Marvel’s What If… Episode 4

Marvel’s What If… Episode 4

What if Doctor Strange had terminal Oneitis?

That was basically the plot for this episode.

Again it was better than the first two episodes. Doctor Strange was astonishingly enough, still a white male. Or perhaps that wasn’t too surprising since they were able to get Cumberbatch to voice him.

In this What If, Strange didn’t lose his hands in the accident, he lost Christine. Which apparently hit him a hell of a lot harder in toon world than it would have in the movie. After her death he is absolutely devastated. He goes looking for answers all across the world finally ending up in monastary with Wong and the Ancient One. The rest of his narrative from the movie is repeated to include the death of the Ancient One and his battle with the demon Doorarmarmarmamoo (however the hell it was pronounced).

But after that he settles in for good, long introspective sulk for a couple of years.

Finally he uses the Time Stone to travel back to the night of Christine’s death and alters things so she won’t die. And she dies anyway in a different accident. He tries to alter things with his route and the result is the same. Christine still dies. He tries not going out at all that night and she perishes in his arms while dancing. He tries again and again but no matter what he does, Doctor Strange cannot prevent Christine’s death.

Finally, the Ancient One appears. Now the Ancient One had died in this version of events too but apparently she can kind of, sort of be alive again if the plot needs things to happen.

Anyway, the AO tells Strange that Christine’s death is a fixed point in time. There is nothing that can be done to alter it. Except there can be if it makes the plot happen. It turns out you just need lots and lots of power, although there is “a price to paid” for this. A pity the price elaborated on because Strange might have thought things over. Anyway, Doctor Strange spends decades learning how to change a fixed point in time and then he starts absorbing the souls of demons to give him the power he needs.

No matter how many demons he absorbs it’s never enough because the Ancient One had somehow or another split Doctor Strange into two different versions of himself. One of whom didn’t go around eating demons to charge his magic battery. The Ancient One tells Good Doctor Strange he has to go fight Bad Doctor Strange. And Good Doctor Strange losses and gets absorbed.

Finally with enough power, Bad Doctor Strange breaks the fixed point in time but destroys his entire universe in the process. And Christine still dies, leaving bad Doctor Strange imprisoned in a small pocket dimension without even enough room in it to stretch his legs.

The episode wasn’t all that original and there was a ton of hand wavium to explain away the plot holes. But at least some effort went into it. The downer ending was kind of brave for Disney Plus. It’s not worth subscribing to Disney Plus but if you have it for free anyway, sure go ahead and watch it.

Although, I’ve told you the whole plot so there really isn’t any point.

Okay, I’m done here.

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Comments (9)

  • Grasshop Reply

    I’m a (relatively) young normie. My first, and honestly only, awareness of Doctor Strange comes from the 2007 direct to video animated movie.

    In it, Steven’s little sister Donna has a degenerative brain defect. He goes into med school solely to take a crack at fixing her when literally every doctor he brings her too says it’s futile to try. She dies on his operating table.

    We find this out during Strange’s final student wizard trial, where the Sorcerer Supreme forces him to relive his every memory of his sister until he realizes that his grief and pain is not an excuse to become callous or quit trying altogether.

    And that right there is the biggest plot hole in this What If, one that seems to go entirely unacknowledged going off this report: if Death is irreversible, no one no matter how imbecilic is gonna give the secrets of phenomenal cosmic power to an unstable mourning man until they have forced him to accept death as a part of life and at least begin to move on.

    September 4, 2021 at 12:22 am
  • Blume Reply

    I mean how is this even the evil doctor strange? He kills demons for power. And that’s bad how?

    September 4, 2021 at 12:32 am
    • Cloudbuster Reply

      The Satanists who run Disney have a soft spot for demons.

      September 4, 2021 at 1:54 am
    • RandyJJ Reply

      Not killing, absorbing. I think this is supposed to be a ‘use the One Ring to defeat Sauron’ type of thing. I mean, how is defeating Sauron bad?

      September 4, 2021 at 2:57 pm
      • Blume Reply

        It isn’t. Remember Galadriel says that after his defeat then she will be corrupted by the ring and become evil herself. Without that scene and the parallel story of gollum the reader wouldn’t know that you couldn’t use the ring to defeat the dark lord. Where in the episode does it say or show that he is now evil by absorbing the demons?

        September 5, 2021 at 1:57 am
    • Talos Valcoran Reply

      I imagine the power is corrupting – be a cool twist if the demons were letting themselves be killed as part of a greater plan to take out someone who would otherwise hunt them down for the purposes of destroying their influence.

      Also, isn’t the whole “love interest dies, time traveler protag keeps trying to undo, love interest dies anyway” ad nauseum the opener for the most recent execrable adaptation of Wells’ “Time Machine”? Why the feth would you rip *that* off?

      September 4, 2021 at 3:40 pm
  • fnordfnordfnord Reply

    So, they basically channeled the 2002 film version of “The Time machine.”

    September 4, 2021 at 1:02 am
    • Talos Valcoran Reply

      Ha, posted my comment before scrolling down far enough – teaches me.

      September 4, 2021 at 3:41 pm
  • Rollo Tomasi Reply

    What If..? (all your favorite heroes were hideous negroids, bigmouthed women or evil)
    So far all the villains have been white or jew passing for white men.
    Sheer coincidence.

    September 5, 2021 at 10:07 pm

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