What If… Killmonger Rescued Tony Stark? | Transcript

Killmonger rescues Tony Stark when his Humvee is attacked in Afghanistan and manipulates his influence for his designs of conquering Wakanda.
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What If... Killmonger Rescued Tony Stark?

Season 1 Episode 6
Original release date: September 15, 2021

In Afghanistan, Tony Stark is ambushed by the Ten Rings, but is saved by Erik “Killmonger” Stevens. They return to Stark Industries, where Killmonger exposes Obadiah Stane’s involvement in the ambush before helping Stark build a humanoid combat drone using vibranium. Needing more vibranium to create a drone army, they arrange for James Rhodes to purchase it from Ulysses Klaue. At Killmonger’s behest, Klaue leaks word of the transaction to Wakanda to lure in T’Challa. Killmonger kills both T’Challa and Rhodes, staging it as if they killed each other. Stark confronts Killmonger, but he kills him and makes it look like a Wakandan attack. Killmonger then kills Klaue and reunites with his relatives in Wakanda. Thaddeus Ross sends the drone army to attack Wakanda, but Killmonger helps the Wakandans stop them, becoming the new Black Panther. As the United States plans another attack, T’Challa’s sister Shuri visits Pepper Potts, who was suspicious of Killmonger, and proposes an alliance to expose the truth.

* * *

WATCHER: Time.

Space.

Reality.

It’s more than a linear path.

It’s a prism of endless possibility.

Where a single choice can branch out into infinite realities,

creating alternate worlds from the ones you know.

I am the Watcher.

I am your guide through these vast new realities.

Follow me

and ponder the question…

“What if?”

Every journey has a beginning,

but change one step along the way,

and you could end up at a very different destination.

Come on. It’s okay. Laugh. Hey!

(CHUCKLES) Is it cool if I take a picture with you?

Yes, it’s very cool. Please, no gang signs.

No, throw it up. I’m kidding.

Yeah, peace. I love peace. I’d be out of a job with peace.

(ALL EXCLAIM)

RAMIREZ: Contact left!

Jimmy, stay with Stark!

(GRUNTS)

(STARK GASPS)

Wait, wait, wait. Give me a gun.

Stay here.

(JIMMY GRUNTS)

(BREATHING HEAVILY)

(MISSILE WHISTLES)

(EXPLOSION)

(EXCLAIMS)

(MISSILE WHISTLES)

(EXPLOSION)

(GRUNTS)

(GASPS)

(MISSILE BEEPING)

(GRUNTS)

That was a spectacular entrance, seriously.

The Ten Rings have reinforcements en route. Let’s move.

Fine by me, Lieutenant Killmonger? What is that?

German?

A nickname.

(GUNSHOTS)

That’s clearly a good fit. I see where they got it.

Uh, what’s your afternoon like?

Heroes are not born, they’re forged in darkness.

Shaped in battle.

Defined by sacrifice.

And I am Iron Man.

Without Tony Stark’s fateful capture in Afghanistan,

the Age of Iron Man would never come to pass.

Though the man was saved, a hero was lost,

and a villain was given a new chance.

Mr. Stark, were you injured in the attack?

No, but I did spill my drink, and it was a ’26 Macallan,

so I’m pretty sure that’s a war crime.

Excuse me, sir. Harry Whittington, British Post.

Did you learn any lessons from your time in Afghanistan?

I did. Never travel anywhere that doesn’t have a Four Seasons.

(INDISTINCT SHOUTING)

FEMALE REPORTER: Mr. Stark, has this experience changed you?

Well, I saw young Americans killed by the very weapons I created

to protect them. And I realized we have to do better,

build bigger, and fight badder for them.

Which is why I’m bringing in Lieutenant Erik Stevens,

the Navy SEAL who saved my life,

as Stark Industries’ new chief security officer.

This a load of bull. That was supposed to be my promotion.

(CROWD APPLAUDING)

(CAMERAS FLASHING)

All right! Tony’s back, huh?

Lieutenant. Lieutenant. Christine Everhart.

I think we’re done here.

What is it you were doing in the Kunar province?

Uh, saving me. Pretty sure we went over this.

It’s just strange. Since on the day of the attack,

his unit was stationed 400 klicks away.

If you’re trying to imply that he had advanced knowledge of the attack…

She’d be right. I uncovered plans to assassinate Tony Stark

while on a deep cover operation inside the Ten Rings.

(CHUCKLES NERVOUSLY) Whoa! Whoa! Well, there you have it, folks.

That’s going to be a wrap on this conversation.

Yeah. Yeah, you’d like that, wouldn’t you?

Because those plans were bankrolled by Stark Industry COO Obadiah Stane.

(ALL GASP)

Tony, I…

(CHUCKLING NERVOUSLY) I don’t know what this kid’s talking about.

Let’s get outta here and work through this.

No, no, don’t you worry about that. I brought receipts.

Wire transfers, bank documents, phone records.

Google it. I just dropped it all online.

(ALL GASP)

I knew it.

Tony…

You son of a… Security!

Oh, man.

(GRUNTS)

(OBADIAH GROANS)

(PANTS)

Ah. I never liked that guy.

I’ll say this for the new guy, he certainly makes for good TV. Right?

STARK: Terrorists, corporate raiders, Maxim cover models.

What do they all have in common?

They came for the king.

And they missed.

I owe it all to you.

And that’s why I want you by my side 24-7 as my new COO.

Wait. You’re giving him Obadiah’s job?

Damn, I don’t know, Mr. Stark. I think I’m more of a soldier.

Which is why it’s perfect. You, me. We’ll be like Butch and Sundance.

They died at the end, Tony.

Okay, bad example.

Fact remains, I need a killer. Figurative one, of course.

But, hey, a literal one can’t hurt either.

(UPBEAT MUSIC PLAYING ON SPEAKERS)

To killers.

(CHUCKLES) Yeah.

You’re Butch. I’m Sundance. Just so we’re clear.

(INDISTINCT CHATTER)

So, Colonel Rhodes, what can you tell me about our knight in shining camouflage?

Graduated Annapolis at 19, MIT a year later.

Made quite a name for himself since joining the SEALs

as part of an elite ghost squad that specializes in high-target wetwork.

PEPPER: Please tell me that’s plumbing.

Assassinations.

Jeez. Glad I asked for clarification.

I’d say he’s done pretty good for a kid from Oakland.

I mean, what’s your concern, Pepper? Other than the killing part.

Lot of people come around looking to get their moment in the sun with Tony Stark,

and it’s my job to sniff out exactly what it is they want with him.

And what do you smell?

Nothing.

And that’s the problem. Everyone wants something.

STARK: Welcome to Candy Land. I built everything in here myself.

Well, except for the Lambo. That’s 3D printed.

KILLMONGER: Oh, man. Repulsor tech?

Trying to miniaturize the Jericho into a portable firearm.

(GRUNTS) Bet she pops.

Easy, killer. I come in peace.

What did your old man used to say? Ah. That’s right.

“Peace means having a bigger stick than the other guy.”

Hey, play nice. He’s a friend.

Lot of good it did dear old Dad. What about you?

You close with yours?

Nah.

He died, too. Gang violence.

Weapons in the wrong hands. Wish no one had to fire them at all.

For real. Then again…

Ah, forget it.

What?

It’s just my doctoral thesis.

I developed plans for an automated combat drone.

Thought I was going to make human soldiers obsolete.

But I could never crack the interface.

‘Cause you didn’t have me. Let’s do this.

Let’s build your science fair project.

You saved my life. I’d like to return the favor.

Jarvis, search the MIT doctoral thesis database.

Project…

Liberator.

You’ve got an ear for branding. I’ll give you that.

(TRILLS, HUMS)

Wow. Uh, bold design choice.

What? I like anime.

Worst-case scenario, we’ll end up with the world’s most expensive Gundam model.

Jarvis, case the warehouse.

We’re gonna need FPV wiring, nanocircuitry,

and Bloody Marys. Hangover’s starting to kick in.

(UPBEAT MUSIC PLAYING)

STARK: Human pilots mean human error, but with Jarvis at the wheel,

drones can react to stimuli in real-time and no one needs to lift a finger.

(POWERS UP)

Operations test. Stark Liberator drone mark one, showtime.

It’s only a failure if it explodes.

Okay, that changes things.

JARVIS: It appears the drone’s regulating processor is over-clocked.

You know, we need another power source.

Hey. Hey. If we could miniaturize an arc reactor…

No, that’s a dumb idea.

What we need is Vibranium.

With the right juice, it can act as a self-sustaining energy source.

Yeah. Now you’re thinking.

Too bad Pops used up the last of it during the war.

Hmm. Not all of it.

(TRILLING)

Where did you get this?

This kind of stuff pops up all over the globe.

You need the right hook up.

I might have just the guy.

Ulysses Klaue? No, Tony. Absolutely not.

Are you allowed to say that to people in my tax bracket?

Tony, in case you forgot,

Stark Industries doesn’t fraternize with black market arms dealers.

She’s right, Tony. I agree.

Wait. What?

Things go south, shareholders are gonna flip.

Unless we secure some kind of diplomatic cover.

We send Rhodey. There. He’s U.S. Air Force,

and he’s the company’s military liaison. We are all aboveboard.

I think that’s a great idea.

Excellent. I’s dotted, T’s crossed. Pep, drop the purchase order.

KLAUE: Break out the fine China.

Not every day the Americans get down in the muck with the likes of me.

Can’t clean up the world without getting your hands dirty.

Oh! That is good. You should stitch that on a pillow.

KILLMONGER: Ugh! This guy will run his mouth all day.

Tell him you want to see the product.

So, about that Vibranium?

Oh. Oh. No foreplay, eh? (CHUCKLES)

You know what? It’s a waste of time anyway.

Dora Milaje spear.

Bought it off the black market for ten mil. Steep, I know. But…

Please, Tony spends $10 million on a slow Tuesday in Vegas.

Good. (CHUCKLES)

Now that I know you mean business, we can move on to the good stuff.

(CHUCKLES SOFTLY)

(DOOR WHIRRS)

Uh…

Where did you find all this?

What’s going on here? We’ve been breached.

Find them and light them up.

Killmonger, you got eyes on this? Killmonger!

(MAN SCREAMS)

WOMAN: Sector four to sector one.

Sector four to sector one.

RHODES: Killmonger, on comms. Are you seeing this?

(MERCENARIES GRUNTING)

(GRUNTS, SCREAMS)

(GASPS)

(MERCENARIES GRUNTING)

(GROANS)

Our quarrel is not with you, Colonel.

Oh, really? ‘Cause you’re sending me mixed messages.

Let me take the Vibranium back where it belongs.

KILLMONGER: Sorry, cuz. That’s ain’t gonna fly.

(SONIC BLAST THROBBING)

(BOTH GROANING)

(SCREAMS)

(BOTH GROANING)

Really wish it didn’t have to go down like this.

(YELLS)

Stark R and D is no joke. The sonic taser thing is legit.

But this…

(DOOR THUDS)

This I’m really feeling.

RHODES: Erik, why?

(BREATHING HEAVILY)

Better question. Why wear the uniform of your own oppressors?

Fight for them? Die for them?

Kid, you’ve gotta be part of the system to change the system.

Nah. You can burn it down.

(GRUNTS AND GASPS)

KLAUE: Ooh! (CHUCKLING)

My, my, my. I would not want to play chess with you, my friend.

I leaked word of the sale to the Wakandan War Dogs.

And it all played out just as you predicted it would.

(WHISTLES)

We better load up the product. The Dora’ll be here soon.

(SOMBER MUSIC PLAYING)

T’CHAKA ON TV: We will not sit idly by while our resources are pillaged,

our people killed at the hands of American imperialists.

KILLMONGER: Hey, Tony. Brought you a souvenir.

What, airport gift shop out of Toblerones?

So you’ve been watching the news?

We lost one of our own. Let’s show the world who’s boss.

And just who is the boss, Lieutenant?

Last I checked, your name’s on the building.

And the paper trail. You certainly saw to that.

But not to everything.

Word to the wise. Never play Clue with Jarvis. He sees all.

Go ahead, call the cops. Still won’t get here in time to save you.

Yeah, well, police are the law. I want justice.

You? You never lifted a finger in your life.

You gonna ask Pepper to come and kill me?

Yeah, probably not. But there’s no need. I melted down that ring of yours.

(WHIRRING)

You were right. Vibranium worked like a charm.

(KILLMONGER GROANS)

What do you say? To killers?

Whoa, he’s got your number, am I right?

You forget you programmed the drone yourself? Your moves are his moves.

I guess I have to freestyle, then.

(THRILLING MUSIC PLAYING)

(GROANS)

(STARK BREATHING HEAVILY)

Each one is for a kill. Believe it or not, Tony,

I was really hoping you wouldn’t make the cut.

(EXHALES HEAVILY)

For a minute, I really thought it was you and me against the world.

We’re not fighting the same battles, Tony.

(GROANS)

Two gear-head orphans trying to do right by our fathers?

We sound the same to me.

The difference between you and me…

(STARK GROANS)

Is that you can’t see the difference between you and me.

(GASPS)

(SINISTER MUSIC PLAYING)

Vibranium spear. Wakandan issue. Definite hit job.

The Wakandans sent a message.

Not a very subtle one.

How did none of this get captured on security?

Jarvis was wiped clean. Conveniently.

What are you implying, Pepper?

I don’t know, three murders in two days, and one man at the center?

You are talking to a highly decorated Naval officer.

It’s cool, General. Cut the lady some slack.

Her and Tony were tight.

What’s the next move?

They want a war, so that’s what we’ll give ’em.

Put the Liberator drones into production.

Okay, hold on. That’ll require a multi-billion-dollar allocation.

The board will need to be consulted.

The Patriot Act should cover the red tape.

The U.S. Military is hereby seizing control of all Stark Industries assets.

(SCOFFS) You must be joking.

GENERAL ROSS: No one has ever accused me of being funny, Miss Potts.

We’re at war. You work for me now.

(DRAMATIC MUSIC PLAYING)

Congratulations, Lieutenant. You just invented 21st century warfare.

KLAUE: Oh! That is…

Yes! Yes! Yes!

Oh, I’m glad to see my Vibranium’s been put to good use.

Yeah, and I’m just getting started. How about a road trip?

You telling me this is it?

Wakandans are full of surprises.

(FORCE SHIELD HUMMING)

(INSECTS TRILLING)

Wakanda.

I found it, Dad.

KLAUE: Hey! Hey, boy! (WHISTLES) Come on. We better get going.

Not looking to meet the business end

of one of their spears, if you know what I mean.

Savages.

(ENGINE STARTS)

It’s like you said. Wakandans are full of surprises.

(BIRDS CHIRPING)

(ALL GRUNT)

I come with a gift. An offering of justice.

For I am N’Jadaka, son of Prince N’Jobu.

RAMONDA: What is this foolishness?

N’Jobu sired no children!

We were led to believe that. I let us believe that.

We are at war,

he is still an American soldier. What does he know of our people?

These are my people too, cousin.

I brought you the man who stole your Vibranium

and murdered your people as proof of my loyalty to Wakanda.

You have the eyes of your father.

He used to tell me stories about you.

About watching the sunset from the top of Mount Bashenga with his brother.

I shared the same story with my own son.

I spent my whole life searching for my home.

Rest easy, nephew. You are home.

But there’s no time to rest, Uncle. War is here.

The drones are made up of Vibranium alloy.

Just like your weapons. Almost indestructible.

Oh, please. They’re built by Americans. We’ll be home in time for lunch.

It will not be that easy.

The drones operate via a hive matrix,

communicating with each other in real time to maximize strategic efficiency.

Then how do we cut them off from their network?

We let them inside our force shields.

The electromagnetic interference will block their satellite uplink.

You’re suggesting we let the killer robots into the city?

That’s the only way to disconnect them from the Jarvis AI.

After that, we’ll destroy ’em.

The Americans won’t have any Vibranium left to rebuild.

Why should we trust you with our people’s lives?

I know what it’s like to have someone taken from me,

and if I had the chance to avenge my father, I wouldn’t hesitate.

These people murdered your son.

Even if there’s only a chance I’m legit, isn’t it worth the risk?

What say you, General?

(SOLDIERS SHOUTING IN WAKANDAN)

(IN ENGLISH) For T’Challa!

ALL: (CHANTING IN WAKANDAN) Yibambe! Yibambe! Yibambe!

(CHANTING CONTINUES)

(DISTANT RUMBLING)

(IN ENGLISH) Status, gentlemen.

WOMAN: We have full systems green, General. Drones moving into position.

This is the Wakandan capital?

Confirm location.

WOMAN: Sir, all drones are on target.

It’s time.

Are you certain about this, baba? Entrusting our fate to this outsider.

He is family.

Open the shields.

(PEOPLE GASPING)

Wakanda. So the rumors are true.

(FOOTSTEPS THUDDING)

Show them the true might of the U.S. Military.

Uncle?

Close the shields.

(POWERING DOWN)

What the hell is going on?

WOMAN: Some kind of interference.

The drones have all gone dark.

Yeah, I see that. Get it back online!

(POWERING DOWN)

It’s working! (GASPS) You were right.

Thank you, nephew.

You’ve made your uncle and father proud.

I only wish to serve Wakanda.

(CHUCKLING) I’d much rather you join me in celebration tonight.

Know that wherever life’s journey takes you,

you’ll always have a home in Wakanda.

I want a little bit more than that.

(POWERING UP)

That is impossible.

The drones should be disconnected.

Tony Stark! He must’ve built a back-up transmitter.

Why would he do that?

That man was a villain. Didn’t trust anyone.

Charge!

(ALL EXCLAIMING)

(THRILLING MUSIC PLAYING)

(YELLS)

(GRUNTS)

(GRUNTING)

Wakanda forever!

(SOLDIERS CLAMORING)

(YELLING)

(GRUNTING)

(GRUNTING)

(EXCLAIMS)

(GRUNTS)

(TRIUMPHANT MUSIC PLAYING)

Wakanda forever!

(GRUNTS)

(EXCLAIMS)

For T’Challa!

ALL: (CHANTING IN WAKANDAN) Yibambe! Yibambe! Yibambe!

(BANGS DESK)

(SIGHS DEEPLY)

(MYSTICAL MUSIC PLAYING)

(IN ENGLISH) Does it meet your expectations?

It surpasses them.

I wish we could share it with our brothers and sisters across the world.

Your father wished the same.

Perhaps that is why Bast has returned you to us.

I am a loyal servant of Wakanda, Your Majesty.

Let me be of service.

T’CHAKA: With this herb, you shall become the next Black Panther.

(MYSTICAL MUSIC PLAYING)

Was it worth it,

my cousin?

Yeah. I did what I had to do.

T’CHALLA: For what? A throne?

For vengeance. For my father.

And for all my brothers and sisters who suffered through oppression

while you just sat back and watched.

You believe the cure for human suffering is more suffering.

The cure is power. And now, I have it.

T’CHALLA: Because you stole it.

Power, unearned, can be a very volatile force, cousin.

It’ll get the best of you, eventually.

On your plane, or on ours.

Destroyers are circling the African coast.

I want all Jericho missiles locked and loaded by 0600.

Yes, sir.

All due respect, sir,

isn’t that a lot of firepower to aim

at a country most Americans can’t find on a map?

By tomorrow, they won’t need to.

(SIGHS)

What… How did you get in here?

I’m here to help, Miss Potts.

I knew it. He killed Tony.

And your brother? How did you get this?

Mr. Stark was a genius, but he’s not the only genius.

It appears have a common enemy.

Unfortunately, your side and mine refuse to see it.

So, let us open their eyes together.

WATCHER: Heroes are never really gone.

They live forever.

As do the ones they inspire to carry on the fight.

(UPLIFTING ORCHESTRAL MUSIC PLAYING)

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