The HoloFiles

REVIEW: WandaVision – Episode 4

by Josh Bate for @sw_holocron

WARNING: The following review contains spoilers for WandaVision – Season 1, Episode 4: We Interrupt This Program

The mystery of WandaVision finally began to unravel in We Interrupt This Program, an episode that brilliantly connects to the events of the broader MCU while spotlighting returning characters. The fourth episode of the Disney+ series changes course from the previous episodes in largely focusing on Monica Rambeau’s journey as she begins to expose what’s really going on Westview.

So far, WandaVision has impressively committed to its unusual premise, delivering entire episodes in jovial sitcom fashion with only brief glimpses of what’s lurking underneath the surface. We Interrupt This Program intelligently halts this structure in shifting the focus away from Wanda and Vision’s idyllic world to begin delivering some answers. These answers largely come as we track Monica Rambeau, impressively brought to life by Teyonah Parris in a nuanced, impactful performance. The beginning moments of the episode are haunting as they show the effects of the Blip unfold in real time. The confusion, the chaos, and the sense of dread is palpable in these early moments and certainly add yet another emotional layer to the events that occured in Avengers: Endgame.

As the episode progresses, we’re introduced to Randall Park’s Agent Woo and Kat Denning’s Darcy Lewis, who are both scene stealers. Similar to the Star Wars universe, one of the best things about the MCU is its ability to call upon different characters or plot elements from the past and reintegrate them in new, unexpected ways. Darcy hasn’t appeared since 2013’s Thor: The Dark World and it seemed like her tenure in the MCU was over, until she springs on the scene in a pivotal role in WandaVision. Similarly, Jimmy Woo was a highlight in Ant-Man and the Wasp and now shines in his expanded role in a new medium.

The fourth episode of WandaVision offers a glimpse behind what’s going on behind the curtain, without giving too much away too soon. This is a difficult balance to strike, because, if the show progresses as it did with the first three episodes, some viewers may grow frustrated at how abstract and ambiguous the series is. However, revealing all of the secrets of Westview prematurely spoils the fun and stops the guessing game MCU fans are currently engaged in. We Interrupt This Program largely confirms what fans have been speculated for a while now regarding WandaVision largely drawing upon the classic comic run House of M. We finally get confirmation that Wanda created Westview, presumably as a place to live her dream life with Vision away from the perils of the world. We’re also given answers about some of the unusual occurrences in the series so far, such as the red and yellow helicopter toy, the Beekeeper, and Geraldine’s knowledge of Ultron. The list of what we don’t know, however, is still rather extensive: is this world Wanda has constructed a threat? What’s up with Wanda’s neighbors and what are they hiding? What are the implications of re-creating Vision in this world? All of these mysteries and more are brilliantly set up and likely to unfold over the coming episodes, once again emphasizing how the story Kevin Feige and company are telling really lends itself to the week-by-week format of a television series.

The titular characters are notably quite absent in episode 4. Although it would’ve been nice to see more of Wanda and Vision, the decision to shift the focus away from them is a reasonable one in order to inform the audience about what’s going on. Along with the shift away from Wanda and Vision comes a shift away from the beautifully stylized aesthetics of the series’ first three episodes. Obviously, this is done for major story purposes, but it was a bit of an unfortunate contrast to go from entire episodes uniquely made to look like 1950s, 60s, and 70s sitcoms in exchange for a relatively bland looking episode set in the modern day. 

Verdict: 8.5/10

WandaVision continues its incredibly impressive run so far with an episode that ties nicely in with the events of the MCU and sheds light on what’s really going on in Westview. While the episode may not be as visually unique as its predecessors, the mysteries answered and mysteries left unresolved, in addition to the return of several MCU characters, make us excited for and intrigued by what’s to come in the Disney+ series.

Images courtesy of Disney+ and Marvel Studios

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