Who is he ? How does the Multiverse work? And did we just meet the most powerful character in the history of the franchise?
It all starts with a mission in a post-apo world. A devastated Earth and its survivors. We tell ourselves that Marvel has chosen its genre for this episode 8 of What if …? “What if … Ultron won?” The Avengers would no longer be. Iron Man would be dead (again). The blue planet would be devastated. And Hawkeye and Black Widow would be (inexplicably) the last survivors trying to save what can be saved. Fun, but not very ambitious …
Except that the animated series of Disney + of was not satisfied to deliver yet another quirky new of the MCU. This episode is a real small upheaval in the Marvel Universe. Just that. Because this time, The Watcher couldn’t stay away. This time, the character embodied by Jeffrey wright awoke. And the consequences could be massive. Attention spoilers!
– Ray 🎃👻 (@RaySupremacy) September 29, 2021
Indeed, in this world, Ultron has dubbed Tony Stark and his Avengers. It was able to take shape in the body of what should have been Vision. Overpowered, unbeatable, he has become the strongest being in the world. And the worst is yet to come. When Thanos arrives, he cuts it in two pizza style, and takes the opportunity to steal the Infinity Stones. We then join the last image of the episode of last week, confirming an unprecedented continuity between the chapters of What if …? We are now in the rest of the story.
With the Infinity Gems within him, he’s an omnipotent Ultron who understands that there are other existences in the Galaxy. In the universe. So in his quest to suppress all life, responsible for chaos according to him, he destroys world after world. The Guardians of the Galaxy can’t do anything. Ego can’t help it. Even Captain Marvel is defeated. Ulron won. He killed everything and everyone. He is now alone in this cleansed Universe. Aimlessly, he wanders … until he hears that little voice in the background!
Give a movie with this Monster that is Ultron, the MCU needs this!
– Catra 🌸 (NWH) (@ScorpiaQ) September 29, 2021
This voice is that of the Watcher, obviously. The one who narrates What if …? in the shadows for weeks is suddenly seen. Ultron now knows that a higher entity still exists. Monitor. Dominated. Of course, he’s going to hunt her down. And find her. The Watcher then comes into action for the first time in the history of the MCU. Although obliged to defend himself, he shows the extent of his impressive powers. He resists Ultron … but not enough to destroy him. The Watcher ends episode 8 by fleeing. And in his observation bubble, a piece of advice is heard from nothing: it’s Doctor Strange! The Sorcerer Supreme is there, crouching in the dark, whispering in the Watcher’s ear. Obviously they already know each other. And the former surgeon clearly seeks the help of the passive spectator: he must break his oath and become an actor!
What will he be able to do? What oath is he talking about? We will have an answer in episode 9, as confirmed by screenwriter AC Bradley and director Bryan Andrews in EW, admitting that the first seven episodes served as an introduction to the last two parts of What if …? “The eighth is an episode in itself, but also leads to the ninth. I’m glad people see that it’s all connected, that there was a bigger plan from the start. I am aware that a lot of episodes end tragically, and maybe there is a reason (…) Everything is connected, it was planned in a certain way. We saw The Watcher take up more and more space, react more and more, and be more and more visible. We’re getting to the heart of it all now. “
Without question, the surprise is total. We understand that What if …? was not just an entertaining anthology. Its ambition is much greater. In particular that of dissecting the Multiverse already apprehended in Loki, through the eyes of the Watcher, who has become a full-fledged character in the MCU: “He will learn important lessons about what it means to be a hero, realizing how important these stories and these worlds are to him. “, continue the authors.
In the Marvel comics, the Watcher is part of the “Guardians”, a race of cosmic entities who have dedicated themselves to observing the universe and its inhabitants, without intervening. But while the whole multiverse is threatened, it will have to defend it. “At first he acts aloof, looking from afar. But as he wanders between these universes, he lives through these heroes, endures their tragedies and celebrates their achievements. He begins to feel emotions towards them and does more and more part of their worlds … even if it is not foreseen in his oath. So in the finale, we will attempt to answer an age-old question: Will The Watcher break his oath? is he what he is, ie an outside observer? “
– Akira (@ AkiraRC5) September 29, 2021
We understand that Doctor Strange managed to make him switch to the action camp! Our Doctor Strange? The one we will find in Multiverse of Madness next March at the cinema? So remains this final question for fans of the franchise: to what extent the events of What if …? are they cannons? Will they have concrete consequences for the future of the MCU?