Marvel’s What If…? episode 7 ended on a huge cliffhanger last week when a supreme Infinity Stone-wielding variant of Ultron arrived on the scene. Fans were immediately curious who would be voicing the A.I. villain on the animated series. Was James Spader reprising his role from Avengers: Age of Ultron? Alternatively, because Ultron was inhabiting Vision’s body, was Paul Bettany going to get the chance to play a bad guy? Now that episode 8 is here, we have our answer.
This Wednesday’s episode 8 is titled “What If… Ultron Won?” and depicts a true Age of Ultron, where Tony Stark’s twisted creation overtook first the world, then the universe, and the entire multiverse. But who brings this powerful Ultron variant to life? As it happens, it’s neither Spader nor Bettany, but Ross Marquand. Episode 8 marks Marquand’s second appearance on What If..? following his turn as Red Skull in episode 1.
Yes, Marquand has the distinction of portraying two iconic supervillains in the MCU. Most known for playing Aaron on The Walking Dead, the actor – known for his talent for vocal impressions – replaced Hugo Weaving as Johann Schmidt in both Avengers: Infinity War and Endgame. This is his first in-canon appearance as Ultron, although he previously voiced the character in 2019’s Avengers: Damage Control video game.
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Episode 8 probably featured the fewest number of OG MCU stars than any other installment, with the likes of Mick Wingert, Josh Keaton, Lake Bell and Alexandra Daniels reprising their roles from previous weeks as Iron Man, Captain America, Black Widow and Captain Marvel, respectively. Jeremy Renner was back as Hawkeye, however, along with Toby Jones as Armin Zola.
Seeing as this episode ended with Ultron getting the better of the Watcher and threatening to spread his evil throughout all of reality, it looks like we can expect more from Marquand’s uber-antagonist in next week’s season finale. Catch up on Marvel’s What If…? on Disney Plus now.