Loki season 2 episode 2 shifted focus away from our titular star and introduced us to Hunter X-5, a former TVA hunter who turned his back on the organization to live on Earth as the actor Brad Wolfe.
In the MCU show, Wolfe’s latest role is Zaniac, a crazed serial killer and malevolent creature. While Zaniac remains strictly fictional within the confines of the Marvel series, he ends up becoming a real Marvel villain in the comics.
If you watched all the Marvel movies in order, you’d know that Clea makes her debut in the post-credits of Doctor Strange 2. This is significant because she is the niece of Dormammu, an inter-dimensional being from the Dark Dimension.
In the 1982 Marvel comic Thor #319, Zaniac is a creature working at the behest of Dormammu. The Marvel character possesses a number of people in the 1800s in order to carry out murders, and even ends up possessing the person Earth comes to know as Jack the Ripper.
Fast-forward a couple of centuries later to the 1980s, and Zaniac ends up possessing Brad Wolfe, who, in the comics, is still an actor playing Zaniac in a movie. But the fact the creature possesses him means that the lines between fantasy and reality end up, unsurprisingly, blurred.
Zaniac’s latest reign of terror catches the attention of Thor, and with the help of TVA agent Justice Peace, goes back in time to defeat Zaniac before he has the chance to possess any humans.
While it would be great to see this sequence of events play out in the Disney Plus show, Zaniac isn’t an actual villain in Loki. In season 2 episode 2, the character really is just the subject matter of a movie starring Brad Wolfe. But who knows? Marvel’s best TV series may well introduce Zaniac further down the line if they’ve already introduced Brad Wolfe.