What If was one of the most anticipated series of Marvel Cinematic Universe’s 5th phase. In this animation series, we see the alternative timeline if the characters’ choices and actions were different than the ones we’re familiar with.
Warning: This review spoils the events of the Loki series and the first episode of the What If series.
At the end of the Loki series, we saw that the Time Variance Authority organization was destroyed when Sylvie AKA Female Loki killed He Who Remains. That ending on its own opens a lot of new opportunities for Marvel to explore.
Now that there is no Time-Keeper and TVA organization, we can have multiverses and alternative universes. Multiverses have been the main subject in Phase 5 of the MCU. It was opened but not deeply discussed in the WandaVision series. Later they built the foundation of multiverses in the Loki series. In the What If… series we see what the multiverse and alternative universes are. Most probably all these events will build the stage for Sam Raimi’s Doctor Strange and Multiverse of Madness.
In the first episode of the What If… series we see how our beloved Agent Carter becomes Captain Carter. In this 30 minutes episode, we get a total understanding of how multiverses work and what they are. We also see the Watcher voiced by Jeffrey Wright.
Marvel is doing a very good job at introducing its bigger characters step by step without any rush. At first, they showed Kang the Conqueror in Loki and here we see the Watchers, who are cosmic beings. We will be seeing some more powerful characters on both sides.
After the Hydra agent shoots Steve Rogers, Agent Carter gets in the chamber and takes the serum. Now Agent carter is our super soldier instead of Rogers. It in this universe, Howard Stark makes the first Hulkbuster by the name of Hydra Stomper. Buckey won’t fall from the train, which means he won’t become the Winter Soldier. Just like Steve Rogers, Captain Carter sacrifice herself to end World War II.
Red Skull has used the Tesseract to summon a beast which ends up killing him, and Agent Carter goes into the world of the Tesseract. In the end, she comes back 70 years later and meets up with SHIELD.
I was afraid that 30 minutes won’t be sufficient to explore the idea. But after seeing the first episode I was glad they didn’t make it longer. They said all the things necessary in a very good way in 30 minutes. Making the episode any longer would only cause boredom because they had to fill it with unnecessary dialogues and details.
The first episode of What If… doesn’t take many risks. We don’t see much difference between the main timeline of MCU and this one. There are only two or three differences with the same impact as Steve Rogers not becoming Captain America.
In the end, Captain Carter is brought back by SHIELD and will eventually start the Avengers. Hydra gets defeated as we saw in Captain America: First Avenger. I hope they go further and a little bit crazier in the next episodes. This way they can show the true potential of multiverses.
Kevin Feige did a great job by choosing to produce What If… in animation. This way Marvel doesn’t have to go through enormous budgets to create an episode with a lot of explosions and CGI and superstars. It can be watched with little kids and is probably a good way to start introducing Marvel to them.
Although in some places the animation looks a little sloppy, it’s not something that can ruin the experience of the show.
The first episode of What If… give us a good understanding of what the series is. It beautifully shows the concepts of multiverses but unfortunately doesn’t take many risks. Captain Carter is the first character of the multiverse. The art style of the animations is very good but it can get better.
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What If… is the first animated entry in the MCU and works like a multiverse classroom so that casual viewers would have an understanding of it.