At first glance, the newly released premiere episodes of WandaVision seem to offer nothing substantial and simply seems to drive forth the “House of M” theory that has been floating around- that Wanda, grief-stricken after Vision’s death, lost control over her sanity as well as her powers and ended up creating the fake, sitcom-style reality we see her in. But look closely and you will see the little clues strewn around that paint a very different and rather darker picture.&
WandaVision starts with a newly married Wanda and Vision driving into the quaint town of Westview and settling in their new home. When alone, they use their powers for everyday tasks but when they are with other people, they pretend to be like everyone else. But apart from knowing that they love each other and that they have powers which they can’t reveal in front of normal people, the duo seems to have no memory of the events preceding the series- that Vision is dead and Wanda is now living in a post-Snap world.& &
Wanda conjures things out of thin air and puts wedding rings on her and Vision’s fingers when people question them about it- this does make it seem like Scarlet Witch is the one running this makeshift reality. But it is the smaller hints and apparent Easter Eggs that beg to differ.&
The “commercials” in the two episodes.
Following the sitcom theme of the series, both the recently released episodes of WandaVision have a commercial about made-up products at half time and seem to be subtle nods to Wanda Maximoff’s childhood and how she got her powers. Like in the first episode, after Wanda and Vision move into their new home, we see a commercial about a toaster, with an ominous powering up sound followed by a continuous ticking, by the name of Toast Mate 2000 by Stark Industries.&
If you look at it as an Easter Egg, then it could be a reference to the fact that Stark Industries is the reason that Wanda ended up with Hydra. In Avengers: Age of Ultron, Wanda and her brother Pietro harboured a particular hatred for Tony Stark as it was one of his company created bombs that killed their parents and the siblings were left waiting for death inches away from a second, “ticking” bomb that could have gone off with the slightest change in pressure.&
Similarly, in the second episode, there is another commercial, this time about a luxury Swiss watch by the name of “Str&ücker” with an unmistakable symbol and name on the dial- the name Hydra and its octopus-skull logo, followed by another, loud ticking clock sound. For those who might have forgotten, Baron von Str&ücker was the Hydra leader who recruited Wanda and Pietro for his experimentation on Loki’s sceptre (hiding the Mind Stone).&
But nothing in the MCU is ever as innocent as it appears and combined with the other clues in the two episodes, these two commercials seem to be hinting at something else entirely.&
HYDRA, not Wanda, is the one controlling the artificial reality.
If you watched the two episodes carefully, you would know that one of the signs of the outside world trying to break into this illusion Wanda is living in when her black and white surroundings are disturbed by totally random, out-of-the-blue, burst of colours. Like the red helicopter (with the S.W.O.R.D. sign, but more on that later) in her rose bushes, the cut on Dottie’s hand bleeding bright red followed by the voice on the radio urgently asking “Who” is doing this to Wanda, etc.&
So, let’s start with the first commercial about the Toast Mate 2000 by the Stark Industries. Towards its end, the toaster starts ticking loudly, the light on it starts blinking and starting flashing red. In fact, this is the first color we see in the monochrome WandaVision and the lady, who seems slightly put off (either by the sound or maybe the crack in the construct with the blinking red light), takes out the toast followed by the host advising viewers to “forget the past, this is your future.” A pretty innocent sales-y line that sounds rather loaded given the weird amnesia life Wanda and Vision are living.&
While it doesn’t explicitly say that HYDRA is the culprit here, it does establish that someone on the outside, probably S.W.O.R.D. (SENTIENT WEAPON OBSERVATION AND RESPONSE DIVISION) is trying to break this made-up reality.
Either way, it’s the second commercial of the “Str&ücker” watch that establishes the HYDRA connection especially when it announces that “He’ll make time for you”- while Str&ücker was killed, it doesn’t necessarily mean that he is gone as like the HYDRA scientist Arnim Zola, maybe his computerized consciousness remains or he has been revived, just like it happened in the comics. Or maybe, it is a hint that while Str&ücker is dead, the rest of the villainous organization is not done with Wanda, which brings us to the other clues in the plot.&
It is HYDRA who wants Wanda to have children.
At the end of episode 2, we see Wanda having a baby bump out of nowhere. Now, it could be that Wanda has simply gone cuckoo over Vision’s death and got magically pregnant as she did in the comics. But Marvel never really, completely sticks to the comics storyline and given how everyone is grilling Wanda about not having kids in WandaVision, it’s almost like someone is egging her on to conjure her pregnancy magically.&
Whether it’s Vision’s boss’ wife questioning Wanda about why she doesn’t have kids yet, others hinting that she should give it a go, or the repetitive and very creepy, robotic chant of the crowd in episode 2 that the Talent Show is “for the children” (without a single child ever seen in the episode), someone is trying to sow the idea in Wanda’s head that her reality and happiness is incomplete without children. Maybe that someone is HYDRA, still seeking young super-soldiers whom they can turn against the Avengers and realize its long-held dream of world domination.&
Wanda does appear to have some semblance of control over this fake reality, especially at the end of the second episode where upon seeing the beekeeper with the sigh of S.W.O.R.D. she utters a stubborn “NO!” and time reverses itself such that the couple never comes outside. Chances are that Wanda just conjured up Vision in her grief over losing him but HYDRA, already aware of her powers, saw their chance and established the rest of the construct to keep her locked in so they can use her for their gain.&
We agree, that’s a lot of maybes and the reason behind the events can be much simpler. But it’s the MCU after all- nothing is ever what it appears to be and plus, it will be a long time before WandaVision starts spilling the beans (especially about that forbidding ticking sound in the commercials). So, wild theories are the answer till then. The premiere episodes of WandaVision are now streaming on the official Disney+ app.