In Norse mythology, Loki is a shape-shifter (hence, a trickster) who is ascribed various powers in different versions or accounts. He is sometimes described as helping the other members of the Norse Pantheon and sometimes as working against them. This diversity makes him nuanced and interesting. In the original myths, he is completely unrelated to Odin, Freya, and Thor.
This Norse god has been skillfully re-written in Marvel Comics. In their version, he is the adopted son of Odin and Frigga (Freya) and the envious stepbrother of Thor.
This unavoidably sets him at odds with the Avengers (get a load of the old Iron Man).
The imagery for this character has been effectively re-invented in the comics. Below is a later version.
Disney Marvel also got Loki’s imagery right, and Tom Hiddleston excellently portrays him in the movies. In my opinion, he has become one of the best villains in cinematic history.
We’ll look at one more Norse god next week and then move back to the Greek pantheon.
Continuing on in our series, let’s take a look at…
Actually, this goddess has a number of appellations and spellings as can be seen in some of my image captions. Also called Frigga in the Marvel Universe, she is the goddess of love, sex, fertility, beauty, war, death, etc. As you can see, their is some redundancy of function between the members of the Norse pantheon. Freya is the wife of Odin and the mother of Thor. Below is a depiction of her flyting with the god Loki. Flyting would have been called “playing the dozens” in the not too distant past of the American inner city. In the 1970s, my friends and I called it “firing” on each other when we were in high school. As this picture suggests, this is a fairly widespread sport throughout history.
Here is another representation by John Bauer.
Moving on to the comics, a prominent expression of modern mythology…
… we finally arrive at the movies of the Disney Marvel Franchise, where Freya is played by Renee Russo.