Spoilers for Marvel’s What If…? Episode 5, obviously.
Zombified Iron Man
To quickly recap the events of Episode 5: Hank Pym’s attempt to rescue his wife, Janet Van Dyne, from the quantum realm goes horribly wrong as the latter has been infected by some quantum virus which turns her into a zombie-like being. She bites Hank and turns him into a zombie, and the infection then starts to spread across the world, zombifying even The Avengers. However, a rag-tag group of surviving Avengers led by Hope Van Dyne and Bruce Banner journey to a mysterious location in search of a cure, only to find that things are not what they seem.
Evidently, in complete contrast to last week’s Doctor Strange entry, Episode 5 is a largely fast-paced, action-packed feast for the eyes. While Episode 4 deserves commendation for not shying away from taking a deep dive into the topics of grief and human nature, this week’s episode deserves an equal amount of praise for not being afraid of getting its hands dirty.
We are not going to lie; it has indeed been a while since we have had the opportunity to witness any MCU offering boldly go where no MCU film or show has gone before by amping up the blood, gore, and horrific imagery. It is certainly a welcome change to see a more unapologetic plot where our beloved MCU characters are brutally torn to shreds or zombified.
Of course, the plotting may not make much sense if we were to scrupulously analyze its otherwise shaky usage of certain conflicting tropes, but an episode such as this one does not call for such an analysis to take place. In short, it was all about having a bit of conceptual fun, a truly “what if” scenario without the execution of any meticulous planning behind its story. Therefore, it made for a thoroughly enjoyable experience from beginning to end, allowing viewers to simply sit back, relax, and shut off their brains for 30-minutes in what is arguably the second-best episode we have seen from the series thus far.
And that, is precisely why we loved it.
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