Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness is here and fans have begun to come down from the high of the Sam Raimi-directed epic. This epic sequel has been six years in the making and finally offers a second solo adventure for Benedict Cumberbatch's Stephen Strange as he takes a jaunt across multiple realities alongside Xochitl Gomez's America Chavez.
Warning: the rest of this article contains spoilers for Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness.
This film has many fans talking, as it surprisingly turned the Scarlet Witch into the main antagonist. This comes after Wanda Maximoff got her hands on the Darkhold at the tail end of WandaVision, opening her up to a world of evil and dark Chaos Magic.
However, now the question of if Wanda is alive has popped up thanks to the final moments of Multiverse of Madness. Upon sacrificing herself to destroy the Darkhold across the Multiverse she supposedly perishes in the rubble of a crumbling Wundagore Mountain, although a cloud of red smoke in the carnage does make one wonder if in fact the Scarlet Witch is dead.
Well, MoM screenwriter Michael Waldron has addressed these final moments, giving his thought on if Wanda is dead.
Did Wanda die?
Did Wanda die in Multiverse of Madness? In an interview with Variety, Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness scribe Micheal Waldron broke down his thoughts on whether the Scarlet Witch actually died in the final moments of Doctor Strange 2. Waldron states Wanda's death is "up for interpretation" after she sacrificed herself to destroy the Darkhold. It is up to the viewer to determine "whether she's dead or not" after the Doctor Strange sequel.
"I think that’s up for interpretation. She made some kind of sacrificial act that destroyed the Darkhold in every universe, which is protecting Wanda in every universe from being seduced by the Darkhold. Whether she’s dead or not remains to be seen. I know what it’s like to love characters and to not want them to be gone and to hate when they do bad things. But that’s that’s part of the fun of watching stuff and getting swept up in it."
The screenwriter also shared his opinion on fan uproar regarding Wanda's turn in the film, after everything she went through in WandaVision. He clarified that he "wouldn’t change a thing about what they did" and that Wanda becoming the main villain of Multiverse of Madness was a continuation of the grief she felt in WandaVision, so "it made sense to [him]:"
"No, I don’t wish WandaVision had done anything differently. I wouldn’t change a thing about what they did. My interpretation of WandaVision is that she confronts her grief and she lets go of the people she has under her control, but I don’t think she necessarily resolves her grief in that show, and I don’t think she resolves her anger. Maybe she’s able to say goodbye to Vision, but I think she’s really just fallen in love with those kids. I think that all of those hanging threads are the things that the Darkhold preys on when she gets the Darkhold from Agatha. You see in the final scene of WandaVision, that tag — the mistake that our Wanda makes is she opens the Darkhold. She starts reading, and I think it preys on her desire to have those children and have them for real this time. So yeah, that was how I arrived there. It made sense to me and it made sense to our teams because we built the story."
Wanda or Gone-da?
As much as fans do not want to hear it, nobody is ever truly dead in the MCU. This is not a confirmation that, in fact, Wanda Maximoff died at the end of Multiverse of Madness. But if she did, she is only one Kevin Feige announcement away from making her way back into the story.
Of course, Waldron is not going to confirm or deny either way. Surely even he doesn't actually know if she is dead or not. But with rumors pointing to a potential Scarlet Witch-centric movie, it feels like Olsen will be back as the character sooner rather than later.
Elizabeth Olsen has become one of the biggest stars in the MCU, so for her to go out as unceremoniously as she did in the Doctor Strange sequel would feel a bit flat. She will get her redemptive moment, it is just a matter of when.
And as for Waldron's comments regarding the connective tissue between MoM and WandaVision, fans who have been upset over the character's turn will have to take this answer for now. Many speculated how the filmmakers felt about the Disney+ series, but Waldron puts those questions to bed. He definitively thinks that the character's transition into a full-on villain makes sense. That doesn't mean fans have to like that answer, but at least they got one.
Doctor Strange 2 can be seen in theaters now.