Friday, January 22, 2021

REVIEW: 'WandaVision' - Wanda's Pregnancy Accelerates Which Makes Vision Question This New Reality in 'Now in Color'

Disney+'s WandaVision - Episode 1.03 "Now in Color"

Wanda's pregnancy fritzes her powers as she and Vision prepare for an accelerated delivery.

In 2019, the television industry aired 532 scripted shows across numerous outlets. The way people consume content now is different than it used to be. It happens according to one's own schedule. As such, it's less necessary to provide ample coverage of each episode in any given season from a show. Moreover, it is simply impossible to watch everything. As such, this site provides shorter episodic reviews in order to cover as many shows as possible. With all of that being said, here are my thoughts on the next episode of Disney+'s WandaVision.

"Now in Color" was written by Megan McDonnell and directed by Matt Shakman

Weird things are happening in Westview. Over night, it seems as if the entire story has moved ahead years. Gone is the black-and-white aesthetic of 1960s sitcoms. Now, the story is shown in color with the fashions and designs inspired by the 1970s. The homage is still present for comedies of the past. This episode takes inspiration from The Brady Bunch. All of that is evident right away. Meanwhile, Vision is more concerned with the rapid development of Wanda's pregnancy. Now, all of this could easily be explained away as Wanda and Vision having extraordinary abilities that contribute to their children growing in an unusual way. All of that is quite typical in the science fiction genre. Pregnancies and aging rarely seem to make sense in a realistic way. In this case though, it all happens in the extent of a day. Vision is concerned. He wants it to make sense because that is the way he processes the world around him. Meanwhile, Wanda goes along with all of it. It's more important to play into the sitcom convention of not letting her neighbors realize that strange things are happening as a result of her glitching powers. That too could be explained as the pregnancy having a physical reaction with her abilities. It also highlights the extent of how much she is in control. She holds that tightly. It's hard for her to embrace the genuine support from others. That, in turn, reveals just how desperate her hold is on this reality. It's a wild adventure for her to continually find a way to conceal her pregnancy once Geraldine stops by asking for a bucket. Her neighbor starts telling a story about her day at work when an actual stork comes to life and starts wandering around in the background. Again, it's a familiar structural device. Vision has gone to retrieve the doctor to help deliver the babies. He is fast but all of this is happening very quickly. Their powers are revealed to more people in this world. It's played off as simply being weird things that happen in the scope of this small neighborhood. That was the easy way that comedies of this era typically depicted the scope and stakes of their stories. Weird things could happen. That was important. But it was all in service of presenting a more picture perfect reality. People could recognize that things were off. That didn't matter. And yet, that can only mask things for so long. Wanda and Vision both see that things don't line up. How they confront those mysteries are incredibly different though. Moreover, they don't appear to be the only sentient beings in this world who have some awareness of what's going on. The ensemble could be nothing more than fabrications meant to provide comfort as conventional sitcom characters. Instead, Agnes and Herb appear to know more than they let on. They know that Geraldine doesn't inherently belong in this world. They introduce that topic before fearing that they are telling Vision too much. He questions it. He is powerless to do anything about it though. Wanda contrasts that with her approach to dealing with the reality breaking moments of this universe. She rewinds time so that Vision never actually sees or completes a thought questioning this world. She doesn't want him to focus on that. She simply wants him present in the world with her and their growing family. And yes, they do have fun bantering about the names for their boys. It's sudden when they realize they are going to have twins. It also forces Wanda to reflect on the fact that she is a twin herself. Pietro died during the conflict with Ultron when the two of them first worked together with the Avengers. Vision essentially took his place as the most important man in her life afterwards. And then, he was killed by Thanos. Her life has been consumed by death. Geraldine understands that history too. Wanda seeing that also shows that she can banish Geraldine from this world altogether. The mysterious outsider is seen landing back in what seems like the real world. That too infers that Wanda has all the power in this reality. It may simply be a way for her to cope with the monumental loss she has survived as of late. It's a unique way to manage grief in a way that the Marvel universe hasn't always prioritized. More of the premise is becoming clear. It's all a fantasy. Some people are willing to play along. Wanda relies on all of this in order to feel secure and loved. She has Vision once more. He may even have some of Quicksilver's powers as well. And yet, this can't be the best way to cope or grieve. Plus, Vision has agency outside of his interactions with Wanda. So, something more may be going on with him as well. It's still too early to tell. But the show is also providing more clarity to the audience. That is necessary in order to keep us engaged and interested in finding out what's going on while enjoying the highlights of paying homage to the past eras of television. It's ambitious while being incredibly character driven. It works while still rewarding patience for now.