Marvel’s What If…? continued with its second episode today, and it generally depicted an almost utopian version of the MCU timeline. Thanks to the central change that T’Challa had been abducted by Yondu instead of Peter Quill, the Wakandan Star-Lord helped make the galaxy a fairer place, stealing from the rich and corrupt while aiding the poor. He even managed to reform Thanos, thereby preventing the events of Avengers: Infinity War and Endgame.
But, if you think about the implications of one scene from the episode, it looks like an even greater tragedy befell the Avengers in this universe. As episode 2 continues, it’s revealed that, when Thanos turned good, Taneleer Tivan AKA the Collector stepped up to fill the power vacuum as the galaxy’s most dangerous man. When T’Challa and his allies face off against him, a jacked-up Tivan unveils his enviable arsenal of weaponry, including several familiar items.
While battling Star-Lord, Tivan arms himself with the fist of a “terribly chatty” Kronan (i.e. Korg) as well as Hela’s crown, saying “that woman had style”. Though he doesn’t use them, his arsenal also includes Captain America’s shield and Thor’s trusty hammer Mjolnir. Seeing as he talks in the past tense about Korg and Hela, it stands to reason that he killed them. Which must mean that he succeeded in defeating the Avengers, too.
MORE FROM THE WEB
So how did the Collector manage this? Well, it’s feasible that the Avengers never formed in this reality and so they were easier to beat individually. With Thanos redeeming himself, the Battle of New York didn’t happen, meaning the team wouldn’t have come together and would be totally unprepared for an extraterrestrial attack from the Collector and his forces. His Hela and Korg trophies also suggest Ragnarok occurred earlier in this timeline.
The end of episode 2 then hints that Ego, having finally located his son Peter on Earth, is about to start his Expansion, destroying the universe in the process. So, on better inspection, this might not be the ideal MCU timeline it appears to be.
What If…? continues next Wednesday on Disney Plus.