Star-Lord T'Challa

There Were Plans for a What If…? Spinoff Series for Star-Lord T’Challa and Damn That Would’ve Been So Much Fun

"We know he would have loved it, too."

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Slight spoilers for Marvel’s What If…? season one.

The first season of Marvel’s What If…? has come to an end and, unsurprisingly, has left plenty of room for a second season.

On a more tragic note, the end of the season also marks the last performance of the late Chadwick Boseman.

I will admit that for a while after Chadwick’s passing the idea of watching Black Panther (or any Chadwick Boseman performance, really) put knots in my stomach. I prepared myself to be really sad about watching him in What If…? but wow, Star-Lord T’Challa was so delightful that I found myself rewatching his premiere episode multiple times. There was an almost Saturday morning cartoon hero quality to him, and I mean that in the best way possible. If I could, I would sit down and watch an entire series based on his intergalactic adventures, armed with a giant bowl of cereal and whatever pair of comfortable pajamas I had available.

Well, according to head writer A.C. Bradley and director Bryan Andrews, that was actually something that was being planned!

In an interview with Variety, the two spoke about tying up loose ends in season 1 and plans for season 2. When asked about whether or not Chadwick had been able to record anything for the new season, the two said “no” and reflected on how lucky they were about having him for the first season, as neither realized that this would end up being his past performance.

Then Andrews revealed something that they never got to discuss with him: a spinoff series for Star-Lord T’Challa.

Chadwick had recorded his Star-Lord T’Challa stuff early. But we had those later episodes that he appeared in sporadically, and it was a long stretch before we got him [again]. And it was not long after the final recording that he passed. I think it was maybe just a few months, or a month. None of us knew, obviously. But we got him in time to have everything [for Season 1]. I think he was also trying to make an effort because T’Challa was so important to him — and also this new version of Star-Lord T’Challa was so important to him. He dug it.

I don’t know if he knew this, but there was planning to have Star-Lord T’Challa spinoff into his own show with that universe and crew. We were all very excited. We know he would have loved it, too. And then, you know, he passed, and so all that’s in limbo. So, who knows? Maybe one day.

Damnit this would’ve been perfect for Chadwick. You could tell that he was really enjoying this take on T’Challa (as Star-Lord T’Challa is a lot less serious than the one we know in the MCU). There’s a real charm to him and the way he interacts with crew. I would not have objected to seeing more of him with Nebula, Thanos, Korath, Yondu, and anyone else he came across.

But Bradley and Andrews never got the chance to fully make those plans.

As sad as this news is, I will forever be grateful that our final Chadwick Boseman performance was one that’s so wildly entertaining. I’m so glad that my last Chadwick memory is him being the kind of guy who can sweet talk someone like Thanos and make time to rescue Peter Quill, Dairy Queen Employee of the Month, from certain doom.

Cue the “cool guys don’t look at explosions” moment.

What If T'Challa and Peter

Thank you, Chadwick.

(Image: Marvel Studios)

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Briana Lawrence
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)