After last week’s excellent Halloween episode, I had to ask a very scary question in the Nerds on Earth Discord: What if this show doesn’t resolve itself? Now, do I ask that because I still wear the scars of 6 seasons of Lost?
No, even moreso, with what we know is potentially coming, I worry the end of this season of excellent television is Dr. Strange swooping into Westview, NJ and “please stand by” pops up to tell us all to see what happens in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness.
Thankfully, after this episode, I feel better that the season will have some resolution via the next two episodes, albeit with some dangling plot threads that will tie into Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness. More on that speculation later.
Recap of WandaVision S1E7 “Breaking the Fourth Wall”
This episode opens in a whole different way, with Wanda directly addressing the audience. To be honest, it didn’t feel real clear to me what the sitcom inspiration was until the credits rolled and we get that it is supposed to be an homage to The Office. The major vehicle that they are going to use is that the cast can chat directly with the audience for the first time.
And in Wanda’s case, she is, uh, a little bit off. While attributing it to having a “case of the Mondays,” she confesses to feeling remorse about expanding “the false world we created” in a fit of anger.
The twins even come to ask her help, because their game controllers go from the modern controller to Uno cards in just a few seconds. Interestingly, Billy complains about it being noisy in his head, but she blows him off.
When she does eventually come downstairs, we watch as the milk goes from almond, to regular to old style bottle, each time under the effects of Wanda’s red magic. While she sees it, once she takes a bite of the massive bowl of Sugar Smacks and determines it tastes okay, she moves on.
Outside of the Hex, we discover that the signal that had been broadcasting the television show has gone dead and SWORD is readying to launch a team into the Hex.
Inside the new walls of the Hex, the Circus that Wanda created out of the previous SWORD facility brings together the “new clown,” Vision, who appears none the worst from his horrific injuries the previous night and The Escape Artist, Dr. Darcy, who was sucked into the Hex as it expanded the night before as well.
But Vision remembers seeing her from the night before while she has no memory at all of seeing what happened.
The twins express a few other concerns, namely where their dad is and what Uncle Pietro said last night, about the Vision not being able to die twice. Wanda is having none of it and gives a speech that is basically telling them to figure it out on their own because she doesn’t have answers.
As you can imagine, it doesn’t go over great with the tweenagers but…Agnes comes to the rescue of Wanda, scooping the boys up to give their mom some alone time despite the twins protestations.
But Alone Time for Wanda goes quickly astray. Various parts of the house and decor move backward and forward from the various television sets we’ve seen and when she tells the camera she is fine, repeatedly, it is getting hard to believe her.
Meanwhile, the two parts of the Trio still outside the Hex are still working on their rescue plan. First, they discover the files Darcy sent after cracking the last firewall, which shows Project Cataract was a plan to redeploy the Vision, not to decommission him.
It turns out the director just wants a weapon. But they also are able to pick up the sweet vehicle that Monica thinks will let her breakthrough the Hex, as they are loaned it from Major Goodner, a woman soldier that was friends with Monica’s mother.
Inside, Dr. Darcy gets zapped with Vision’s yellow energy and comes to herself. Dr. Darcy smacks the Ringmaster in the face as they steal the Funnel of Love food truck and head out to get to Vision’s house, as he is worried about his children.
But as we will see over the rest of the episode, the world seems to be conspiring against them. They face traffic lights, construction, and school lines. But the delays allow Dr. Darcy to help Vision know and understand his own history, starting with Jarvis, his sacrifice at Wanda’s hand, her seeing that reversed by Thanos, only to then watch him die again. It is much to take in but in the end, Vision decides to fly towards home.
Meanwhile, Wanda confesses that she doesn’t know what is going on with her powers when a voice offscreen asks her: “Do you think this is what you deserve?” She chides the voice saying he isn’t supposed to be seen and we get an immediate commercial for Nexus, a depression drug,
At Agnes’ house, we see the boys crowded up with her on the couch. Billy says that he likes it here, because it is quiet. And that Agnes is quiet, on the inside. Agnes seems not to know what to do other than assure them that their mom is going to be fine.
Meanwhile, Monica attempts to go into the Hex but it spits out the new vehicle, actively fighting against letting anyone inside. And half of it had been turned into a truck.
But even though she dodges the vehicle, she ignores Jimmy Woo and runs into the wall herself. And we watch as she tries to push through the Hex wall. As she goes through we see and hear memories that all come together and Monica, with glowing blue eyes, has made it into Westview, now with the ability to see other kinds of energy. So off she runs to Wanda’s house.
Monica reaches Wanda’s home but receives a less than warm welcome. While she tries to explain some of the concerns (and disavow having anything to do with the Pietro situation), Wanda attacks. But when she flings Monica to the ground, the blue energy now associated with Monica rematerializes and they both acknowledge that something else is going on.
But just when Monica seems to be starting to get through to Wanda, Agnes shows up, comforting Wanda, walking her to her house. Offering her a cup of tea, Wanda sits, takes a deep breath and then asks where her boys are.
Agnes says that they are probably just playing in the basement. Wanda heads down that way and discovers vine covered hallway and enters it, coming out the other side where there is a large collection of various things, most notably a glowing red book.
We get what so many people have thought was coming: the reveal that Agnes is actually the witch Agatha Harkness, as her purple magic goes over Wanda and we get her own sitcom jingle: “Who’s been messing up everything? It was Agatha all along.”
We end with Agatha’s confession of killing Sparky and a hideous witch’s cackle.
And…there is a mid-credits scene as well, as we see Monica snooping around Agnes’ house, finding an entrance when Pietro comes up behind her!
Thoughts on WandaVision S1E7 “Breaking the Fourth Wall”
So who is Agatha Harkness? Like most characters in the Marvel Universe of comics, she has a long and complicated backstory that veers from the side of good to the side of evil and back and forth.
The basics of her story is that she was a witch that was tried at the Salem Witch Trials in the 1600s and survived. Along the way, she held such roles as governess for Franklin Richards, the first child of the Fantastic Four’s Reed and Sue Richards.
Now, in the comics, she plays a vital part in the children of the Scarlet Witch and the Vision, saying that using magic and parts of the villain Mephisto’s soul allowed Wanda to conceive. From there it gets even more convoluted but the main thing is that she is pretty much tied to Vision and Wanda after that point.
What does that mean for the show? Who knows!
There has been some speculation that we will get to see Mephisto before the series end. That is fueled in some part by Paul Bettany claiming that he gets to work with an actor he never has before and who has some experience in the sitcom world.
A lot of speculation is that Mephisto may be played by Bryan Cranston, who would be a diabolically good fit. Regardless, we now know for certain that this isn’t JUST Wanda at work but more going on there. Where will it lead us in the next 2 episodes?
Remember all the hype around the Aerospace engineer? Well, this is an example of one of those things that if the showrunners could do over, they probably would. Where they wrote a simple part, who to my knowledge doesn’t exist in the MCU or Marvel Comics, the nature of the show had everyone jumping and looking for clues.
The conversation between Dr. Darcy and the Vision is potentially very enlightening. On some level, I had assumed that the Vision had some idea of his past. To have him be essentially a tableau rasa opens up so many potential doors. Just the questions he asked like “But, what am I now?” could go a long way to determining if he lasts past the end of this series. It was reassuring and hopeful to hear what Dr. Darcy said about the love that Vision and Wanda have for each other.
Something to pay attention to now especially is the colors and their association with powers. The most obvious is the red aura that comes from Wanda. But in earlier episodes we see yellow from the Vision when he “frees” the captives. Monica’s powers have had a blue reveal in this episode and Agnes’ big reveal included purple touches. That could be nothing more than to give each character a distinguishable different tone, but it could also be important down the line!
Finally, here is my speculation on the dangling thread that will need to be resolved at the end of the series, going into the Multiverse film: Pietro needs to get home!