This week’s What If…? sees the conclusion of the first season. When we last left the series, an Infinity Stone enhanced Ultron was wreaking havoc all across the multiverse and not even the Watcher physically confronting the villain was enough to stop the march of destruction. Who will come to the rescue and take down this looming threat?
The Watcher always has a back up plan and boy is it a doozy. He assembles his own team, the Guardians of the Multiverse, and its members are composed of many of the heroes and villains we’ve met this season: Captain Peggy, Star-Lord T’Challa, Killmonger, dark Doctor Strange, and bro Thor. Joining them is a Gamora who has a history of destroying Infinity Stones.
The season finale of What If…? is a grand culmination of what was built all season. It ties in all other episodes by bringing back the characters as a supergroup. It’s all you could ask for with almost a complete half hour of action. There’s an epic final battle filled with plenty of great comic book-esque moments and shots. The suspense is effectively built once the team lodge one of the Infinity Stones free and different camera angles and close-ups are used during the scramble for it.
“What If…the Watcher Broke His Oath?” serves as the animated series’ own mini-Avengers. Other than Gamora, we were introduced to the members of the Guardians of the Multiverse in episodes that solely featured them and then they are brought together to take down a big bad and protect the world. There’s even a nice nod to one of the film’s most iconic scenes.
The episode is a lot of fun. Why can’t we have this version of Thor in our main MCU universe? However, there are some nitpicks. There are big plans for Captain Carter moving forward and I wish they allowed her to have her own identity. In the series premiere, her story matched the beats and paralleled Captain America’s story too closely. Then in her reintroduction here, things are too similar to Captain America: The Winter Soldier. She might be a form of Captain America, but she should be able to branch out and be her own person.
In addition, in many team stories, there are members who are featured more while others are there but placed in the background. The same happens here and one teammate in particular has really nothing to do except be a plot device. It’s a little disappointing because they were one of the more enjoyable characters in the series although they do stay true to themselves when used.
Regardless, this finale of What If…? is really entertaining and a good way to conclude the season. With the future of the MCU moving towards multiverses, there’s even a potential way for the series to tie in to the bigger picture. The Watcher’s final words, implies we might see some characters outside of the animated show.
This episode delivers all the superhero action you could hope for and serves as a fitting way to close out the first season.
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