Here's Why Thanos Had To Kill Loki in Avengers: Infinity War

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Avengers: Infinity War featured some shocking moments and even more shocking deaths. Before the opening title even appeared, several well-known characters met their demise, including Loki. While behind the scenes of the shoot was more lighthearted, on-screen fans were heartbroken. Thanos kills Loki in a brutal and tragic manner while Thor helplessly watches. If this wasn't shocking enough, fans have wondered if the death was warranted. Loki knew what he was up against, yet he still tried to take out Thanos with a knife instead of something a bit more creative. While this may seem like a meaningless death, there are reasons behind the death of the fan-favorite character and even the way he dies.

Loki Knew What Thanos Could Do

As shown in Thanos' cameo in The Avengers, Loki knew exactly who Thanos was. Even when he was power-hungry and arrogant, he was smart enough to know to fear Thanos. He was familiar with his past planet cleansing, and that's why Loki believed he was key in ruling Earth. He knew how powerful the Titan was, but more importantly, he knew how powerful the Infinity Stones were. When he saw the Titan in the flesh already wielding one stone and wiping out the Hulk in a battle Mark Ruffalo wishes to see get a rematch, he knew he couldn't stop him. However, he had an idea who could.

The Avengers arresting Loki

Loki knew the only ones who could stop Thanos was The Avengers, most of whom were on Earth. Heimdall knew this as well, which is why his final act was sending Hulk to Earth via the Bifrost. Loki knew that Thanos and his Black Order would easily be able to intercept Hulk before he can raise the alarm. Many fans were confused as to why Loki tried to attack Thanos with a small knife when he was capable of so much more. The simple answer is he wasn't trying to kill him, he was trying to divert his attention from Hulk. The character had grown considerably, so it is not out of character for him to sacrifice himself to ensure the safety of the universe.

Loki giving Thanos the Space Stone

If Loki knew how powerful Thanos was, why give up the Space Stone? The answer is he knew that in order for Thanos to ultimately lose, he had to win. Thanos would have torn the ship apart and killed everyone on it to get to the Tesseract, so Loki willingly gave it up to ensure his brother would be able to join his team and go after Thanos. This is similar thinking to that of Dr. Strange who would later willingly give up the Time Stone so Tony Stark would be spared. Even if there is a fan theory stating Strange let Tony die, he still knew that again, Thanos had to win in order to later lose.

Loki Wouldn't Last On Earth

In the after-credits scene of Thor: Ragnarok, Loki voiced his reluctance to return to Earth. In the eyes of humanity, and The Avengers, he was a war criminal. Loki had redeemed himself at this point, but it would still take some time to earn the trust of the planet. Loki wouldn't exactly be welcomed with open arms, and would likely be thrown in a prison. Even with Thor defending him, it would be revealed at some point that Loki had stolen the Tesseract, which even Thor wouldn't be able to defend. Seeing as how Loki used the Tesseract to cause mayhem the first time he visited Earth, it would be difficult to talk his way out of it.

Loki after falling in Dr. Strange's trap

Even when he did briefly go to Earth in Ragnarok, Dr. Strange saw to it he wasn't able to do anything except fall endlessly in what is assumed to be between two portals. It is not as if Loki wanted to die, but he knew that sacrificing himself to Thanos would be the best bet. In the event Loki did survive the attack, Loki would have surely been blamed for handing over the Tesseract, and that would have made things even worse for him. Even though Loki had turned over a new leaf, it would have been tempting for him not to take advantage of the fact he had possession of the Tesseract, and Loki knew this better than anyone. Loki didn't want to be the bad guy anymore, as proven when he helped fight for Asgard. He knew his past actions were truly irredeemable, so in sacrificing himself he became the one thing he felt he could never be, a hero.

With Loki's return in his own show, it seems as if his death was for nothing, but this couldn't be further from the truth. This death showed that the once dastardly villain could be redeemed, a characteristic that hinted at his personality his variant carries in the Disney + show.