WHAT IF EPISODE 5 SPOILERS AHEAD, FAVOURITE THIS POST AND COME BACK LATER IF YOU HAVE NOT SEEN THE EPISODE YET!
Episode 5 of What If…? was possibly the fandoms most anticipated because it was all about our favourite Avengers becoming zombies!
Now, the hype wasn’t just because zombies are rather cool – it’s also because this episode is a direct adaption of a series of comics Marvel have been releasing over the last decade or so.
But, the thing is, is that a lot of the Marvel Zombies stories were published out of order, so trying to attempt to read this series can be very confusing.
I’m here with the actual, chronological reading order, so let’s get into it!
The Marvel Zombies come face-to-face with Dynamite Entertainment’s Ash from the Army of Darkness! Ash has faced legions of the undead before, but never like this. See how his actions help turn more heroes and villains into Zombies! Under the watchful eye of Marvel Zombie guru Robert Kirkman, this might just be the comic event of 2007.
The start of the Zombie virus! This also features Ash from Evil Dead/Army Of Darkness from the publisher Dynamite Entertainment, so I’d recommend looking that up so you have a basic idea of who he is first.
At last – experience the birth of the Marvel Zombies as told by the creative team of the best-selling limited series, and then witness their rise as they attempt to slake their hunger across two universes! First, Kirkman and Phillips pull out all the stops as they reveal the secret story of the day the Marvel Heroes became brain-eating monsters in Marvel Zombies: Dead Days! Next, follow the Marvel Zombies into the pages of Millar and Land’s Ultimate Fantastic Four! When Reed Richards uses his scientific genius to contact an Earth in a surprisingly familiar parallel dimension, nothing could have prepared him for the world he’s about to enter! And when the zombiefied FF escape from their Baxter Building prison in the wake of Dr. Doom’s return, get ready for the deadly debut of the Frightful Four! Finally, in Hudlin and Portela’s Black Panther, the mainstream Marvel Universe’s New Fantastic Four just made a wrong turn on the dimensional super highway, and they’ve landed in the middle of Zombie-verse!
This bind up features the original origin for Marvel Zombies, and is definitely essential reading when it comes to this event!
On an Earth shockingly similar to the Marvel Universe’s, an alien virus has mutated all of the world’s greatest super heroes into flesh-eating monsters! It took them only hours to destroy life as we know it – but what happens when they run out of humans to eat?
The main run – featuring all of your favourite Avengers as they hunt down some human flesh to eat!
In the aftermath of Civil War, the Black Panther and Storm take up temporary residence in the Baxter Building while Reed Richards and Sue Storm attend to important personal business. Can a team-up with the Thing and the Human Torch be far behind? It’s clobberin’ time.
This mainly focuses on T’Challa and Storm post Civil War, but still contains tie-ins to Marvel Zombies, so it’s still a good one to read.
Forty years have passed and the zombies have come back home after eating just about everything else in the universe. Yum yum! What awaits them back on Earth, though, is beyond anything even these shambling monstrosities could have conceived! The Marvel characters that became last year’s unexpected smash hit are back and more stomach-churning than ever! Plus: At last – witness the birth of the Marvel Zombies! Kirkman and Phillips pull out all the stops as they reveal the secret story of the day the Marvel Heroes became brain-eating monsters! Want to see the Avengers eat Jarvis? You won’t get that in New Avengers, effendi!
Carrying on the main storyline from Marvel Zombies 1.
They’re back! What happened to Spider-Man, Colonel America, Power Man, Giant-Man, and Wolverine at the end of Marvel Zombies 2? Where were they transported to… and, more importantly, when? A frightening five-part event shambles to life here, penned by resident (evil) Marvel Zombies 3 and 4 scribe Fred Van Lente and three of today’s hottest novelists of zombie fiction!
The final part to the main Marvel Zombies run!
An Alternative Read
Now, this is a long series, and there’s a lot of crossovers and tie ins on top of what’s already been stated here (let me know if you want that list too!) and to be honest, it all got very confusing and was a bit all over the place. So, Marvel decided to do a reboot with:
When Galactus’ corpse appears at the edge of Earth’s solar system, the Avengers, X-Men and Fantastic Four investigate. Too late, they discover that Galactus’ body is now the vessel of an interstellar terror, which one by one transforms Earth’s Mightiest Heroes into the universe’s most terrifying predators! As our heroes try to escape the super powered, cannibalistic aberrations that were once their friends and family, will any survive? And even if they do, can they hope to protect Earth from the infestation that has already claimed half of the known universe?
This is an entirely new story, which completely restarts the Marvel Zombies storyline and proceeds to go down an entirely different path compared to the original. So, if you want to skip over the confusing Marvel Zombies run, or just want a break from the more confusing tie-ins, then this is perfect.
And that’s my Marvel Zombies reading order! I hope this helped, and, like I said above, if you want me to do a part two to this where I go into all the spin offs and tie-ins, please do let me know down in the comments!