Review What If…? 2 episode 7: unlikely couple

Recensione What If...? 2 episodio 7: improbabile coppia

We present to you the episode-by-episode review of season 2 of What If…?: here is the review of episode 7

ORIGINAL TITLE: What If…?. TYPE: animation. NATION: United States. REGIA: A.C. Bradley. CAST: Jeffrey Wright, Karen Gillan, Jude Law, Michael Rooker, Seth Green, Taika Waititi, Michael Douglas, Hayley Atwell, John Slattery, Kurt Russell, Chris Hemsworth, Laurence Fishburne, Sebastian Stan, Atandwa Kani, Jon Favreau, Cate Blanchett, Clancy Brown, Josh Brolin, Benedict Cumberbatch, Idris Elba, Frank Grillo, Jeff Goldblum, Tom Hiddleston,  Samuel L. Jackson, Elizabeth Olsen, Jeremy Renner, Sam Rockwell, Paul Rudd, Mark Ruffalo, Cobie Smulders, Tessa Thompson, Stanley Tucci, Rachel Weisz. DURATION: 20 minutes per episode. DISTRIBUTOR: Disney+. EXIT: from 22 December 2023.

Hela’s story begins similarly to Thor’s in the first film of the franchise released in 2011. Unlike Thor: Ragnarok however, Odin chooses not to imprison Hela for daring to have opinions and ambitions. Hela rightly points out that she was raised to fight, so asking him to stop now is ridiculous. Her attempt to use Mjölnir on him fails and Odin shatters the mighty hammer, stripping Hela of her power as punishment for his bloodlust before hunting her down. He places a similar spell on Hela’s helmet as he did on Mjölnir in the first Thor, granting his powers to anyone who proves charitable. The helmet crashes in the mountains of China, where Wenwu and his men, known in Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, find it.

Hela and Wenwu: an unlikely alliance | Review What If…? 2 episode 5

In this series, as in the first, alternative futures are proposed for the most (or least) beloved characters of the Marvel cinematic universe. In the seventh episode of the second season the protagonist is definitely a villain, Hela, who although played (also in the animated version) by her beloved Cate Blanchett, it is difficult to perceive it as possible good. Yet many Marvel fans took to social media to praise the episode and share how much they appreciated this unlikely team-up. In fact, Hela’s parable could have been different: her ambition could well have been balanced with compassion, obviously learned on Earth.

A new story, perhaps useless | Review What If…? 2 episode 7

While Cate Blanchett returned to lend her voice to Hela, a role she first played in Thor: Ragnarok, both Odin and Wenwu were played by other actors for the animated series. For Wenwu, the role was instead given to Feodor Chin. Also for Odin, Anthony Hopkins absent from the episode was replaced by the Bugs Bunny actor, Jeff Bergman.

So ultimately, in addition to the appreciated return of Cate Blanchett, the episode risks being a little too much for its own sake. We don’t see a general pattern, as in other episodes, nor new characters, except for Hela good, almost forced though. In short, there was a step backwards compared to the other episodes, so beyond a nice story there is little else left.

Points in favor

  • The cross between Norse and Asian culture is interesting

Points against

  • Episode as an end in itself

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