A villain must be a thing of power, handled with delicacy and grace. He must be wicked enough to excite our aversion, strong enough to arouse our fear, human enough to awaken some transient gleam of sympathy. We must triumph in his downfall, yet not barbarously nor with contempt, and the close of his career must be in harmony with all its previous development.
–Agnes Repplier, A Short Defence of Villains (1892)
This is probably the happiest we have seen Loki. He is completely in his element, causing mayhem, mischief, and destruction, and having an absolute ball the whole time.
Odin and Loki on Jane.
Isn’t it interesting that Odin says, in effect, “don’t attach yourself to humans because their mortality makes them unworthy” while Loki says “don’t attach yourself to humans because their mortality will cause you pain”.
And yet it is Loki who is considered to be the cruel and evil one and Odin the kind father-figure?
It’s like - gasp - Loki’s main concern is protecting his brother’s heart while Odin’s main concern is reinforcing the bigoted notion of Asgardian superiority he’s implanted in Thor’s head.
Of course, Loki is the villain and driven only by jealousy, so we Must (Must!) read an undercurrent of jealousy in his words and assume no sincerity in his concern for Thor to go along with that, but still. Remind me which one of them calls Jane a goat? Which one suggests letting elvish antimatter slowly kill her, and which one repeatedly throws himself between her and danger? I’m having a very hard time keeping it all straight, you know. Damn villains with their protectiveness and all.
I swear this movie was an exercise in seeing how far Loki could NOT ACT VILLAINOUS AT ALL and still have people call him that.
I was talking with Lou not long after the film came out about how Odin really does not understand Thor anymore. Thor has changed so much that there is a real disconnect between father and son now. Loki, for all his trickery and all the conflict between them, understands Thor better than anyone else around him (with the possible exception of Jane). So when Odin gives Thor a little lecture, Thor brushes it aside. But when Loki talks to him, his words hurt because both he and Thor know them to be the truth.