One of the main advantages of comics is that nothing is set in stone. Although the main universe exists, one can always theorize about all the possible outcomes of any story. The Multiverse allows those outcomes to come true, even if it’s in a different dimension. For example, him What if? The comics are the divergent stories of the Marvel canon.
45 years have passed since the first What if? was published. After more than four decades of stories outside of Marvel continuity, there are some What if? comics that beat the main universe. Whether it’s because they feature original captivating characters and better versions of already iconic superheroes or because they deliver so much better than the original comics, these comics deserve a place closer to the original timeline.
10 What if… The Fantastic Four had different superpowers?
based on The Fantastic Four #1, this is the sixth What if? never created. The issue follows the story of the Fantastic Four in a world where their powers are different. Ben Grimm grows dragon wings, Sue Storm develops flexible skin, Johnny Storm becomes half-robot, and Reed Richards, always the smartest, becomes a brain named Big Brain.
While there’s absolutely nothing wrong with the Fantastic Four’s main lineup, What if? #6 explores how the powers of these heroes determine their group dynamics. The story features a disfigured Reed inside Doom’s body as a mix of the two characters, offering a deeper insight into Reed Richard (who has a practically perfect life on Earth-616). Unfortunately, this darker Mr. Fantastic was not explored further.
9 What if… Jane Foster had found Thor’s hammer?
After being intercepted by aliens during a failed excursion into the mountains, Jane Foster finds an old staff in a cave, which is actually Mjolnir in disguise. Before she understands what is happening, she becomes Thordis, the Goddess of Thunder. Instead of acting like Thor’s damsel in distress, Jane saves Donald Blake in this comic. — who is just a regular earthly doctor.
Jane Foster as the Goddess of Thunder is such a compelling idea that it actually became canon. In mighty thor by Jason Aaron and Russel Dauterman, Jane claimed Mjolnir after Odinson became unworthy of the hammer. This arc will also be explored in the MCU. Thor: love and thunder with Natalie Portman as Jane.
8 What if… Gwen Stacy had rescued Gwen Stacy?
Thanks to Marc Webb The incredible Spider-Man 2, everyone knows that Spider-Man couldn’t save Gwen Stacy from a deadly fall. But how would things have gone if this had never happened? In What if? #24, Spider-Man jumps to grab Gwen instead of just throwing a web at her, correcting his mistake in The amazing Spider Man #121.
Regardless of the endless ramifications of Gwen’s death on Peter’s life, of course, fans would love for her to be alive. His death is an iconic moment in Marvel history, but the guilt that follows Spider-Man after the event sees Peter in a very dark place.
7 What if… Rogue possessed the power of Thor?
During a battle against the Avengers, Rogue, a member of the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants, absorbed Thor’s abilities and left Odinson to die. Although she uses her newfound abilities for evil, the late Thor meets her on the astral plane and convinces her to take up the mantle of the Goddess of Thunder as a hero, which she does.
Okay, nobody wants Thor Odinson to die. However, mixing Rogue’s power level with the God of Thunder’s strength is too good an experiment to forget. Although Rogue is already incredibly powerful in the main universe, this combination makes the alternate Rogue one of the most powerful characters in the Marvel Universe. Sadly, Marvel dropped her in 1994.
6 What if… The Scarlet Witch ended the ‘House of M’ by saying, “No more power?”
What if? House of M #1 follows Earth-9021, a world where Scarlet Witch not only decimated mutants, but all manner of super-powered heroes. This results in a universe very similar to JLA: Act of God, where some of Marvel’s most iconic superheroes deal with the consequences of losing their abilities while others celebrate, all while the Red Skull takes advantage of the situation.
What if… The Scarlet Witch ended the ‘House of M’ saying, ‘No more power?’ presents a realistic universe, where the strongest beings in the world are faced with new weaknesses, such as Wolverine, whose adamantium skeleton is now too heavy for him. However, it also shows a hopeful moment, where the heroes don’t give up even if they are no longer virtually invincible. Instead, they build new technology to fight the Red Skull, showing the true nature of a hero.
5 What if Daredevil lived in feudal Japan?
On Earth-717, Masahiro is the Devil Who Dares, a blind samurai in feudal Japan whose father was killed by the giant Shogun. — an obvious reinterpretation of the Kingpin. Raised by Stick to be a warrior, Masahiro fights this crime lord alongside Elektra, the daughter of a murdered Greek ambassador.
Rick Veitch and Tommy Lee Edwards treated Daredevil fans to a well-crafted retelling of the Daredevil mythos told by Matt Murdock II, a descendant of Earth-717’s own Matt Murdock. What if Daredevil lived in feudal Japan? It’s hardly the origin story of Devil Who Dares, but surely this character gives Earth-717 a beautiful connection to Japanese lore that Earth-616 lacks.
4 What if…Storm had the power of the Phoenix?
What if…Storm had the power of Phoenix? follows Storm when she is replaced by Phoenix in place of Jean Gray in Uncanny X-Men #100. Though Storm-Phoenix’s intentions are good — she wants to protect nature all over the world —her media turns villainous as the humans refuse to follow her rules, so the X-Men have to stop her.
Considering new hosts for the Phoenix Force is always an interesting thought exercise. Of course, there’s nothing wrong with Jean Grey’s run as the Phoenix. However, Storm is often underestimated. In this comic, the X-Men take down Storm easily, but true fans know this is just to make sure the story is kept short. Surely she would be one of the most powerful Phoenix hosts ever? It’s a shame fans can’t see her on Earth-616.
3 What if… starring Secret Wars: 25 Years Later… a new generation of heroes arrives!
Set in a universe 25 years after Marvel’s most iconic heroes were trapped on Battleworld, this comic shows what would have happened if no one left. Rather than return to their Earth, all of these characters settle on Battleworld, get married, and even have children.
What if? #114 features several original characters whose abilities are a mix of their parents. For example, Clinton Barton Jr. is the son of Hawkeye and She-Hulk, so he is a great archer with great strength. Kendall Logan can control the weather like her mother, Storm, but she also heals faster, like her father, Wolverine. These are just two examples of a dozen interesting characters missing from Earth-616.
two What if… Magik became Sorcerer Supreme?
What if? with great power features Illyana Rasputin, aka Magik, as she transitions from a near-feral girl recently freed from Limbo to the protégé of Doctor Strange. Though suspicious of Strange at first, Magik learns to trust him as he trains her to become his predecessor.
One of Marvel’s greatest wizards, it’s not uncommon to imagine Magik as the Sorcerer Supreme. After all, the mutant trained with Doctor Strange on Earth-616, but only until she was an adult. What if? Magic presents a universe in which Illyana lives up to the full potential of her magical abilities.
one What if… Iron Man lost the Civil War?
One of What if? Civil war the stories include an alternate universe where Iron Man and Captain America talk rather than fight each other regarding the Superhuman Registration Act. In this issue, Tony and Steve meet midway. They decide to have Steve oversee the Act so the government doesn’t have the sole say on the matter.
A peaceful conversation doesn’t seem like an exciting ending, especially considering Civil war is one of Marvel’s biggest crossovers. However, he saved Steve from dying in jail, leaving the events in The death of Captain America impossible. This devastates Tony, who cries in front of Uatu as he realizes what could have been in the final pages of What if? Civil war.
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