Who is Wanda/the Scarlet Witch on WandaVision?

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2021/03/03/who-is-wanda-the-scarlet-witch-on-wandavision.html


I’ve been enjoying WandaVision tremendously, and can’t wait for the finale. I hope it’s an hour long; they’ve got lots of 'splainin to do.


The ultimate reveal was that she is the sister of the Olsen Twins, that plot twist threw a lot of people for a loop


Your enthusiasm is delightful.


Same. I worried it would be terrible, but they’ve knocked it out of the park on this one. Elizabeth Olsen has done tremendous work as the lead, Paul Bettany is wonderful as the most compassionate android ever, and the writing has been just stellar.


Agreed on all points. I’m so impressed with the work that’s gone into, well, everything. From capturing the feel of the different eras of television with great sets, costumes, and camerawork to the acting (even from the kids!) and writing. It’s brilliant genre art.


I’m impressed with how the show has not only integrated and explained elements of the previous Marvel movies, but has made some sense of/streamlined Wanda’s extremely convoluted comic book history. Here’s hoping the finale is satisfying, and sets up the character for more mystical hijinks going forward.


I’m enthusiastic about WandaVision right now!


Contrarian point:

As someone coming into the character – and MCU! – totally cold, I am baffled by it. There’s clearly tons of references and in-jokes to someone who knows these characters, but without that, the first two episodes were interminably slow and trite, and by the time the mythos is being revealed/built the other characters feel, well, flat as a comics page. The Big Reveal of the penultimate episode (yet unwatched) leaves me going… well, so what?

The cast is good, the production quality is very good, but the storytelling suffers from assuming that the audience is 100% aware of All The Things. I would have appreciated some of the later scenes being intercut with the early stuff, for example. Show me why this is so strange, tease out some of the mysteries, and build up my curiousity.

It’s… OK? No hate for fans of the show, characters, and MCU! But as a standalone, it’s not very approachable… and loses a lot of its entertainment value for the clueless masses like myself. Very much an in-club show.


Fair enough. I confess that I don’t understand it all, and get all the easter eggs and in-jokes and such. I think a show like this is meant to bear repeat viewings. The more you watch, the more you go, “oh! Now I get it!” If you are coming to this show not having watched (and rewatched) all the Marvel movies (and, spoiler alert! the second wave of Fox X-films), you would understandably be totally lost. And if you haven’t read some of the old comics, you’d certainly be right in saying things like, “who the heck is Agatha Harkness and why should I care about her?”

My son and I think they made a bad call not dumping these all at once so people could binge the show. Spooling out The Mandalorian weekly worked really well, because you felt like you were getting a complete meal each week; each episode told a complete tale with a beginning, middle, and end. But WandaVision is more like chapters of a longer tale. It leaves you feeling like you were forced to get up from the table before finishing your meal each week.

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She’s not a witch. She’s a very naughty woman. :slight_smile:

I remember the stuff with the kids and “white vision” from my comic book reading days. I love how they made the show into about stages of grief.


I want to watch the Agatha Harkness spinoff show suggested by the “Agatha all along!” theme song, which is probably the catchiest original tune from a Marvel show since the 1967 Spider-Man theme.

Instead of paying homage to sitcoms like Dick Van Dyke/Bewitched/Malcolm in the Middle etc. they could use macabre shows like the Addams Family, Tales From the Crypt and Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Maybe even bring in Elvira to guest star.


Yes! Everyone is concerned with the plot, but the theme is grief. It’s really interesting as we go into the second year of this pandemic lockdown. “The Blip” is sci-fi, but society has more-or-less blipped for the past year. When we come out of this (not today, Texas), the loss will become real. We’ll start to experience things and see people again, but each of us has lost something due to the pandemic and we will all need to grieve in our own way. But maybe, just maybe we’ll come out stronger, like Monica freaking Rambeau.


A bit of a counter counter point.

Most comic fans aren’t overly familiar with these two characters. And while the major bits and pieces are rooted in specific comic story lines, there’s not a ton of direct reference to the comics and what’s going on isn’t particularly close.

The two them have pretty messy, complicated histories loaded with retconns and do overs. What following they have is rooted in a hand full of stories that used them well, their presence in a popular 80’s Avengers run, and a sort of D list notoriety. A lot of the core story lines, and major memorable events around the two of them have mostly been regarded as examples of just how bad bad comics can get. Perpetual entries on “man comics are bad” listicles.

To the extent that there’s references that aren’t integral to the plot or contained within the show. It’s meta teasing of the fan base, and more taken from the film series.

And you can see that in the interwebs fan discussion. A lot of the fan theorizing is more rooted in using half remembered summaries of some of the comics stories, wedged into “proving” a preferred outcome. Mostly the assumption that Marvel will wholesale boot in the fully formed Fox X-men films to the canon. A bit of people hoping for a Fantastic 4 intro.

If the shows not working for you, it wouldn’t be working for you if you knew every detail of the comics history here. Most people I know, comic fans or not seem to be following a long fine and enjoying it. But all of them are very familiar with the films.


Even for someone who knows the characters well, the first two episodes were painful to watch. They got me to watch by teasing a weird superhero mystery; Don’t make me sit through an hour of old Nick at Nite reruns before the first real hook.


Very much my experience. Had they intercut some short “flashback” scenes in the first episodes, I would have been intrigued, not going “well, OK, he’s a robot, and she’s magic. And?”


Pfft. Olsen twins? That’s just what they want you to believe. :crazy_face:

(Last Week Tonight with John Oliver - Olsen Twins Conspiracy)

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Got damn it.

(You beat me to it because I had to work.)

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i agree that the first 2 episodes were a little flat. i wonder if perhaps the creators relied on something that i haven’t seen in many other TV shows and i haven’t seen mentioned here yet - the post-credit scenes.

There weren’t any until episode 7 or so.

Post credit stingers are also incredibly common in television. Particularly in comedy, but plenty of plot driven twisty turny shows have used them as teases and cliffhangers. And LOTS of shows do basically the same thing by running a “next time on” teaser immediately after every episode.

Marvel basically picked up the idea from TV when you get right down to it.