Much of the movie Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness is based on his ambiguity. There is a frantic and dazzling ride through the multiverse. Places so disparate and crazy that it is difficult to describe them at first glance. Also characters with numerous layers of meaning and interpretation. But the most striking thing is that both the screenwriter Michael Waldron and the director Sam Raimi decided that the end of the film was not entirely clear. Or rather, the final destination of one of its most important figures, which opens up a considerable range of possibilities for the future. We refer to Wanda Maximoff, who has turned out to be a nemesis of overwhelming power in a film full of portentous characters.
But the Wanda Maximoff in the plot of the sequel to Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness is more than just unstoppable and formidable. She is also a tragic figure, whose driving force is based on pain and loss. In fact, in several of the film’s scenes, Wanda insists that everything in the plot has a direct relationship to her personal tragedy. And she goes so far as to mention that she “killed the love of her life, to no avail”.
In the series WandaVision (available on Disney+), the character went through a very hard process of mourning and mourning after the death of the synthezoid Vision. Which caused him to create a HEX through which he kidnapped an entire town and its inhabitants, to recreate an idyllic life. She now arrives at the cinema turned into a desperate creature. She is also one of the most powerful villains — yes, it can be called that — in the Marvel factory.
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Wanda Maximoff demonstrated brutality, cruelty, and awareness of her power that baffles and dazzles. In fact, none of the characters manage to beat her in any of her confrontations. And in the end, it is her own character who admits her defeat — moral — and deposes the purpose that led her to travel — wander — through the multiverse. When she gave in, she also decided to disappear forever all the magic related to the Darkhold. Finally, she gives up any intention of defending and protecting herself from her, for which she ends up disappearing.
That is the important dilemma that the film leaves open. At no point does Wanda seem diminished in her powers or that she is unable to stave off imminent death. The final sequence of the character only shows him in the middle of the collapse of Mount Wundagore. However, for much of the film, Wanda Maximoff made it clear that she was capable of teleporting, appearing, and disappearing, even facing the mirror dimension. Could she have died by herself crushed under a barrage of stones?
A villain who may seek his redemption
One of the most intriguing points of Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness is that Wanda stands up to Stange and the rest, but insists on “being reasonable.” Something that Baron Mordo also mentions when referring to her. The question plays with one of the central points of the film. Can Wanda be convinced, stopped with reasoning, can she find redemption?
In fact, by her final minutes, Wanda Maximoff realizes that she is fighting forces that are not rivaled by her powers, but by her goals. The Scarlet Witch understands that she, at the same time, is still Wanda Maximoff. And that despite the corruption wrought by the Darkhold, she still has enough awareness of good and evil to understand the horror she unleashed. Is it an indication that Marvel intends to bring the character back to the Marvel movies or series? Will the Scarlet Witch return, no longer as an enemy to be defeated, but as an ally in a greater story?
So far, Marvel has been successful in the redemption of its villains. Or at least, the most emblematic of all in his franchise. Tom Hiddleston’s Loki went from Thor’s (Chris Hemsworth) envious and scheming younger brother to a man in search of an ideal. In fact, Hiddleston recently commented in an interview on Playlist that he decided to reprise the role of the troubled Asgardian god to bring him redemption.
But beyond the actor’s good intentions, there is considerable appeal in villains who go through major moral shifts. The truth is that Loki spent much of phases two and three of the Marvel franchise doing something resembling the right thing. For his series, the same character confessed that he “wasn’t the same man anymore” and that he understood his mistakes. An evolution for the chaotic, passionate, and turbulent incarnation of the god of lies.
Wanda Maximoff, again in the center of power
Will something similar happen to Elizabeth Olsen‘s Wanda Maximoff? In 2021, Kevin Feige made it clear that the character would “definitely have a promising future.” This year, there were also consistent rumors about an extension of the actress’ contract with Marvel. And also, that she would be involved in at least one future movie and seven more projects. However, neither the actress nor the studio confirmed the news. Whatever the case, it most likely won’t be the last time the Marvel Cinematic Universe will have to face off against the Scarlet Witch. Whether as an enemy or an ally, the formidable character has all the makings to be essential in the upcoming multiversal war.