"What If…?" tập 1: Đâu đó trong Đa vũ trụ Marvel, có một "Đội Trưởng" tên Peggy Carter!

The opening episode of the series “What If…?” – the first animated project in the Marvel Cinematic Universe – has officially premiered on Disney+. With an opening score of 7.8/10 (IMDb) and 85% “fresh” (Rotten Tomatoes) due to its captivating and unique story, it seems like this will be another resounding success for Marvel Studios in its new “Multiverse” era.

As we know, the MCU on the big screen has been a condensed reality within the Multiverse created by the variant He Who Remains, but the mischievous duo Loki and Sylvie unleashed it back to its primitive state. Therefore, the story of “What If…?” explores what happens in parallel universes through the narration of The Watcher – the deity responsible for observing and documenting all events in the Multiverse.

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The entity overseeing the Multiverse – The Watcher – Source: IMDb

(Note: This article contains spoilers for the movie. Readers who haven’t watched it should consider before reading further.)

A universe without the presence of “Captain America,” but instead “Captain Carter”!

Titled “What If Captain Carter Were the First Avenger?,” the first episode of “What If…?” presents a very different story set in the same context as the film “Captain America: The First Avenger” (2011).

As Loki explained: Just a small choice made by any individual can create a separate reality branch in the Multiverse (a nexus branch). And the nexus branch in this episode comes from the decision of secret agent Peggy Carter to stay in the laboratory where Steve Rogers undergoes the Super Soldier Serum, becoming “Captain America,” instead of observing him from the waiting room as in the 2011 film.

All the events in this first episode initially follow a seemingly familiar sequence as audiences have always known. However, everything completely changes when the HYDRA agent critically injures Steve, preventing him from continuing the experiment. This leads to Peggy Carter courageously entering the famous iron chamber to become the first super soldier of mankind, taking on the title “Captain Carter” along with the British-flag-themed costume and vibranium shield. She quickly defeats HYDRA and the Nazis, becoming the first Avenger in this universe.

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Captain Carter is just as powerful as the “alternate universe lover” Captain America – Source: Polygon

The first “Iron Man” is not Tony Stark, but Steve Rogers!

The fact that Steve Rogers doesn’t become “Captain America” may seem odd to the audience, but it is one of the intriguing plot twists that make “What If…?” special.

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If he can’t become “Captain America,” then why not be the “20th-century Iron Man”! – Source: The Direct

Don’t think that Peggy Carter taking Steve’s place as the super soldier with the vibranium shield weakens him, because it seems that no matter which universe he is in, his destiny is to become a hero. With the power of the Tesseract (obtained from HYDRA) and the help of scientist Howard Stark – Tony Stark’s biological father, Steve becomes the first “Iron Man” of this universe in the 1940s. With the advanced technology armor called the “HYDRA Stomper,” Steve and Peggy become a formidable duo against the notorious terrorist organization in the Marvel universe.

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This couple demonstrates incredibly action sequences – Source: MCUTimes

The MCU cast returns to voice their own characters

One interesting aspect of “What If…?” is that the animated characters are voiced by the same actors who portrayed them in the MCU over the years.

In this first episode, “diehard fans” can recognize the familiar voices and charisma of characters such as Hayley Atwell (Peggy Carter), Dominic Cooper (Howard Stark), Sebastian Stan (Winter Soldier), and more. However, it’s regrettable that Chris Evans has implicitly stated that he will never return to the MCU, so the iconic character Steve Rogers is voiced by actor Josh Keaton instead. Additionally, the villain Red Skull is voiced by Ross Marquand (known for his role in The Walking Dead) in place of the famous actor Hugo Weaving who previously played this role.

But don’t worry, because most other MCU actors such as Chris Hemsworth (Thor), Benedict Cumberbatch (Doctor Strange), or the late Chadwick Boseman (Black Panther) will return in the remaining 8 episodes of this first season.

Speculation: Will Captain Carter return in Doctor Strange 2?

The first episode of “What If…?” had a rather “unexpected” ending when Peggy sacrificed herself to defeat a HYDRA monster from another dimension and ended up “time-traveling” to 2012, meeting Nick Fury and Hawkeye (in the context of The Avengers film). So what will happen next after this “what if” scenario?

According to recent rumors, the superhero Captain Carter in this episode may potentially return with actress Hayley Atwell in the live-action film “Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness” set to release next year. It’s possible that the Multiverse catastrophe caused by Loki will also affect other realities, so we might witness this female hero teaming up with Doctor Strange and Scarlet Witch to find a way back to her own time.

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Could Captain Carter make an appearance in “Doctor Strange 2”? – Source: O Vício

Episode 2 of “What If…?” will premiere on Disney+ this Wednesday at 3 PM.

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