After a slow start, WandaVision is now kicking into high gear in terms of transforming into a full-blown MCU spectacle. The first half of the MCU's first Disney+ project was geared towards establishing the fake reality that Wanda created in Westview, but the show's transition to the real-world helped fans further understand what's happening.
In true comic-book fashion, “Episode 4” started off with the aftermath of Hulk's snap from Avengers: Endgame, showcasing how the victims of Thanos' decimation came back to life. This was done through the perspective of Teyonah Parris' Monica Rambeau, a character that was last seen as a child from 2019's Captain Marvel.
Originally introduced as a resident of Westview with the name Geraldine, Monica's role in the show slowly expanded, and she became Wanda's advocate in the real world, much to the disgrace of S.W.O.R.D. Director Tyler Hayward. Based on the last few episodes, Monica appears to understand where Wanda's grief is coming from, especially after experiencing the character's mind control while inside the suburban town.
Ahead of the seventh episode of WandaVision, Parris has opened up about the relationship between her character and Wanda in a recent interview.
TEYONAH PARRIS EXPLAINS WHY MONICA UNDERSTANDS WANDA
In an interview with Variety, Teyonah Parris, who plays Monica Rambeau in WandaVision, discussed her character's strong emotional connection with Elizabeth Olsen's Wanda Maximoff.
During the sitdown, Parris was asked about the line from S.W.O.R.D. director Tyler Hayward that was directed towards Monica, Darcy Lewis, and Jimmy Woo, saying “Are you the sassy best friend?,” with Variety comparing it to the show's acknowledgment of how Black women were sidelined and marginalized in American television over the history of American TV. The veteran actress playfully answered with “He went there, didn’t he?!”
When pressed if that was something that was discussed on set, Parris pointed out that it was “not in [that] aspect” while also sharing that there were conversations with director Matt Shakman about “trying to find the balance between what we know to be true — which is in the history of American sitcoms, these Black characters were sidelined or pushed to the back — and then also in this world:”
“Not that aspect, no. I talked to Matt Shakman, our director. We had many conversations before we got on set trying to find the balance between what we know to be true — which is in the history of American sitcoms, these Black characters were sidelined or pushed to the back — and then also in this world, that is not necessarily the case. There is an aspect of it that I did have to lean into in order to keep it true to the time period.”
The Candyman and Captain Marvel 2 actress then explained how Monica is taking charge of the Westview investigation, admitting that “this is her way of unpacking her own grief and trauma by trying to help Wanda through hers:”
“But what I love is that we have gotten to see the evolution of where Black women have lived in these spaces, and so as she goes from this sidelined space to modern day, Monica is taking charge and trying to lead this investigation in a way that is empathetic, with compassion and understanding, realizing that Wanda is grieving and Monica dealing with her own grief of having lost her mother while Monica was blipped away. I think this is her way of unpacking her own grief and trauma by trying to help Wanda through hers.”
MONICA RAMBEAU'S HEROIC MCU FUTURE
Parris' comment is a strong indication that Marvel Studios and the crew behind WandaVision worked hard to find the right balance of presenting the themes surrounding diversity and representation with the real-world circumstance of the topic.
In many ways, the MCU series is a perfect opportunity to tackle this issue due to the show's unique approach of showcasing sitcoms across several decades of television.
Monica appears to be the perfect choice to demonstrate this idea, considering that she already came across the two sides of reality: the sitcom fantasy and the real world. From being a side character in Wanda's fabricated world to being pushed to the forefront in terms of leading S.W.O.R.D.'s investigation, Monica exhibited the evolution of Black women in a compelling manner, making for an impressive feat for the future MCU hero.
By choosing to be compassionate towards Wanda (even after kicking her out from Westview), this essentially marks the first big heroic step for Monica. At this point, it is pretty much guaranteed that the two characters will meet again in the final three episodes, and this encounter could make Wanda aware that she is not alone in dealing with her grief.
While it's already clear that Monica will develop her own power set at the tail-end of the season, there's a strong chance that this S.W.O.R.D. captain will likely resort to stand down and gain the trust of Wanda. It will be difficult, but it's safe to say that Monica is up for the challenge.