Writer and executive producer, A.C. Bradley, confirms that one episode that was pitched for Marvel’s What If…? was inspired by The Office.
What If…? almost had an episode inspired by The Office, according to the series head writer and executive producer. What If…? will explore various stories in the Marvel multiverse, showing how differently certain plot lines in the MCU could have gone if one thing changed. The series is set to premiere on Disney+ on August 11, 2021, with the first episode focused on the story of what if Peggy Carter was given the super-soldier serum and became Captain Carter.
What If…? has teased a number of exciting stories for the series. The late Chadwick Boseman will voice T’Challa one last time in a story that imagines the young prince of Wakanda being abducted by the Ravengers instead of Peter Quill. The series will also feature a loose adaptation of the Marvel Zombies storyline from the comics. The writers pitched a number of episodes, one that had to be scrapped because it apparently was close to the plot of the upcoming Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 3.
According to What If…? series creator, A.C. Bradley, they had one idea that would have been a major departure from what people expect from Marvel superheroes. In an interview with Slashfilm, she said one of the pitches was inspired by the hit series The Office. It appears that the episode pitch didn’t make the lineup of episodes that audiences will see in the first two seasons. Read what Bradley said below:
“We played with different genres. We played with different storytelling. We’re like, ‘Should we do a heist movie?’ I think one discarded idea was, let’s do something in the vein of The Office.”
The original Office series aired on BBC Two from 2001 to 2003. In 2005, an American adaptation of the series aired on NBC and went on to become a pop-culture juggernaut and served as a launchpad for a number of comedic stars like Steve Carrell, Mindy Kaling, and Ed Helms just to name a few. It was also the breakout role for future A Quiet Place director, John Krasinski. The series finished its run in 2013 and since has become a cult favorite being a big viewer on Netflix and was used as one of the big titles to get people to sign up for Peacock. The style for The Office influenced an entire generation of television and comedy, and the easily recognizable nature of the program probably made it appealing to the producers of What If…?.
However, one reason The Office inspired What If…? may not have taken off as it may have been too similar to another Marvel Studios project. WandaVision featured homages and references to much classic television series, with the seventh episode, ‘Breaking the Fourth Wall,’ being a send-up to sitcoms of the late 2000s and 2010s such as Modern Family, Happy Endings, and of course, The Office. Because one Marvel television project was already referencing The Office, the studio probably wanted to avoid repeating themselves.
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