Welcome to Life Outside of Westview

WandaVision ties the loose threads together by incorporating events from Avengers: Endgame. Episode Four, “We Interrupt This Program”, takes place immediately after “The Blip”. Monica Rambeau (Teyonah Parris) rematerializes to learn that five years has passed and much has changed. She returns to work at SWORD headquarters, but is assigned to a missing person’s case in New Jersey. Monica meets FBI Agent Jimmy Woo (Randall Park) on the outskirts of Westview. They encounter a town that shouldn’t exist, and an energy field surrounding it in this latest episode of WandaVision that marks the halfway point of the series’ first season.

“We Interrupt This Program” begins with particles coming together. They combine to create Monica Rambeau, who’s sitting in a hospital room. She gets up confused and walks outside the door to loud commotion. The hospital corridor is frenzied as people are rematerializing everywhere. “They’re coming back! They’re all coming back! We don’t know why this is happening,” a stunned doctor (Samir Younis) exclaims. Monica knocks over a man. She finds the nurses station, but they are equally overwhelmed.

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Dr. Hyland (Lana Young) sees her, “Monica, I can’t believe it!” Monica rushes to the doctor. “Where did you go?” Dr. Hyland asks breathlessly. Monica replies that she probably just fell asleep “for twenty minutes” after her mother’s surgery. Dr. Hyland breaks the shattering news. Her mother, Maria Rambeau, died from cancer three years ago. Two years after Monica disappeared.

The standard Marvel Studios intro plays. Remaining in letterbox format, the next scene introduces Sentient Weapon Observation Response Division (SWORD) headquarters. A massive hangar is surrounded by launch platforms and buildings on an ocean marshland. Monica walks into the main office as huge monitors broadcast, “The Blip Brings Back Loved Ones.”

Monica tries to use her ID to open a secure door, but her badge doesn’t work. Director Tyler Hayward (Josh Stamberg) greets Captain Rambeau, “Wow, you haven’t aged a day.” A plaque of her mother, Maria “Photon” Rambeau, adorns the wall. “It’s been three weeks and you’re the first to report,” Hayward comments. He updates her that the other astronaut trainees haven’t come back. The program has changed towards technology and weapons since she’s been gone. “The world is not the same since you left. Space is full of unexpected threats,” says Hayward. He acknowledges that Monica’s mother built SWORD from the ground up.

In his office, Hayward tells Monica that the FBI is “in a tizzy over a missing person’s case in Jersey.” They’ve requested use of an imaging drone. Hayward is sending Monica. He informs her that she is grounded, “terrestrial missions only.” It was her mother’s protocol. “She implemented guidelines just in case the vanished persons came back,” Hayward states. It’s a raw deal, but her mother “believed she would come back.”

Monica drives through New Jersey to Exit 32, Westview. She arrives at the town’s outer limits to find James E. Woo (Randall Park), an FBI agent, and two cops waiting. She introduces herself. Jimmy tells her that he had an asset, a person in the witness protection program, supposedly staying in Westview. After contacting this person’s known associates and friends, he was stunned to learn they had never heard of him. He flew from Oakland immediately to “interface” with local law enforcement. The two cops from Eastview give them another “wrinkle.” Westview isn’t a real place. The town doesn’t exist. And they can’t reach anyone on the inside. “This isn’t a missing person’s case. It’s a missing town, population 3,892,” Jimmy says as he reads the Westview sign.

Monica asks why he hasn’t gone inside to investigate. “It doesn’t want me to,” Jimmy replies. Monica takes a drone helicopter from her SUV. She doesn’t understand why she and Jimmy have an awareness of Westview. The drone vanishes as it flies towards the town. Monica cautiously walks forward and sees the shimmering energy field. She touches it, and is sucked through.

A caption reads “24 Hours Later.” Darcy Lewis (Kat Dennings) is inside a tactical van. She asks the other scientists what their fields are. She’s in astrophysics, “SWORD obviously has no idea what they’re dealing with.” They arrive at the “SWORD Response Base” outside Westview. An agent takes Darcy to her station in the command tent. Her gear has already been set up. The chirpy Darcy asks for a cup of coffee. She turns on her scanner and “gets a colossal amount of CMBR (Cosmic Microwave Background Radiation).” Darcy detects another “wavelength superimposed over the noise.” She tunes the frequency and gets an image, “I need a TV…an old one, not flat.”

That night during a rainstorm. Director Hayward and a team lower Agent Franklin, in a protective suit, into the sewer. He’s tethered and in nonstop radio contact. Jimmy is “not confident” this will work. Hayward dismisses his “feedback” as they enter the command center. Jimmy doesn’t believe it’s wise to send another agent when the first one hasn’t returned.

Hayward and Jimmy look at various panels. They hear a sitcom laugh track. Everyone gathers around Darcy’s old school TV. They’re watching Vision (Paul Bettany) and Wanda (Elizabeth Olsen) in the first episode. “I know it’s been a crazy few years, but he’s dead right, not blipped?” Darcy observes. “What am I looking at?” Hayward asks. Darcy doesn’t have any answers, but the CMBR had a broadcast frequency. When “the goons” brought her a TV, “voila sound and picture.”

They watch as Vision and Wanda bumble dinner with the Harts. A perplexed Jimmy comments to Darcy, “So you’re saying the universe created a sitcom with two Avengers?” Hayward returns to SWORD headquarters immediately with this new information. “Great work,” Jimmy says as he compliments Darcy. She’s still waiting for her coffee. The credits roll on the fifties sitcom’s conclusion. Darcy closes her notebook. She was the unseen person watching on the monitor in the final scene of episode one.

At the next briefing, every station is now being fitted with an old TV. Jimmy updates the scientists. They have identified Wanda and Vision in the “Westview anomaly”. Using facial recognition, they discover the real names of the Harts, Todd and Sharon Davis, Abilash Tanden is Norm, Harold Proctor is Jones, Isabelle Matsuada is Beverly, John Collins is Herb. These people are all missing. Jimmy notes, the anomaly is a hexagon, how can Vision be alive, and is it taking place in the same time and space.

A stunned Darcy drops her cup of noodles. Monica, as Geraldine, is now appearing in the sitcom. She and Jimmy don’t understand how Monica’s there. Darcy has an idea. Outside the command center that night, she sets up a radio transmitter. Darcy tells Jimmy that a radio has always appeared beside Wanda in the sitcom. She wants to try and speak directly to her. Another agent brings them a screenshot of the current episode. It’s a picture of the helicopter drone that Wanda found in her bushes, but changed to reflect the fifties time period. It’s also in color.

Darcy races back to her station as Jimmy dons a headset and microphone. Darcy watches the scene at the community pool with Wanda and Geraldine, who now has a speaking part. When Wanda tries to play nice with Dottie (Emma Caulfield Ford), Darcy sees the radio on the table beside them. She starts to transmit Jimmy, “Wanda…Wanda…can you read me over? Wanda…Wanda…who’s doing this to you?” Darcy looks as Wanda stares at the radio and the glass breaks in Dottie’s hand. The scene then resets on her screen. “Mission failure,” Darcy says. But she is confused and doesn’t convey her gut feelings to Jimmy.

In the sewer, Agent Franklin has reached the energy field. As he crosses over, his suit changes to a beekeeper and the tether is severed. When the other agents reel in the broken line. It looks like a jump rope. Agent Franklin exits the sewer in front of Wanda and Visions house. He’s surrounded by bees when Wanda sees him. Everything is in black and white.

The scene cuts to Darcy and Jimmy watching the seventies sitcom in color. The time period has changed and the couple is having a baby. They watch as Geraldine delivers the first child. “Twins…what a twist,” says a teary Darcy. They then hear the moment when Geraldine tells Wanda that her brother was killed by Ultron. Darcy and Jimmy are startled. It’s the first time the sitcom has “referenced their reality.”

The TV screen shows Wanda angrily approaching Geraldine. The scene resets again and the credits roll. “What happened? Where did she go?” Jimmy asks. Darcy rewinds the video to where Geraldine vanishes. She realizes that someone is censoring the broadcast. An alarm blares in the command center. Darcy and Jimmy rush outside.

The TV monitor zooms in, the screen reverts back to the 4:3 aspect ratio. “Who are you,” an angry Wanda confronts Geraldine. “Wanda, I’m just your neighbor,” a frightened Geraldine responds. “Then how could you know about Ultron? You’re not my neighbor,” Wanda states threateningly. She raises her arms. Wanda’s hands are glowing with red energy. “You’re definitely not my friend. You are a stranger, an outsider, and right now, you are trespassing here. I want you to leave!” Wanda roars.

Wanda hits Geraldine with the energy beam. Who smashes through the wall, the backyard fence, across a field, and through the energy barrier. Wanda then uses her powers to fix the damaged living room. She walks back towards her children. Vision enters the room, “Where is Geraldine?” Back in letterbox format, Monica aka Geraldine, lies in the grass outside of Westview. SWORD agents rush towards her as a helicopter shines a spotlight, the ending of the previous episode.

In the living room, Wanda turns around. She gasps in horror. Vision is the cold, colorless form with the Mind Stone torn from his head, revealing circuits, as he was when Thanos killed him. “What is it? What’s wrong?” Vision asks as he approaches her. Wanda looks up and he’s back to normal. “We don’t have to stay here. We can leave,” he tells Wanda. She stares at him with tears in her eyes, “No, we can’t. This is our home. Don’t worry darling. I have everything under control.” Outside of Westview, Monica regains consciousness. Jimmy and Darcy rush to her side. Monica gasps, “It’s Wanda…it’s all Wanda.” In the living room, Jimi Hendrix plays in the background, Wanda and Vision sit on the couch with their twin sons to watch TV.

WandaVision changed perspectives completely in a banner episode. It was great to get away from the hokey sitcom format and reveal the SWORD investigation of Westview. The helicopter, beekeeper, and radio burst comes into focus as SWORD trying to penetrate the town. Wanda’s attack on Monica, and the dead Vision scene, confirms her awareness of what’s happening. Westview is her created reality. It may be her coping mechanism after she came back from “The Blip.” All of the previous Hydra references allude to Agent Jimmy’s missing person. That must be the villain somehow influencing Wanda. We never see what happened to Agent Franklin. Does he become the Swarm? WandaVision returns next Friday on Disney+.

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