"What If...?" we dive into the multiverse
SUN. | 11-07-21 | ENTERTAINMENT
On August 11, Marvel released their brand new show, What If…? onto Disney+. This new animated series is unlike anything the Marvel Cinematic Universe has ever made.
What If…? explores the world of superheroes through the eyes of The Watcher, whose true name is Uatu. He is an immortal being who keeps watch over all of the possible timelines in the multiverse. The Watcher is a very interesting and unique narrator for this show. He has an omniscient presence and will sometimes appear as a translucent figure in the sky. Uatu has a deep, powerful voice and talks like he is above the human race. According to marvel.fandom.com, The Watcher is canonically commanded to watch over Earth but forbidden to interact with anything.
The show is a dive into random events that happened in different timelines. Each episode is a different event that could have happened in the movies if they had played out differently. It’s very interesting seeing your favorite superheroes and villains acting completely different or being in entirely new situations than what they usually are in. For example, in the second episode, T’Challa (AKA The Black Panther) becomes Star Lord instead of Peter Quill, and because of this change, Thanos, the biggest and baddest villain of the Avengers universe, is one of the good guys. In this timeline, Thanos was convinced by T’Challa that his plan to wipe out half of the population of the universe was unnecessary and joined T’Challa’s team of marauders instead. There are many events like this in the show, where things that we are used to are completely different.
What If…? is a new leap for Marvel, being the first big animated show they’ve made in a long time. It’s an interesting transition from live action to animation, with both the change in style and aesthetic and the new liberties that can be taken. They can make scenes with wild fantastical
Photo courtesy of marvel.com
visuals without having to worry about computer-generated imagery (CGI) or making it work with real human anatomy and capabilities. They can also take liberties with their characters, like with Steve Rogers, AKA Captain America, in the first episode of the show. Chris Evans, Rogers’ original actor, no longer has a contract with Marvel, so he couldn’t play Steve Rogers in the new show. Marvel found a way around this, though, by making the animated character look like Chris Evans but having him actually voiced by Josh Keaton. They did the same thing in episode three of the show with Tony Stark being voiced by Mick Wingert instead of Robert Downey Jr.
I’m interested to see what other liberties and choices Marvel will make with this show. So far, I’ve heard only positive reviews from my community and it makes me very happy to see other people loving the gorgeous animation style of What If…?. It has a wonderful comic book style that is unlike anything else Marvel has done.
What If…? truly is such a unique show. There is no overarching story that is apparent yet, just fun mini stories about random possibilities. The way the stories are narrated and displayed is so interesting with the concept of The Watcher. I am very interested to see where Marvel takes the show in the future. Knowing them, there will be some kind of wild story that appears in the later episodes, likely involving The Watcher and his powers. This show has been wonderful so far and I can’t wait to see what happens next.