6 Thoughts on WandaVision

WandaVision is over and the world may never be the same! After a year and a half, we finally have new Marvel content in our lives and I love how excited the world became for this TV show! None of us knew what to expect with Marvel Studios transitioning to television, but I think most of us are pleased as punch with the result.

TV Show Rating: 8/10 – Very Good.

It should come as no surprise that I loved WandaVision. I make no bones about the fact that I am a dedicated Marvel fanboy. I love their stuff, and I loved this new TV show. The performances were excellent. The use of characters was fun. And the main story, about grief and witchcraft, was a blast. This thing succeeded at everything it tried to do. I’ll admit it wasn’t perfect, but it was still very enjoyable and entertaining viewing. Obviously, I have thoughts.

Join me after the jump for my thoughts and review on WandaVision! Expect FULL SPOILERS for the whole season.


6. I very much enjoyed this show


Don’t look at me like that

Simply put, I had a great time watching WandaVision. I don’t really have any gripes or complaints about the show as a whole. The acting was superb, the storyline was great, they used all of their characters well, and everyone did a great job building the mystery and the tension. I loved the weekly release schedule. As much as I enjoy binging a show on streaming, I will readily admit that it’s a lot more fun to watch one episode a week and then speculate and commiserate online with other fans in between. It builds hype and helps spread the word. I was often dismayed back during the Marvel shows on Netflix when they’d release one weekend and then nobody would ever talk about them again.

But WandaVision proved that the world can handle weekly television, and can handle it well. I love all the fan theories, all the conversations, all he people enjoying the show. I’ve enjoyed the Kathryn Hahn renaissance and hopefully this does wonders for her career. “Agatha All Along” was a real banger! I loved seeing Wanda and Vision get some attention. I think TV shows for the Avengers’ side characters are a great idea! I could keep gushing, but let’s get into some specifics.


5. I loved the TV homages


“That was my grandmother’s piano…”

For whatever strange reasons, a lot of people did not care for the TV homage episodes. I guess some fans were getting impatient for the show to pick up and reveal what was happening. But not me! I looooved those homages. I thought they were funny and entertaining in their own right, just like classic sitcoms. Add the mystery and suspense, and I thought it was a great way to start the show and really have fun with it. The actors and the production team clearly went all out, creating not just parodies, but full on recreations! That takes skill, talent and an exceptional eye for detail.

I especially loved the fan theories that suggested the decade of each show altered how the story progressed. Like, we didn’t have post-credits scenes in WandaVision until we reached the decade where Marvel movies made those popular. Another fan I saw online suggested that Vision was only able to go off on his own in the Halloween episode because that was an era of sitcom filmmaking where they could leave the house and go off on trips through a neighborhood. I thought that was fascinating!

Plus, having Marvel’s first television show pay homage to television shows is just a fun and clever idea.


4. I was not disappointed in the reveals


It was a good Bohner joke

Fan theories and speculation were a huge part of watching WandaVision week-to-week, and I had plenty of theories of my own. But I am not disappointed, nor will I mark it against the show, that few of the fan theories actually came true. No Mephisto or Nightmare? That’s fine. No Doctor Strange or Reed Richards cameo? Also fine. Ralph Bohner? Works for me! Paul Bettany’s teased actor was himself? Magnificent trolling! I wish more actors would actively troll when confronted with such constant PR.

In the end, WandaVision was exactly what it claimed on the tin: Wanda and Vision. It was a show about Wanda dealing with her grief, and it didn’t need to launch the multiverse or introduce the X-Men or end with a duel between Doctor Strange and Mephisto.


3. I was disappointed in the ham-fisted finale


They all gonna throw hands!

If I’m being totally honest, while I enjoyed the finale, I felt it was really ham-fisted. I felt they played really fast and loose with a lot of plot points and storytelling. And I don’t mean how the fan theories didn’t pan out. I mean stuff like Monica’s entire storyline only leading to her minimal power use in getting in front of some bullets. Or Agatha Harkness being just plain evil, without any layers. Or the SWORD agents having no real agency. They just run around silently pointing guns. And how did Jimmy Woo get picked up by SWORD? The last time we saw him, he was with Monica’s friends outside the dome. Where did those friends go? And did nobody really see him pick up that buzzing cell phone? And why did Darcy only get a single line?

I could go on. The point is, the show itself was all about build up and tension and mystery and atmosphere and going above and beyond with the world it had built. And the finale was all about laser blasts and people flying and quick rushing around. In large part, I felt the ending worked well enough. And it had some great moments. I particularly loved how the Visions settled their fight with a philosophical debate. But over the course of its run time, I felt it was probably the weakest episode of the bunch.

Part of me wonders if the finale suffered due to the pandemic. I don’t remember if they were still filming WandaVision last March when stuff started shutting down. Is that how they lost Kat Dennings? Did that curtail some scenes or some writing? I don’t know. All I know is that the finale wasn’t up to snuff.

And there was one overall storyline in particularly I didn’t really like…


2. Director Hayward


I know what I’ve been cast to do

I don’t exactly understand why SWORD Director Tyler Hayward is going to prison.

What did he do that warrants being led away from the scene in handcuffs by the FBI? What did he do that wasn’t part of his job as director of SWORD? Wanda Maximoff has used her super-powers to imprison a town of thousands against their will…that seems like something SWORD would respond to. And he was working in conjunction with the FBI through Jimmy Woo. So just because Hayward viewed Wanda as a bad guy and Monica didn’t, that’s why he’s a villain? To outside eyes, Wanda was very clearly a bad guy in that situation! Hayward was completely correct in painting Monica as someone sympathetic to superheroes. And, as Hayward himself points out, he lived those five years of post-apocalypse. Those had to be a rough five years.

But again, what did he do? Rebuild the Vision’s body? Perhaps that went against Vision’s living will, but I’m pretty sure some sort of bureaucracy or red tape would make it OK, even if it’s not ethically sound. He lied to Monica and Jimmy about Wanda taking the body? Seems well within his authority as director to manage information to subordinates. Shoot at some children? Sure, that seems bad, but those children weren’t real, and he only did that in the finale, where his character is as ham-fisted as humanly possible.

All I’m saying is, most of everything Hayward did seemed perfectly in line with a government official trying to put down a bad guy and save a town full of innocent people. The show chose to paint him as a cartoon super-villain, but I think he could have been far more nuanced. What Wanda did was wrong, and reasonable authorities should have been involved in stopping her.


1. I am very excited to see what Marvel does with TV


Will they cast a spell on television? Eh? Eh?!

This is probably a very simple take on the idea, but I am very excited to see how Marvel shapes television. Say what you will about the Marvel Cinematic Universe, but it has not only changed Hollywood forever, it has made its mark on the world. And it was oh so exciting to watch play out. And now I want to see what Kevin Feige and Marvel Studios do to television. Can they really capture the magic of the movies on the small screen? WandaVision just showed us that they have the budget to make it happen. But there’s more at play that I can’t wait to see.

They’re not going to make traditional, multi-season shows. WandaVision is done in one. The Falcon and the Winter Soldier is only going to be six episodes long. All of these shows are using Hollywood-level actors. And what about the future shows that don’t have ties to the movie? Surely Ms. Marvel could go for multiple seasons. Same with the likes of She-Hulk. But will they? And what about the TV/movie crossovers! Wanda is going to show up again in Doctor Strange 2. Both Monica and Kamala Khan are going to show up in Captain Marvel 2.

Will Marvel be able to count on the fans/watchers of WandaVision to understand where they send the White Vision, Monica and children storylines next? I think it will be a pretty exciting endeavor to explore!

——————

About Sean Ian Mills

Hello, this is Sean, the Henchman-4-Hire! By day I am a mild-mannered newspaper reporter in Central New York, and by the rest of the day I'm a pretty big geek when it comes to video games, comic books, movies, cartoons and more.

Posted on March 10, 2021, in Avengers, Lists of Six!, Marvel, Television and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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