For dozens of hours of Marvel Cinematic Universe movies, the Infinity Stones were the ultimate MacGuffin. One alone could defeat alien demigods; all six of them united could alter the shape of the entire universe. Wars were fought for control of these mystical objects. Yet in Loki, our title character finds a Tesseract — and an entire junk drawer full of discarded Infinity Stones — and discovers that they are now as worthless as the third printing of Spider-Man #1.

So how did the Infinity Stones go from the most powerful force in the universe to trash in a matter of moments? It’s a question a lot of people have been asking us on Twitter since the premiere of Loki — and after giving it some thought, we think we know the reason. The video below puts forward our theory why the Tesseract won’t do what Loki wants while he’s at the TVA — and why Dr. Strange could have used the Time Stone to look into the future in Avengers: Endgame to find the one timeline where the Avengers succeed, if — as Mobius says in Loki — there is only one “proper” timeline. Check it out:

If you liked this video on what’s going on with the Infinity Stones in Loki, check out more of our videos below, including what happened in all the broken timelines from Avengers: Endgame, how time travel works in Loki and the rest of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and why Loki is the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s most interesting tragic hero. Plus, there’s tons more over at ScreenCrush’s YouTube channel. Be sure to subscribe to catch all our future episodes. New episodes of Loki air weekly on Disney+.

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Gallery — Marvel’s Full Phase Four Movie Lineup (With Release Dates):

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