‘WandaVision’: Could the Show Follow the Comics Too Closely?

Marvel‘s upcoming series WandaVision has been teasing its audience for more than a year now, ever since the show was first announced at San Diego Comic-Con last year.

When one of the leads, Paul Bettany, describes the show as “bonkers” and unlike anything Marvel Studios has ever done, attention will be paid. Some of that attention includes an unusual request not to follow the comics.

Marvel fans often fervently wish for the MCU movies to follow the comics more closely because typically, they don’t. In WandaVision’s case, however, fidelity might not be the best idea because the comics with Wanda are particularly dark and complex. 

What is ‘WandaVision?’

Elizabeth Olsen
Elizabeth Olsen | Dominik Bindl/Getty Images

Starring Bettany and Elizabeth Olsen, the show details what happens to Vision and Wanda after the events of Avengers: Endgame. The fact that Vision is even there raises eyebrows because Thanos killed him even before the snap in Avengers: Infinity War. The glimpses afforded by the trailers appear to show the two being married, with twins coming along later. 

Fans have obsessively broken down the wild trailers for this show, which appear to be spoofing different eras of television, starting with the black and white world of the 50s and 60s with shows like I Love Lucy and, fittingly, Bewitched. Other shots appear to lampoon The Brady Bunch, Roseanne and Full House.

WandaVision also bears the distinction of being the first of the Marvel Studios shows on Disney+. The Falcon and the Winter Soldier had been slated to be the first show, but production shut down due to the pandemic. WandaVision is scheduled to premiere on Disney+ on January 15.

Its storyline has been said to lead into the movie Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, although that film isn’t due out until 2022. 

What is ‘WandaVision’ based on?

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Many outlets, including The Hollywood Reporter, have guessed that WandaVision’s storyline is based on “The House of M,” a 2005 comic in which an emotionally broken Wanda created an alternate reality after she couldn’t cope with the loss of her twin babies. WandaVision seems to borrow this storyline, with the death of Vision being the inciting incident. The trailers have shown what appears to be the couple with twin babies, so in WandaVision, the kids are apparently part of an alternate reality. 

In the comics, however, the storyline is harrowing. In the comics, Wanda was connected to the X-Men, and in “The House of M,”  mutants were considered the superior species and the humans were second-class citizens. Until recently, this was a storyline that Disney could not exploit. Now that Disney owns the X-Men, having bought 20th Century Fox, there has been some speculation that WandaVision would be a sort of a backdoor entry for the X-Men into the MCU. 

On top of all that, according to a story by Vox, Wanda’s breakdown results in the deaths of Hawkeye and Ant-Man. Certainly that won’t happen in the show, because Hawkeye has his own show coming up, and plans have been drawn up for the third Ant-Man movie.

Moreover, the comic tone that WandaVision has struck in the trailers would be at odds with a story that tragic. 

Should ‘WandaVision’ follow the comics?

“The House of M” took a lot out of comic fans – so much so that on Reddit, some are making the unusual request that it not be followed. One fan said, “I love Wanda (favorite comic character) and her kids, but I really hope they don’t follow the comics and just have them as part of this pocket reality. That all gets really complicated, even for comics folks.”

This comment was prompted by a picture that guessed Wanda would be pregnant in the 70s, when the show is referencing The Brady Bunch, and those babies would be toddler’s in the 80s, when the show appears to adopting the look of Roseanne or Married … with Children. “I co-sign this theory. That the twins age only as fast as Wanda can experience them growing in her alternate realities.”

If nothing else, WandaVision could take advantage of what appears to be a reference to Full House, which starred Elizabeth Olsen’s older sisters, Marry-Kate and Ashley. That in itself has fans clamoring for an Olsen twins cameo