The next installment in MCU’s What if…? is finally out and boy what an episode that was! We witnessed some of the most extraordinary things to ever grace the tv screen. The implications of this episode are mind-boggling. Not only did we get an Evil Version of Doctor Strange prancing around the timeline we also had a different version of the same man in the same timeline battling him for control. The battle was hard-fought and it was witnessed by the Ancient One and The Watcher themselves. However, in the end, delusion won over devotion and we got to see a universe collapse unto itself for the first time. The bill came due, the episode was quite revealing. We have compiled a list of 6 Major things we learned From What If Episode 4. Take a look:
Dimensions Exist in Each Universe
One peculiar thing about the episode was how it introduced the source of evil Strange’s power. We knew from the episode trailer that Strange would seek to change an absolute point in time. But when the episode realized what that moment was and how he got to the Lost Library of Cagliostro, and why. The purpose was to save Christine, to make that happen he needed immense power and turned to absorption magic. But to exercise the absorption he had to open portals to other dimensions including one to Shuma-Gorath. All these portals led to different dimensions, we know this because of the space stone and its portal in Episode one. But it seems that all Universes in the Multiverse have these dimensions. Pocket realities in Pocket realities, one wonders how it will work out.
There Are Many Mystic Beings like Dormammu
Dormammu hails from the dark dimension and there he reigns supreme. However in Episode 4 Strange summons mystical beasts from unlimited dimensions and absorbs them whole. But before he can understand how to go about it he opens the portal to Shuma-Gorath in an attempt to get the maximum power at the start and ends up being slammed around. So he slowly and steadily builds up the beast. He absorbs devils and necromancer beings of strange origin and malicious intent, without mercy or remorse. Filled with regret and obsessed with the loss of his loved one, he ends up destroying the very thing he cared for. The universe collapses in on itself and Strange is left apologizing to the void.
Timelines Can Be Split
Something that we already knew about the Universe was that there could be more than one copy of a single individual existing simultaneously in the time stream. When Captain America went back in Time to live with Peggy Carter he lived simultaneously with his younger self. Although the Captain America we follow in the MCU does not know that. However, another thing added onto this by episode 4 is that there can be two instances of the same man in the Universe and they can exist until a fixed moment in time. This may get a little complicated but while Steve was living one life, Evil Strange was living multiple, and it was the ancient one’s doing. She used the dark dimension to split the timeline. Exceedingly dangerous but also their last option.
The Ancient One Can Still Help After Her Death
Another major reveal for Multiverse Of Madness was that MCU just gave itself a way to have the ancient one reappear whenever our Sorcerer Supreme needs help. If it is in the past she can reach out with the help of the time stone and if It is in the future a psychic impression of her can always help Dr. Strange. Quite magnificent if you ask me. The writers at Marvel Studios have seemed to have outdone themselves with this kind of a twist.
The Watcher Cannot Intervene
At the pivotal moment in the episode, the Universe of Evil Strange starts collapsing in on itself. It breaks in half and Strange Supreme finally regains his clarity. He has used up all of the power he absorbed to change the fixed moment in time, he no longer has the energy or the power to reverse his actions. He struggles against the inevitable as Christine fades into nothing beside him. In a final desperate attempt, he calls out to The Watcher, “You are a God, you can undo this, help me, punish me”
“ If I could undo this and punish you instead, I would, but I can’t, the fate of this universe is not worth sacrificing all the others”
Strange Supreme Will Be Back
We already know from the original What if…? The trailer that evil Strange meets Captain Carter at some point in the series. This has not happened yet so it is likely that Strange Supreme will return later down the line. The mad sorcerer has lost everything he ever held dear including his own universe and now he may help save others on the brink of collapse. This will be Strange Supreme’s duty, he may become the next guardian of the Multiverse. I would not be surprised to see Strange being the final wall between Kang and total domination.
So these were all the major things we learned from What If Episode 4. It was really heavy and hopefully, the show will continue this darkness in the coming episodes as well.