We really need to dive into this WandaVision episode 8 recap with a giant red siren blaring: this episode changed quite a bit of the lives of its titular characters in the MCU. So, let's break down "Previously On," the latest chapter of the Disney Plus series, and get into the news coming out of Westview.
And of course, as the above implies, this will break down WandaVision episode 8 in great detail. So don't tell us you got spoiled. It's time to give into the greatest flashbacks ever.
Who was Agatha Harkness?
Before we dive into the big news, let's give some context from Salem, Massachusetts in 1693. In the opening scene of WandaVision episode 8, we learn that Agatha was a witch hunted by her own coven for breaking the rules. Her own mother is leading the hunt against her, but the group's blue magic isn't strong enough, and Agatha's purple powers leave everyone — her own mom included — as dried husks.
Agatha then takes her mother's brooch, which may or may not have powers. Knowing this show it could very much be about the sentiment. This scene is important to define what kind of witch Agatha is, which will become more important soon.
Wanda's love of sitcoms explained
There are two big pieces of news coming out of WandaVision episode 8. One pertains to Wanda's role in the whole series, and the other — which is more important — redefines her arc in the MCU.
As for the former, Agatha spends the whole episode trying to learn the secrets of Wanda's magic, thinking Wanda is a witch like herself. Agatha — like any Bond villain — starts to talk too much, and explains what's been happening all along. She came to Westview because she sensed all the spells happening at once, and she couldn't make sense of it all.
This (and more later) defines Westview as Wanda's creation. Agatha does admit, though, that Pietro was her own work. She admits it's not the real Pietro, a nod to the fact that this is the Fox version of the character and not the MCU version, and calls him Fietro (i.e. fake Pietro). The real Pietro, she notes, is still buried.
And after threatening harm on Billy and Tommy, Agatha convinces Wanda to explain how this all happened. What follows is a tour de force of grief manifesting in storyline, starting with a flashback to the Maximoffs in Sokovia — watching (you guessed it) sitcoms to learn English.
Wanda's father opens a piece of luggage to reveal DVDs of Bewitched, I Love Lucy, Malcolm in the Middle and many more. But it's Dick Van Dyke that Wanda loves the most, and she asks for season 2 episode 21. And clips of this episode "It May Look Like A Walnut" show what appear to be a super-powered mystery involving a hill of walnuts flowing out of a closet, with Mary Tyler Moore on top of them. This feels like a nod to something, or it might just be a wink.
Oh and Malcolm in the Middle DVDs create a plothole in the show. Wanda’s parents died in 1999, before the TV series’ 2000 premiere — and before DVDs of it could be released.
The big reveal of where Wanda's powers came from
This is the only moment of pure happiness we see from Wanda's childhood in the series, sadly. The retro English lesson is interrupted by a bombing, wherein their parents died.
Wanda and Pietro are then seen cowering under a bed, with their parents nowhere to be seen. That's when Wanda sees a Stark Enterprises bomb, about to detonate. She reaches out as if to use powers to stop it, and it doesn't go off. Agatha asks if she used a probability hex, Wanda just says it was a dud.
But when we see Wanda undergoing a Hydra experiment — the kind which we thought gave her her powers — we learn that the story from Avengers: Age of Ultron was wrong all along. In that movie, we thought that the Mind Stone gave Wanda her powers. As we watch her engage with the Mind Stone, freeing it from Loki's staff with her own mind, we find out she had latent powers all along.
In short: we just got confirmation there have been mutants, in the MCU, all along. Which means that Wanda did nerf that bomb with her mind.
Grief leads to S.W.O.R.D.
The best parts of the episode come next, though, as a heart to heart between Vision and Wanda, after Pietro's death, show how much Wanda is unwilling to confront grief. When she asks Vision "What makes you think that talking about it would bring me comfort?" he doesn't even get a chance to reply before she says, "the only thing that would bring me comfort is seeing him again."
Trying to connect with Wanda, Vision sits down and watches Malcolm in the Middle with her. As the two continue to talk he seeks to break her loop of sadness and anger by asking "what is grief if not love persevering?"
Suddenly we're back in the modern moment, as Agatha wipes a tear that may or may not be there. Then, a bit coldly, she recaps all the death in Wanda's life only for Wanda's waterworks to turn on.
This leads us to another flashback, and one that reveals that we've been lied to. This time we're post-Endgame, and Wanda goes to S.W.O.R.D. HQ to pick up Vision's body. She says she wants him back for a funeral, but Director Hayward acts as if she's lying.
He then sends Wanda into even more sadness by showing how Vision has been completely dissected. Surgery is being done to all his limbs, and Wanda is not handling it well. Hayward accuses Wanda of wanting to bring Vision back to life, and says he can't part with "3 billion dollars worth of vibranium."
When Wanda implies "He's all I have," the director responds coldly, saying, "That's just it, Wanda, He isn't yours." Of course, this just pushes Wanda harder, and she breaks into the lab, and going down to the body. But after saying she can't feel Vision in this body, she just leaves.
That, dear readers, shows that Hayward fabricated the footage of Wanda stealing the body of Vision. More proof that the S.W.O.R.D. director should not be trusted (the Hayward name has links to Hydra).
But as Wanda drives away, she looks down at a letter in the front seat. And before you know it, we're in the dilapidated modern Westview, with Wanda driving by her soon-to-be co-stars.
After she drives to an empty lot, she opens the letter to reveal a deed for the property, signed with a heart and the message "To grow old in. — V."
And this is where we see Westview's magic makeover, as Wanda, stricken with grief, falls to the ground and her anger explodes in red energy. In this fit, she modifies Westview to fit the sitcoms she grew up with, and out of her own body, the Westview version of Vision arrives (re-confirming that Wanda did not steal the body).
Back on "the set" of WandaVision, Wanda is finally seeing her world as the creation it is, as Agatha claps from the audience's seats. But jump to the streets of Westview and we see both Billy and Tommy are in danger, with Agatha's purple tendrils wrapped around their throats. Agatha then says Wanda was "supposed to be a myth," and that she employs "chaos magic." This is what makes her the Scarlet Witch.
A dark and disturbing Vision
Mid-credits, we jump back to S.W.O.R.D. HQ, where Hayward meets with his loyal team. And this is where we get more confirmation that Wanda didn't steal Vision.
Hayward notes that his team has been trying to revive Vision for quite some time, but all it took was a bit of the energy from Wanda's hex world.
And the cameras pan to a reassembled Vision, who is all white. In a scene that screams "Frankenstein's Monster," this new Vision awakens, and opens its hand.
Where we are going into episode 9
So, to recap: Wanda has always real big mutant powers of her own, and was the one who invented the sitcom Westview. Vision is back, but it's not the real Vision. And Agatha really wants Wanda's powers.
How will this all tie itself up in the last episode of WandaVision? Let's find out together next week, readers. Spill your WandaVision theories in the comments below.