WHAT IF…? Season 2 Christmas Episode Review – A Festive Delight and Marvelous Homage to the Genre

What If...? Season 2

Marvel Studios’ What If…? Season 2 has outdone itself with its Christmas episode, a brilliantly creative homage to the action classic Die Hard. This festive foray is not just a seasonal treat; it’s a showcase of Marvel’s ability to blend genre influences with its superhero universe, resulting in an episode that is as entertaining as it is innovative.

Holidays, Homages, and Happiness

What If...? Season 2

From the get-go, the episode exudes a Die Hard-esque vibe, masterfully mixing the tension and thrill of action with the warm, fuzzy feelings of the holiday season. The clever references and nods to the genre are not just superficial; they are woven into the narrative, making the episode a respectful tribute to the films that have inspired it. The festive setting of the Avengers Tower, under siege in a manner reminiscent of Nakatomi Plaza, sets the stage for an exhilarating adventure.

RELATED: Marvel Studios’ WHAT IF…? Season 2 Explores Uncharted Territories in the MCU Multiverse

This Christmas episode is more than a seasonal special; it’s a testament to the endless possibilities that lie within the MCU. By embracing different genres and styles, What If…? demonstrates Marvel’s capacity for storytelling that is both diverse and engaging. This episode opens the door for future explorations into various genres, promising a future where the MCU can continually reinvent and surprise its audience.

Every Name on This List is Nice

What If...? Season 2

Jon Favreau as Happy Hogan is an absolute delight. In this episode, he gets a chance to shine brighter than ever, showcasing Happy’s resourcefulness and heart. Favreau’s performance captures the essence of Happy’s character – a blend of earnestness, loyalty, and unexpected heroism. His chemistry with the rest of the cast, especially Kat Dennings’ Darcy, adds a layer of charm and humor that is essential to the episode’s success.

Speaking of Dennings, her return as Darcy Lewis is a highlight. Her quirky, witty portrayal of the character fits seamlessly into the festive chaos of the episode. Dennings brings a sense of fun and intelligence to Darcy, making her a perfect counterbalance to the more action-oriented elements of the story. The dynamic between Darcy and Happy adds a heartwarming touch to the episode, further enhancing its appeal.

RELATED: WHAT IF…? Season 2 Surprise: Michael Douglas Returns as Hank Pym in an Alternate 1980s Avengers Line-up

Sam Rockwell’s return to the MCU as Justin Hammer is nothing short of spectacular. He brings the same charisma and flair that made him a standout in Iron Man 2‘ elevating every scene he’s in. His portrayal of Hammer in this alternate universe retains the character’s essence while perfectly fitting into the unique narrative of this episode. Rockwell’s performance is a reminder of how versatile and compelling Marvel’s roster of characters can be under new and imaginative circumstances.

This Gift Opens Up Endless Possibilities

WHAT IF...?, Season 2
Tony Stark/Iron Man in Marvel Studios’ WHAT IF…?, Season 2 exclusively on Disney+. © 2023 MARVEL.

The Christmas episode of What If…? Season 2 is a triumph. It’s a perfect blend of homage, creativity, and Marvel charm. With standout performances from Sam Rockwell, Jon Favreau, and Kat Dennings, and a storyline that skillfully pays tribute to Die Hard, and so many things Favreau, this episode is a must-watch for both Marvel fans and lovers of great storytelling. Marvel Studios once again proves that its universe has limitless potential, and I, for one, can’t wait to see what they come up with next.

RELATED: Marvel’s WHAT IF..? Season 2 Introduces New Groundbreaking Native Hero: Kahhori’s Story and Impact

For being the perfect gift to Marvel fans, I give the What If…? Season 2 Christmas Episode a


Marvel Studios’ What If…? Season 2 premieres on December 22, 2023, exclusively on Disney+. A new episode will be released each day for the remainder of 2023, ending with the ninth and final episode of the season on December 31, 2022.

About Marvel Studios’ What If…?

Marvel Studios What If

Season 2 Release Date: December 22, 2023 (1 New Episode each day, with the season finale on December 31, 2022)
Directed by: Bryan Andrews (S1)
Head Writer: AC Bradley (S1)
Executive Producers: Brad Winderbaum, Kevin Feige, Louis D’Esposito, Victoria Alonso, Bryan
Andrews, AC Bradley
Production Company: Marvel Studios

MCU Stars Reprising Roles (S1): Andy Serkis, Angela Bassett, Benedict Cumberbatch, Benedict Wong, Benicio Del Toro, Bradley Whitford, Carrie Coon, Chadwick Boseman, Chris Hemsworth, Chris Sullivan, Clancy Brown, Clark Gregg, Cobie Smulders, Danai Gurira, David Dastmalchian, Djimon Hounsou, Dominic Cooper, Don Cheadle, Emily VanCamp, Evangeline Lilly, Frank Grillo, Georges St-Pierre, Hayley Atwell, Jaimie Alexander, Jeff Goldblum, Jeremy Renner, John Kani, Jon Favreau, Josh Brolin, Karen Gillan, Kat Dennings, Kurt Russell, Leslie Bibb, Mark Ruffalo, Michael B. Jordan, Michael Douglas, Michael Rooker, Natalie Portman, Neal McDonough, Ophelia Lovibond, Paul Bettany, Paul Rudd, Rachel House, Rachel McAdams, Samuel L. Jackson, Sean Gunn, Sebastian Stan, Seth Green, Stanley Tucci, Taika Waititi, Tilda Swinton, Toby Jones, Tom Hiddleston and Tom Vaughan-Lawlor.

Season two of “What If…?” continues the journey as The Watcher (voice of Jeffrey Wright) guides viewers through the vast Multiverse, introducing brand-new and familiar faces from the MCU. The series questions, revisits and twists classic Marvel Cinematic Universe moments with an incredible
voice cast that includes a host of stars who reprise their iconic roles.

Season two features fan-favorite characters this season like Nebula, Hela and Happy Hogan, episodes are directed by Bryan Andrews (eps 2-9) and Stephan Franck (ep 1) and written by AC Bradley (eps 3, 4, 5, 8), Matthew Chauncey (eps 1-3, 7, 9) and Ryan Little (eps 6, 8). The animated series is executive produced by Brad Winderbaum, Kevin Feige, Louis D’Esposito, Victoria Alonso, Bryan Andrews and AC Bradley. The animated series begins streaming on Disney+ on Dec. 22—with a new episode debuting nightly for nine nights.

Does this episode of What If…? count as a Christmas episode? What does that mean for Die Hard as a Christmas movie? How excited are you to see the return of Justin Hammer? Let us know your thoughts on the episode and talk to us about anything you want about the series on Discord!

KEEP READING: WHAT IF…? Season 2 Throws Happy Hogan and Darcy Take the Spotlight in an Incredible Christmas Episode


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Kevin Fenix

Professional Nerd | Amateur Human | Creative/Content Director The best way to describe Kevin Fenix is the kid you never tell what the buttons do in video games so you have a chance to win. Being 6’ 4” and Asian, he never really fit in, so he got comfortable standing out. Not only is it easy to find him in crowds, he dabbles in the culinary arts, does a little stand up and improv, and can honestly say Spider-Man is the Jesus-like influence of his life. Kevin Fenix loves dogs, movies, television, comics, comedy, and to shoot people… with video.