The new trailer for “What If…?” starts, appropriately, in the same place as the MCU: With Tony Stark posing for MySpace photos in Afghanistan, seconds prior to being lightly exploded by one of his own company’s weapons. This time, however, instead of nabbing a chestful of shrapnel, he’s saved in the eleventh hour by Killmonger from “Black Panther,” and the two walk off into the middle distance like Rick Blaine and Captain Renault.
The promise of a theoretical MCU where Tony never became Iron Man or stopped selling weapons is only the tip of the iceberg. The teaser also gives fans a glimpse at an Avengers-adjacent swooping, low-angle shot of a team consisting of Star Lord, Thor, Black Panther, and Gamora wielding Thanos’s double-bladed sword. We see a world where T’Challa was taken by Yondu and took Peter Quill’s place as a Guardian of the Galaxy, a Loki-led Asgardian invasion of Earth, the long-overdue return of Howard the Duck, and a reimagined timeline where Peggy Carter became World War II’s super soldier. In a surprising twist, Spider-Man also makes a brief appearance, sporting his “Homecoming” duds, but otherwise not giving curious fans much to go on. Also, Scott Lang shows up as a disembodied head in a bell jar. This show is going to be off the rails.
“What If…?” is scheduled to debut on Disney+ on August 11.