WandaVision is moving closer to its endgame, as SWORD clashes with Wanda, Vision continues to question his reality, and the mystery of who is actually behind the Westview Hex grows.
But as we get closer to getting those answers, WandaVision has also started to lay the groundwork in this week’s episode for whatever might come next, including hints at a new generation of Marvel superheroes that could pop up in future movies and shows.
[Spoilers ahead for WandaVision’s sixth episode.]
Two of a kind
The show may be called WandaVision, but taking the spotlight in this episode are the couple’s children Billy and Tommy, who jump to the forefront of the early 2000s Malcolm in the Middle-style sitcom of the week.
The twins — born just a few episodes ago — have already aged into preteens and are starting to exhibit their own powers that match their comics counterparts, Wiccan and Speed.
The comics history of Wanda and Vision’s children is a complex one, to say the least. As my colleague Julia has alluded to in earlier editions of this column, Billy and Tommy were originally magical constructs that Wanda managed to bring to life (through a complicated plotline involving fragments of the soul of Mephisto, the Marvel equivalent of Satan).
While those construct-children were eventually reabsorbed into Mephisto, Billy and Tommy eventually would return in later comics as members of the Young Avengers. But they weren’t quite the same iterations of the characters. Rather, they were “reincarnated” versions: William Kaplan, who adopts the name Wiccan and wields magical powers similar to Wanda, and Thomas Shepherd, who bears similar speed powers as Pietro. (He goes by the rather original hero name of “Speed.”)
It’s those versions of the characters that WandaVision is beginning to allude to with its latest episode. Billy’s Halloween costume is a dead ringer for Wiccan’s comic attire, while Tommy’s Quicksilver-like quickness matches the abilities of Speed. Billy’s visions at the end of the episode appear to be hinting at his own magical abilities, too.
That leaves one of the biggest questions surrounding WandaVision, though: are Tommy and Billy real?
For the children?
The answer may lie in one of the subtler reveals in this week’s episode: what exactly is happening to the hundreds of inhabitants of Westview when Wanda is not around, and — as Vision highlighted last week — where are all the children?
It’s the recast Pietro (who, noticeably, seems to be suspiciously more aware of Wanda’s effect on the town than almost anyone else) who provides the answer. Whether consciously or not, Wanda was working to minimize her rewriting of the town’s inhabitants and the trauma it causes. The town residents’ lives still broadly resemble their own, with the children kept out of the picture until they’re needed. When Wanda and Vision aren’t around, everyone just sort of… stops.
But given what we know of the Hex’s ability to rewrite reality for anyone who enters, it’s possible that Billy and Tommy aren’t just magical conjurings — they might be real children who have been recast as Wanda and Vision’s kids, similar to the reincarnated versions of the characters in the comics.
But if Billy and Tommy are just ordinary Westview children, where does their magic and speed come from?
WandaVision may have an answer to that question, though, through its hinting at the comic book destiny of Monica Rambeau.
In the comics, Monica Rambeau isn’t just the daughter of Captain Marvel’s best friend; she’s a superhero in her own right, who gains energy-based superpowers as Spectrum after being exposed to extra-dimensional energy. It’s a similar origin to the lab results that Darcy reveals in this week’s episode, where Monica’s cells have begun to change on a molecular level as the only person to face repeated exposure to the Hex’s energy field.
We already know that Wanda and Pietro’s powers came from exposure to the Mind Stone, and that Wanda herself has power enough to rival one of the Infinity Stones at this point. It’s not so hard to make the leap that Wanda’s own magical energy could confer superpowers of her own — powers that could be infusing Monica Rambeau and Billy and Tommy, sowing the seeds for a new wave of Marvel heroes.