When [The Avengers: Age Of Ultron](tag:293035) came out, everyone expected Thor's brother, Loki, to make at least a small appearance; after all, he was the villain of the first film and was extremely popular. It was especially expected since Heimdall's actor, Idris Elba, seemingly confirmed Loki, saying to The Telegraph in late 2014:
"I’m in 'Avengers: [Age Of Ultron']. And I’m doing a scene with Chris Hemsworth [who plays Thor] and Tom Hiddleston [Loki],"
While Thor was obviously a main character and Heimdall received an appearance in Thor's dream, Loki surprisingly received nothing more than a name drop. The last time Loki was shown was at the end of Thor: The Dark World, when, unbeknownst to anyone else, he was sitting atop Asgard's throne under the guise of his father.
Still, with Elba's information and his extreme popularity in the first film, fans were shocked Loki didn't appear in the movie. The writer and director of Age of Ultron, Joss Whedon, was asked by MTV about Loki's absence and said:
"We did shoot something, but it didn’t play. The movie has so much. It’s so filled. We didn’t want it to feel overstuffed. I really wanted to have Loki in it, but I understood the decision that there were now too many voices in the chorus. At some point the embarrassment of riches is actually embarrassing."
In addition, Tom Hiddleston was asked about the same topic by Digital Spy, and gave a fairly similar answer:
"In test screenings audiences had sort of over-emphasized Loki’s role so they thought that because I was in it I was controlling Ultron and that it was actually imbalancing people’s expectations so Joss [Whedon] and Kevin [Feige] were like ‘let’s cut it’ because it’s confusing people."
So Loki was supposed to be in Age of Ultron, but when he was shown, test audiences falsely believed he was controlling Ultron; in addition, the producers thought the movie felt too stuffed to have included Loki. So, Hiddleston's scene was removed. Loki was nowhere in the film save for a few mentions here and there.
Or so we thought.
I was watching Age of Ultron on iTunes, and when I got to the scene of Thor's vision involving Heimdall and the infinity stones, I noticed something peculiar in the background.
While Heimdall is telling Thor that he is responsible for Asgard's demise, many are watching him. They're all in groups, and in the same shots.
But I paused it at 51:35 and saw this
He's not in focus, so it's a bit hard to see, but that really looks like Loki to me. I don't think it would be unlike Marvel to hide Loki there; remember, Samuel L. Jackson wasn't credited for Iron Man and nobody knew about Thanos being in the mid-credits scene of The Avengers. Marvel does like to hide things.
So if that is Loki, what exactly does this mean? It's interesting how he appears when Thor is in his greatest agony and doesn't try to help him. The Dark World's ending showed that we aren't done with Loki, and Thor's vision was pretty much a setup for Thor: Ragnarok, which we know will spell disaster for Asgard. Does Loki have anything to do with this?
Ragnarok is leading up to be possibly the most important film before Infinity War, sort of in the same way Winter Soldier was to Age of Ultron. Remember in The Avengers, when the Other told Loki that Thanos would be out for vengeance if he failed? Well, Loki failed, and if Thanos is as powerful as Guardians of the Galaxy makes him out to be, Loki better watch his back.
Thanos needs the Tesseract; the Tesseract is on Asgard. Thanos wants to kill Loki; Loki is on Asgard. What happens in Ragnarok? The end of Asgard. What if Thanos is the catalyst of Asgard's downfall, and thus Loki?
Where does Thor come in? Thus with Heimdall saying "You're our destroyer, Odinson,"?
Well, I'm not really sure.
Maybe Loki, under Odin's disguise, tries to blame Ragnarok on Thor rather than himself? Don't forget, Thor now has suspicions about someone searching out for infinity stones, so he does have the Tesseract to protect on Asgard. That could put him (and now, as we know, Hulk too) on a collision course with Thanos.
The point is, I'm pretty sure that's Loki; and I think Marvel put him there for a reason; Loki is going to be a huge part of Thor: Ragnarok.
But what do you think? Is that Loki or do I just have bad eyes? If it is Loki, what does this mean for Thor: Ragnarok, and maybe even Avengers: Infinity War? Let me know what you think in the comments.