature, technically speaking, but the magic learned from his adoptive mother Frigga (Rene Russo) enables the character's well-established predilections toward mischief. The point is, Loki has never been a singular being. Born a Frost Giant and raised as a prince of Asgard, Loki's also a shapeshifter, one who's taken the form of an Asgardian soldier and Captain America (Chris Evans), even transforming brother Thor (Chris Hemsworth) into the fearsome warrior Sif (Jaimie Alexander). But that all transpires in less than a minute of MCU canon; like gods of many mythologies — Greek god Zeus morphed into an eagle to abduct Ganymede — Loki has the ability to change into a number of creatures. Per Norse legend, Loki transformed into a mare to be impregnated by a stallion and birth Odin's eight-legged horse, Sleipnir. 

The "Loki" series will explore the title character's fluid nature, and Hiddleston recently opened up about how important that was to the show's creative team.

Hiddleston said he was aware of Loki's range of identity when he first took on the role

A screenshot from one of the "Loki" teaser trailers is making the rounds and causing all kinds of chatter. The image offers a peek at the Time Variance Authority's partially redacted file on the title character, with the type of information typical of a dossier. For name, they've listed "Laufeyson, Loki," because like all good bureaucracies, the TVA puts a party's surname before the given name. Loki's alias is listed as "God of Mischief," and the fields for date of birth, age, and ethnicity feature only question marks. There's a curious entry listed for sex: "fluid," leading some outlets to conclude that Loki is canonically genderfluid in the MCU, though it's important to avoid conflating biological sex with gender. But that doesn't mean the character isn't providing important representation, according to head writer Michael Waldron. "I know how many people identify with Loki in particular and are eager for that representation, especially with this character," he told Inverse, saying "We worked really hard."

Loki's fluidity has "always been there," Tom Hiddleston said in the same Inverse article, pointing to the comic book source material and the Norse mythology in which the character originated. "Breadth and range of identity contained in the character has been emphasized and is something I was always aware of when I was first cast 10 years ago," he elaborated. "I know it was important to [director] Kate Herron and Michael Waldron and to the whole team. And we were very aware, this is something we felt responsible for."

"Loki" premieres Wednesday, June 9, on the Disney+ streaming platform.