WandaVision was one of the four series that closed off the Infinity saga after the events of Endgame and at the same time gave a preview into what was comprised in the MCU Phase 4. Exploring the concept of the multiverse on a vast scale, Doctor Strange 2 was a commercial success. But the main antagonism of the film originated with the WandaVision storyline which dived into the tragic arc of Wanda Maximoff and her transformation into the Scarlet Witch.
The Problematic Themes and Tragedy of Wanda Maximoff
The series had a lot of problematic themes, beginning with unchecked power, Wanda’s inability to control them, and puppeteering an entire town full of people to do her will. However, the most troubling of all was how much tragedy a human being is capable of bearing before giving in to the rage and hatred, and destruction.
Beginning with the death of her parents, experimentation under HYDRA, joining the Avengers and losing her brother on the same day, being sanctioned by the government and ostracized for her powers, killing Vision and watching him being brought back to life just to be murdered by Thanos again — all of it amounted to her losing all tether to reality as her grief became too insurmountable to bear. She transformed the existing reality into one where she could be happy and even that had to be given up by her upon realizing what it was doing to the living world.
Doctor Strange 2 Writer Smashes WandaVision Haters
Wanda’s multitude of sacrifices had to have a final snapping point and that was where her transformation into the Scarlet Witch began. The themes were drawn with broad brushstrokes without focusing on the tragedy itself and the series was stylized more as a sitcom spanning decades rather than just Wanda and her transformation.
Moreover, Doctor Strange 2 focused on a continuation of that grief that was displayed in WandaVision as Wanda travels and wreaks havoc across the multiverse to be reunited with her children. Fans have trolled and hated the film for turning one of the heroes of MCU into a certifiably insidious villain. But Doctor Strange 2 writer Michael Waldron says he wouldn’t change a thing about the movie:
“No, I don’t wish WandaVision had done anything differently. I wouldn’t change a thing about what they did. My interpretation of WandaVision is that she confronts her grief and she lets go of the people she has under her control, but I don’t think she necessarily resolves her grief in that show, and I don’t think she resolves her anger. Maybe she’s able to say goodbye to Vision, but I think she’s really just fallen in love with those kids.
I think that all of those hanging threads are the things that the Darkhold preys on when she gets the Darkhold from Agatha. You see in the final scene of WandaVision, that tag — the mistake that our Wanda makes is she opens the Darkhold. She starts reading, and I think it preys on her desire to have those children and have them for real this time. So yeah, that was how I arrived there. It made sense to me and it made sense to our teams because we built the story.”
In a surprising comment, Waldron also asserts that Wanda sacrificing herself and the Darkhold in this universe and every other one along with herself being perished under the rubble of the Wundagore Mountains might not be the end of her: “Whether she’s dead or not remains to be seen.”