What If...? Director Reacts To Captain Carter's Death In Multiverse Of Madness [Comic-Con]

Before "Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness" debuted, fans speculated that the MCU's first foray into the multiverse would be a chance to cover some ground previously tread in the pages of Marvel Comics, exploring variations of pre-existing characters and the alternate realities they populate. It turned out that the Sam Raimi-directed flick had something much more shocking and less crowd-pleasing up its sleeve: Introducing some of those long-awaited variations, but then killing them off pretty much instantly.

In one of the film's most epic but polarizing scenes, Wanda Maximoff (Elizabeth Olsen) is introduced to the Illuminati, a team of Avengers-like heroes on Earth-838 led by Professor Xavier (Patrick Stewart). It's seemingly a moment of triumph for MCU fans, introducing an impressive line-up of cameos and surprise reveals that includes John Krasinski's Reed Richards, Hayley Atwell's Captain Carter, and more. Then Scarlet Witch slaughters them all. In really creative and visually wild ways.

Luckily, this wasn't actually the first time Peggy Carter got to take up her own version of the Captain America shield: She also appears in Marvel's alternate timeline animated series "What If...?" Today at San Diego Comic-Con, the team behind "What If...?" appeared during the Marvel Animation panel and weighed in on Peggy's surprise live-action multiverse appearance. Panelists included Ryan Meinerding, head of visual development at Marvel Studios, A.C. Bradley, who created "What If...?", and Bryan Andrews, who directed the series.

The other Carter would've won

During the panel, someone asked the group what it was like to see Captain Carter come alive in a live-action MCU film, and Meinerding revealed that he thought Atwell's cameo was "pretty awesome." After asking the audience how they felt about the Captain Carter appearance and getting cheers in response, the exec had only positive things to say about the actor playing the superhero:

"Hayley Atwell's amazing. We love the fact that she's able to come back to our show, for the first season and also for the second season. She loves the character, she is the character. Seeing her in live-action was incredible. But I think it's also fun to point out that that's not our Captain Carter, that's some other variant version."

This led to some playful smack talk from the "What If...?" team, as Andrews added, "Our Captain Carter would not have gone out like that." It's probably true: In the show's first episode, viewers saw an alternate timeline in which Peggy took the supersoldier serum instead of Steve Rogers, leading to her becoming a major hero and ultimately going 70 years into the future just like her counterpart. While season 2 of the anthology series hasn't debuted yet, it's pretty clear that "Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness" let Scarlet Witch harness a hero-killing power most other villains haven't gotten because the infinite nature of the multiverse meant these deaths weren't a huge deal in the long run.

Still, Andrews and Meinerding are pretty clear about which Peggy holds the power: "She would have kicked Wanda's **s," Andrews told the crowd, to which Meinerding added, "It would have been her movie. 'Peggy Carter in the Multiverse of Madness.'" Hey, I'd watch that.