The Marvel Cinematic Universe’s move into episodic television got off to a phenomenal start with WandaVision, which threw off the shackles and stigmas typically attached to the comic book genre, becoming a genuine awards season phenomenon.
The sitcom-inspired exploration of grief through a superpowered lens notched 23 Emmy nominations, a hugely impressive haul. Every aspect of the creative team was firing on all cylinders, to the extent that stars Elizabeth Olsen, Paul Bettany and Kathryn Hahn, director Matt Shakman and lead writer Jac Schaeffer all landed nods in the biggest categories, with Olsen in particular standing a very real chance of claiming the trophy at next week’s ceremony.
Bettany knows a thing or two about dealing with death in the context of the MCU, having been killed of three times already this year to bring him up to five in total, six if you include Ultron’s initial destruction of JARVIS in the second Avengers movie. In a new interview with British GQ, the actor explained why he thinks Wanda created her own version of Westview to escape her traumas.
“I think the animation is so beautiful, but the drawing of the sort of birth of the town and the building, and her version of Vision in this is so really elegantly rendered. I think it’s really special. Such a lovely idea that because she can’t solve the real issues, she creates a world in which she can have these little puzzles to deal with and everything can be neatly tied up. Unlike life.”
That Paul Bettany is nothing if not an eloquent man, with his Ship of Theseus spiel and “what is grief but love persevering?” quote from WandaVision generating countless memes and plenty of emotional responses. We might not be getting a second season of the series, but Wanda will be back next year in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, while the synthezoid’s original vessel remains out there somewhere in the MCU ether.