The Captain America Shield Plot Hole in What If Episode 2 Explained

What If…? is one of the most amazing shows to come out of Marvel this year. It references the Marvel Cinematic Universe while taking us to places we can only dream of. This is an entirely new level of using Marvel and gives a wide scope of imagination. The plotlines vary from absolutely absurd to some fan-favorite moments as they are possibly derived from theories that fans had regarding their favorite characters. Being an animated show the creators have taken certain liberties as this could not have been achieved in a live-action treatment for the material. But certain liberties have given way to some plot holes like the second episode having a massive Captain America shield plot hole.

The Episode

The second episode of What If…? dealt with the Nexus event where T’Challa becomes Star-Lord. He is abducted by the Ravagers instead of Peter Quill and from then on the events take a massive turn in comparison to the timelines of the movies. We get to see many fan-favorite characters make a return with a massive change in their persona. Thanos appears as a completely different character who has given up on his ways under the influence of this new Star-Lord. This leads to some of the most epics moments and a cool heist that changes various events from the original MCU movies.


The consequences of the Nexus event are very apparent from the transition of the Ravager is a group of outlaws to a team of do-gooders for the less fortunate. Similarly the transition in Thanos’s arc and his relationship with his daughter Nebulae. Not only that, one of the overlooked arcs is that of Peter Quills. Being left alone on earth we see him working at a Dairy Queen. We also get to see Ego meeting up with him. The Watcher gives us a hint of the terrible events that might follow but saves the rest for some later episodes. This could probably mean that Ego is gonna use Quill’s Celestial powers for his own benefit and thus recreate the universe in his image. This could probably lead to an Infinity Saga-like event which could be even worse considering there won’t be any Guardians of the Galaxy. One of the prime examples of such changes in the events showed us how the Collector fills the villain void left by Thanos.

Cap’s Shield?

Captain America Shield Plot Hole

When T’Challa is fighting with the Collector we get to see his massive collection of weapons which he shows with pride. Amongst these, he wields an arm like that of Korg, which could mean he took it from the character we were introduced to in Thor: Ragnarok. Amongst these, we also get to see some of his other toys. This includes Hela’s helmet, Thor’s hammer, and also Captain America’s shield. This could mean that the Collector battled all of them and took these items as his winnings.

But, considering the timeline of the episode this seems to be somewhat impossible and out of the place. According to the episode, the brawl with Collector takes place 20 years after T’Challa was abducted making it the year 2008. That doesn’t make sense as to how did he get hold of the shield before Captain was unfrozen. Cap stayed frozen till 2011 according to the original timeline.

Captain America Shield Plot Hole

While it is fairly obvious that there could be drastic changes in the timeline due to that Nexus event, but could it mean that the original Nexus event actually took place way before the one we were shown. Hence, it is quite clearly an overlooked mistake committed by the creators of the show. Maybe we will be shown a possible Nexus event giving us a much better explanation for this possibility. Let’s see.

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