Marvel Studios' What If…? has provided fans a glimpse at alternate words where the famous MCU storylines unfolded in different ways. However, the upcoming episode of the animated Disney Plus series may be the most radical departure yet, and Hulk actor Mark Ruffalo provided a sneak peek at the MCU debut of Marvel Zombies.
Appropriately titled "What If… Zombies?!," the newest episode of Marvel Studios' first animated show is likely inspired by the Marvel Zombies series from Marvel Comics. These stories are set in an alternate Marvel universe where a virus has zombified the world's superheroes, although the zombie versions of these characters have been depicted as both heroes and adversaries throughout the comic book series.
Details on What If…?'s incarnation of Marvel Zombies are being kept under wraps for a little while longer, but a new clip shared by Ruffalo on his official Twitter appears to provide some insight into the events that may kickstart the zombification. The clip opens with Ruffalo's Bruce Banner exiting Doctor Strange's Sanctum Sanctorum only to find a seemingly abandoned New York City. After asking himself if he's too late, Banner comes face to face with Ebony Maw, one of the underlings of Thanos. Although Banner attempts to bring out the Hulk, the Green Goliath refuses to enter the fray, but the defenseless scientist is saved when Iron Man, Doctor Strange, and Wong emerge from a portal to bring down the alien invader. However, the trio's fighting style is far more lethal than Banner expected, though the reason becomes clear once the dust settles and a zombified Iron Man menacingly glares at the bewildered Science Bro.
Based on the setting and events that unfold, the scene featured in the new What If…? clip appears to be an alternate take on Ebony Maw and Cull Obsidian's arrival on Earth in Avengers: Infinity War. As fans may remember, Iron Man joined forces with Wong and Doctor Strange to confront the antagonistic duo shortly after Banner crash-landed in the Sanctum Sanctorum to warn his fellow heroes about the impending invasion of Thanos. However, What If…? appears to be telling a version of events where Banner (who was transported to the Sanctorum by Heimdall after Thanos and his underlings destroyed the spaceship carrying the survivors of Asgard's destruction) arrived too late to warn his allies. Still, how and why the zombie versions of Iron Man and his cohorts manage to find their way to Earth remains a mystery for the time being.
Fans can assume the MCU version of the Marvel Zombies story will be decidedly different from the comics. After all, the Marvel Zombies series was launched by the events of a crossover story-arc of Ultimate Fantastic Four, and the creative team behind What If…? has made it clear that the Fantastic Four won't be making their MCU debut in the show.
Regardless of how these undead versions of our favorite heroes make their way to the MCU, fans will likely have as much fun with the story as they have with the previous tales on What If…? Zombies remain as popular as ever, as seen with the continued success of The Walking Dead, so it was only a matter a time before Marvel Studios seized the opportunity to get in on the action.
What If…? premieres new episodes on Wednesdays on Disney Plus.
Source: Mark Ruffalo/Twitter