WandaVision, the first original television series produced by Marvel Studios, doesn’t quite look like anything Marvel has released before.
It’s absurd and pays an authentic homage to some of the best American sitcoms produced in the 50s, 60s, 70s and 80s, including Nice to meet you and The Dick Van Dyke Show. WandaVision is still a Marvel Studios show, however, and that means it’s tied into the larger Marvel Cinematic Universe. The first two episodes, now airing on Disney Plus, set up a key organization that binds WandaVision in the current moment of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, all the while setting up the alluring era of the “cosmic universe” he is about to enter.
[This is your mandatory spoiler warning. Stop reading here if you don’t want to know anything that happens in the first two episodes.]
The first episode shows Wanda Maximoff (Elizabeth Olsen) and Vision (Paul Bettany) living a charming suburban life in a fictional town. Although the show takes place after Avengers: Endgame, there is no reference to anything that happened – no explanation of how Vision is suddenly alive, why they live in an alternate, dreamlike world, or why they don’t remember anything that happened. moved on before moving into their new home.
Throughout the first episode, there are a few clues that all is not what it appears to Wanda and Vision. Vision reiterates that Wanda was from Sokovia, and during a dinner scene, Wanda is transfixed by a specific question: “Why did you come here?” It wasn’t until the end of the episode, however, that WandaVision finds its most interesting revelation: the presence of SWORD
What is SWORD?
SWORD, or Sentient World Observation and Response Department, is a cosmic version of SHIELD. on New York or Ultron’s attack on Sokovia. SHIELD has been infiltrated by Hydra, as seen in Captain America: The Winter Soldier, and that’s the key like WandaVision includes a reference to Wolfgang von Strucker. In the MCU, von Strucker was a Hydra sleeper agent within SHIELD who is seen holding custody of Wanda and her twin brother Pietro in a Winter soldier post-credits stage and Age of Ultron ‘opening battle of s. It’s those little moments that connect Wanda and Vision to the MCU in general.
All right, it’s SHIELD; what about SWORD? The organization first appeared in Stunning X-Men # 3, which was written by Joss Whedon in 2004. (Fun fact: The first appearance of anything SWORD-related in the MCU is a little Easter egg in Age of Ultron, which Whedon also led.) The organization was originally created to defend the entire universe from alien threats. Led by Abigail Brand, a woman who is essentially a space mutant version of Nick Fury, the idea was to act as an intelligence agency based outside of Earth.
The most memorable nod to SWORD came in the form of a Spider-Man: Far From Home post-credits scene. Fury, apparently on vacation, steps out onto the deck of a spaceship while a group of Skrulls (those green aliens from Captain Marvel) are walking around. It’s clear Marvel Studios is setting up SWORD to appear and possibly connect the MCU’s Fourth and Fifth Phases, but what does that mean for WandaVision?
Everything is connected
Interestingly, the name of SWORD in WandaVision changed slightly to Sensitive Weapons Observation Response Division. It could just be a title change (the definition of SHIELD in the MCU is slightly different than in the comics), but it could also indicate that Wanda is trapped in a fictional world where SWORD watches. her. Monica Rambeau, who originally appeared in Captain Marvel as the daughter of Maria Rambeau (Carol Danvers’ best friend), is now an adult and agent of SWORD, based on official Topps playing cards released before WandaVisionlaunch.
Small visual glitches appearing in the sky suggest that Wanda and Vision are trapped in an artificial world, and the final scene of the first episode confirms that the SWORD agents are watching their every move. In the second episode, even more clues appear. A voice coming from a radio (it sounds like The ant ManAgent Jimmy Woo asks Wanda, “Who’s doing this to you?” Later in the episode, Wanda suddenly becomes pregnant. She asks Vision if “this is really happening”, and after first reflecting that something looks weird, time suddenly returns and he changes his response to a simple, “Yes, it does.”
The most important moment occurs when Wanda and Vision stand in the middle of the street after hearing a noise. A beekeeper emerges at a glance, the SWORD logo on the back. A frightened Wanda says a simple “no” and everything returns to normal – well, her version of normal. If the title change means Wanda is being viewed as a possible sentient weapon (we still have no idea what happened to Vision’s actual body), that would play slightly in her arc in the House of M comics, where Wanda creates a fictional reality to face a devastating loss.
Here’s where some funny predictions come in. Marvel Studios must unite their new group of superheroes, many of whom are linked to other planets. Remember when Captain Marvel told the Avengers fortune board in End of Game that when Thanos snapped his fingers it devastated a bunch of other planets as well? The way they can do this is through SWORD We already know that WandaVision connect to Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness. in the House of M comic book series, Professor X reveals that he brought in Doctor Strange in an attempt to shatter Wanda’s fictional reality. This doesn’t work, but it’s possible that Doctor Strange could work with SWORD in WandaVision to try something similar.
It also seems likely that Monica Rambeau will also appear in Captain Marvel 2. The character was in the first Captain Marvel, and, considering that Fury appeared to be working with SWORD at the end of Far from home, it’s no exaggeration to assume that Carol Danvers, Nick Fury, and Monica Rambeau all know each other and continue to work together.
Remember: WandaVision was not originally supposed to air until the end of this year, closer to Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness and Captain Marvel 2the release date from, and after The Eternals. Not to mention that with X-Men and the Fantastic Four under Feige’s belt – and a new The Fantastic Four movie in preparation – use SWORD to tie together everything SHIELD has done to Iron Man, Captain America: First Avenger, Thor, and The Avengers, is a good way to do it.
It seems like WandaVision will spend its first season determining whether SWORD is an ally or an enemy. Most importantly for the MCU, getting fans immersed in SWORD before The Eternals, Captain Marvel 2, and other cosmic films is a good place to familiarize people with the agency.