If last week’s episode where Doctor Strange changed the past and killed his universe wasn’t scary enough, how about zombies?
This week, the Avengers become Earth’s Mightiest Undead.
How did this happen, and who can fight them?
This episode comes from a short comic-book series in later 2005 where a virus turned super-heroes into super-zombies, and a sequel emerged last year.
In this scenario, it’s more connected to Ant-Man and the Wasp and Infinity War.
Remember when Hank Pym went into the Quantum Realm to look for his wife Janet in AM&W?
Zombie Pym attacks Scott, but Hope gets away. For now, she’s one of the uninfected.
Then Bruce Banner comes back from space to warn people about Thanos. He wonders why everything is quiet, then Ebony Maw arrives to say Thanos is coming.
He gets zapped by Iron Man, which is great….until he eats Maw.
Banner sees Iron Man is now a zombie, along with nearly everyone else.
Before we continue, the episode’s voice list is impressive with many of the original actors including Chadwick Boseman, Mark Ruffalo, Evangeline Lilly, Paul Rudd, Jon Favreau, Emily Vancamp and Sebastian Stan. It’s was especially great to see Boseman as Black Panther again. He’s expected to be back through the first series.
Hudson Thames was Spider-Man here, and his voice is the next best thing to Tom Holland’s.
Back to the episode:
Some of the heroes, from Captain America to the Falcon and Hawkeye get infected quickly. Some are not, including Sharon Carter, the Wasp, Okoye, the Winter Soldier, Happy Hogan…and Spider-Man, who has Dr. Strange’s cape to help him. They’re able to do what they can to hold off the zombies, but it’s getting tougher. They at least have a PSA.
They find out someone may have come up with a cure at Camp Lehigh, SHIELD’s first home. It looks like hope, right?
The unbitten do their best to get there but it’s evitable some don’t make it, including Happy and Sharon. Hope also finds out she’s infected, but fights to the end using the Giant Wasp switch on her costume. It’s a noble end for the heroine.
Again, though, watch out for a swerve.
Once they get to Lehigh, they meet the Vision. He uses the Mind Stone to emit a frequency to keep the zombies away, and cure someone.
Well, at least Scott Lang’s head, giving off dad jokes and a Futurama vibe.
Bucky soon learns the truth from Black Panther. The Vision really wanted to kidnap people to take care of someone close to him.
That’s right, WandaZombie. Nice callback to last week’s episode. Viz just couldn’t kill her, but he’s willing to kill himself by tearing the Mind Stone from himself.
This leads to a frantic escape that includes Zombie Hulk battling Wanda, and Giant Zombie Wasp almost stopping the quad-jet.
Headed to Wakanda, Spider-Man is upset that he’s lost so much, including family and friends. Black Panther assures him as long as they’re not forgotten, they’re always with him. They’re pretty hopeful the Mind Stone will stop the zombie virus, and Earth can be reborn.
This is what awaits them
Since Halloween is pretty close, this episode is appropriate. The horror comes from two sources. First, we have the zombie virus that jumped from the Quantum Realm to Earth (a COVID metaphor), Then, we have hope taken away time and again. The scariest part was clearly Zombie Thanos ready to use the Infinity Gauntlet, not to eliminate half of everything but maybe to spread the virus to whoever’s left. YIKES!
The episode also had a few callbacks, like the idea of sacrifice for the great good, how love can lead to disaster, and how one detail can change everything. This suggests the series will have an overall theme. Some have wondered if the Watcher will interfere eventually.
Hopefully, next week will be more optimistic.
What If airs new episodes every Wednesday on Disney Plus.