A Quick Refresher on "Loki"'s Time Variance Authority

Watch out! This post contains spoilers.

"Loki," starring Tom Hiddleston as our titular trickster god, is back for season two this October. After the events of "Loki" season one (which wrapped up back in 2021), Loki destroyed the Time Variance Authority (aka the TVA), unlocking absolute chaos in the multiverse. In some of the Marvel movies that have been released since then, we've seen the consequences of that decision as the multiverse falls into chaos.

But if you're still a little confused about the TVA, what it does, and what happened to it in season one, we don't blame you. Here's a little refresher on what the TVA is, what role it plays in the MCU, and some other big questions you might have about the agency.

What Is the TVA?

The TVA — as it's explained at the start of season one — oversees time itself and timelines. It keeps the timeline from breaking out into tons of smaller branches. Basically, if someone takes a step that would change the timeline — like Loki does in "Avengers: Endgame" when he steals the Tesseract — the TVA steps in to stop them, pulling them out of the timeline into the other place where the TVA exists.

At the start of the series, the employees of the TVA believe it is ruled by the Time-Keepers, who keep it from diverging from the sacred timeline. If a Variant (like Loki) creates a Nexus event, they would split the timeline, potentially wreaking chaos. If the sacred timeline splits apart, the multiverse will once again go to war.

At the end of the season, Loki finds out that in actuality, He Who Remains (Jonathan Majors) created the TVA after he went to war with other variants of himself from other universes, including Kang the Conqueror. During the destructive multiversal conflict, He Who Remains discovered Alioth, a creature who could consume time and space. He used Alioth to end the war and isolate the Sacred Timeline. He created the TVA to keep the timeline in check — and to keep other variants of himself, like Kang, out.

Is the TVA Good or Bad?

The TVA is kind of both hero and villain, depending on your perspective. He Who Remains tells Loki the TVA is good because it's keeping out Kang variants and preventing multiversal war from happening. But for people who accidentally slip from the timeline, like Loki, they get reset and turn into the very workers who run the TVA, with no memories of their former lives and trapped to serve the authority forever. Sylvie (Sophia Di Martino) kills He Who Remains at the end of season one, letting the sacred timeline split into branches again, and season two will deal with the consequences of that choice. At the very least, we know from the season one finale that no one at the TVA remembers Loki anymore.

What Is the TVA's Role in "Loki" Season 2?

Some form of the TVA still exists, since Loki is transported there at the end of season one. But there's at least one huge difference: a giant statue of Kang the Conqueror. If Kang is running the TVA, its goals could be a lot different.

Meanwhile, we know from trailers that Loki's closest friend in the TVA, Mobius (Owen Wilson), is going to help him try to stop "time-slipping," which is causing him to teleport randomly (it seems very similar to glitching in the Spider-Verse films).

Is the TVA in the Quantum Realm?

The TVA exists in some place out of time and space, allowing the workers to jump into different points of the timeline. And yes, that sounds very similar to how the Quantum Realm has been described. Both places also constantly defy reality, and both are deeply tied to Kang and his Variants. Marvel hasn't commented on the official connection between the TVA and the Quantum Realm yet, but this fan theory definitely has the ring of truth.

Is the TVA Stronger Than Thanos?

Season one of "Loki" established that the power of the TVA is stronger than the Infinity Stones; Loki sees a bunch of said Stones lying around the agency because the TVA doesn't care about them. So since Thanos — the big bad of the first three phases of the MCU — got most of his powers from the Stones, it seems fair to say the TVA is stronger than Thanos.

"Loki" season two premieres Oct. 5 on Disney+, with new episodes premiering Thursdays.

Additional reporting by Victoria Edel