The Watchers have been a part of the Marvel comic universe since Uatu’s first appearance in Fantastic Four # 13 in 1963, and now, they are prepared to look at the MCU in the same way. When Uatu the Observer – played by Jeffrey Wright – finally appears in What If? it will bring a certain dose of gravity to the series.
For those wondering why, and who Uatu the Watcher is, there is a lot of comics canon to draw on. After all, a Watcher can do much more than just watch, and Uatu and his people have a very interesting history.
10 not the first time the Watchmen appear in the MCU
As the Benatar bounced through too many jump points, crossing the universe at ridiculous speeds, they sped past a group of Observers, taking note of the one and only Stan Lee.
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Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 It marked the official introduction of the Watchmen and, with Ego, the film introduced the MCU audiences to a wider and more alien universe than they had ever seen before.
9 Uatu is the Man on the Moon
The moon seems to be a perfect place for a hidden alien to observe Earth, and that is exactly what Uatu does in the comics. Of course, the moon is much busier in the comics, with mutants and Inhumans living there from time to time, but with a few exceptions, Uatu’s base is usually quiet, allowing it to record events on Earth without disturbance.
From time to time he receives visitors. Reed Richards and Nick Fury have appeared – sometimes with dubious intentions – and several of his neighbors, such as the Inhumans, know him.
8 The Blue Wonder can make Uatu smile
When the Blue Wonder was struggling with his place as a supremely powerful hero and black man in America, he found a quiet place on the moon to vent. Uatu found him, angry and frustrated, and the two argued about what Uatu had seen in humanity and what the Blue Wonder had experienced.
Their friendship is so strong that the Blue Wonder occasionally calls Uatu “the Maker”, for his interference with humanity. The nickname makes the Watcher smile.
7 Uatu keeps his oath not to interfere, most of the time
Observers are charged with recording and witnessing, but must not interfere with, world events assigned to them. Uatu has defended this, even in the face of his own death, but was sometimes forced to try to intervene on behalf of humanity.
He projected fire and destruction on the planet to dissuade Galactus from eating the Earth. When that didn’t work, he tried to reason with the Eater of Worlds, and then helped them get the Ultimate Nullifier, the only weapon capable of stopping Galactus.
6 Uatu was tried for his ethical violations
Eventually, the other Observers found out what was happening on Earth, and Uatu had to face trial for his meddling. He admitted that the world he was watching seemed to be drawing him into his history and that he had developed an emotional bond with Earthlings.
He was released, but had to swear that he would never interfere again, despite his feelings. However, he did not fulfill his promise and was expelled from the Watchers society for a time. However, he never stopped guarding the Earth and was eventually reinstated.
5 The Watchers have been around for a long time
The Observers were the first intelligent species born in the universe. They learned very early that observing and recording the events of the universe was the best use of their power. His oath to just watch was born out of a first attempt to help another species, which led to its destruction.
These cosmic beings are part of the balance of the universe and often conflict with the Celestials, both races remain honest in their efforts.
4 Every universe has Watchers
Although there are some variations as to the existence of the Watchers and what they are from place to place, they exist in some form in all Marvel Universes. In the Ultimate universe, they were rock statues with glowing red eyes that recorded all the events of that universe.
They have also appeared in many Marvel animated series. There were three Watchers in the audience at Mojo’s Arena in Avengers Assemble.. Uatu was also part of the Big Heads supervillain convention in Super Hero Squad.
3 Uatu was assassinated
In the main continuity of 616, Uatu had a somewhat gray ending. After being attacked by various supervillains, including the Orb, his eye was gouged out. Uatu’s eyes store the information he has gathered from his observation. When he refused to reveal the identity of his attackers, Nick Fury killed him and removed his other eye.
This started the hunt for the murderer of Uatu, and the eventOriginal sin. Fury was punished by putting herself in Uatu’s place. The Council of Watchers gave Fury the remnants of Uatu’s powers and tied him to the Moon, making him the Invisible.
2 Uatu improved
Following a failed attempt by a plant race to take over the universe, their weapons were taken up and studied by the Avengers and the Fantastic Four. The Invisible – formally known as Nick Fury – also acquired some of the weaponry, for his own upbringing. The presence of that weapon triggered a change, and Uatu stepped out of the Watcher’s eye that had been given to Fury, alive again.
This is probably related to the Watchers’ power level. It has been said that they may wish to exist again after death through the powers of their minds.
1 He sees everything in the multiverse
Uatu does not limit himself to observing the only version of the Earth before him. He has been interested in all the forms that the Earth, and its inhabitants, takes throughout the multiverse, which makes him the perfect guide for the series What If? from Disney +.
In the past, Uatu has appeared to observe major events personally, and the resulting scenarios have been covered in the comic series. What If?, framed as Uatu records of these alternate universes. Sometimes these events even become canon of the main continuity.