Thanks to What If…? episode 3, the MCU has just set up an even larger war than the battle for the Infinity Stones and Thanos’ invasion of Earth. Loki has taken Earth in a last-ditch betrayal of Nick Fury, with whom he’d collaborated to bring down the traumatized, treacherous Hank Pym AKA Yellowjacket.
While the episode concludes with the suggestion of a brand-new Avengers team, there’s a lot more in that alternate reality that demands to be explored.
The MCU has been marked by major events and an increasing number of crossovers thus far. The first was the Battle of New York, followed by the admittedly brief Age of Ultron, a Civil War, an Infinity War, and an Endgame.
That’s not even taking into account the single-film and TV-show disasters and threats to the Earth (and cosmos) that were deemed too little for numerous heroes to intervene. The demand for the next big crossover event will grow as the MCU extends into the future with more new properties on the big screen and on Disney+.
The next MCU crossover might be Secret Wars. Or it could be the arrival of Galactus. Or a crossover between the X-Men and the Avengers. Alternatively, The Dark Avengers. The options are endless, but What If…? teased one that was grander than anything seen before, and served as a reminder of how much had to go right for Thanos in order for his own invasion in Infinity War to succeed.
Because Loki’s invasion would unite the heroes of the MCU with their villainous enemies, as well as several powerful factions who were taken out by the time Thanos’ Black Order landed in New York, the episode’s end, which sees Loki crowned, sets up a far bigger war than the Infinity Saga, because Loki’s invasion would unite the heroes of the MCU with their villainous enemies, as well as several powerful factions who were taken out by the time Thanos.
Loki’s army, which was more powerful than Thanos’ invasion force, would have encountered far more formidable foes in combat than the Mad Titan.
Loki has essentially just gained very powerful enemies by conquering Earth after claiming the throne of Earth at the end of What If…? episode 3. Even with Loki heading Asgard’s army, he’ll have to fight Odin (assuming he’s not on his regenerative nap schedule), who would not accept such an invasion on his favorite of the Nine Realms.
That would reintroduce Gungnir, the MCU’s most powerful weapon after the MCU had essentially forgotten about him. Given that Thanos and his army are still on the hunt for the Infinity Stones, Loki must also consider Thanos and his army.
There’s also the possibility of every Marvel villain with their own conquest agenda uniting with their enemies, led by Captain Marvel and Captain America – a smaller but potentially more powerful iteration than the Original Avengers – as well as the new Avengers, led by Captain Marvel and Captain America – a smaller but potentially more powerful iteration than the original Avengers.
Beyond that, Loki would have to deal with Wakanda’s whole military, even without Thanos halving their population, as well as the Ancient One and the Sorcerors, probably the most significant aspect in the entire War For Earth.
They wouldn’t have been thinned out by Kaecilius and Mordo at this point in history, and the combined might of the Ancient One’s followers would make for an epic battle.
What if Loki’s Asgardian army appeared in What If…? He could possibly command the armies and creatures of the Nine Realms if Odin backed him after Thor’s death (or in the absence of the All-Father), but the combined potential of each of his opponent factions would lead to amazing sights. The endgame would have appeared to be a skirmish.