WandaVision: Season 1 – Episode 9 ‘The Series Finale’ REVIEW

WandaVision was greater than the sum of its parts, and that is saying a lot.

WandaVision Season 1 – Episode 9 ‘The Series Finale’
WandaVision Season 1 – Episode 9 ‘The Series Finale’

Well, this is it, folks. ‘The Series Finale’ is finally here, and it is a lot to unpack. The final episode of WandaVision sees Wanda reaching the culmination of the emotional journey that we were introduced to in Episode 1. Wanda’s Westview is no longer, and many inevitable goodbyes are finally said.

The show picks up right where we left it, with an Agatha/Wanda faceoff. More players are soon added into the mix, with both Visions showing up and zooming away for their own showdown. The forty-minute episode does not spend a whole lot of time on fight scenes, but honestly every scene featuring generic Marvel punches and flashes of light seemed like a waste of precious time that could have been used to tie up the several loose threads that had been left hanging.

There are a couple of clever references in the background though, like how the visual of shoes sticking out from under a car was a clear homage to the Wizard of Oz, with the Wicked Witch of the West’s legs poking out from under a house. Kathryn Hahn got a final zinger to declaim when the Visions first met – ‘Oh, this is awkward. Your ex and your boyfriend together at the same party.’

There’s a lot of action with S.W.OR.D. that seemed largely unnecessary for ‘The Series Finale’, and it largely consisted of Hayward breaking into Westview, being willing to fire at literal children, and getting his butt kicked by Darcy in her funnel cake truck. Speaking of Darcy, that one moment was the only thing that the finale gave her to do, which is a disappointment, because in retrospect it diminishes her role in the entire series as well.

We were always led to believe that her actions would have a greater deal of impact, especially in terms of returning Vision to Wanda, but now it looks like she was included in the show to fill in for the Snarky Sidekick character and possibly remind people of her existence before she shows up again in the next Thor movie. Meanwhile, Jimmy Woo gets a chance to flex his magic tricks to his advantage (including a cute little ‘flourish!’ the same way an inebriated Vision did in Episode 2), and is in charge of things at the end of the show. But I was rooting for you and Darcy, Woo!

Speaking of disappointments, any last shred of hope for an X-Men crossover disintegrated with Evan Peters’ character confirmed to be…Ralph Bohner. Really, Marvel? All this buildup and theorizing for a mere dirty joke? Yes, Ralph is the mysterious missing husband Agnes always referred to, so there is that connection, but casting Evan Peters as fake Pietro seems like a very deliberate choice by Marvel designed for shock value and to manipulate hype around the show. What a waste of a perfectly good Evan Peters.

Paul Bettany has been terrific as Vision, and as with every appearance of Vision in the MCU, he gets some deep lines to say in this episode as well. After the ‘what is grief, if not love persevering’ from the last episode, this week he faces off against himself (the cameo that Bettany talked about), and the Visions settle their feud in wholesome synthezoid style – referencing a good old thought experiment. The experiment in question, the Ship of Theseus, asks about whether an object is still the same after all of its parts have been replaced, thus concluding that neither and both of the Visions are simultaneously the real one. It is heartening to see that White Vision, memories fully restored, flies off into the unknown, leaving the door open for Paul Bettany to return to the MCU. He has truly proved himself.

Meanwhile, Wanda is finally confronted with the mental trauma that her magic is inflicting on the residents of Westview when Agatha releases the townspeople from their spell. Although the sequence is less subtle than the lone tear streaking down the woman’s face in Episode 6, it is no less powerful when the angry citizens converge on Wanda with fury in their eyes. We knew she would have to make the difficult choice between living breathing people and a dearly cherished fantasy at some point or the other, but it is still painful when it happens.

After last week’s declaration that Wanda was in fact the Scarlet Witch, she attains her final form in this episode. It was expected, but also glorious. Agatha Harkness is turned back into Agnes again, but her defiant prediction that Wanda ‘will need her’ may soon come true, especially because Agatha Harkness helped Wanda figure out her powers in the comics. The end credits also hint at Wanda becoming a villain, showing her studying the Darkhold, which holds dark magic. She also hears her children, presumably from another universe, which sets up her upcoming appearance in Doctor Strange 2: Multiverse of Madness.

Wanda and Vision are no doubt the heart and soul of the show, and it is fitting that Wanda chose to end their story on her own terms. The finale does a beautiful, heartrending job in their final moments, and many a tear was shed when Wanda and Vision gazed lovingly at their children for the last time. Their goodbyes to each other were even more sorrowful, and Wanda holds Vision till the end, when she ends up back at the plot of land where she willed her Westview into existence. Back to square one.

Only Monica seems to understand her pain, and as Wanda walks off under the (completely warranted) glares of the people she traumatized, Monica is the only one to offer a word of consolation. Speaking of Monica, there was little progress for her character after the reveal of her powers in Episode 7, which is a shame. Teyonah Parrish has been great on WandaVision as well, and it felt shallow when the show had built her up so much only to have the finale give her such little run time. Except of course, for the credits scene that sets up Captain Marvel 2.

That is one of the reasons why ‘The Series Finale’ did not resonate as much as the rest of the show. The finale simply had too much to do. Much of it returned to standard Marvel fare (CGI fights and the like), and that pulled it back from how far it had left the original MCU mould. Other parts of it were dedicated to setting up future Marvel projects, and that took time away from the main storyline. For fans who have been theorizing for weeks and weeks, the finale may be a bit of a letdown. For those who watched it on a little more of a surface level, it made for great television.

If ‘The Series Finale’ was not as good as expected, it was only because WandaVision has done an incredible job of raising expectations every week without fail. Elizabeth Olsen has been a clear standout, taking us through all of Wanda’s stages of grief without ever making it feel artificial. One does not have to possess her powers to see great projects in her future. The same has to be said of the rest of the cast, especially Paul Bettany, Kathryn Hahn, and Teyonah Parrish. Ultimately, WandaVision was greater than the sum of its parts, and that is saying a lot, because the parts were pretty darn amazing.

Goodbye, WandaVision. You were our excitement and our hype, every Friday – but mostly, you were our coolest Marvel project so far. Take a bow.

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WandaVision Season 1 – Episode 9 ‘The Series Finale’
An above-average finale sets up multiple plot points for future MCU projects, but struggles with pacing at the end.