Take A Break
This week’s episode of WandaVision finally broke away from the sitcom nature of its show completely and delved head first into the wider Marvel Cinematic Universe. This may be the episode you’ve been looking forward to ever since the show premiered and while it does give us some more answers, it also gives us some more questions. More exciting, thought-provoking, and maybe even scary questions.
The episode doesn’t necessarily tell us a whole lot of new information but rather recontextualizes the first three episodes from the point of view of the organization known as S.W.O.R.D. This episode served as a full introduction into the secret organization and gave both comic fans and casual ones something to chew on. We have learned that Captain Marvel’s close friend/pilot was the one who founded the organization and her daughter Monica Rambeau is now helping to run it. I loved seeing how the impact of Thanos still has an effect on characters today as we see first hand the characters rematerializing and then facing the reality of the world they live in. It was a neat callback and provided a great introduction to the rest of the universe within the show.
We also got to see some secondary characters from other Marvel movies such as FBI agent Jimmy Woo from Ant Man and the Wasp (who seems to have finally nailed down that card trick), and Darcy Lewis from the first two Thor movies. It’s great to see them here and continues the emphasize the comic book natrue/interconnectedness of this franchise that so many fans, myself include love to see. TV shows are a great format for us to see secondary characters get more of a shine and I think that may be the case here with these ones.
Again, the episode is giving us a different perspective on the events we have already seen but it was intriguing and curious to see that the characters here are asking a lot of the same questions that we are. Why is it a sitcom? Are they missing persons or manifestations of an illusion? Where did this new reality come from? And how is Vision still alive? I wasn’t expecting this episode to give us full answers to these questions as we aren’t even at the midway point yet of the season, but it was nice to know that we are along for the ride in trying to piece together the mystery.
We do see that Darcy was the one watching the sitcom, Jimmy was the one on the radio, and a unidentified S.W.O.R.D. agent was the beekeeper. While I did enjoy having those reveals, it does bring the question into mine why they revealed it all so early. The only explanation is that we have just scratched the surface with the reveals and unraveling, and that the show will have bigger if not more impactful surprises up its sleeve in the latter 5 episodes.
We do have confirmation that Wanda is the one controlling this reality and seems to be holding the people of Westview hostage under her illusion. This is a dark direction to take a Marvel character, but it is easily one of the most exciting elements of this show. Seeing Wanda take such a dramatic turn in response to the loss and grief she feels makes her more of a morally grey character that causes us to introspectively process our morals. It’s a refreshing take for the MCU to take, and that haunting image of a dead Vision proves that the show could become all the more sinister down the road.
It’ll be interesting to see how the next few episodes develop and whether or not the sitcom element will stay or if it will turn into more of an MCU level show. The first two episodes relied a bit too much on the sitcom, while this episode shifted everything to the wider MCU. Episode 3 seemed to find a right balance, but personally I am more interested to see how Wanda’s character develops and hope that line between good and evil becomes more and more blurred as the show goes on. Wanda, and Elizabeth Olson’s performance, remain the most fascinating and strongest part of the show and I sincerely hope it can maintain the momentum going into these next middle episodes.
Episode 4 of WandaVision gives us more of what fans have been clamoring for, and seems to be pushing the show in an interesting direction. With still 5 more episodes left, there is a lot of opportunity for development and intrigue to be unraveled and the questions that are asked make that venture forward all the more riveting. I hope the show doesn’t just revert back to the sitcom element next week, but even so I remain more optimistic than before that this show will continue to be great.