ALL-NEW HALLOWEEN SPOOKTACULAR! Some SUPERHERO ORIGIN STORIES SET UP, BUT WE STILL NOT KNOW WHAT EVAN PETERS DO HERE.
WandaVision is still holding back answers to its key mysteries with only three episodes to go, but it also offered a number of questions worth asking. Instead of the ready-made meta-joke about the early 1990s TGIF lineup of Full House or ABC, an Olsen, and some twins, it's right there, choosing a different meta-joke and a different variety of old TV to anchor its latest episode. But will Wanda's (Elizabeth Olsen) latest move survive Vision's (Paul Bettany) search for the truth? Let's look at episode 6 and see what we can postulate about her Hex role.
The series leapfrogged over TGIF in a curious twist and landed on two interesting stylistic choices: the early 2000s sitcom Malcolm in the Middle for its credit sequence and the ability of Billy (Julian Hilliard) to address the camera and the overall energy of tween-geared sitcoms from the late 1990s and earlier 2000s on the cable channel. "Although, with that absolutely chilling "Yo-Magic" commercial and its "totally extreme" cartoon shark mascot, that feeling of a late '90s Nickelodeon series comes across the strongest. Did the ads shift the viewpoint from Wanda to Billy?
Back in the episode itself, the ability of Billy to talk to the camera foreshadows his awareness of Vision's escape attempt later on, at least in the first few scenes. For those who are still convinced that Mephisto is pulling the strings, the look of Billy as that awareness manifests in the details could indicate the Devil. Also, the inability of Wanda to explain how she is doing all of this leaves enough space for her later to say "I made a deal with the Devil."
Of course, in order to support the Mephisto hypothesis, we still do not see enough evidence in the text. It's certainly a possibility, and the seeming clues found by eagle-eyed viewers may add up to the primary demonic force of Marvel Comics. There is also a valid story point going forward if, as they were at one stage in Marvel Comics history, Billy and Tommy (Jett Klyne) are shards of Mephisto's consciousness made manifest.
Although we will argue that Billy's Halloween costume, a rendition of his Wiccan costume in the Young Avengers pages, suggests that Phase 4 could lead to his own team of Young Avengers. We have already seen Cassie Lang (Emma Fuhrmann) as a teenager, and Kate Bishop (Hailee Steinfeld) will be on TV soon. Before WandaVision concludes, will we see Billy and Tommy as adolescents?
Around the same time, the Halloween costumes of all of the main characters consciously nod to their comic book origins. Finally, with the Jack Kirby headgear, Wanda finally has her typical look, explained away as the getup of a traditional Sokovian fortune teller, and Pietro/Quicksilver (Evan Peters) finally has his sweptback hair. But it is important to note how goofy the brighter, flatter costumes look when imposed on actors after two decades of textured leather and more' tactical' approaches to superhero costumes in film and television.
That being said, while wearing yellow and blue spandex, we also want X-Men to arrive in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
The costumes also seem to suggest the regions where the power of the Hex by Wanda is waning. Pietro seems fairly resistant to her suggestions, for one thing. He also goes as far as he's intent on the sitcom version of events is to lampshade. The costume of the twins foreshadows the arrival of their powers. And, maybe most alarmingly, Vision's remark that all of his other clothes except the outfit of the "Mexican wrestler" have disappeared points to his growing freedom.
Also, the reluctance of the Mind Stone of the costume to sit still on his head shows the stubbornness of Vision to learn more.
Until we get out, Billy's respect for the camera disappears, another indication that Wanda's power is crumbling, and we get the most meta-joke WandaVision has done so far; as Pietro offers to take the boys trick-or-treating at high speed, Tommy says "kick-ass." As they vanish, Wanda repeats the term for the past week in an obvious callback people have been debating online: both Peters and Peters. (Pictured, left to right, in Kick-Ass below, by Taylor-Johnson and Peters.)
The film also noted the goofy look of superhero suits on actual human bodies, based on a comic book written by former Marvel Comics writer Mark Millar. But a variety of scenes were also used in which the two actors stand next to each other. This becomes a retroactive callback to the first comic book story about a Multiverse: DC Comics' Flash #123-"The Flash of Two Worlds" in view of their role in comic book movies.
The Pietro also has super-speed abilities feels like the universe itself had set up the meta-joke. Or, perhaps, the author of Babylon 5 and former Thor comic book writer J. Straczynski's Michael. That kind of long game, he's working.
The joke often reinforces how odd it is in the first place to have Peters as Pietro and it brings into question who or what he really is. Pietro calls out the shift in Wanda's skills, their separate memories of growing up in war-torn Sokovia, and their communal lack of Eastern European accents until the trick-or-treatment hits the town square. Then we see him as a bullet-riddled corpse for a moment. But he's already Peters, even then, and not Taylor-Johnson (pictured below in Avengers: Age of Ultron).
The stacking references can matter to the Pietro of Two Worlds. Did Wanda pluck Pietro's other universe into the MCU somehow? And if so, did he die in a manner similar to our Pietro? If we take the face value of Peters playing the same character he played in the three new X-Men movies, there's an irony that he's dying from gunshots. After all, Pietro appeared famously in bravura scenes, using his pace to dodge all sorts of attacks.
But if we can go meta again, it's also possible that Peters actually plays Evan Peters, an actor who starred in a movie called Kick-Ass with an actor who looked very much like the brother of Wanda. Since we still don't know why Wanda is making the particular cultural references she has chosen so far, it is as valid an idea as anything else to pull the MCU's Peters into her Hex.
Or, maybe, we're trying to compensate for the missed joke of the Whole House.
It is becoming apparent beyond Westview that S.W.O.R.D. Director Hayward (Josh Stamberg) is up to no good at all. His missile stunt last week certainly put him in the shady column, but it is now clear that he has no interest in supporting the people caught up in the Curse. Many have believed this for a while.
So far, the few things we know about him: he's been at S.W.O.R.D. for a while and was the default option after her death to replace Maria Rambeau. He absolutely believes in the Sokovia Accords and in general has a fair dower view of super-powered individuals.
His involvement in the Hex also appears to derive from Wanda's theft of the corpse of Vision just before WandaVision started. Wanda unintentionally gave him the permission to use Vision as a drone, our first guess, something that was specifically prohibited in his will. Given that he is an android made of vibranium, so many years after the Sokovia Accords were signed, Vision's body may be a valuable commodity to aspects of the U.S. government still worried about superheroes. But his plans include something called "Cataract," as Dr. Darcy Lewis (Kat Dennings) learned, which vision he hopes to impair with Vision?
He would want to give the Avengers a blind spot, given Hayward's reported views.
Then again, if S.W.O.R.D. has been around long enough to grow up in the organization for Monica Rambeau (Teyonah Parris), it is likely that Hydra was infiltrated as well. If that's the case, the intent of Hayward might not be based on Vision or the Avengers. Maybe this is about Wanda being recovered as an asset.
And speaking of Monica, there seems to be a lot of set-up going on with her eventual status quo. Her test results show that her cells are evolving at the molecular level, for one thing. While the well-being of that relationship is still obscure, we received more confirmation regarding her past with Carol. Even though it is strained, the remarks made by Hayward showed that she is still predisposed to support superheroes.
Back in the comics, for a time, Monica adopted the name "Captain Marvel," changing it to "Photon" when the son of the original Captain Marvel decided to use the nickname. The call sign her mother used when she and Carol flew jets in the Air Force also happens to be "Photon" in the MCU.
We are bringing this up because WandaVision seems to be on the precipice of making Monica a superhero. As it happens, after being struck by a wave of extra-dimensional energy, her comic book counterpart obtained her abilities, something very much like what seems to be powering Westview's (currently expanding) frontier. Her skills are built on the light-focused electromagnetic spectrum, and what is television but a directed, information-rich manipulation of light?
Darcy suggested that another trip through the energy field could be lethal, but now we wonder if next week Monica might appear as a "Captain Marvel" light-powered. Well, as long as she and Agent Jimmy Woo (Randall Park) end up being swept up in the Hex expansion. Actually, as she certainly passed through the sector, you have to wonder who Darcy is going to become.
The one broken girl, maybe?
Also, who does Monica's engineer friend keep referring to? She's pretty sure she can get that person back to Westview, but her name has been blurred. Some assume this character will be Olsen's promised 'Luke Skywalker-level' cameo a few weeks back, but do any of the existing Marvel characters suit the description we have so far while also having a plausible relationship before the Blip with Monica?
There is a wonderful response if we eliminate the requirement that it has to be someone we've seen in a Marvel film before, which seems necessary for an effect on par with the Mandalorian appearance of Luke. But that's got to be a long shot, huh? Marvel Mutant Longshot still seems to be very unlikely, too.
Source Rotten Tomatoes