Before we get into it, this is your SPOILER WARNING for WandaVision Episode 8. If you haven’t seen it what are you still doing here?
For the past seven weeks fans have theorised about WandaVision, we’ve poured over every detail, linking back to comics, spotting references and connecting the dots.
“Who’s the real villain? must be Mephisto, did you see that fly?”
“What about Hayward? Could he be ULTRON?”
Reed Richards, Loki, Wolverine, I even heard someone suggest Deadpool was going to show up! (WTF)
We were even teased by the cast, Elizabeth Olsen seemed to promise a Luke Skywalker level cameo, and just last week Paul Bettany sent the rumour mill into overdrive by suggesting there was still a big cameo left that no one had guessed, and that it was an actor he’s been wanting to work with his whole life (my guess was Pacino BTW)
Well I think I’ve figured it out. I know who the cameo is, the actor Bettany has been longing to work with all these years, and I don’t think it’s anyone previously mentioned. Episode 8 gave us another huge character reveal, during the mid credits scene we saw that Hayward’s secret weapon was the White Vision. Is this the cameo we’ve been waiting for? Is it possible that the actor Bettany was excited to work with is himself? I think so, and after his performance so far I hope I’m right.
We don’t need anyone else to complete this story, we know that there will be questions left unanswered, threads for further writers to pull on and develop, and we know the end of the series will go on to link to Dr Strange 2 and probably Spider-Man 3. But I honestly feel that we already have everything we need for an incredible finale right there already.
Elizabeth Olsen has been flawless, switching effortlessly between sitcom eras to modern day. Alongside her Paul Bettany has been brilliant, funny and poignant in equal measure. The sitcom episodes have shown just how much range the pair have, but their real brilliance has been shown during the in-between moments of the story, flashback scenes where we get to see the true depth of their performance.
Episode 8 took us back in time, to every specific moment of tragedy that lead to Wanda brainwashing an entire town. Showing these moments reinforced the idea that everything Wanda has been doing was a result of the sheer tragedy she’s lived through. We’re taken back to the Sokovian flat where her parents were killed, the Hydra testing facility where her and her brother were experimented on and to Avengers HQ, where she first bonded with Vision. We get to see what really happened at the SWORD facility, and the moment Wanda’s grief finally takes over, as she creates a new version of Vision and a perfect world for them to share.
There was a chance, perhaps a few episodes ago that Wanda would become the villain of the story, the classic fictional trope of the “Unstable Powered Woman” that sees a female character turn bad because they have too much uncontrollable power. However, what we’ve seen is that this is not the case for Wanda, that it’s the grief she’s experienced throughout her life that has led her down this path. It is her grief that she cannot control, not her power.
And what of Agatha? fan theories suggested that she may be doing this on behalf of someone else, a bigger villain perhaps? But by showing her origin story at the beginning of this week’s episode, and her interactions with Wanda we can see her motives are more to do with Wanda, and specifically her power. In the comics Agatha Harkness isn’t an outright villain, and I’m not convinced she will be in WandaVision. She’s a mentor figure to Wanda, teaching her how to use her power, often with tough love.
The season finale of WandaVison looks to me like it’s going to be the most emotional episode yet, and I’m not looking towards any more big reveals in the way of characters. I’ll be more than happy if Wanda, Vision(s), Agatha and Monica are given the screen time they’ve earned in the series so far. We have the potential for an incredible showdown between powerful characters driven by grief, tragedy, love and emotion. For Wanda it’s a fight to hold onto the things she loves but I suspect that what’s to come could be the most tragic part of her story so far.