The man behind the curtain has been revealed and Marvel have opened up. That means this article contains heavy SPOILERS for the Loki finale. If you have not yet seen the Loki finale then go and watch it, it was amazing. Then come back for a bit more information directly from Marvel.com.
**Warning! Loki Finale SPOILERS Below.**
Still with me? The you either know who the man behind the curtain is or don’t care about spoilers. It was speculated by fans that the man behind everything would be revealed to be Jonathan Majors playing Kang. We already knew Majors was playing Kang in Ant-Man and the Wasp Quantumania, however the show was in many fans opinion setting up Majors for his debut today. Well, it happened.
There was no Ralph Bohner switch here. Jonathan Majors really was playing ‘He Who Remains’, the force behind the TVA and the Sacred Timeline. However, it is also clear that this version, or variant of the character is not Kang, not yet. He who remains warned Loki and Sylvie that he was the only one holding back far worse versions of himself from appearing in the Multiverse. That story of the Multiversal war was true. He Who Remains therefore theorizes that events will end up the same. Eventually he will be back playing the man behind the curtain, until Loki and Sylvie arrive and reset everything.
However, I’m betting this time around, the end result will play out differently. One of Major’s character’s variants he called a conqueror, a clear reference to Kang. It therefore looks like the events of Loki have blown apart the Multiverse going forward in the MCU. By the time the show ends, Loki is back in the TVA but instead of the Timekeepers statues, there is just one statue, and it looks like Jonathan Majors in a Kang outfit. Oh, and Mobius no longer seems to remember who Loki even is. I guess we will explore this more when Loki Season 2 eventually arrives. However there is a lot of MCU content to get through before we get to there.
The Man Behind The Curtain
“We knew that we wanted this show to be huge, and we wanted it to really end with a bang and have a huge impact on the MCU moving forward,” head writer Michael Waldron tells Marvel.com. “Knowing that Kang was probably going to be the next big cross-movie villain, and because he is a time-traveling, multiversal adversary, it just always made so much sense. I came up with that big multiversal war mythology and pitched it out in the room one day to our producers. And they said, yeah, let’s go for it. We knew we were going to end up meeting the man behind the curtain. And then it was just on us to make sure that that meeting really delivered.”
“You had to leave a lot of meat on the bone in terms of how evil he could be, because that’s He Who Remains’ whole thing, that it’s not me who you should be afraid of,” Waldron continues. “‘It’s the other versions of me that are going to come.’ It was trying to really hint at that terrifying evil within without going all the way there.” In Waldon’s own words, he was just trying to write him as a “very charismatic sociopath.”
The pieces were already in place to have He Who Remains be the big bad at the end of the show, and when Majors signed onto the role, Waldron explains it was, “So exciting and humbling. You have such an astounding actor who is that much more of a cool thing. You had to write him in a way that he felt worthy of being the villain at the end of our show.”
“I knew I could always breathe a sigh of relief knowing we had Majors in that finale. We hung a lot of our hopes on [the character]. This guy is laying out, ‘Here’s the deal,’ and it’s one final test between our two Lokis.”
The question of who would play He Who Remains, and later Kang, loomed large, with Waldron wondering, “Are you going to have somebody charismatic and magnetic as you imagine? Loki and Sylvie, they fought so hard to get to this point and they’re not going to be able to take their eyes off him. Getting Jonathan, hopefully [the audiences] is going to feel the same way.”
He Who Remains
“I was quite excited that we got to show him because he is the one that brings it all [together],” director Kate Herron adds. “[He’s] the theme of our show. No one is completely good or completely bad, and people do fall into that gray area. I thought his reasoning with [Loki and Sylvie] that you can take me out, but I’ll be back here anyway…you’re going to awaken all these versions of me. And they are much scarier than me. I really believe him when he says that.”
“I just want to salute Jonathan Majors,” shares Tom Hiddleston. “He came in the last lap of this series and made an extraordinary impact. And it’s quite something to do that for a story, to get to its final chapter and to introduce the character of such breadth, and depth, and charisma, and intelligence. He was dazzling. It was our final week of filming, literally. He came in and blew us all away.”
“It was so exciting for me to watch because I knew that for Jonathan, as an actor, it’s his entry point into the MCU,” Hiddleston adds. “To watch him come in and be so ready, and so agile, and so prepared, and so surprising. Sophia and I sat and watched him deliver this extraordinary performance of such wit and with such intelligence. It was a real thrill to watch him do that.”
“He was so much fun and he absolutely blew it out of the park,” Sophia Di Martino says. “As soon as he was on set, he was phenomenal. Like, no one could take their eyes off him. You knew something magical was happening and it was like, ‘Oh my god, are you watching this? This is going to be amazing.’”
“I remember being there [while he was filming],” Waldron says. “He’s an amazing actor, and as amazing actors do, they make it their own. Jonathan could perform the phone book and it would be incredible.”
Hopefully, fans are just as excited and bewildered as Loki and Sylvie meeting him in the finale —and his involvement with the show has (thankfully) been kept a secret. “They think something’s coming as a post-credits scene!” Waldron exclaims. “Nobody thinks that the meat of the episode is him!”
As always, leave any thoughts you have about the Loki Finale, or The Man Behind The Curtain, aka, He Who Remains, aka, Kang, aka Nathaniel Richards, below.