How did Marvel's first salvo, Wandavision, fare after Avengers: Endgame?
Spoilers ahead, you’ve been warned.
Wandavision kicked off phase four of the MCU and, admittedly, I didn’t know what to make of the first few episodes. The show took us from one decade to the next without really clarifying what was going on, leaving us with us only with very few tidbits to piece things together. Weird. But weird, in this case, was good and as soon as they let on to what was happening, I was beyond hooked.
As the series went on, it had fans churning out theories left and right; let me know if any of these sound familiar:
- Who’s the villain? Someone said the devil is everywhere; it’s got to be Mephisto!
- Oh my god Pietro, the merger of the Fox characters is happening!
- Wanda is going to be the bad guy by the end of this, I know it.
The best part was you didn’t need to be deep into Marvel lore to have understood or even theorized about Wandavision. What we got was a great show that took us through the emotional rollercoaster of Wanda Maximoff in a fresh way, while opening up the MCU post-Avengers: Endgame.
Was it perfect? No, but I’ll still say that it was pretty damn good.
I wanted to see a big bad villain, bigger than Agnes
Let me start by saying I ended up answering my own comment. Read on, I will explain.
Marvel has a wealth of “popular” baddies that play into the mystic side of the universe, even a leftover one from Doctor Strange. What we got was Agatha Harkness (played excellently by Kathryn Hahn), who is not necessarily first tier in terms of popularity. While that’s okay, as a fan, I thought it was a wasted opportunity because Marvel could’ve easily introduced a bigger-name antagonist that carried on into the other parts of phase four (again: Mephisto, anyone?).
Having this in mind, I thought back to how things started for the MCU, and I remembered that Thanos did not come about until The Avengers. As much as I did want to see a bigger villain, I had to tell myself that the Marvel Studios gods probably thought of this and designed season one of Wandavision exactly the way they wanted. There’s no denying that Marvel has a pretty good track record when it comes to build ups, and that’s why I brushed off my complaint. It would’ve still been awesome but, okay, I give them a pass for this one (sorta).
Not the expected ending
Wandavision closed out the season with a very emotional episode, the level of which caught me off guard. From seeing Wanda watch her family suffer as she undid Westview momentarily, to her conversation with Vision before he disappeared, the ender had me involved because the show took me along for the ride so well. The evolution of grief that she had to deal with from the very first episode was so well told that, in hindsight, you marvel at all the faces that Elizabeth Olsen put on (and very believably too! I would go as far as to say, nominate her for an Emmy!). No shortage of emotions in the last episode, courtesy of the episodes before it. Well played.
The final showdown, however, was anti-climatic—dare I say even a bit formulaic. The Vision and Vision conflict was great, but we knew that wouldn’t be the finale. When Agatha and Wanda fought for the power of The Scarlet Witch, I felt that it was a bit too tame. Maybe I expected a more eccentric clash, similar to how the start of the season was eccentric, maybe I expected more chaos, maybe I expected a bit more of the unexpected which was really how Wandavision struck me. An energy blast here, a rune spell trick there and a memory wipe later, we see a victorious Wanda Maximoff. Not bad, but not the show’s highlight.
Endpoint: still very good
Wandavision is definitely still worth the watch. Apart from other qualms I have (the use of the X-Men Quicksilver was another waste. I went ballistic when I first saw him, only for him to be a bad dick joke later on), the show held together well. We got our first slice of MCU after Avengers: Endgame, and it was still very good. A season of quirks, emotions and foundation setting well done, taking us a step further into the MCU. A few kinks here and there but nothing I think that a little Marvel magic can’t fix moving forward.
Overall, an 8/10.
Words Yosu De Erquiaga
Art Alexandra Lara