If you’re like most fans of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, you just finished WandaVision on Disney+, and you probably have…feelings about it. Well, I do to, and I wanted to put down what I wanted to say about the show here.
As fans, we love to make theories about shows, and think about them when we aren’t watching them, and talk to other fans about the show. Well, the MCU fandom was in a flurry the past two months, coming up with theories and ideas left, right, and center, about the WandaVision.
Now, what is important to remember when you make these theories, is that the show has no obligation to fulfill your ideas of what the show could/”should” be. A lot of fans seem to have forgotten that lately. Just because we know that WandaVision leads into Doctor Strange and the Multiverse of Madness, does not mean that Doctor Strange is required to make an appearance.
The most frustration I’ve seen on Twitter lately, is “Why have the actor for the X-Men Quicksilver if it’s not going to tie in?” There are a couple reasons why, and I want to preface saying that I thought it was super cool that he was there, and am satisfied with him not being the tie-in that we all hoped for.
Firstly, when the door opens up, Wanda clearly recognized her brother Pietro, even though it wasn’t actually his face that she remembers. The only way to have us feel that same emotion, is to have it be an alternate reality Quicksilver.
Secondly, it builds a lot of buzz on the internet, as everyone starts asking “Who is he?” and “Why is he here?”. It accomplished exactly what they wanted it to. They knew that they didn’t want to bring back the Pietro from Age of Ultron, but fans would have been downright angry if they slapped some random guys face on the screen and called him Quicksilver. So instead, let’s slap a face that we can agree is Quicksilver, and tell the same story anyway.
Lastly, the whole point of the show was to be a giant mystery. They went three episodes in without explaining anything about what was going on. Then, at the end of the fifth episode, they give you a solid Red Herring. You suddenly think you know what’s going on, only for it to be taken away again. Red Herring’s aren’t lies to the audience, they are clues, placed in the story, to lead you in the wrong direction. It is okay that you thought you knew what was going on. It was on purpose.
Now that I’ve addressed the complaints I’ve heard most, I want to talk about what I liked. Which is easy, because I liked almost every single episode.
The first three episodes were exactly what the trailers promised; a weekly sitcom with each episode set in a different decade. The hijinks were wacky, the plots were simple and comforting, and they were just easy and enjoyable to watch.
The fourth episode stands out to me in one key factor, the post-Blip return. Ever since Endgame came out, people have been joking about what it would be like coming back five years later, realizing everything changed. The only canon look we’ve had at it so far was from the beginning of Spider-Man: Far From Home, which made it a joke, and not very satisfying. Instead, they drop Monica Rambeau back in a hospital, where sick patients have suddenly returned, and a terrified nurse exclaims “we don’t have enough room!” That was an amazing moment that I’ve been waiting for since the end of Phase 3.
The next few episodes were more enjoyable on the S.W.O.R.D. side of things, outside The Hex, as we watch Monica (from Captain Marvel), Jimmy Woo (from Ant-Man and the Wasp), and Darcy (from the first two Thor‘s) work together to try to figure out what’s going on, and be a super fun team. I want to watch an “Agents of S.W.O.R.D.” show that’s like what Agents of S.H.E.I.L.D. was, but post Endgame.
The seventh episode wasn’t a ton of fun, and instead felt frustrating and stunted, but that could just be because I’m not a big fan of Modern Family or most modern sitcoms.
HOWEVER. Finally getting into the nitty-gritty of Wanda’s backstory was SO ENGAGING. I’ve always been a big fan of Age of Ultron, and said that people don’t give it enough credit, and I hope that with this added context for the Maximoff twins, more people will enjoy the Sokovian set film. It’s good, and y’all are sleeping on it.
The finale was a bit of a letdown for me, but not because it didn’t pay off any expectations that I had. It was more the energy of it. I didn’t feel the stakes in this episode, which is a bummer because it’s unlikely that these MCU Disney+ shows are going to be getting any second seasons. They are all just set in between movies, and for Wanda to go back to a storyline with Vision seems improbable. So only because this was not only the season finale, but also probably the series finale, I just would have liked something a bit bigger.
The last thing I want to say, is that I am realizing that I appreciate the weekly releases that Disney+ is mandating lately. Ever since House of Cards and Orange is the New Black on Netflix, releasing an entire show at once has slowly become the norm. While it was cool and exciting at first, it has stopped the community that builds around a show. Now, if you don’t watch an entire show the day it comes out, then you are behind the curve and getting spoilers. With Mandalorian and WandaVision, not only do people spend week-to-week talking about the next episode together, but also I saw a lot fewer spoilers than I usually do for popular shows. Because everyone knew that they had a week to watch it, no one felt the need to immediately mention the most spoiler-y part of the episode. They had a week to break up the conversation, so people had time to check it out.
Overall I really enjoyed watching the show, and it has made me even more excited for the future of the Disney+ shows, specifically The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, which was my most anticipated show of the year already.