The highly praised Disney+ Original Series, “WandaVision,” aired its final episode on Friday. Prior to its January release, the lovable duo of Wanda Maximoff (Elizabeth Olsen) and Vision (Paul Bettany) didn’t have significant screen time in comparison to their Avenger counterparts. The Marvel franchise has collected a large fanbase familiar with its intertwining character arcs and methodical storylines, constantly keeping viewers on their toes. Each Marvel release becomes a missing puzzle piece that falls into the greater timeline of the supernatural universe, and “WandaVision” is no exception.
Leading up to the “WandaVision” finale on March 5, it was unclear whether viewers should be rooting for Wanda or characterizing her as the antagonist of the series. During the series there are multiple instances that tap into the Avenger’s dark thoughts, making viewers doubt Wanda’s motives for controlling the town of Westview. However, by the final episode, Disney and Marvel once again humanize the superhero by displaying the challenge of choosing between her family and saving the townspeople of Westview. Upon finishing the series, the audience is left with a better understanding of the moral dilemma that Wanda faces, developing a stronger connection to her and sympathy for her journey in processing her loss.
Apart from Wanda’s character development, one of the most notable features of the Disney+ series was the unique staging of each episode. The series took place across the span of various decades in American history, which captured the attention of its viewers and increased interest in the series during its early aired releases. With every episode, Wanda and Vision starred in a new and equally cheesy sitcom parody from a defining decade. Every detail ranging from the set design, to the quirky dialogue, to the theme songs were poignantly accurate to each decade, spurring nostalgia of nights spent surrounding the television on a Sunday evening.
At first glance, “WandaVision’s” time-traveling concept appeared to be a fresh way for Marvel to keep its audience engaged with the weekly releases. However, Disney uses the sitcom narrative to explain Wanda’s longing for family stability and safety. After dealing with loss and loneliness, her desire for escapism manifests in the creation of the sitcoms, in which problems are always resolved by the end of the twenty-minute episodes. Previous Marvel storylines weave their way throughout the episodes through small details such as returning characters, momentary flashbacks, and reoccurring symbols during “commercial breaks.” References to the Marvel Cinematic Universe throughout the series show that “WandaVision” isn’t simply a stand-alone spinoff of the franchise, but a defining point of the Marvel timeline.
In typical Marvel fashion, there are many open-ended storylines for the characters of “WandaVision.” Although the “WandaVision” era might be over, Marvel’s projected 2021 releases suggest that fans can still hold hope that “we’ll say hello again.”