As the final episode of Marvel's What If...? rolls around, the title of the finale has been announced, as many have been expecting for the last couple of weeks, as "What if The Watcher Broke His Oath?" While the series began as a happy little episodic snapshot of many different realities across the Marvel multiverse, in the second half of the season it began to turn into something more involving, with the final episodes connecting in a way that was clearly leading to a regular all-out Marvel ending.
In the first episodes of What If...?, we were introduced to Uatu The Watcher, nothing more than a presence that was delivering viewers to other realities within the multiverse and telling stories of what could have happened to the Marvel timeline if things had not gone exactly as planned. However, as the episodes moved on, it became clear that The Watcher, voiced by the excellent Jeffrey Wright, was getting closer to the realities he was showing. By last week's episode, The Watcher had not only interacted with the dark version of Doctor Strange, but had been assaulted by an Infinity Stone charged Vision Ultron and after a battle he realized he couldn't win, had found solitude in the contained "prison" of Strange as he looked to assemble his own team to take down the evil robot.
Speaking to EW, series writer A.C. Bradley and director Bryan Andrews discussed how all of this Marvel madness came to be, and what fans can expect from the finale.
"We will pop into and re-meet some of our heroes from the previous episodes, including the lovely Captain Carter [Hayley Atwell], Strange Supreme, Party Thor [Chris Hemsworth], and even Killmonger [Michael B. Jordan]," Bradley explained. "Early on in the first season, like day one talking about it, there was this notion of we're creating all these great heroes, but we only get to sit with them for 20 or 30 minutes. Wouldn't it be great to see them again in the finale? And then once that decision was made, it liberated me to make the endings a little bit darker and bigger, knowing that we can give some sort of resolution in the finale."
"There's a degree of resolution where it feels like all the stuff that's been percolating across the episodes, the adventure that we bring you into for the ending, ends, to a certain degree," Andrews added. "All these universes, when we're done with our episode, those universes continue. It's an on-going cinematic universe; there is stuff that happens yet to come that maybe we will see and maybe we will not see. But we don't necessarily want to have it all tied up in a perfect bow. There is a level of buttoning up with a certain degree of things that we get into with a certain storyline."
As the finale arrives, there is now another question that will soon become prominent in the minds of Marvel fans who have enjoyed the MCU's first foray into animation: where will they go in season 2? Of course, we know that there will be a second season coming to Disney+, and with the episodes already written, Bradley has already been teasing what to expect the next time around.
"Going into the second season, we're sticking with anthology form, and it's going to be all-new stories, lots of fun, new heroes, and pulling more from Phase Four than we were obviously able to this season," she said. "Hopefully, we'll see hints of Eternals and Shang-Chi and the Black Widow characters. The fun of What If...? is that we get to explore the entire infinite multiverse, so we try and bounce around as much as we can. I want to play with all these characters, and as much as I love Captain Carter, we've got to share the love. I'm very excited to show new worlds, new heroes."