It’s finally happened: for the first time since Marvel Studios plunged into Disney+ content, the events of the show are directly linked to one of its films. Elizabeth Olsen’s Wanda Maximoff, Scarlet Witch herself, just got out of WandaVision join Benedict Cumberbatch’s Doctor Strange in its sequel, Doctor Strange in the multiverse of madnessgiving fans an idea of what to expect from future characters intertwined between film and series formats in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
The arrival of Disney+ has given the MCU a new dynamic in the post-Infinity Saga era, but not every country that receives MCU movies has a streaming service available. So, until now, everything seemed to be working under the pretense that everyone who watches Disney+ shows is into movies, but not necessarily the other way around.
Presumably, this would mean that Marvel would make sure that viewers learn about the events of the show in films as needed, rather than working on the basis that the shows require viewing. This was never a guarantee until the character jumped from Disney+ to the big screen (in the case of Wanda, back on the big screen) really happened.
Doctor Strange in the multiverse of madness makes a strange decision, choosing both options. Wanda’s storyline in the film unfolds as a continuation WandaVisionand while the film references the events of the show, it doesn’t explain them very well for the uninitiated. While the film’s storyline can technically be followed by someone who hasn’t seen the series, many of the nuances and insights of Wanda Maximoff and her children will be missing for those who missed it. WandaVision. In fact, it can be very annoying for someone who last saw her in Avengers: Endgame.
The problem is that the movie tries to install the Wanda arc from WandaVision all over again, only this time on the big screen. Basically, it’s an attempt to tell everyone about the development of Wanda’s character that happened on the show, and at the same time continue as if everyone has already seen it. In this regard, the filing of this story in Multiverse of Madness inferior to how it’s done in the TV series, and the fact that it’s done in the movie generally seems like a regression of the character. It’s pretty disappointing, especially after the series handled Wanda’s dilemma well with such nuance and caution.
Beyond specifics WandaVisionconnection with Multiverse of Madness, there are some takeaways from it that are noteworthy as the MCU moves forward into more stories spanning both movie and series formats. Namely, that some shows will actually be «prerequisites» for films, and not vice versa. Ms. Marvel required for this Wonders given that the protagonist of this series is technically the main character of the film. Loki may be one of Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantum Mania due to the presence of Jonathan Majors in both projects, though this is less likely as he will no doubt be playing a different, semi-unrelated version of his Loki character in quantum mania.
Till Doctor Strange in the multiverse of madness did a misguided job of serving as a sequel to a Disney+ series but still making it work for those who haven’t seen it WandaVision, this is just the first of many examples of such platform switching for characters. Hopefully in the future, Marvel Studios can handle things like this as they continue to build on both the cinematic and streaming side of the MCU.