Benjamin Wollmuth is a lover of literature who enjoys sharing his thoughts on everything from movies and video games to books and music.
After weeks of having WandaVision's show-within-a-show theme songs stuck in my head, the Disney+ limited series has come to an end. And I'm not gonna lie: I enjoyed this show way more than I thought I would. Deep down I knew that the show wasn't just going to be a sit-com with nothing else going for it––because it's Marvel––but I was also slightly worried that the show was gonna be... too different. But hey, I was wrong. In fact, I'd even dare to say that the show didn't take enough risks. I won't complain, though, because I know Kevin Feige has plans, and I trust him. But before we get to what I was hoping for, let's talk about what I liked.
Oh, and, as always: SPOILERS lay ahead for the entire series.
Was This Show Any Good?
Yes. I enjoyed this show very much. Yet, I also have a feeling of ambivalence towards it. On the good side of things, I loved how this show left me wanting more. Each new episode had me hooked, and once it ended I just wanted to watch the next episode. The creators took the cliffhanger of Infinity War and did that with almost every episode. That's where the negative thoughts come from, and it has nothing to do with the show. In fact, I'd call it a positive for the show. And that is: I hated waiting one week for each new episode. I just wanted to binge the entirety of it in one sitting, especially after episode four was released. I hated waiting. But it's something I'm gonna have to get used to because Marvel is far from done with limited series.
What I loved the most about this show is the exploration of Wanda's character. Episode 8 showed us Wanda's backstory––a backstory that we have heard about but was never shown. Now, we have seen it. We have learned that Wanda always had powers and that the Mind Stone enhanced those powers, perhaps even turned her into the mythical Scarlet Witch. This could be the first sign of mutants in the MCU. The show is about grief, and it is insanely sad at times. Wanda's character has been through so much––more than one single person should go through. We feel that grief in this show, and we understand why Wanda is feeling the way that she is.
The sit-com aspects of the show, after watching episode 8, make so much sense, and I think it was an interesting way for Marvel to experiment with different genres.
The show was also able to introduce new characters without it feeling forced. I didn't mind the introduction of Monica Rambeau. I think she will be integral to the upcoming sequel to Captain Marvel and Nick Fury's limited series, Secret Invasion. I didn't feel as if she was thrown in this show just so she could have an introduction. Perhaps she will show up in Multiverse of Madness, if Wanda ends up being the villain, to help get her to see the wrong in her actions. I also think Jimmy Woo was a fun inclusion, and I think he can be a huge asset in future shows or movies.
But let's finish by talking about the villains. Kathryn Hahn's Agnes/Agatha Harkness was one of the best characters in the entire show. Even though avid comic readers––and really anyone who watches a lot of films and can decipher secret villains well––knew Agnes was actually Agatha Harkness, or at least that she was one of the villains (and I say villains because so many people, including myself, expected a bigger bad, i.e. Mephisto). She was a fun character on the show within the show, even when there was that underlying feeling that she wasn't who she said she was. After she finally revealed herself as Agatha Harkness, we got to see her use her powers and the Darkhold, and until Wanda actually began to use her magic with skill, Agatha had her beat. She also looked great. I truly hope she shows up again. We also have Hayward, who was just a guy who didn't really like superheroes. He wanted to control his own weapon... and he did it illegally. Now he's in prison, and I hope we don't see him again. I don't think he would be much of a threat in the future, and I mostly just saw him as an annoying side villain.
Ah, and we can't forget White Vision, who is now back to being real Vision. He at least has his memories. It was a fun inclusion and gave Vision something to do. Overall, I didn't mind him, and I'm glad to see that Vision still has a future in the MCU.
What Did I Hope For?
If you haven't figured it out by now, I really liked this show, and don't have too many negatives. The small negatives that I do have are solely based around certain expectations I had not coming to fruition, which didn't necessarily ruin the experience, but definitely left me hoping for more.
Firstly, let's talk about what I mentioned before: the lack of a bigger villain. I think Agatha was compelling enough, especially after we learn what her motive is. But I, like so many others, was expecting someone else, especially after we see the Darkhold and... bam! MEPHISTO?! Nope. Yet, that possibility is still there for the future, and again, it didn't ruin the experience overall.
And then we have Evan Peters, who I was so hoping to be playing his version of Quicksilver from the Fox universe. I guess I was just expecting this show to set up Multiverse of Madness in more of an explosive way, like the crossing of realities. Now that we know Evan Peters was actually just Ralph Bohner (enter dick joke here), I truly believe the Fox X-Men are dead, except for Deadpool, who has been confirmed to return.
I will also say that the show's finale was pretty typical, with CGI fights and exposition. I still liked it, yet it did shift from really cool genre-bending to typical MCU ending.
While it didn't set up the future as much as I had hoped, I still really like the implications this show has, mostly in terms of Wanda. The finale's end credit scene shows Wanda using astral projection to seemingly appear as if she is living normally, but she is actually studying the Darkhold. I firmly believe she is going to be the villain of Multiverse of Madness, whether it be accidentally or purposely. Maybe she will accidentally release Mephisto. Maybe she will attempt to bring her kids back, accidentally smashing a few universes together. We don't know what's gonna happen. What we do know is that studying the Darkhold is going to give her an insane amount of dark abilities, which may not be good for the future of the MCU. Plus, her Scarlet Witch outfit, which looks insanely awesome, also looks very... villainy. To sum it up, I don't think she's going to be a hero in the Doctor Strange sequel. At least not right away.
I really liked this show, and while I have gotten used to being able to sit and binge an entire season of a show in one sitting, I actually enjoy being given a week to theorize what will happen next, as painful as it can be sometimes. This show has hopefully set a precedent for all future Marvel limited series, as well as set up a very dark future for the Scarlet Witch.
Sure, I had some expectations that were not fulfilled, but I didn't dislike any of the choices that Marvel made. Overall, I'm going to give the limited series WandaVision a 9.5/10.
© 2021 Benjamin Wollmuth
Nick Cavuoti from Columbia, MD on March 06, 2021:
Nicely written, i agree with a lot of your points.I think theories were part of the fun but also ruined expectations in ways