Like Westworld and Lost before it, WandaVision is the kind of show that lends itself to wild theorising, with almost every episode leaving us with more questions than we started with.
Just what set off the Westview anomaly in the first place? Is Elizabeth Olsen’s Wanda really in control? How did Evan Peters’ Quicksilver end up in the MCU, and what happened to Vision in the years after Infinity War? In trying to work things out fans’ theories have ranged from a plot by the devil (or at least, Marvel demon Mephisto), the introduction of Doctor Strange villain Nightmare or even the inclusion of Wanda’s comic-book dad Magneto.
But now, with just three episodes left we have to wonder…are we maybe overthinking what’s actually going to happen in the series? While we can probably expect some more twists and turns – it’s clear now that Wanda isn’t the only sinister force at work in Westview, and Josh Stamberg’s Director Hayward definitely has some secrets – I’m beginning to worry that WandaVision just doesn’t have time for any of these grand reveals to work.
Of course, the episodes are set to get longer from hereon out – apparently, each of the last three episodes will be roughly an hour long, as opposed to the 30-35 minute episodes we’ve had so far – but I’m just struggling to picture Marvel throwing in the concept of demons, the multiverse and/or elemental beings like Nightmare at the end of a series that’s actually been quite self-contained thus far.
Characters like Mephisto and Nightmare are great villains who could appear in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, but I don’t think the way to do that would be to throw them into the eleventh hour (or rather, final three hours) of a two-month event series that’s in no way built up to or prepared for them.
The better place to include them would be in a film that already delves into extradimensional beings and fantasy like the upcoming Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, or maybe the Loki Disney+ series debuting later this year. By contrast, it should be in a series that so far has very clearly stayed either within the world of the Westview anomaly – which has specific rules and challenges that viewers have gradually become used to – and the normal world outside as represented by SWORD.
If suddenly the whole thing was revealed to be the work of the devil-like Mephisto, or that neighbour Agnes (Kathryn Hahn) was really comic-book witch character Agatha Harkness, it’d feel like a weird cheat, like if Iron Man fought a dragon (maybe Fin Fang Foom) in his first 2008 movie. Technically it’s within the scope of the fictional Marvel world, but it would just feel wrong based on the rules and aesthetic established so far.
If a big left-field twist involving magic or extra-dimensional beings was unveiled as the real endgame of WandaVision it’d be a strange and unconvincing moment, all the more so because of how few episodes are left. I’m not saying it’s impossible that any of this would happen, incidentally, more that it’s increasingly difficult to see how these things could be included without compromising the quality and storytelling of the series as we’ve seen it before.
What seems more likely is that we could see twists and developments within the story elements have already been set up. We know that Hayward is hiding something and that SWORD maybe have been up to no good with Vision’s body before Wanda turned up to liberate it (assuming that’s what really happened). We also know that an FBI witness is still hidden within Westview who has yet to be revealed, and that at least one episode will feature flashbacks showing how Wanda ended up in her sitcom dream in the first place (at least based on some shots within WandaVision trailers).
For me, it’s looking increasingly likely that we could be in for a more grounded denouement in WandaVision’s final episode, free of complicated, MCU-busting twists and more easily understandable for the casual viewers Disney is keen to attract to its new TV series.
It might all be a bit simpler, is all I’m saying. If I’m wrong, well, at least I’ll be in for a nice surprise when we found out how the real magic trick was pulled off.
Want more WandaVision content? Check out our latest WandaVision review, our guide to the WandaVision cast, the WandaVision release schedule, Agatha Harkness and the creepy WandaVision commercials. Plus, we ask:When is WandaVision set and how did Vision survive?
WandaVision releases new episodes on Disney+ on Fridays. You can sign up to Disney Plus for £5.99 a month or £59.99 a year. Want something else to watch? Check out our full TV Guide.