WandaVision: Episode 4 “We Interrupt This Program” (TV Review) SPOILERS
January 29, 2021 by: Alex Maidy
EPISODE: “We Interrupt This Program” – Written by Bobak Esfarjani and Megan McDonnell and directed by Matt Shakman..
SYNOPSIS: Monica Rambeau, tasked with a special assignment regarding sentient weapons, goes missing.
REVIEW (WARNING: CONTAINS SPOILERS FOR THIS EPISODE): After three episodes set in a retro sitcom world, we finally get a lot more information as to what is going on in the world of WandaVision. At the end of the third episode, Monica Rambeau was mysteriously freed of the barrier surrounding Westview and surrounded by agents of S.W.O.R.D.. “We Interrupt This Program” takes us all the way back to show us just how Monica got there. Opening with the Reverse-Snap (aka The Blip), we see Monica reappear in a hospital next to an empty bed. Turns out her mother, Maria “Photon” Rambeau, had undergone cancer surgery when The Blip occurred. Monica learns her mother passed two years earlier. Monica is disoriented and confused but is ready to return to work.
That work is at S.W.O.R.D. (Sentient Weapons Observation and Research Division), an agency formed by her mother, likely as a response to her interactions with Carol Danvers during the events of Captain Marvel. Monica is a Captain and according to S.W.O.R.D. Director Tyler Hayward, one of very few who returned to work following The Blip. That means WandaVision is set in the days immediately following Avengers: Endgame. Due to protocol, Heyward grounds Monica to only terrestrial missions. Monica is not pleased but accepts her assignment to assist the FBI with a missing person case in New Jersey. Outside of Westview, Monica meets Jimmy Woo (Randall Park) who brings her up to speed on the fact that a mysterious barrier surrounds the town which, according to local law enforcement, isn’t even a real place. Monica launches a S.W.O.R.D. drone which is sucked into the barrier. When she tests it herself, Monica is then pulled in as well.
Jimmy Woo notifies S.W.O.R.D. who set up a base outside of Westview and call in experts, including Dr. Darcy Lewis (Kat Dennings). While recording extremely high cosmic radiation emanating from the town, they discover a signal that is broadcasting the sitcom we saw in the first three episodes. This also reveals to the world that Wanda and Vision are inside. It also confirms that the world knows Vision died at the hands of Thanos. We see Darcy’s hand taking notes which reveals it was her we saw at the conclusion of the first episode. As they struggle to figure out what is going on, Hayward sends an agent in a hazmat suit into the sewers to try and get into town. When he crosses the barrier, we see he is transformed into the beekeeper seen in the second episode.
One by one, Jimmy and Darcy identify the cast of the show as various missing persons who are somehow being forced to interact with Wanda and Vision. It is also revealed that the drone Monica sent in was transformed into the helicopter from episode two. This gives Darcy an idea. Using an antenna, they set up a transmission into Westview to play over Wanda’s radio. As Jimmy tries to communicate with Wanda, Darcy watches the scene from the second episode unfold. But, where we saw Wanda and Dottie break character, Darcy’s transmission is mysteriously edited and shows nothing. They continue watching the sitcom for clues when they spot Monica alive and in character as Geraldine.
As they keep watching the show, the birth scene from episode three plays. Darcy and Jimmy notice that a dramatic confrontation takes place between Monica and Wanda that is very different than what they have seen so far. Suddenly, it cuts to the happy ending of the episode and the credits. Within the show, we see the end of the scene from last week where Wanda uses her full powers to force Monica through the walls of the house and miles outside of town, through the barrier where she ends up in the field. As S.W.O.R.D. agents swarm her, Monica utters the mysterious phrase: “It’s all Wanda.” Back inside Westview, Vision reenters the house and asks Wanda where Geraldine went. When Wanda turns around, she is horrified to see Vision’s face is gray and the Mind Stone torn from his forehead as seen in Avengers; Infinity War. She looks away and when she looks back, he is normal. VIsion tells her they can leave and go anywhere but Wanda says they are home. They pick up their infants and sit down to watch their TV.
MARVEL CINEMATIC UNIVERSE REFERENCES: The moment we see Monica Rambeau return from The Blip, Captain Marvel’s voice can be heard calling her “Lt. Trouble”. The acronym for S.W.O.R.D. changes from the comics where it is the Strategic World versus Strategic Weapons agency. We learn Maria Rambeau founded S.W.O.R.D. and has since passed away. Westview is a fictional town and the name is likey a play on words (West View…W V…Wanda Vision). Darcy Lewis is now a Doctor since the last time we saw her in Thor: The Dark World. When Rambeau meets Jimmy Woo, he uses close-up magic to give her a business card, referencing Ant-Man and The Wasp. Jimmy Woo references the Skrulls as potentially being the cause of this mystery.
COOLEST SCENE: The entire episode feels like a cool scene now that we are learning what is going on. But, I would have to say it is a tie for me between seeing another angle of the Reverse-Snap and Wanda using her powers to force Monica out of Westview.
FINAL VERDICT: Those of you who were confused or underwhelmed by the first three episodes of WandaVision should be very happy now. This series is still vastly different than any other Marvel Studios project but now the more cinematic elements are coming into play. Almost wholly outside of the sitcom format, this episode gives us a ton of MCU easter eggs and connections, teases a lot more mystery to what is going on, explains a lot of what we had questions about, and once again plays with the visual format of the show with the aspect ratio shifting and changing once again. This series is such a cool experiment and one I am glad Marvel Studios is taking and now shows just how beneficial the long format of TV can be for world-building the MCU.
NEXT ON WANDAVISION: Episode 5 premieres February 5th on Disney+
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