On January 15, the very unique Marvel television show WandaVision will finally premiere on Disney+. While many of the show’s biggest twists have yet to be revealed, we do know that Wanda (Elizabeth Olsen) and Vision (Paul Bettany) will be back following the events of Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers: Endgame. Now, these former Avengers are a happily married couple who now live in the pleasant suburban community of Westview. But, as time goes on, Wanda and Vision will soon realize that something about the nature of their existence in Westview is, well, askew. Together, they will have to figure out what exactly is going on and how they can fight it.
But, before we dive right into WandaVision, we should probably take a look at the history of these two Marvel characters in both the comics and in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Wanda and Vision have been through a lot, both on the page and onscreen. While the trip down memory lane won’t dive into the nitty-gritty of the couple’s relationship, it will revisit the biggest beats so you can get caught up.
Wanda & Vision in Marvel Comics
Wanda and Vision have been hanging around the Marvel Comics-verse for a much longer period of time than they have the MCU. She’s a witch! He’s an advanced android! Together, they’re a very powerful, very beautiful couple with one of the most enduring love stories in Marvel history. As such, these two superheroes have built up quite the narrative arc over the history of Marvel Comics — ones that would take up far too much space here. But that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t talk about Wanda and Vision’s Marvel Comics relationship at all. Instead, let’s touch on the biggest plot points in this couple’s comics history so we can lay the groundwork for them by the time they materialize in the MCU.
Wanda Maximoff, a.k.a. Scarlet Witch, was introduced into the comics four years and seven months before her husband. Arriving in March 1964, Wanda and her twin brother Pietro (a.k.a. Quicksilver) were established as villainous assistants to Magneto. By the ’70s, the twins were established to be the children of a superhero named Whizzer before that plot point was retconned and it was established that Wanda and Pietro was Magneto’s children. Over the years, Wanda and Pietro have kept one foot in the world of X-Men and one in the Avengers’ world, with the pair popping up all over Marvel Comics. Wanda is an extremely powerful character, with training both in actual witchcraft and witchcraft-like abilities as a mutant. Chaos magic, force field creation, reality warping, illusion creation, elemental manipulation, telekinesis, telepathy…the list goes on. In general, it’s better to assume Wanda can do something magical until she can’t.
Introduced in October 1968, Vision’s story will sound familiar to MCU fans. Vision was created by the robot Ultron and meant to be used by Ultron to attack Hank Pym and Janet Van Dyne. (You read that right: In the comics, Ultron’s creator is Ant-Man, not Tony Stark.) Vision is eventually freed from servitude to Ultron when the Avengers convince Vision to see reason and he absorbs the consciousness of another superhero into his being. Vision eventually joins the Avengers, is briefly controlled once again by Ultron, regains control of his body, and then meets Wanda. In the comics, Vision is visibly a human being in every way but has synthetic body parts. He is also not powered by an Infinity Stone and the yellow stone in his forehead is actually a Solar Jewel, which absorbs and concentrates the sun so that Vision can shoot it like a laser. Vision also has classic superhero abilities like flight, superhuman reflexes and stamina, superhuman regenerative powers, and durability.
Together, Wanda and Vision are a notable Marvel Comics couple because they are the first human-android relationship. Naturally, this presents some problems when the couple try to give normal life a go, but thanks to Wanda’s hex powers, the couple — who also get married — have twin boys. Eventually, it is revealed that Wanda and Vision’s sons, Thomas and William, are actually fragments of a demon named Mephisto and are reabsorbed into their actual dad’s being (it’s a comic book; what do you expect?). This event really shatters the couple and, despite their best efforts to try and stay together, can’t make it work.
Wanda & Vision in the MCU
Wanda and Vision’s long and complicated Marvel Comics history has been reduced down to only a handful of scenes across four MCU features and, now, one Marvel Disney+ TV show. (A fact made glaringly clear in Wanda and Vision’s respective episodes of the new Disney+ series Marvel Studios Legends.) There are some beats in the MCU version of Wanda and Vision relationship that will be familiar to fans of the couple in their comics form. But the MCU has also made some key changes that have greatly impacted the couple’s time onscreen.
What the MCU has retained from the comics is the circumstances behind Wanda and Vision meeting one another in Avengers: Age of Ultron. In Age of Ultron, Vision is still the creation of Ultron, but he is made using Stark technology — including the JARVIS operating system. Vision is also made sentient with the Mind Stone, which is taken out of Loki’s scepter and placed into Vision’s head by Ultron. Additionally, Age of Ultron‘s climactic battle between the megalomaniacal robot and the Avengers allows Vision and Wanda to meet for the first time. Wanda and her brother Pietro are reluctant assistants to Ultron for most of the movie before turning against him as the Avengers fight Ultron. Although Vision is eventually taken in by the Avengers earlier in the movie and is ostensibly one of the good guys, he chooses to save Wanda during the battle rather than let her get hurt.
Wanda and Vision only get a few scenes together in Captain America: Civil War, with this MCU movie once again putting them on opposite teams. Despite spending a lot more time together at the newly built Avengers facility and growing closer as a result of it, Wanda and Vision find themselves on different sides of an important ideological debate. The introduction of the Sokovia Accords, which would provide more government oversight on superheroes, threatens to team the team apart. Tony Stark is pro-Accords while Steve Rogers is opposed. In one scene, as the team debates this, Vision reveals himself to be aligned with Tony while Wanda is more aligned with Steve, causing strain in their nascent relationship. As the movie progresses, the couple splits up and assists their respective team leaders — Tony and Steve — before the two teams eventually come to blows. Despite Wanda and Vision using the full force of their powers on each other and on other Avengers, the couple manage to kiss and make up by the end of the game-changing fight.
At the start of Avengers: Infinity War, it’s revealed the Wanda and Vision have absconded to Edinburgh, Scotland. There, post-Civil War, we learn couple has been stealing time together here and there to try and figure out their relationship; Edinburgh is just the most recent meeting place for the secret couple. (When they haven’t been together, Wanda has been forced to remain on the run, following Steve breaking her out of jail and his entire Civil War team forced to lay low.)
Before the couple can make any real plans for their future, Thanos’ henchmen arrive in Edinburgh to try and kill Vision and take the Mind Stone. Wanda, Steve, Falcon, and Black Widow fight Thanos’ goons off and immediately go to Wakanda to see if Shuri can safely remove the Mind Stone and keep Vision alive. Instead, Vision is eventually forced to ask Wanda to destroy the Mind Stone — a fatal and devastating request. Wanda succeeds, but Thanos uses the Time Stone to wind the clocks back and take the Mind Stone for himself, killing Vision in the process. Thanos’ snap of the Infinity Gauntlet also wipes Wanda out of existence. In Avengers: Endgame, Wanda returns in the climactic battle and gets a brief moment to take out her anger and pain on Thanos as she beats the living hell out of him.
What Happens to the Couple in WandaVision (and Beyond)?
Details about the fate of Wanda and Vision as a couple are somewhat unclear because we still have no idea what WandaVision has in store for the pair. Vision’s existence in WandaVision doesn’t necessarily prove that he is somehow back from the dead following the events of Avengers: Infinity War. However, we cannot overrule some clever MCU trickery to explain why he is suddenly back and sentient like the old days.
Over the course of nine episodes, we could see Wanda and Vision’s relationship touch on some of the plot points from their comics history. Recent WandaVision trailers feature shots of Wanda pregnant, the couple preparing a nursery, and even an amusing moment where two different pacifiers are seen popping up out of two different cribs. Similarly, one teaser trailer sees Agnes (Kathryn Hahn) recognize Vision as an Avenger. This implies that Wanda and Vision’s lives as Avengers might factor in to WandaVision and could affect the outcome of their stories on the show.
And then, there’s the possible reference to Marvel’s House of M arc (read more on Fandom), which includes characters from X-Men and The Avengers. The reference is featured in one of the earliest WandaVision trailers, with a bottle of wine being served at dinner sporting a “Maison de Mépris” (French for “House of Contempt”) label. In the comics, Scarlet Witch and Professor Xavier use their powers to construct a world known as the “House of M,” where a person’s desires become reality and which eventually results in Scarlet Witch becoming too powerful and destructive. This arc could play out in WandaVision, as a grieving post-Endgame Wanda constructs a reality where she can have a the life with Vision she’s always wanted despite agents from the outside trying to make contact to get her to snap out of it. The House of M arc ends on a pretty devastating note (Wanda erases millions of mutants out of existence), so if WandaVision does replicate this arc, it’s worth wondering if it will also end on a highly-emotional note or if it will affect what happens to Vision.
No matter how WandaVision ends, we do know that Wanda’s MCU story will continue in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness. It’s only theoretical at this point, but there’s merit to keeping your mind open about how the events of WandaVision could play into Doctor Strange 2 and Wanda’s story, specifically.
WandaVision debuts on Disney+ on Friday, January 15. For more, find out what we learned about WandaVision from the cast and crew in a recent press conference and check out the first reactions and reviews for the Marvel Disney+ show.
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