With only one more new episode of WandaVision left to go (the finale streams on Disney+ beginning on Friday, March 5), there are a lot of unanswered questions stemming from major reveals that happened in episode 8, “Previously on…” Some of these questions date back to the earliest episodes of WandaVision. Some of them reach into the history of the MCU. And some go all the way back to the Salem Witch Trials! I’m kidding, they don’t. But with this show, they could.
Before we go any deeper into analysis on episode 8 of WandaVision and speculation on the finale, it goes without saying that the rest of this feature is basically all spoilers, so stop reading now if you don’t want to know what happened on WandaVision, and what we think might happen going forward.
Cool, ready? Let’s start with:
Is Wanda a Mutant, or just a witch?
I ask this because we learned something significant about Wanda Maximoff (Elizabeth Olsen) in this new WandaVision episode, something that rewrites the history we learned in Avengers: Age of Ultron. In that MCU sequel, it was revealed that Wanda and her quick brother, Pietro (Aaron Taylor-Johnson), received their powers from the Mind Stone after being experimented on by HYDRA. And that’s accurate… but for Wanda, she had powers before. This episode suggests that it was young Wanda who prevented the Stark bomb from going off in their Sokovian apartment, saving Pietro but not saving their parents.
So Wanda had powers BEFORE the Mind Stone amplified what was already there. Agatha (Kathryn Hahn) calls it a Probability Hex, then refers to Wanda as “a baby witch.” And that’s probably what she is. By the end of the episode, Wanda finally inherits her comic-book name, Scarlet Witch, so that could be her origin in the MCU. But… in the comics, the Scarlet Witch (and Quicksilver, for that matter), also are mutants. And what if its their genetic mutation that caused the reaction from exposure to the Mind Stone? Because making Wanda a witch who grows powerful thanks to the Mind Stone doesn’t explain how Pietro got his speedy abilities. Unless the two Maximoff kids are mutants, first.
Who the heck is that?
This vision (get it?) appeared to Wanda after she shattered the crystal surrounding the Mind Stone and stared directly into the troublesome Infinity Stone. As mentioned, this event enhanced whatever latent powers Wanda possessed, and put her on the path to becoming what Agatha called “the Scarlet Witch” at the end of the episode.
So, is that what we are looking at here? The original Scarlet Witch? Agatha refers to the idea of this being as a myth. Agatha calls her dangerous, and notes that she would be capable of spontaneous creation. This is why Agatha was so fascinated by what Wanda was doing in Westview. But we don’t know the origin of witches in the MCU. Agatha, in the Salem scenes that started the episode, had a mother, and her mother also was a witch. But Wanda’s Sokovian parents seemed like very normal people. Did Wanda get possessed by this figure that visited her during the HYDRA experiment?
Is Pietro really not from the Multiverse?
We get further confirmation that the Fake Pietro (lmfao, Fietro) was created by Agatha, and was introduced into the sitcom narrative in an effort to expose Wanda and reveal where the artificial reality was coming from. Any time Agatha manipulated Wanda with her actions (sing it with me, “It was Agatha all along!”), it was the witch trying to better understand this anomaly that was Westview, and Wanda.
Agatha says that she couldn’t do a Necromancer spell, because Pietro’s real body was overseas, and filled with bullet holes. Nasty. So she conjured Fietro using a “chrystolum possession,” and he just happened to look like Evan Peters. I’m not buying that. You don’t cast the actor who played Quicksilver in the Fox universe by accident. You do it to send a message that other Marvel characters who were not as Disney previously can cross over. But so far, based on what we were just told in this episode, Evan Peters’ appearance was magic caused by Agatha and believed by Wanda. Granted, we did see that Pietro finding Monica (Teyonah Parris), and there was no sign of them in this episode, so that reference needs a payoff.
Are Wanda and Vision’s twins real?
Oh man, this one is going to hurt so badly next week. Wanda and Agatha have a comic book history. And in a popular storyline, Agatha shocks Wanda by telling her that her and Vision’s children are artificial creations, created from fragments of the scattered soul of the demon, Mephisto. There are ample traces of this being used in WandaVision. For starters, Wanda’s pregnancy lasted all of an hour, and her child birth was over in minutes. There was nothing traditional about it, so Tommy and Billy easily can be deemed as fake.
Then, there was a hint in episode 8 that showed me (at least) where this is going. While Wanda’s watching an old episode of The Brady Bunch, Bobby is making fun of his sister, Cindy, because she thinks her “doll” has real feelings. Bobby tells her the doll isn’t real, and is made up of sawdust or rags. Fluff like that. Cindy is furious. As will be Wanda, when she too learns a similar truth about her own children. If you think Wanda is overwhelmed with grief now, wait until the reality regarding Billy and Tommy hits. Elizabeth Olsen is going to knock that clean out of the park.
Why would Hex Vision doubt Wanda at all?
Let’s shift focus to Vision (Paul Bettany), because he had a hell of an episode, even while Wanda and Agatha held down the bulk of the story. It was revealed in episode 8 that the Vision in Westview is fully a creation of Wanda… that he was “born” during her deepest moment of grief, when she cried out, creating Westview and reviving her soul mate in a supreme act of power. This is NOT Vision’s corpse (as Director Hayward would lead us to believe), and so he should NOT have any programming that would have him question Wanda’s alternate reality.
So why does he? Throughout WandaVision, the Vision we have been watching has slowly been “waking up” from Wanda’s creation. He even has the ability to tap Westview residents and wake THEM out of Wanda’s simulation. Why would that be an option in a world that Wanda built from scratch? To me, it always felt like more of a failure of Wanda’s universe that Vision was slowly able to see behind the “curtain.” But because the Vision that we’ve watched is not that real Vision, it makes we wonder how or why he was able to see through Wanda on any level?
Why was S.W.O.R.D. still dissecting Vision five years later?
This could be a nitpick of timeline wonkiness, but do the MCU math, and it doesn’t exactly add up. Wanda disappeared in the Snap, shortly after seeing Vision die. She was gone for five long years. She returned, and was part of the Avengers: Endgame battle, as well as Tony Stark’s funeral. Then, we assume, she went to get Vision’s body.
Five years had passed since the Battle of Wakanda. And the S.W.O.R.D. technicians were STILL dissecting our beloved android? So, let’s make the argument. Maybe it took a long time for our government to get into Wakanda and retrieve the Vision’s corpse. And MAYBE they have been working to take apart this incredibly sensitive piece of advanced technology, thread by thread. Would they still be working on our beloved android five years after he died in Wakanda? Ehhhh, probably not.
How different will S.W.O.R.D. Vision be?
For one thing, he won’t be powered by the Mind Stone. Director Hayward has been lying this whole time, selling a bill of goods that Wanda stole Vision’s corpse, when in fact, S.W.O.R.D. has been reassembling him this whole time. Hayward does consider Vision to be a weapon, but how will his programming work? The remnants of JARVIS no longer are part of his DNA. And the “power” derived from the drone that Wanda threw back at Hayward is an X factor that we are curious to see how it plays out.
Either way, the white, colorless look was part of Vision’s evolution in the comics. Seen in the pages of West Coast Avengers, this rebuilt Vision had no emotional connection to Scarlet Witch, or their family. Which of course was devastating to the mutant. Will we see that all in the final episode of WandaVision? Or will it just be Bettany on Bettany violence?
Who will teach Wanda the fundamentals of magic?
When Agatha probes Wanda, she traps her in a pretty simple defense spell… then seems puzzled why Wanda doesn’t understand the basics of magic. “Who are you?” the powerful witch wonders, and Wanda clearly doesn’t know, herself. I think that following the events of the WandaVision finale, Wanda is going to seek a mentor. And who better than the Sorcerer Supreme, Stephen Strange.
Elizabeth Olsen already is on board Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, so we know Scarlet Witch is part of that sequel. For a little while, some thought she might be the villain of that piece, having gone mad in WandaVision. And that still might be the case. But I’m more willing to believe that Wanda’s inherently good, and that Strange will help her better understand and control her powers. Because once she has a grip on everything, she’s clearly Marvel’s most powerful character.
Find out how WandaVision concludes when the finale streams on Disney+ on Friday, March 5.