The first episode of What if…? revealed to us a multiverse full of possibilities. The watcher took our hand and then proceeded to blow our minds with the things he showed us. We were taken back to the time of World War 2 when Red Skull and Hydra were allied with Hitler. Soon, we saw the same familiar insidious plan unfold, that was first witnessed in The First Avenger. Only this time there was no Captain America to stop them. Instead, we had the mighty Captain Carter and Hydra Stomper. The new heroes took their duty very seriously and gave us one of the most entertaining half an hour of lives. Now we can’t help but wonder if Captain Carter is a She-Hulk experiment by MARVEL in What If…?
The point here the timeline divulge from the main MCU canon is when Peggy Carter refuses to watch the Super Soldier experiment from the booth. She wants to be in the thick of things, and she will not let her superiors stand in her way. Her wish is soon granted when the attack on the experiment ends up injuring Rogers. In a desperate move, Peggy throws herself in the coffin-like contraption and gets injected by the super-soldier serum. This gives us Captain Carter, the protagonist we follow for the rest of the episode. When the super-soldier serum was given to Steve, he transformed from a disease-stricken skinny kid into the ideal physical specimen. One wonders how much the effects will vary for Peggy, someone who already has a well-trained body.
The answer comes a few moments after Peggy enters the transformation coffin. She comes out a hulking beast, quite literally. Her existing muscles have grown beyond our wildest imagination, and she seems to have also grown in height. The soft-spoken English Agent is transformed into the Hulking Captain Carter. This entire sequence is inspired from The First Avenger. Although, we don’t remember quite as many explosions the first time around. Peggy seems to be different than Captain America. Carter is not only larger l she is also stronger, it seems.
The problem with this claim is that MARVEL has never explicitly stated the extent of Steve’s powers. We only get a vague “peak of humanity” trope for the character. So what yardstick do we compare Captain Carter to? As it happens, I have the perfect contestant in mind. I am talking about none other than Jennifer Walters aka She-Hulk from MARVEL comics. The character is about to star in one of the new DISNEY+ shows so this will be even more interesting, She-Hulk and Hulk are part of the experiment which was studying the effects of gamma rays on the human body. The idea was to use this research to recreate the original Super Soldier Serum. But the failure of this project resulted in Banner’s Hulk.
The future of MCU
There are several scenes in episode 1 that can be considered as comparisons to the Hulk. The first one that comes to mind is when Captain Carter stops a convoy ints tracks by incapacitating the vehicles one after another. It is very reminiscent of how Bruce Banner stops the Chitauri leviathan during the events of Avengers. Another very apparent similarity between the two characters is the air raid that Carter pulls off. It reminds us of the time Hulk fought one of S.H.E.I.L.D.’s jets. Suffice to say Captain Carter comes off as less of a soldier and more of an unstoppable force.
Another reason why we bring up this comparison is because the Jennifer Walters led series, She-Hulk will release on Disney+ in early-mid 2021. So it seems that Marvel is testing the waters with characters like Captain Carter, to see the audience’s reaction to a female character who is capable of such destruction. Another very glaring similarity between CAPTAIN CARTER and HULK is how the former leaps in to fight the interdimensional monster. This is supposed to mirror Steve’s sacrifice at the end of the first movie. But we can’t help but compare it to HULK’s tendency to jump into these situations fist first.
Now we cannot be sure whether the experiment was meant as a test or a warmup but we are sure that whatever this was we want much much more of it. What do you think? Did you enjoy the first episode of the multiversal anthology? Or do you have some complaints about it? Let us know in the comments below and keep watching this space for everything MARVEL, DC, and Hollywood.