Warning: This article contains spoilers for WandaVision Episode 7.
Marvel Studios is kicking up the excitement with every new week of WandaVision, bringing intense action and drama in all seven episodes to date. Even while some episodes haven’t been as mind-boggling as others, like Episode 7 from this week, Marvel still manages to leave viewers on the edge of their seats, waiting for what’s coming.
In "Episode 7" specifically, Marvel Studios took a dive into tributes to present-day sitcoms like The Office and Modern Family while bringing a couple of major character moments that have been building all season. One of these came with Kathryn Hahn’s Agnes unveiling herself to be Agatha Harkness (via a catchy musical number, no less) while Teyonah Parris’ Monica Rambeau pushed through the Hex barrier and pushed herself closer to her superhero status.
Speaking to Parris herself, she recently revealed some telling information about her journey to becoming a full-fledged Marvel hero.
MONICA RAMBEAU TRANSFORMS INTO PHOTON
In a recent interview with Variety, WandaVision star Teyonah Parris spoke on some of her experience playing the adult Monica Rambeau, particularly as she gains superpowers and becomes Photon.
When asked what she knew about Monica’s transformation in the comics, Parris revealed that she knew about the character mostly because “fans on Twitter had been fan-casting (her) as Monica Rambeau” even before the release of 2019’s Captain Marvel.
"Oh, I knew Monica was a superhero before I even got the role because fans on Twitter had been fan-casting me as Monica Rambeau. This is way pre-“Captain Marvel.” So I looked her up, just very casually, like, “Oh she’s pretty cool. She’ll never see the light of day. Moving on!” So that was really my introduction to her, maybe, like five or six years ago when fans started doing that. So when she showed up in “Captain Marvel” as a young girl, I was like, “Ooo! Okay!” But again, I didn’t expect that she would become a full grown woman and character in the MCU. So it was a pleasant surprise to learn that not only would I be able to tell this woman’s story, but that the world would be able to see another Black female superhero in the MCU."
While discussing what it means to be a Black female superhero in the MCU, giddy with excitement, Parris spoke about what an honor it is to take on this responsibility. She also spoke on how “it’s important for young kids of color to see people that look like them” when watching major productions like those from Marvel Studios.
"Absolutely. It’s no secret to any of us that it’s not often we get to see Black people in the superhero aspects, but particularly Black women. I would say there’s been a disproportionate amount of men to women, and that’s in everything in life, if we’re honest. So being a Black female superhero is really exciting for me because, especially in this context, being in a show where you’re in people’s homes, I get the opportunity for people to see this Black woman and to empathize with her, to get to know her. They begin to engage with her humanity. And I think that’s so important, and it’s important for young kids of color to see people that look like them — young Black girls, young Black boys and just everyone — to be able to have that opportunity to see people that look like them, or not, and to get to know who they are, engage with them. That’s really an honor."
PARRIS EMBRACING SUPERHERO RESPONSIBILITY
While Teyonah Parris has had quite the successful career before joining the MCU, she has spoken on numerous occasions about how much it means to her to play one of Marvel’s new leading heroes. Along with the pure excitement to join such a successful franchise, it seems as though Parris truly feels blessed to be a woman of color taking on such an important role in the franchise as Phase 4 gets underway.
After 2018’s Black Panther set the high standard for African-American-led movies, especially within the MCU, fans have looked forward to the MCU’s future as they expand on their diversity within the superhero ranks. This is especially satisfying with Monica coming in the very first Phase 4 project released, particularly knowing that she will continue on and play a key role in 2022’s Captain Marvel 2 as well.
As for Parris’ comments on knowing Monica Rambeau’s journey so well, it’s quite refreshing seeing somebody so passionate about the source material taking on this big of a role within the MCU.
After seeing Monica as a young child in Captain Marvel, it was a mystery whether the franchise would have her continue along her journey as an adult and fully become Photon. Now that it’s a reality, the MCU fandom and stars are already all-in on Monica’s progression, and it will be exciting to see where the Disney+ shows and theatrical movies take her.