Only a few people truly know what is going on in Westview right now. For the remainder of us, we can only speculate and use what we know.
Until this point, the MCU had primarily consisted of movies, 23 to be exact. I use the word primarily because mixed in there are a handful of television shows that are - well let’s call them MCU related. When I look at shows like the Netflix series (Luke, Jessica, Iron Fist…), Cloak and Daggar/Runaways, even The Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D and Inhumans there is a sense of disconnect. Like one set of characters are aware of the others…but not vice versa.
But now an Avenger with such power coupled with one who can perceive on so many levels have a show that is poised to bring it all together.
Now That’s Entertainment
It is really easy to overlook what, in my opinion, are two things this show does so well. First, it establishes the relationship between Wanda and Vision. Second, it delivers on their powers.
Now as I remember Age of Ultron ended with the pseudo-New Avengers showing up. The next time we see the Avengers is in Civil War. Wanda and Vision are living at the Avengers compound. There is a glimpse at the two of them together during the second act. For a few moments, it seems there is a bit of courting occuring. That is until Vision proves that even an android can….follow directions. Siding with Stark in the Civil War dustup, it would seem this couple was over before they even got a chance. However as the tarmac fight ends Wanda ends up in Vision arms.
Watching those scenes I can’t help but notice the spark, the magic. There is something real between this spellcaster and synthezoid - not manufactured or manipulated. The bond between these two is only further cemented in Infinity War and Endgame. Wanda has to make the painful choice to destroy Vision for the good of all, and proceeds to share all of that hurt with Thanos when Vision remains lost despite the reversal of The Snap.
With WandaVision fans of these two have been given what only briefly has been hinted at in the films. There is a relationship, a love, between these two characters that has existed in the pages of comic books for decades. Debuting as Avengers alongside another soon to be television star, Wanda and Vision are what I would consider the rehabilitation portion in the teams history established by Captain America. Not a god or a scientist/businessman, these guys had troubled pasts. And through that shared experience something marvellous manifested.
Not only does WandaVision play to the characters relationship well, it uses their powers in a truly creative manner. Watch Wanda tussle with Thanos all day, but eventually that overlooks an amazing portion of her power. This “hex” ability, manipulation of reality, even if in a small sphere of influence, sounds like a life changing possibly dangerous ability. So watching her power “glitch” things in the town of Westview, changing details or even eras, proves Vision may have been right in Civil War. Before WandaVision, we only got glimpses of what Wanda was capable of. Now, things are much clearer.
Meanwhile, in terms of Vision, you would think you had seen him at his maximum potential in the films. Powerful as his density manipulation and energy blast may be, that’s only half of this robot. His ability to detect, to investigate makes Vision an ideal choice for the mystery taking place in New Jersey. Things are already odd for Vision, trying to adjust to humanities quirks, this situation has put his ability to make sense of his surroundings to the test.
BUT WAIT THERE’S MORE
Disclaimer: So far I’ve been pretty general about the shows details. From here on out I am gonna touch on actual plot points so….
With it’s cinematic releases Marvel’s character reveals and introductions were done, excuse my term, on the fly. That’s not a disrespect to the process as I feel each character was introduced and presented great so far. Maybe I should have said in the heat of the moment. Things were happening and ta-da a new character is there. Think about how we got Mantis, Valkyrie, even War Machine. They lacked a bit of that comic book buildup. WandaVision has been giving weekly fits of speculating and spectacular reveals. A few so far…
The moment her younger self appeared in Captain Marvel the speculation engine began. When she showed up in WandaVision it was hard to deny the day was coming. And once we watched as Darcy explained how she had been altered by entering the “hexagon” it didn’t matter what anyone said, Captain Marvel….I mean Photon…Spectrum had arrived. When someone has had that many names you know there is a story or two. Monica Rambeau’s comic counterpart certainly has a tale to tell. A natural and proven leader, if S.W.O.R.D. no longer wants her a certain superhero team is without either of it’s former leaders. They could do a lot worse.
Don’t tell Mom, The Babysitter’s..
Always a presence in Wanda’s life, I was anticipating the arrival of Agatha. I just thought it was Dottie. Look at how she dealt with Wanda. So tasking and authoritative. She had to be in control of this somehow. And her hair was already the right color to be Wanda’s twisted mentor. Turns out that wasn’t a hex just Clairol. Mrs. Harkness, that catchy tune sums up how beautifully you pulled it off. Harmless. Clueless. Always so helpful. I mean she volunteered to watch the twins…though that should have tipped me off. Speaking of the twins she didn’t let that weird her out. To be honest nothing did. She was always calm when things seemed out of the ordinary. Maybe I took that for granted thinking she was following Wanda’s spell. She played her role to perfection. Now she is shown as a manipulator, although we aren’t certain yet if she is serving her own and others goals. This old witch’s history in Marvel comics is deep and dark and now that Agatha Harkness has shown up the age of magick and mysticism has begun in the MCU.
When two characters appeared in the pages of Young Avengers named Billy and Tommy this longtime Avenger fans wondered a familiar Marvel title, What If. Could these be the children Vision and Wanda lost? Impossible. But it didn’t help that their powers seemed to mirror those of Wanda and her brother Quicksilver. It took some time but the folks at Marvel finally gave us the answer. When twins were born to Wanda and Vision, again named Billy and Tommy I asked myself the question again. Thankfully WandaVision didn’t waste time in showing What’s Next. A Halloween themed episode gave us a glimpse at Wiccan and Speed. Their fate at the end of Episode 7 is unknown but this wouldn’t be the first time they were lost only to return again.
So far I’ve really been telling you why I believe WandaVision works as a television show. But I wrote this because I have a real question. Why is WandaVision a television show?
Bought To You By
Before Episode 7’s reveal my biggest question dealt with the fantasy world Wanda created. Typically when a character goes into a fantasy or alternate world, by some means unconsciousness being one, it is one based on a reality they relate to. The Wizard of Oz is a good example of this. Comic book fans may recall when Morgan Le Fay abducted all (active and reserve) Avengers team members, the world she took them to was based on the Middle Ages. I have never gotten the impression Wanda was a television junkie on screen or in print. WandaVision has even hinted in that rather than give a commercial reference for things, like the Halloween costumes, Wanda’s opts to give things a more cultural explanation.
Darcy intercepting the signal makes sense. She was able to analyze and receive the energy being emitted from WestView. The show is the message, S.W.O.R.D. believes Wanda is the sender. They may be wrong?
And sure I’ll except it was her….at some point. She flew into Westview and floated right up to Wanda and Vision’s door. She has been weaving little spells throughout episodes…for reasons unknown. I can’t see much benefit in making things happen at the Talent Show when Wanda countered them. I suppose all these efforts were to put a strain on Wanda’s powers or Wanda and Vision’s relationship. But ALL ALONG requires me to accept Agatha compelled Wanda to steal Vision’s body. It would make sense if she needed Wanda and Vision to have Billy and Tommy. But for her ends or someone else’s mean?
To Be Continued…
Despite whether you agree or argue with anything I have written one thing is fact. WandaVision is poised at the perfect place in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. It is set as the beginning of Phase 4. And though it is set to finish this portion at Episode 9, I don’t feel this story will be resolved by then. Wanda has a title card in both Dr. Strange 2 and Spider-Man 3. Whatever has begun in this series I am sure will be felt in both of these films.
Marvel had shown it cool shine on the screen…but so had a lot of other franchises. It is that shift that often proves unsuccessful. WandaVision has shown no deterioration rather it gave more than this fan could have even anticipated. New characters and uncertain futures. The weekly guessing game and easter egg hunts have been fun to witness, it’s like new comic day on television.
And it’s on Friday. Like T.G.I.F is back again…wait a minute…wasn’t that the same company. Wanda Watcha Doing?