Exploring Marvel’s ‘WandaVision’ and its Take on The Grief Process

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Jordan Patterson

Opinion Editor

Marvel’s “WandaVision” is just one of multiple projects spanning decades for the comic book movie company. 

However, this one is unique for several reasons.

First of all, “WandaVision” is the first of many Disney+ TV shows Marvel has planned to be released.

The second thing that makes this so unique is the emphasis on one of Marvel’s most psychologically damaged characters ever created dating all the way back to the comic books.

Anyone even slightly familiar with the Scarlet Witch from the comics knows of the woman who created an entire alternate universe out of grief after the loss of her two twins (the easiest way to sum it up for non comic fans.)

However, in the movies one could argue that her life is even more tragic, and “WandaVision” finally puts an emphasis on all grief that had been building up in the mind of this side character.

From the moment she first appeared in the movies, she was introduced as a character who hated the Avengers because of Tony Stark’s role in the death of her parents at a young age.

She would go on to join the Avengers, but her life as an avenger would only build on the mental struggles she already had.

In only 4 movie appearances, she would go on to be experimented on by an evil organization, lose her twin brother, cause the death of many civilians in an accident, and lose the love of her life.

“You took everything from me,” she angrily uttered towards Thanos in the movie “Avengers Endgame” makes a lot of sense with this context.

However, it made it very confusing when her next appearance was as a housewife to her, supposed to be dead, lover. 

Even as viewers watched an Avengers sitcom parody there were certain signs that were hard to ignore.

One being that, everytime something that Wanda didn’t like would happen, it would be undone.

This led up to the reveal in the episode that Wanda is well aware of what’s going on and things are the way they are because she likes them that way.

She doesn’t want anyone bursting her bubble or reminding her of what her “truth” is.

All she wants to do is live in this little world with the love she had lost.

Elizabeth’s Olsen’s powerful performance at the end of the third episode hammered home the point that this was a woman who was tired of accepting that tragedy’s of life, but more frighteningly is that she now had the power to change them.

My favorite scene of the series is when Wanda comes out of ‘The Hex’ for the first time. 

Not only because it was the most badass she has ever been, even more so than when she almost took out one of the most iconic and powerful villains in movie history, but because she was so clearly broken. 

A former hero who was more than willing to play the part of a villain by keeping thousands under a painful mind control and threatening a group of government soldiers. 

Operating in a grey zone that the MCU (Marvel Cinematic Universe) very rarely occupies, Wanda knew she was in the wrong but very clearly refused to let go of the things that she loved. 

The things that life was never willing to let her keep. 

As she comes through the barrier of ‘The Hex’, a silhouette flickering in and out like a witch, a scarlet one, out of a horror movie, she makes it clear that she is not giving up her new ideal life.

As multiple soldiers point their lasers directly at her, she doesn’t back down an inch as she makes it clear that she is the one with the power and she will not let anyone take away the happiness she had found within ‘The hex.’ 

My eyes began to water when Wanda said, “I have what I want and no one will take it from me again,” followed by her flicking her magic with a tremendous amount of sass of forcing all the soldiers to point their guns at the director of the organization. 

This scene resonated with me so much because life can be rough sometimes and it’s natural to want to do everything you can to live a perfect life and be happy, even if you have to make selfish decisions to do so. 

This series has put Wanda and her trauma that was slowly and sparingly built up across her appearances in the Avengers movies front and center and Elizabeth Olsen has fully delivered, as she always has. 

Wanda, a.k.a. The Scarlet Witch, has become my fourth  favorite MCU hero behind Captain America, Spiderman, and Black Panther.

Email Jordan at:

jpatters13@live.esu.edu

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