Loki: Is Ouroboros from Marvel Comics?

What the heck is an Ouroboros anyway?

by Mike Bedard
Image: Marvel Studios/Disney+

Loki Season 1 made a splash, and round two looks like it will follow a similar trajectory. Things started out with a bang for the opening episode of the new season, and in an episode with several highlights, arguably the best thing to come out of it is the introduction of Ouroboros, played by Academy Award winner Ke Huy Quan. He’s a Time Variance Authority agent who’s basically a quirky repair guy, and Quan plays the role marvelously. Plus, his name is just delightful, with “Ouroboros” referencing the mythological snake that eats its own tail, part of Norse mythology that Loki (Tom Hiddleston) himself stems from. And while O.B. seems like mostly an original creation, it’s worth noting the several iterations of Ouroboros that have come out of Marvel Comics.

The TVA Used to Have a Mr. Orobourous

Image: Marvel Comics

The closest iteration of O.B. from Loki Season 2 in the comics is Mr. Orobourous, who was a judge for the TVA. Notably, his name is spelled differently than Ouroboros, and other than being another bureaucrat for the TVA, the two don’t have a ton in common. He was created by Dan Slott for a 2005 She-Hulk comic and was a clone of Mr. Paradox. Even though the characterizations are completely different, there’s a good chance the writers of Loki liked the name, at least.

Marvel Has a Few Other Miscellaneous Uses of Ouroboros

Image: Kabam

There have been a few other references to “Ouroboros” throughout the lineage of Marvel properties. In 1993, Doctor Strange #92 introduced the Oculus Ouroboros which consists of elemental magic that takes the form of a snake eating its own tail. 2015 brought readers a character named Admiral Ouroboros in Silver Surfer #11. The two do battle when the Surfer gets trapped in a time loop.

Most recently, Marvel’s Contest of Champions had an organization called Ouroboros in Universe-517. This group opposed the Elders of the Universe that sought to liberate the Battlerealm. The only issue with these other references is that they don’t seem to have anything to do with Ke Huy Quan’s character from Loki. The safest bet is that the writers liked the name and how it shares a connection with the TVA from the comics, and it being based in North mythology was the cherry on top.

It’s probably for the best as it allows Quan plenty of room to put his own spin on the character. And maybe his name will mean more in the episodes to come.

- This article was updated on October 7th, 2023

About The Author

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Mike Bedard has written tens upon thousands of articles online in all kinds of spaces. Some of his previous writing credits include Cracked, Ranker, and StudioBinder.