At first glance, WandaVision is a playful satire of family sitcoms of yesteryear. Wanda (a.k.a. Scarlet Witch) and Vision play house as a happily married couple dealing with mundane problems like disastrous dinner parties and pregnancy plots, all performed in front of a live studio audience. But there’s a twist: their happily ever after is almost certainly a delusion of Wanda’s, especially given that we know Vision died in Avengers: Infinity War. Wanda, who has mind-control powers, seems to have retreated into a fantasy where she and Vision can live “normal” lives in the most American setting possible: A sitcom. Each episode, set in a different decade, riffs on a beloved show like I Love Lucy or Bewitched.
Don’t be fooled: this is also a show set in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. And unlikes Jessica Jones or Daredevil, it ties directly into the Marvel movies’ central plot. After all, both Wanda (Elizabeth Olsen) and Vision (Paul Bettany) have made pivotal appearances in multiple Marvel films. So if you haven’t kept up with the movies, you may get confused. In fact, WandaVision will serve as a launching pad for Marvel’s highly anticipated “Phase 4,” which has been on hold since Disney delayed the releases of Black Widow and The Eternals because of the pandemic. Marvel Studios head Kevin Feige has said that WandaVision will set up the plots of upcoming Marvel movies like Doctor Strange: Multiverse of Madness and Spider-Man: Homecoming 3.
At its heart, WandaVision is actually a mystery series deeply rooted in Marvel lore. Why has Wanda created this world? Is someone making her do it? Why do references to HYDRA and keep popping up? What familiar Marvel character is that calling out to Wanda over the radio? The show is chock-full of easter eggs that hint at what is going on with Wanda and what the ramifications might be on the rest of the remaining Avengers.
Here are all the clues, hints and references that you may have missed.
Episode 1: Agnes as a possible Marvel villain
Kathryn Hahn is having a ball playing a nosy neighbor named Agnes in the early episode of WandaVision. But she may be prying for a reason.
In the comics, Wanda has a neighbor named Agatha Harkness. Some Redditors have pointed out that if you squish the names Agatha and Harkness together, you get “Agnes,”—which, at first glance, seems like a stretch. But other sharp-eyed fans have pointed out that Agnes is always wearing a brooch on WandaVision, just like Agatha in the Scarlet Witch comics.
In the comics, Agnes is a witch who trains Wanda. She also helps Wanda get pregnant by her husband Vision, which would be anatomically difficult because he’s an android. That happens, without Agnes’ help, at the end of the second episode of WandaVision—though, again, nobody ever explains whether Vision can have children considering he’s, well, a machine. I suppose that’s not appropriate for a family show.
Bad news for Agnes: Wanda and Agatha’s relationship in the comics does not end happily. Watch out Kathryn Hahn!
Episode 1: The Stark Industries toaster
Each episode of WandaVision is broken up by a fake commercial that contains a Marvel easter egg. In the first episode, a man and a woman advertise a toaster made by Stark Industries (owned and run, of course, by Tony Stark’s family). While the toaster is making toast, it emits a beeping noise and a red light flashes. It’s surprisingly menacing for an appliance commercial.
It’s possible that the commercial is supposed to suggest that Wanda has ambivalent feelings toward Stark. Over the time they have known each other, Stark hasn’t exactly been a great friend. Stark attacked Wanda and her brother, built a genocidal AI program called Ultron that almost destroyed the world and put Wanda under house arrest because he insisted she could not control her powers.
On the other hand, Stark also created her boyfriend, Vision. Could Vision somehow be the toaster? Maybe this particular metaphor will become more clear later on.
Episode 1: “House of M” wine bottle
During their disastrous dinner party, Wanda and Vision serve a French bottle of wine called “Maison du Mépris,” which translates to “House of Contempt.” More loosely—okay very loosely—the bottle can translated to mean “House of Misery.” Regardless of the actual translation, the bottle has a large “M” on the label. So, a connection to the “House of M” comic storyline is likely.
In “House of M,” Wanda is reeling from accidentally killing some of her fellow Avengers including Vision. She deludes herself into thinking she has twin boys with Vision. When Magneto (from the X-Men) tells her the babies aren’t real, she essentially uses her mind-control powers on the entire world to trick them into believing they live in an alternate universe where her babies exist (and lots of other parts of reality have been altered as well).
WandaVision appears to be at least loosely based on this comic. As in House of M, the MCU Wanda technically killed Vision, though it was to prevent bad guy Thanos from getting a powerful gem called he Mind Stone in Vision’s head. She’s in mourning and perhaps using her powers to soothe herself. The wine bottle may hint that it is, indeed, Wanda controlling this universe, and that the creation of her dreamland may have real-world consequences.
Episode 2: A helicopter with a SWORD symbol
The colorful helicopter popping up in Wanda’s black-and-white world is the first major indication that someone from the outside is trying to break into Wanda’s fantasy. But to understand the significance of the helicopter, you have to know about SHIELD and SWORD.
In the MCU, SHIELD was an anti-terrorist organization that created the Avengers Initiative, brought all the Avengers together and (usually) gave them their orders. It was run by Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) until a Nazi splinter group called HYDRA infiltrated their ranks, and SHIELD had to be disbanded. Since then, Fury has been working on a new governmental body designed specifically to respond to supernatural threats and treats from space. (We see him hanging out on a spaceship doing just that in Spider-Man: Far From Home.)
Based on what we know from the comics, this new initiative will most likely be called SWORD. It’s also logical that the agents of SWORD might use, well, a sword as their symbol. When Wanda picks up the helicopter to examine it, she spots a picture of a sword on its side. It’s likely that an actual SWORD helicopter tried to enter Wanda’s world and was somehow turned into a toy.
Episode 2: Monica Rambeau is in Wanda’s delusion
Wanda meets a new friend during the second episode. The woman, played by Teyonah Parris, introduces herself as Geraldine. However we know from IMDb that Parris is actually playing a character named Monica Rambeau.
Viewers who caught Captain Marvel have actually met Monica Rambeau before. She’s the daughter of Captain Marvel’s BFF Maria Rambeau, and the adorable little girl in that movie. Captain Marvel, as you’ll recall from hints like Captain Marvel’s Nine Inch Nails shirt, was set in the 1990s. WandaVision is set in present-ish day, after the events of Avengers: Endgame. It looks like Monica is now all grown up.
It’s likely that Monica is an agent of SWORD or some other do-gooder trying to help Wanda. After all, her godmother is Captain Marvel. It would be very weird if Monica grew up and decided to turn all evil. When Monica and Wanda first meet, Monica admits, “I don’t know what I’m doing here.” It’s possible she was either sucked into Wanda’s fantasy or was sent on a mission but doesn’t know how to negotiate Wanda’s predicament. We know from the trailer she will return again in later episodes.
Episode 2: “The devil is in the details”
One of Agnes’ tossed off lines may have a deeper meaning. During the Mad Men-esque meeting of the housewives to prepare for the talent show in Episode 2, the Queen Bee of the group quips, “the devil is in the details.” Agnes retorts, “That’s not the only place he is.”
It may be a joke, but many Marvel fans have theorized that the Marvel version of the Devil, Mephisto, will show up in WandaVision. Without spoiling too much, Mephisto is a major villain for Wanda in the early Marvel comics and even uses his magic to enhance her delusions. Agatha Harkness plays a role in the conflict between Wanda and Mephisto too.
If Mephisto doesn’t actually show in WandaVision, it’s likely at least that this line is dropped as a nod to Marvel diehards.
Episode 2: Jimmy Woo on the radio
While Wanda is cleaning up after the talent show meeting, she hears the song “Help Me Rhonda,” which sounds an awful lot like “Help Me Wanda,” come on the radio. A static-y voice interrupts the song calling out to Wanda: “Who is doing this to you?”
Keen-eared fans will recognize the voice of Randall Park, who plays Agent Jimmy Woo in Ant-Man and the Wasp. In that film, he was responsible for making sure Ant-Man didn’t violate his parole. It seems now that Jimmy is moving on up in the world—it’s likely that he’s an Agent of SWORD or some other organization trying to reach Wanda.
Episode 2: A commercial for a HYDRA watch
The same man and woman from the first commercial reappear in a second one, this time advertising a watch called a Strucker with the HYDRA octopus symbol on it. It ticks, well, menacingly. (There’s a lot of menace in these commercials.)
Recall that Wolfgang von Strucker was the name of the HYDRA leader who experimented on Wanda and her twin brother Pietro, torturing them with the Mind Stone—yes that same Mind Stone that’s later put into Vision’s head—until they gained superpowers. Ultron killed Wolfgang, so it’s unlikely that he is the one forcing Wanda into this dreamland or hurting her directly in any way.
But it’s possible that HYDRA is hurting Wanda in some way, perhaps trapping her inside her own mind. (Hence Jimmy Woo asking, “Who is doing this to you?”) Alternatively, the commercials could represent how Wanda is haunted by her past. She’s trying to repress memories of being held captive by HYDRA. The trailer has shown flashback scenes to when Wanda received her powers.
The clicking tock could either signal that Wanda has a limited amount of time to live in this fantasy or that HYDRA is coming for her.
Episode 2: The beekeeper with a SWORD symbol
A sword symbol keeps invading Wanda’s reality. First the helicopter. Now a man in a beekeeper costumer at the end of the episode. Let’s go ahead and assume that, like the helicopter, the man did not look like this when he entered Wanda’s reality. Maybe he was wearing a Hazmat suit and her mind changed it to a beekeeper outfit to better fit the suburban milieu.
The man climbs out of a manhole, as if sneaking into her dream. It’s unclear if Wanda recognizes the symbol specifically or is just scared by this weird breech into her subconscious. But she simply responds to his presence with a “no” and somehow rewinds time.
Notably, the man interrupted Wanda’s fantasy just as she had discovered she was suddenly and miraculously around four months pregnant and showing, despite having not been pregnant moments before. (I don’t know how an android and a witch make babies, but I’m pretty sure this isn’t it.)
Wanda asks Vision, “Is this real?” when they’re interrupted by a bashing sound seemingly created by the beekeeper. After she rejects the beekeeper from her reality, she returns to that moment as if to make sure it plays out perfectly. She asks Vision (again), “Is this real?” And he replies that it is.
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