After watching the first episode of “What If … ?”, I was intrigued to see what else was in store. And with the trailers showing T’Challa as a Ravager, my attention was hooked and excited to see what the fusion of two of my favorite properties in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
This time around, the scenario presented has T’Challa switch places with Peter Quill. But rather than being a wannabe intergalactic outlaw, T’Challa is the galaxy’s answer to Robin Hood. His relationship with Yondu is closer, the Ravagers are more charitable, and even Thanos was talked out of his “wipe out half the population” plan. After getting the Orb appraised by Nebula, she suggests that he leads the Ravagers to steal the Embers of Genesis, a dust that can terraform ecosystems. Through a heist to get them from Tanaleer Tivan/The Collector, T’Challa learns how far his Wakandan roots have reached out for him.
The Butterfly Effect is amplified on a level spanning across the galaxy. Along with Thanos’ struggle to reconcile with Nebula, Drax is now working as a bartender as his family is still alive, and looking at his arsenal, it’s implied that the Collector’s weapons vary from those belonging to Hela and Malekith to Thor and Captain America. The Ravagers are also a far cry than the timeline where Peter Quill was taken; Yondu and T’Challa have a closer relationship akin to father and son, Kraglin and Taserface are more altruistic, and even though he isn’t part of the crew, watching Korath fanboying over Star-Lord is a joy to watch. It’s also nice to see Seth Green return as Howard the Duck.
Even before the dedication at the end, this episode is the perfect sendoff for Chadwick Boseman. Watching the character Boseman brought to life on the big screen was interesting to see go from a Wakandan royal to Robin Hood in space, and as such, the regal feeling resonates over this Star-Lord. He uses diplomacy, but doesn’t hesitate to fight back. And the ending of this episode is the perfect sendoff with T’Challa returning to his home as his found family mixes with his blood family.
Two episodes in and I’m loving what I’m seeing so far with this series. This episode was entertaining in its scenario and heartfelt in its ending. It also opens the door for more potential scenarios to come from the eyes of the Watcher.