The All-Mother has a new task for Loki: bring home all the Asgardians wandering Midgard, starting with Lorelei. In exchange, another of the stories about his old, evil past will be purged from Asgard, replaced by this new tale of derring-do. Seems simple enough, but just because Loki has turned over a new leaf doesn’t mean the old God of Mischief has completely disappeared. As the recap reminds us, deep down he’s still his old self and he’s got a few tricks up his sleeve as he goes about his mission. Let’s just say that Loki’s bond with another troubled younger sibling plays a significant part in this issue’s twist.
I have to admit that I’m a Hiddleston-era Loki fangirl. The old Loki was what I expect a comic-book villain to be: scarred, crazy…he might as well have had the word “EVIL” tattooed on his face. Agent of Asgard feels like it was written for fans that jumped on the bandwagon when I did—this is a handsome Loki, a charming Loki, a Loki with some redeeming qualities. The series thus far hasn’t really assumed that everyone is familiar with this Loki’s backstory, and has been pretty good for newcomers to the Asgardians. This brings me to the one problem I have with the issue: despite the recap that mentions that Loki is actually the ghost of his old self inhabiting a new body, for new readers, that’s a lot to process. It becomes even more confusing when a single panel showing a traumatized Kid Loki alludes to that transition. This is a lot to wrap your head around, so an editor’s note saying which comic to refer to for the background (which we’re given in other places) would have helped. A tiny detail, but pretty helpful for the newly indoctrinated.
Other than, I loved this issue. Loki’s adapting well to life on Midgard, throwing parties for his new neighbors and even speed-dating in a delightful series of panels. We’re actually “introduced” to him through the eyes of Verity Willis, who is at the speed-dating event. She and can see the truth in everything and is the sole person in the room who can see through Loki’s disguise. I love Verity, who is just so over being lied to by life that she calls “bullshit” whenever confronted by it. She’s refreshed by Loki’s candor with her, and he seems pretty taken with her as well, giving her the back-story on his Lorelei mission. I’m hopeful she’ll play a decent-sized part in issues to come.
The art was great, particularly the section on Lorelei’s caper, which brought Ocean’s Eleven to mind with its retro coloring. And I didn’t mind that the story was a bit heavy on the exposition since it was done through Verity. I’m still interested in seeing where this series is going, although I feel that there was a better way of bringing new readers up to speed on Loki’s complicated history.
I give it 4 out of 5 lightning bolts.
Loki: Agent of Asgard
Writer: Ewing, Al
Artist: Garbett, Lee
Cover Artist: Frison, Jenny
Format: FC, 32pg., COMIC
On Sale: March 05, 2014
Product ID: JAN140705