Episode 7 of Marvel’s What If…? tells a fun story featuring Chris Hemsworth’s Thor, filled with plenty of hijinks, cameos, and one epic fight sequence.
It’s a little ironic that in last week’s review of What If…? ‘s Episode 6, I expressed hope for more welcome returns of characters outside of the main MCU players, and Marvel manages to deliver that in Episode 7. Without going too deep into spoilers, there are a lot of characters that show up to Thor’s (Chris Hemsworth) party on Earth. Some of these characters have already appeared in previous episodes of What If…?, but there are other appearances that I wasn’t expecting. In all likelihood, I probably didn’t even catch all of the cameos after watching Episode 7 twice. If you’re an MCU fan, the cameos will delight you; if not, they won’t take away from the story. The so-called “Party Thor” episode, as the internet dubbed it, wasn’t one that I was particularly excited for, but my mind changed pretty quick. Hemsworth’s charm as Thor is as strong as ever, and that, along with some early jokes, drew me in before I even knew what was happening. Episode 7 of What If…? has a really fun story from start to finish, one that is filled with hijinks, the aforementioned cameos, and one amazing fight sequence.
Episode 7 features what is without a doubt the simplest premise for a What If…? episode to date. Uatu, also known as The Watcher (Jeffrey Wright), presents the viewers with a universe where Loki (Tom Hiddleston) was returned to the Frost Giants as a baby rather than adopted by King Odin of Asgard, and thus never grew up with Thor. Years later, Thor is an only child; his father, Odin, has entered into a state of Odinsleep to recharge his powers, and his mother, Frigga, is leaving for a solstice. With both of his parents gone, Thor, also known as the “Party Prince”, journeys to Earth in order to throw the biggest party in the universe.
Despite Episode 7 of What If…? having a rather simple premise, the universe we’re presented with feels natural and authentic. It’s very believable that, without Loki as his brother, Thor would fall down a path where he’s even less capable of handling his duties as the God of Thunder. After all, when we first meet him in Thor (2011), he’s young and arrogant. While he might not be unworthy of wielding his hammer Mjölnir, as he was when his father Odin banished him to earth in that film, this new version of Thor is definitely more immature when he arrives on earth. The authenticity has never been better, with Chris Hemsworth and several MCU players reprising their roles. Even if they have the smallest of roles, hearing these familiar voices once again make this new universe feel like an extension of the MCU that we know, a part of a multiverse, if you will.
This doesn’t mean that the replacement actors are bad by any means. The character that writer A.C. Bradley chose to play the sort of antagonist to Thor in Episode 7 of What If…? isn’t voiced by their original MCU actor, and the replacement does very well in the role. The antagonist is also involved in an awesome fight sequence with Thor that is the best one the series has offered thus far. It’s one that will definitely get a lot of people talking as well. The animation during said fight sequence is beautiful, and the visuals help you to see the impact of every hit during the fight. Even though the characters aren’t bleeding, they’re going at each other very hard and the visuals of their hits reflect that.
The story told in Episode 7 is filled with the most hijinks to date, which is fitting for an episode in which Thor throws an intergalactic party on earth. There’s a particular small subplot involving two characters that I love that I won’t spoil here, but I’ll just say that I thought it was perfect and hilarious. Writer A.C. Bradley balances the comedy and overall story really well. Sometimes Marvel can get a little too joke-happy, which hurts the story they are trying to tell. In What If…? ‘s Episode 7, the jokes don’t take away from the story, and since the main plot revolves around a party, they actually manage to add to it. Even though this sort of story (someone throws a party while their parents are away) has been done before by others, we’ve never seen Marvel do anything like it. By building the story around Thor throwing this party and including a wonderful cast of MCU characters that do and don’t attend, What If…? ‘s Episode 7 creates an original story that only Marvel can tell.
Despite my expectations being low, Episode 7 of Marvel’s What If…? is a wonderful surprise. It tells a fun story filled with a ton of hijinks, surprise cameos that will delight fans, and a stellar fight sequence which is sure to get people talking. Honestly, I didn’t think that something this good could come from such a simple premise, and I’m more than happy to be proven wrong.
What If…?‘s Episode 7 is now available to watch on Disney Plus.