This article contains spoilers about the MCU films ‘Age Of Ultron’, ‘Infinity War’ and ‘End Game’. If you’re yet to watch those films, do not read further. You’ve been warned!
Marvel Cinematic Universe aka MCU is very different from the Marvel comics world, it takes inspiration from. Since the inception of ‘Iron Man’ (2008), the MCU has been steadily making inroads to the vast world of Marvel comics, while writing its own success story. It took more than ten years to build up the road to the epic finale of ‘End Game’, which is by far, the most amazing extravaganza of a spectacle that one can truly aspire to achieve. As MCU looks towards what it calls Phase-4, ‘WandaVision’ is the first stepping stone on that road. I’m happy to report that MCU again has a winner in its hands!
Wanda Maximoff and Vision, the two misfits in a team of Superheroes fell in love but the events in ‘Infinity War’ had Vision getting killed by Thanos, as he tore the mind stone from his head. ‘WandaVision’ talks about days after the blip, which made everyone come back to life, five years after getting wiped out by Thanos’s snap. As the season begins with the first episode, resembling a typical 1950s sitcom, aptly named ‘Filmed Before A Live Studio Audience’, the newlyweds Wanda and Vision are living their lives peacefully. Silly gags and sitcom tropes follow one after the other and eventually the viewer gets to know that somebody is watching this fictional tv show, from the outside world. As the episodes progress, the setups also change their timelines from the fifties, through the sixties, seventies, eighties, nineties and eventually to the current timelines. The viewer gets to know that after losing Vision in the battle against Thanos, Wanda has created a make-belief world in Westview, a New Jersey suburban town and now living there with a resurrected Vision and their twin sons Tommy and Billy. She doesn’t allow anyone to leave town or any outsiders to come into Westview. SWORD, an organisation like SHIELD is monitoring these events from the outside led by its leader Hayward whereas flight lieutenant Monica Rambeau along with FBI agent Jimmy Woo and Dr Darcy Lewis is brought onboard to study this phenomenon. Nothing seems the way they are often portrayed. Watch the episodes to know what happens next.
The show explores the origins of the Maximoff twins, Wanda and her late brother Pietro. ‘Age Of Ultron’ had Wanda telling the reason why she and her brother opted for the experiments with the Mind Stone by Von Strucker, a Hydra agent. ‘WandaVision’ delves deeper into the heart-wrenching backstory of Wanda and how her life turned out after the loss of the people close to her. ‘Age of Ultron’ had Wanda flying into a rage, as she felt the death of Pietro. As the star crossed lovers, Wanda and Vision rarely had some moments together before Thanos and his half universe eroding snap dictated terms. Because Vision was killed by Thanos before the snap, he doesn’t come back to life like others. Grief turns Wanda into something else. We finally see Wanda evolving into the Scarlet Witch who is apparently, even more, stronger than the Sorcerer Supreme himself. The writers delve into some serious writing as they tie the knots to explain the bizarre world of Wanda and Vision. If episode 8 explains the ‘why’ of the events, then the final episode does even more gut-wrenching stuff by pulling an unthinkable.
‘WandaVision’ is an amalgamation of various cultures that TV shows have imbibed in them over the last six decades. Each episode reminds the audience of an erstwhile show and brings back the nostalgia associated with it. But if you’re thinking of them as mere gimmicks, let me stop you right there! Episode 8 and by far the best-written episode of the series offers clarity on why the episodes resemble TV sitcoms. The series acts as a part of the extended MCU canon and part of the storyline aims to build into the next set of movies. Hence it teases a lot as the story builds up. From the crossover of X-Men into MCU to the Young Avengers to Mephisto to Agatha Harkness, the series regulars have dissected each and every easter eggs that the show-runners have thrown at them. In fact, some of the fan theories actually turn out to be true. MCU does pay attention to its viewers! At the end of the final episode, there is a mid-credit scene and an end-credit scene, predicting two different storylines for Monica Rambeau and Wanda Maximoff. Do check them out!
‘WandaVision’ is a spectacular start of a journey that has seeded the beginnings of many similar thrilling stories from the world of Marvel. The Marvel faithfuls duly know that MCU always keeps its cards close to its chest. But the abundance of possibilities that ‘WandaVision’ offers, makes one really hopeful of the future.
All nine episodes of ‘WandaVision’ are streaming on Disney+ and Disney + Hotstar
The Cinemawala Rating: 4/5