WandaVision Review: Is it worth watching?
After almost a year and a half of no new Marvel content, MCU fans can finally get their fill with an all-new streaming show set in the Marvel universe. That show of course being, WandaVision.
As the name suggests, this is a show that focuses on Wanda Maximoff, AKA Scarlet Witch, and Vision(who only has one name). While these characters have been around in the MCU for quite some time now, neither have ever realized their full potential. Both of them usually show up as supporting characters in larger MCU projects.
One might argue that Wanda got her big moment during her fight with Thanos in Avengers: Endgame. I would argue, however, that her display of power there was only a tease of all the comic book greatness this character is capable of.
WandaVision will almost certainly realize that potential and finally give both of these amazing characters their own well deserved time in the spotlight.
WandaVision shows Wanda and Vision living their life as if they were characters in a sitcom. With each passing episode, they move to a different famous sitcom, starting all the way from the 1950s to the present. However, things are not as they seem and a greater threat lurks in the shadows. Looks like Wanda might not get the happy ending she deserves.
A lot many things happen in the show, but not all of them can be judged, much less reviewed without any spoilers whatsoever.
So while this section will cover all the things in the show that can be discussed without spoilers, the latter half of this review will dive deep into theories and comic book stories that might give us a clue as to where this show is heading.
As mentioned in the synopsis, every episode (until now, at least) shows Wanda and Vision as if they were in a sitcom. Both of them get into some kind of conflict that very much represents the style of old sitcoms like I Love Lucy, The Dick Van Dyke Show, and Bewitched.
WandaVision does a very good job of recreating these programs while also teasing a conspiracy to keep MCU fans hooked.
The show is shot and scripted in a manner that actually makes it a very accurate and delightful replica of old half-hour comedies. Right from the VFX to the kind of stories being told, everything about WandaVision creates a sense of nostalgia that is charming and gives audiences an extremely fresh take on MCU stories.
The episodes actually manage to pull off a lot of wholesome humor that gives the show a heartwarming quality. Along with this, the WandaVision creates a few mystery-packed moments to remind everyone that this is indeed a Marvel show.
Elizabeth Olsen and Paul Bettany do a great job playing different characters from old sitcoms. Not only them, but the whole cast delivers great performances, switching between the comedic yet also serious tone of the show in the most seamless manner.
What WandaVision does really well besides creating a sense of nostalgia, is giving the audience a steady trail of breadcrumbs. That makes the viewer want to solve the mystery right alongside the show.
These breadcrumbs are what makes the show unique and watchable in the first place. The clues given aren’t so obvious that anyone can figure them out. But also create a sense of eeriness that will keep the audience tuning in every week.
So the major mysteries from the first two episodes are:
1. Wanda having some control over the reality she’s living in
When their dinner guest is choking in the first episode, everyone else seems to be powerless to stop it. Until Wanda asks Vision to help him. This means that she does have some kind of control over this world that others don’t. Her ability to manipulate this reality is further proved when she rewinds time in the second episode to avoid confronting the beekeeper.
While it is not necessary that Wanda is in full control and bears sole responsibility for what is happening, she does have some edge over others in controlling this “neighborhood”.
At the end of the first episode, it is revealed that a S.W.O.R.D agent is monitoring Wanda in this reality. In episode two, there is also a S.W.O.R.D helicopter that Wanda finds in the bushes outside her house. Could this mean that S.W.O.R.D is trying to enter this reality bubble that Wanda and the rest of the neighborhood are trapped in? And if so, then who’s trapping them?
Comic Book Theories
There are a few comic book storylines that might help get a better understanding of what is going on in the show.
1. House of M
In this very popular story, Wanda created a whole new reality for herself and molded it to her liking. The comics then follow Wanda’s deteriorating mental health until she is driven to a point of insanity. At the end of the House of M, Wanda wipes out almost all the mutants on earth by simply saying “no more mutants”.
It could very well be possible, that like House of M, this neighborhood is a reality fabricated by Wanda while going through some kind of mental breakdown. But now someone else has gained control of it. And Wanda might be in more trouble than she thinks. This is supported by the question asked to hear over the radio “Wanda who’s doing this to you ?”
2. Agatha Harkness
In the comics, a sorceress named Agatha Harkness has often shown up in Wanda’s life. Sometimes as a mentor, other times not. The show introduces a character named Agnes who appears to take a special interest in Wanda. Maybe Agnes could be another name for Agatha Harkness, and she is a witch who wants to gain control of Wanda’s powers.
Or she might also be someone who is trapped in this neighborhood with her. No matter which of the two, Kathryn Hahn is said to play a very important role in the series and cannot simply be an unfortunate bystander caught in all this craziness.
3. This is an experiment gone wrong
In the comics, there is a storyline that involves S.H.I.E.L.D capturing a group of people they consider as high-level threats and then trapping them in a suburban neighborhood. Making these “threats” believe that they are just regular people. Maybe, S.W.O.R.D is trying to do the same thing in WandaVision.
The residents of the neighborhood are dangerous, enhanced people with powerful abilities. So S.W.O.R.D decided to trap them. It’s certainly not the first time that Wanda has been held captive. But what if their experiment went wrong somehow, and Wanda gained control of their reality. That would explain S.W.O.R.D being able to monitor Wanda, as well as the helicopter that got miniaturized when they sent it in to look for her.
It is very difficult to predict how things are going to play out, but some combination of these three comic book storylines might give audiences a vague idea of what’s going on in the show.
WandaVision is by far the most unique mystery in the MCU and makes for must-watch television. It is reported that WandaVision is said to lead into the Doctor Strange sequel, which makes this show not only a necessary chapter of the MCU but also a highly entertaining one.
Background Score: 3/5
Overall Rating- 8/10
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