It’s episode six, we’re into the 90s, the sitcom has changed to ‘Malcolm In The Middle’, and Marvel answers the big question that everyone has been asking. Why don’t film and television do comicbook accurate costumes? Well, here we get to see Scarlet Witch, Vision, Quicksilver, Speed, and Wiccan all dressed as their four colour counterparts and the answer is because it looks stupid. But this isn’t a slight on the show as it does it for a reason. Wanda has made it Halloween in the town and everyone is in fancy dress.
After the reveals of the last two episodes the show now has an ominous feel to it in every scene. The change to Evan Peters as Quicksilver isn’t answered but it is addressed both by Wanda and the characters outside the Hex bubble. The assumption is that Wanda (Elisabeth Olsen) is control of this false reality, which she clearly is, but even she can’t explain the change. Wanda has only been alive again for a few weeks, the same as Monica Rambeau (Teyonah Parris), and can only remember grief and not how she got into this.
Vision (Paul Bettany) now knows something is not right. Having made excuses not to spend Halloween with his family he wanders around the town trying to make senses of things. The further he moves away from Wanda the stranger things get. The towns people are alive but life has stopped. In one creepy scene he witnesses a woman stuck in the motions of hanging up a ghost on a line with a tear running down her cheek.
Outside of the town, Hayward (Josh Stamberg) is positioning himself as the villain of the piece. He wants to take the military approach and take Wanda out. Monica who, like Wanda, has also returned from the snap and trying to process grief thinks the only person who can stop Wanda is Wanda herself. Hayward doesn’t want to listen and orders that Monica, Jimmy (Randall Park), and Darcy (Kat Dennings) removed from the site. This raises the question of is Hayward just following military protocol or is there something darker going on?
It doesn’t take long for the trio to get back on site and Darcy to hack the computers. This is where we get posed with a new set of questions. Monica can’t go back into the Hex as the medical scans show that Wanda’s powers have changed her at a cellular level. Is this the birth of mutants? Hayward is tracking Vision and has information on everyone around him. How and why is he doing this? And, as Monica mention last episode, they is someone an hour away who can help the heroic trio to enter Westview. Who is this and are they going to be a big Marvel name?
Back inside the Hex, on the edge of town Vison encounters Agnes (Kathryn Hahn) sitting in her car. He frees her from Wanda’s control and she confirms to him that Wanda is behind this and recognise him as an Avenger. Vision is taken aback by this as he doesn’t know what an Avenger is as his memory is only as old as his life in the town. Agnes then starts repeatedly shouting ‘dead’ at Vision so he gives control of her back to Wanda.
One of the major theories about the show is that Agnes is Agatha Harkness, a witch that trained Wanda. Nothing that happens here either strengthens or weakens that idea. Just because she’s a witch doesn’t mean that she can’t be controlled as well.
Vision whole world has been shaken but his is probably the most pure hero of the MCU. He just wants to help people, save people. He walks to the border of the town and forces himself through the mystical barrier. Inside the town he alive but outside he is dead. His reality starts to collapse as the forces of S.W.O.R.D. look on. His son Billy, who has inherited some of his mother’s powers, senses this and runs to Wanda. Anger comes over her, her eyes glow red, and she starts expanding the boundaries of the Hex barrier, sucking more of the outside world into her reality. If Monica has been physically changed by the Hex is it affecting everyone it touches?
Another great episode that didn’t quite reach the heights of the previous weeks but still is some of the best comicbook television ever produced. Bettany shines here going from foppish gent to a character questioning their very being. Evan Peters has joined the show half way through and doesn’t miss a beat. He is the character that sitcoms being in when they need some new life but all he is doing is highlighting the darkness. In the lead role, Elizabeth Olsen is giving one of the best portrayals of grief put on screen. She is happy, sad, in control and falling apart. Is she her own villain or are things about to get darker? This is setting a high bar for the rest of the MCU shows to follow but we all know they a most likely up to the challenge.
Three episodes to go and still a compelling mystery. They even reference ‘Kick-Ass’.