Hold On! Gimme A Sec

How What If…? episode 3 writers adapted a Marvel movie Nick Fury meme

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on pinterest
Share on tumblr

Perhaps the strangest aspect of this week’s What if…? It’s technically based on Marvel’s The Avengers Prelude: Fury’s Big Week, a 2012 Avengers tie-in comic. By pointing out a simple fact: Nick Fury is a very busy guy, the comic quickly became part of the lexicon of Marvel movie fans.

And it was exactly that comic that series creator A.C. Bradley wanted to give a What If…?-style spin to in the series third episode.

[Ed. note: This piece contains spoilers for episode 3 of What If…?, “What If… The World Lost Its Mightiest Heroes?”]

Nick Fury tells Loki and his army to wait a minute while he takes a phone call in What If...? Image: Marvel Studios

Perhaps the strangest aspect of this week’s What if…? It’s technically based on Marvel’s The Avengers Prelude: Fury’s Big Week, a 2012 Avengers tie-in comic. By pointing out a simple fact: Nick Fury is a very busy guy, the comic quickly became part of the lexicon of Marvel movie fans.

Fury’s Big Week was based on a subtle fact from the Marvel Cinematic Universe: Iron Man 2, Thor, The Incredible Hulk, and the final scenes of Captain America: The First Avenger all halves. Written by Christopher Yost and Eric Pearson — who would later help script Thor: The Dark World, Thor: Ragnarok, and Black Widow — with art by Luke Ross, Daniel HDR, Agustin Padilla, and Wellinton Alves

While Bruce Banner and the Abomination tore up Harlem, Nick Fury and Agent Coulson hopped around the world, rescuing Captain America from the ice, investigating a strangely heavy hammer in New Mexico, and giving Tony Stark the tools he needed to cure his palladium poisoning.

“We knew early on we wanted to play with [Fury’s Big Week].” Over zoom, Bradley told Polygon. “At first, it was supposed to be like a French farce, with everything falling apart.” But it was when she decided to focus on Nick Fury himself and discover a new side to the unflappable SHIELD director that the idea really took off.

“Let’s show [Nick Fury] having a crisis of faith, wondering whether or not he’s making the right decision,” Bradley said of her thought process. “If the Avengers Initiative is going to fail, well, how do we make it fail? We start killing off all the Avengers before they can rise. Once we had that, it was a matter of finding our favorite moments in those three movies and figuring out ways to twist them.”

In that way, “What If… The World Lost Its Mightiest Heroes?” was almost backwards in its conception, with the creative team deciding on an outcome before figuring out the one simple change in the Marvel movie timeline that would snowball into such a crisis. To figure out what had changed, the episode’s ultimate villain had to be identified, a character capable of doing what Loki, Ultron, and Thanos couldn’t: killing all of the Avengers.

“We didn’t actually have a ‘What if?’ yet” Bradley told Polygon. “So the ‘What if?’ is ‘What if Hope Van Dyne became a SHIELD agent?’ And that could be an entire episode on its own. But then also this notion of She became a SHIELD agent because Fury convinces her and she passes away. Hank Pym — this actually makes sense for him. He wouldn’t have been able to reconnect with his daughter by this point in the timeline. The loss of her, after the loss of his wife, it would have driven him over the edge. So it all came together in a really nice way. It was a puzzle, but at the end of the day, the picture was worth all the struggle.”

And Hank didn’t even have to jump up anybody’s butt.

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on pinterest
Share on tumblr

Related