Would you be surprised if I told you the inspiration Marvel’s WHAT IF…? came from a drive home after work? Well that’s how it happened. WHAT IF…? is such a cool concept that leaves endless possibilities.
Executive Producer Brad Winderbaum said it was a stroke of inspiration that happened on the drive home from work one day. He said he found himself texting with Kevin Feige in his driveway. “By the next day, the wheels were in motion, and we were on our way to making this thing. And I think it was obvious from the beginning that it needed to be animated because of all the locations and sets and characters and elements from the MCU we were gonna revisit. It had to kind of be in a medium that would allow us an infinite scope of whatever we could conceive of.”
When I watch the show, it does feel like an infinite scope. I found myself thinking wow, who came up with this?
Jeffrey Wright is the voice of “The Watcher.” He describes his character as fairly dramatic and powerful. He’s overseeing the multiverses and is somewhat of a narrator. Wright says The Watcher is probably the biggest Marvel fan and deals with temptations to insert himself in the different scenarios, but living vicariously through them.
I think we can all relate to The Watcher.
Director Bryan Andrews said you never know what you’re gonna get with What If…? “You might get an episode that’s comedy, you might get an episode that’s kind of dramatic and serious, super emotional, full of action.” This gave everyone at Marvel the opportunity to play with different genres.
“Just what if? You know, what if this, what if that? Things are so different, so weird, so crazy. It just opens the floodgates. We can do whatever we wanted to, and that was quite exhilarating to be able to play in that way.”
When asked about how they decided which MCU stories to use, Head Writer AC Bradley said, “when it came to creating an episode, figuring out the story of “What If…?”, the last thing we thought about was the what if. I think what we all looked for was what’s the heart behind the hero? How do we get behind the shield? What’s a part of the story we haven’t told before?”
These characters are so iconic and recognizable, but the important thing is how we connect to them. That’s why all the Marvel movies play such an important role in people’s lives. What are new ways to connect to these characters? Ultimately that’s the heart of What If…?
You really do need to expect the unexpected with What If…?, because you never know what will be thrown at you. It’s an fascinating ride! What If…? premieres on Disney+ Wednesday, August 11th!