WandaVision Episode 8 Review
Ever since WandaVision started, fans have been relentlessly asking questions about it. Is someone controlling Wanda and making her do this? How the heck did Pietro and Vision come back? Is Agnes really Agatha Harkness? But do you know what the biggest question has been? It’s how did the event dubbed the “Westview Anomaly” start, and how did Wanda’s powers start acting like they were on steroids? Not one knew the answer to those last two; not even Wanda.
That changes with the penultimate episode. Naughty Agatha makes Wanda take a trip down memory lane that reveals the truth about the Westview Anomaly. And that’s only the start of the bombshells we get this week.
*MAJOR SPOILERS AHEAD! READ AT YOUR OWN RISK!*
We Learn About Agatha Harkness’ Past.
Even before we learned who she was, Kathryn Hahn’s role as Agatha Harkness has been the breakout role of WandaVision. She can go from serious and threatening to pleading for mercy to deliciously evil and hammy at the drop of the hat; her reveal song “Agatha All Along” went viral and hit the top of the charts on iTunes. But who is she, exactly?
Like in the comics, Agatha’s a centuries old witch who lived all the way back in Salem. However, in the MCU, her coven turned on her when she started using powerful dark magic. When they tried to kill her for it, she killed them instead. By accident.
While Agatha hasn’t outright stated her goal for messing with the Westview Anomaly, I have a theory. Remember the Yo-Magic Commercial? I think Agatha’s trying to leech off of Wanda, the most powerful magic user she’s ever seen, and drain her magic power for herself. I mean, if I was a power-hungry lady, that’s what I would do.
But that doesn’t answer the question: what is the Westview Anomaly, and how did Wanda create it?
It’s Always Been Wanda
For years, everyone thought that Wanda got her powers from the Mind Stone, one of the six Infinity Stones. And we bought that idea so easily; hell, I thought the Westview Anomaly was the result of her Infinity Stone based powers evolving. However, this episode revealed something big. It seems that Wanda’s always had latent magic powers in her. On the night her parents died and that shell lay in her living room, it never went off. Wanda thought it was defective; however, Agatha think she used magic to make it happen.
As much as I hate to admit it, Agatha might be right. At one point in the comics, Wanda was said to use very powerful magic. Now imagine that power being permanently juice by an Infinity Stone. Suddenly, the fact that Wanda can warp reality becomes very feasible.
Wanda’s Life of Trauma
So, when the Westview Anomaly was created, why did Wanda make it based off of various sitcoms? Because those sitcoms were her security blanket in an otherwise hellish life.
As it turns out, Wanda’s dad was a fan of old American sitcoms, and he would have the family sit down and watch some every now and then. Seeing how the characters in those shows only had to deal with silly, easily solvable problems made her want to have that kind of life. Instead, the universe seemed to want to continually screw her over. And when she found out about what S.W.O.R.D. did to Vision’s body, she seemed to steal it before creating the Westview Anomaly.
Or did she steal Vision’s body?
Hayward Started Everything
Hayward lied to everyone from the beginning. He made it look like Wanda stole Vision’s remains against his wishes, brought him, and created the Westview Anomaly. But he lied to everyone, and this episode proves it.
In one of the biggest twists to this miniseries, we learn that Wanda never broke into S.W.O.R.D. HQ; Hayward let her in so she could see what they were doing to Vision. She wanted to take his body, but only so she could lay him to rest; and Hayward refused, and gave her the idea of creating a fantasy life where Vision was alive.
The Vision we’ve seen in WandaVision isn’t the real one! He’s a construct created by Wanda’s magic, which is why he can’t survive outside the Westview Anomaly. But if that’s true, then what about the real Vision? It turns out, Hayward’s using all the events going on to get a hold of some of Wanda’s power so he can bring Vision back to life as an emotionless weapon. And he’s succeeded.
In the short time I’ve know Director Hayward, he’s proven to be a callous, deceitful, trigger-happy jerk. Now, he’s willing to risk the lives of everyone in the Westview Anomaly to test out his unholy new toy? That’s messed up on so many levels! Worse, if the comics are anything to go by, then the newly returned Vision will possess no emotions whatsoever. He’ll be a pitiless weapon, the kind that he sought to prevent himself from becoming.
The Big Finale Approaches.
So, to recap, Agatha’s revealed herself to be an evil witch. She’s holding Tommy and Billy hostage and is trying to exploit the power of the Westview Anomaly for her own purposes. And now Hayward’s sending Wanda’s real undead ex to off her. So, yeah, next week’s finale should be pretty amazing to watch.
I honestly have no clue how things are going to turn out, but I can imagine a lot of jaw-dropping moments and some good old fashioned fighting between heroes and villains. It’s gonna be great.
As for this episode, I never thought I’d say this, but I think there was too much exposition for me to deal with. After last week, it felt like this episode fell a little flat for me. Though, to be fair, this show has a pretty high bar to begin with.
I Give “Previously On…” A 3.5/5
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