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After What If…?, I Wouldn’t Be Mad About an Entire Season of Marvel Zombies

One episode wasn't enough for me.

 

Zombie Captain America in What If Marvel Zombies

**Spoilers for What If…? episode 5.**

I learned about Marvel Zombies years ago when I saw a statue of a zombified Spider-Man with Mary Jane in a bloodstained, completely gutted wedding dress. The figure was at my local comic book shop, and I thought, “Huh, that’s a fun little Marvel AU.” The statue has been in my collection ever since, but at the time, I thought it was just a statue someone made on a whim.

I didn’t know it was an entire series.

Spider-Man and Mary Jane Marvel Zombie statue

That being said, I never really got the chance to read the comics. My comic book intake moves at a slow pace because there is a LOT to keep track of, so when the What If…? animated series revealed that it’d tackle a world where the T-virus would be a tropical paradise compared to what the Avengers had to face, I was excited.

Up until this point, I’ve enjoyed all of the What If…? episodes, particularly the ones where the plot feels like it was drawn out of a hat to bring together a randomized sample platter of characters (looking at you, Cha Cha and your communication skills with Thanos, of all people).

The fifth episode of What If…? works the same way.

The remaining heroes of Earth make for a mismatched team that’s trying to find a cure for “goddamnit Hank Pym, again?!” while trying to survive the zombie apocalypse. As to be expected in any zombie media, not everyone survives. There are characters doing particularly questionable stuff in the name of love, and despite the hopeful sunrise, there’s a hint of something a hell of a lot worse coming our way.

After watching this episode, I realized that, wow, I want more of this. This could easily be an entire season of content. You could arguably do that with a couple of the What If…? episodes if you stretched them out a bit, but I never felt like I needed to have more than what I got. Marvel Zombies, however, had so much going on that I would’ve loved to see it fleshed out into multiple episodes.

That’s not to say I didn’t enjoy the episode. I loved it. A lot. I loved it so much that I want more of it.

The episode starts with Bruce Banner crashing into the Sanctum the way he did in Infinity War, but instead of being greeted by Doctor Strange and Wong (who never did get that sandwich he wanted, sigh), he’s all alone to fend off Maw and Obsidian—at least, he thinks he’s alone. Luckily, Tony shows up with Strange and Wong, but the trio is a bit … ravenous. Bruce manages to survive thanks to a friendly neighborhood rescue, a suave cape, and some ants.

This leads to a quick backstory on “How did this happen to me? I’ve made my mistakes, got nowhere to run …”

When we get to the part where we meet our new team of heroes, I thought, “Damn, how did this group find each other? How did they get together? How did they survive this long? Who have they lost?”

We kinda get a glimpse of that when Peter reveals how he manages to stay positive in the middle of a literal horror movie landscape.

I love this quote from him, but I also had this foreboding feeling in my stomach where I wondered what it must’ve been like for Peter to lose Mr. Stark to a zombie outbreak. Also, did he lose Aunt May to the zombie virus, too? Where are Ned and MJ during all of this?

There’s not enough time to flesh that out in half an hour, and there’s especially not enough time to flesh out THIS SH*T HERE:

This?

This is a whole-ass story arc.

Vision trying to work on a cure? While keeping Scott Lang as a talking head? And feeding zombie Wanda to keep her alive? To the point that he has T’Challa locked up?

More of this, please.

This reveal is so intriguing to me, and I definitely would’ve enjoyed a mini-series based on Vision’s motivations during this time, especially since this Vision doesn’t quite understand why he did what he did. I wanted more of a slow burn to the dawning realization that Vision wasn’t thinking as clearly as he thought he was. I wonder what was going through T’Challa’s mind when Vision rescued him, only to realize that Vision was feeding people to Wanda.

Hell, I wanted more build-up about Bucky having to kill his friends.

Also … is there a zombie Black Widow out there?

In the end, this episode feels like the perfect way to illustrate how well an entire series of Marvel Zombies would work. The episode is fantastic, but a series? Now that’s something I could—wait for it—sink my teeth into.

I’m sorry. I’ll see myself out.

(Image: Marvel Entertainment)

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Briana (she/her - bisexual) is trying her best to cosplay as a responsible adult. Her writing tends to focus on the importance of representation, whether it’s through her multiple book series or the pieces she writes. After de-transforming from her magical girl state, she indulges in an ever-growing pile of manga, marathons too much anime, and dedicates an embarrassing amount of time to her Animal Crossing pumpkin patch (it's Halloween forever, deal with it Nook)