Previously on WANDAVISION…
Finally! We’ve fit the 90s with this costumed episode that further puts cracks into Wanda’s created reality and, again, poses more questions about where this story is going.
With her dead brother, Pietro, now staying with the family, the list of people who seem to be in on what Wanda is doing with the small New Jersey town of Westview has expanded. They even discuss why Pietro looks different than he did the last time Wanda saw him, when Ultron killed him in 2015. When you add in the 5 years the MCU advanced between INFINITY WAR and END GAME, it’s been about a decade since Pietro died. The speedy twin explains that he has no idea how he got to Westview, other than he could feel and hear that Wanda needed him, so he ran right over.
Wanda, for her part, admits to not knowing exactly how all of this happened, just that she was overcome with feelings of loneliness and grief and then there was Westview and a family. Either Wanda is lying to her brother, which seems unlikely, or after she came back from the blip and the Avengers defeated Thanos, Wanda had a bit of a cognitive break with reality. Since the show has already given us footage of Wanda breaking into a S.W.O.R.D. facility and stealing Vision’s body before she remade Westview in her own image, it seems like the break with reality may be what actually happened.
It also sounds like she spent some time in Sanctuary, the DCU grief counseling home that allowed Wally West to murder a whole bunch of his friends in HEROES IN CRISIS. What an odd crossover THAT would be…
Wanda may not be completely certain of how she got to Westview, but there’s certainly something within her psyche that wants her to protect this new reality. We saw her confront S.W.O.R.D. to protect what’s inside the hex last episode. This week, as Vision tries to escape – and then starts to fall apart as she gets outside the hex – the episode ends with Wanda expanding the perimeter of the hex, reimagining the S.W.O.R.D. facility as a circus, a modern car dealership as one filled with 1990s vehicles and soldiers as clowns.
Vision’s decision to ditch the trick or treating – with Wanda, Vision and Pietro dressed in comics-accurate costumes – in order to explore the outer edges of Westview gives us our first (in my view) homages to something other than TV sitcoms. The scenes where the android walks around the edge of the town, with people just standing in place and offering only the image of a community, felt very much like it came straight out of Twin Peaks.
As he approaches the edge of town, he sees neighbor Agnes just sitting in her car at an intersection, and when he tries to talk to her, she seems to be just as confused as everyone else in the area. When Vision restores her memories, she recognizes Vision as an Avenger, though the android doesn’t know what that is. Considering that Agnes has been shown to be in on what’s happening in the Hex – along with Herb, who asks Wanda if she needs anything this episode – showing her to freak out about what’s happening is, I think, a red herring to throw us off the scent of her involvement. She did, after all, actually manage to drive away after Vision returned her to her current state.
Outside the hex, before Wanda expanded the perimeter, S.W.O.R.D. director Heyward kicks Monica Rambeau, FBI Agent Jimmy Woo and Dr. Darcy Lewis off the base after the trio question his decisions, which should have kicked off my idea for a show where the three of them explore the weirder aspects of the MCU. Instead, it sends Rambeau and Woo off to meet Rambeau’s mysterious contact while Lewis continues to hack Hayward’s firewall. She gets handcuffed to a jeep as Vision tries to escape and trapped when Wanda expands the hex, but we can assume Jimmy and Monica made it out.
But who is Monica’s contact? Is it someone we’ve already met in the MCU – like Doctor Strange – or will we use this to introduce someone new? Maybe this will be our introduction to Reed Richards, patriarch of the Fantastic Four! I will likely be disappointed if I get too excited about something like that, but the MCU has a pretty good track record, so I’m looking forward to where this ride takes me.