Agents of SHIELD Star Clark Gregg Hints at MCU Return In Marvel's What If...?

By Richard Nebens Updated:
Phil Coulson Marvel's What If...? Poster

Even as Marvel Studios gears up for the season finale of Loki next week and the premiere of Black Widow tomorrow, the team behind the MCU is always looking ahead. In the immediate future after the two aforementioned projects is Marvel’s first animated series in What If…?, which recently debuted its second official trailer.

Based on the events of the Infinity Saga’s 23 movies, this Disney+ show will look at what would have happened in the Marvel Cinematic Universe had key events played out differently. The new trailer highlighted more of these events, which includes Killmonger saving Tony Stark in the opening scene of Iron Man along with more of Chadwick Boseman’s T’Challa/Star-Lord leading the new take on the Ravagers.

Although Robert Downey Jr. won’t be voicing Tony Stark this time around, nearly every other MCU actor hopped in the voiceover booth to reprise the roles they’ve played for years. Even with so many characters teased in the first two trailers, one Marvel fan-favorite recently teased a return of his own.


Agents of SHIELD Avengers Endgame

Actor Clark Gregg, who played Agent Phil Coulson in a number of MCU Phase 1 movies like The Avengers before starring in ABC's Agents of SHIELD, took to Twitter to promote the recently released poster for Marvel Studios' What If...? animated series.

After a Marvel fan jokingly replied that they'll "die if we get an Agent Coulson appearance" in the multiverse-centric Disney+ show, Gregg responded with a simple "please don't," indicating that a return in the Marvel Studios anthology show is likely.

Gregg shared the trailer on his Facebook page and teased that "you never know who might show up."

"Enter the multiverse of unlimited possibilities. Marvel Studios' first animated series, What If...?, starts streaming August 11 with new episodes Wednesdays on @DisneyPlus. You never know who might show up."


Clark Gregg has numerous MCU appearances under his belt mostly in Phase 1, establishing Phillip J. Coulson as a household name in the process.

The unexpected fan-favorite brought the SHIELD agent to life in the first two Iron Man movies and 2011's Thor before Loki murdered him in The Avengers. He proceeded to headline Marvel's Agents of SHIELD for seven years on ABC, although the show is largely not seen as canon with the larger MCU. His latest canonical storyline mark came in the Captain Marvel movie from 2019, set in the 1990s.

Given What If...? is set to tackle the events of the Infinity Saga, it would seemingly be a crime to not include Gregg's hero, who played a key role in five of the MCU's first 23 outings. With Samuel L. Jackson's Nick Fury seeing some shine in the show's first trailer, it seems almost certain that fans will see Coulson alongside him when their episodes arrive.

Although Coulson's potential story in What If...? is still a mystery, it will be exciting to see him come back after helping kick the MCU off alongside Downey and Jackson in 2008's Iron Man. Whatever those details turn out to be, MCU fans everywhere can look forward to Gregg's wit and dry sense of humor alongside a wild new universe of heroes.

What If...? is set to premeire on Disney+ on August 11, 2021. 

- In This Article: What If...? (Season 2)
Release Date
December 22, 2023
Jeffrey Wright
- About The Author: Richard Nebens
Richard Nebens joined The Direct in March 2020, now serving as the site's Senior Writer and also working as an assistant editor and content creator. He started his journalism career as a hobby in 2019 and is passionate about sharing news and stories from the entertainment industry, especially comic book movies, comedy, and sci-fi. Richard looks to expand his knowledge about movies and TV every day, and he is eager to stay locked into the latest releases and breaking news at every opportunity.
- Follow Us: