Marvel Zombies are coming to Marvel's What If…? episode five. Marvel Studios confirmed as much by revealing two posters for the new episode. One shows zombie Captain America. The other reveals the zombified Hawkeye. Tweeting out the posters, the official What If…? account teased, "Assemble the undead. Zombies awaken in the fifth episode of Marvel Studios' #WhatIf, streaming Wednesday on @DisneyPlus." It is unclear what sparks the zombie apocalypse in this episode of What If…? -- What question could lead to this answer? -- but it is also expected to feature Spider-Man as a zombie hunter. You can see the two posters below.
This episode of Marvel's What If…? continues a tradition that began in the comics. Marvel Comics the five-issue Marvel Zombies miniseries in 2005 and 2006. The Walking Dead creator Robert Kirkman wrote the series, and Sean Phillips provided the artwork with covers by Arthur Suydam. The series spun out of Ultimate Fantastic Four, where the zombie Reed Richards tricked his Earth-1610 counterpart into opening a portal into the Marvel Zombies universe.
Marvel Zombies occurs on Earth-2149 in Marvel's multiverse. In that universe, the Sentry from a separate universe crash-landed and spread the zombie infection he carried amongst the other Marvel heroes, including the X-Men, Avengers, and Fantastic Four. These zombies retained their intelligence but were consumed by "the Hunger," driving them to devour flesh. As the story began, the heroes consumed all organic life and attempted to figure out a new food source.
Marvel Zombies proved successful enough to spawn a line of continuations and spinoffs. The book received five direct sequels and crossed over with Dynamite Entertainment's Army of Darkness comics in Marvel Zombies vs. Army of Darkness. Published spinoffs included Marvel Zombies: Dead Days, Marvel Zombies Return, Marvel Zombies: Evil Evolution, Marvel Zombies: Supreme, and Marvel Zombies: Destroy! The Marvel Zombies also appeared in Secret Wars via the Age of Ultron vs. Marvel Zombies series. In 2020, Marvel Comics revived the concept with Marvel Zombies: Resurrection by Phillip K. Johnson and Leonard Kirk (originally announced as Marvel Zombies: Respawn).
The Marvel Zombies episode of Marvel's What If…? follows last week's Doctor Strange episode, the darkest episode of the show thus far. Previously, the show explored worlds where Peggy Carter took the super-soldier serum, T'Challa became Star-Lord, and Nick Fury's big week went very differently.
Are you excited about Marvel Zombies? Let us know in the comments. New What If…? episodes debut on Wednesdays on Disney+.