A Magical Sitcom

Wandavision makes its way to Disney+ and gives us a new whittier side of the Marvel Cinematic Universe

Wanda and Vision looking into each others eyes in episode two

NBC News

Wanda and Vision looking into each others eyes in episode two

The official poster released for the Wandavision premiere (Disney +)

Magic, hexagons, and mystery. Wandavison has made its way to the streaming platform on January 15th and has already become an instant hit. When Disney announced in early 2019 a whole new lineup of shows coming to Disney + fans were excited to see a whole slew of shows based in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Shows including Loki and She-Hulk were some of the first to be announced and also a show starring Elizabeth Olsen as Wanda Maximoff and Paul Bettany as The Vision named Wandavison.  

The filming of the show was halted due to the Covid-19 pandemic and wasn’t able to resume filming until August of 2020. Filming hiatus or not, in November of 2020 it was announced that the show was going to be released on time on January 15th, 2021. This announcement rocked the Marvel community since the last time Marvel had released anything was June 16th, 2019, with Spiderman: Far From Home. The hype surrounding the release of the show was huge. When Disney + released the first two episodes people were raving about the sitcom-style it presented and could not wait to see what came next on Wanda Miximoffs and Visions’ journey in the town of Westview, New Jersey. 

When the show was first released we were able to take a peek at the first two episodes. These two episodes had a very similar feeling, both were set in a time where TV shows were in black and white, the first episode was set in the ’50s and the second was set in the ’60s. Wandavison had made it clear at the very beginning that these shows were going to be ones that we all know and love. Shows like Bewitched and the Dick Van Dyke show were the inspiration for the first two episodes and they could not have been more perfect. 

Wanda looks concerned at a helicopter which suddenly appears (Hollywood Reporter)

The next episode which is based in the ’70s draws its inspiration from the classic show “The Brady Bunch”. In the episode before we find out that Wanda is pregnant, but in a shocking surprise it took Wanda only a week for her to deliver her twins. The show did an amazing job including the source material. In the comics Wanda and Vision have kids named Billy and Tommy, so when the twins were delivered in the show it was an amazing surprise when the names were what they were because it goes with the source material. This episode also did a great job with leaving us on a cliffhanger, when we see a character named Geraldine flown out of this forcefield and landing in a field with a bunch of officers coming to her aid, while she mutters the last line of the show “It’s all Wanda”.

Throughout the show, there are many characters that play a pivotal role in this world. We, of course, have Wanda and Vision who we are following along with the most, but along with them, we have the other people who live in the world of Westview Wanda has created. In the first episode, we meet Agnes who is played by Catherine Haan, this choice of casting could not have been more perfect. Agnes is the nosey neighbor and Haan’s portrayal was amazing and she really made us think of a time where we have also had a neighbor similar to her. We also meet Geraldine, who is played by Teyonah Parris, we meet Geraldine in episode two and by the end of episode three, we have an idea she is not who she says she is. 

Episode four is said to be the most important episode in the whole series. In this episode, we find out that Geraldine is actually Monica Rambeau, who we met in Captain Marvel but she was a lot younger then. We also meet others who have been part of the MCU like special agent Jimmy Woo, who is played by Randall Park, and Darcy Lewis, who is played by Kat Dennings. In the episodes prior we have a lot of unanswered questions, but when episode four came out a bunch of them were answered. We figured out what actually was going on is that Wanda was taking over a whole town to make this world inside the TV happen. In episode four there was an amazing job done to make the audience more aware of what was going on, but at the same time, giving us more questions that need to be answered.

Wanda and Vision smile at one another during the Halloween themed 90’s episode (Pennlive)

For episodes five, six, and seven, we are back in TV land. The shows took inspiration from Full House, All In the Family, Malcolm in the Middle, and The Office. In episode five we are in the ’80s and by the end of seven, we are in the 2000s. These episodes really go together because this is where we see Wanda’s kids grow up and also see a growing rift between Wanda and Vision. The show perfectly captures this growing rift because of the fact Vision is becoming more aware of all the control Wanda has over the town of Westview. The show also gives us an amazing addition of Evan Peters who plays Peter Maximoff in the X-Men but plays Pietro Maximoff in Wandavision who is Wanda’s deceased brother. This was an amazing cameo by the show because since Disney bought Fox people were so confused about how they were going to incorporate the X-Men franchise into the MCU and Evan Peters was the first step to that.

Remember when we talked about the nosey neighbor Agnes? Well from the beginning of the show people were theorizing that she is actually the witch Agatha Harkness from the comics. For the first six episodes, this rumor became bigger and bigger until we were hit with the reveal that she is Agatha Harkness and were given the catchy tune “It was Agatha All Along”. The people who worked on this show knew the right way to reveal Agnes as Agatha and after this reveal, everyone including myself felt an amazing sense of clarity from this reveal.

Marvel Music

Now in the final two episodes, we find out a ton. In episode eight we take a journey with Wanda and Agatha into Wanda’s past. These flashbacks did an amazing job at answering many unanswered questions. Like how long has Wanda had her magic and why the sitcoms are playing such a heavy influence on her life. Agatha was trying to find out how Wanda is taking over this whole town because she wants her power. This episode did so much for Wanda’s story and answered questions people had about her since her first MCU appearance in Avengers: Age of Ultron. We really ended the episode on an amazing note because we hear the first mention of Wanda’s alias in the comics which is The Scarlet Witch, this moment was so monumental and really is something to remember for the rest of the MCU’s history.

Wanda and Vision along with their kids gear up to fight in the last battle of the show (TV Line)

Now the final episode was so anticipated and was actually kind of disappointing. Marvel had teased this huge cameo coming in the last episode and we just found out it was another version of Vision, but instead, he is a different color and the bad guy. This episode was just a big fight scene against Wanda and Agatha, and Vision and the other Vision. The fight between the visions was disappointing because it didn’t last long and the other Vision turned good in the end. The episode did do a good job in the aspect of showing Wanda fully embrace her Scarlet Witch powers. It also did a good job of setting up Agatha to return later in the MCU. We also see Monica Ranbaeu turn into her comic book superhero counterpart and that was a good addition to the story. Bottom line is that the last episode was a disappointing end, but it did do a good job setting up a new storyline later down the road.

Wandavison came out in a time where people were in a serious Marvel drought. The pandemic stopped production on many things, but the fact that Wandavision came out on time was an amazing treat. This sitcom-style show did an amazing job integrating the inspiration from other shows and really was a great opener to Marvel phase 4. It is going to be amazing to see the future of Wanda Maximoff, the new vision, and the other characters we came to love and hate.

Entertainment Weekly