The first episode of Marvel’s What If…? animated series has arrived, and it tells the multiverse story of how Peggy Carter becomes the super-soldier Captain Carter and where that journey leads her. It also shows us what would have happened to Steve Rogers had he not become Captain America.
The point of divergence in this series is when Abraham Erskine asks, “Agent Carter, don’t you think you’d be more comfortable in the booth?” In the original film, Carter did go to the booth, but in this version of the story, she stays on the floor, and that’s where things take a very different turn.
The Hydra agent ends up taking the opportunity to sabotage the experiment early setting off an explosion and shooting Steve in the process, wounding him. Peggy ends up taking action by shooting the agent and then jumps into the pod taking Steve’s place. Howard Stark starts the process and Captain Carter is born.
As you might imagine, the military in the 1940s isn’t happy with the fact that the super soldier serum was given to a girl, and at first they say that the whole thing was a failure. That tune changes over time as Captain Carter proves herself as she rescues Bucky Barnes and the Howling Commandos, and takes on Hydra.
She is shown having a blast using her super-strength abilities, and it seems like she’s having a lot of fun brutally beating the hell out of Hydra soldiers. At one point she and her little team find themselves in an intense situation and call for air support and at that point, Steve Rogers comes flying in Iron Man-style Hydra Stomper armor. Howard stark was able to make this armor due to the Tesseract that Carter managed to retrieve.
Captain Carter, Steve Rogers, and the Howling Commandos find themselves on a train heist, which is called “Operation: Where Eagles Dare.” In the film, Bucky is the one that goes down in the train explosion. In this version of the story, Steve goes down with the train. While Carter and the team think Steve is dead, that’s not the case.
There’s also a point on the train when Peggy pulls Bucky back up as he slips off the top of the train, he says she “almost ripped” his arm off. This is kinda funny because in the main MCU films Bucky loses his arm when he falls from the train.
During the climax of the episode, Agent Carter and the Howling Commandos face off with Red Skull, who summons a multi-dimensional tentacle monster. That monster ends up crushing Red Skull, though. They also find Steve Rogers and the Hydra Stomper.
Carter finds herself taking on this giant monster which is confirmed to have been inspired by Abilisk from the awesome opening scene of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2. Steve jumps in the suit, charges it up and races to help Captain Carter, who is seen pushing the tentacle monster back into the portal it came from.
She sacrifices herself pushing it through, but before she does Steve yells out to her that she owes him a dance lesson, to which she agrees, and then through the portal she goes! She then ends up reappearing in 2011 thanks to SHIELD, where Nick Fury and Hawkeye meet her. It’s unclear if they intentionally brought her back or her return was just a happy accident, but this version of Peggy will apparently show up again.
With that, you can definitely see where the series is going as an alternate Avengers team will be formed.
I enjoyed this first episode! It was a lot of fun and I’m excited to see how the other stories that are planned play out! What did you think of this first episode of What If…?