“Long lost bro get to squeeze his stinkin’ sister to death or what?”
After waiting long enough for the welcoming applause from the audience to die down, a white-haired man wearing a Hawaiian shirt under a black leather jacket asks Wanda Maximoff this question. right after nearly getting into a fight in her living room, wanda and vision are stunned into silence.
“pietro?” wanda finally responds.
This scene closed out last week’s charged fifth episode of wandavision, burying some of the season’s biggest moments under a more arresting headline: Pietro Maximoff has risen from the dead.
And yet Wanda’s twin brother is alive after being killed in 2015’s Avengers: Age of Ultron somehow wasn’t the most surprising twist. rather, it was the actor who wore that shiny Hawaiian shirt and leather jacket, and also the one who didn’t: instead of aaron taylor-johnson reprising his role, it was evan peters, reprising his role as the mutant aka quicksilver from the 20th century fox x-men movies.
Along with pietro’s return, many questions arise that extend beyond the hexagonal boundary of westview and far beyond the plot of wandavision. While all the answers may not come in the final four episodes of the season, Pietro’s small step toward Wanda’s house could be a giant leap for mutantkind. Ahead of WandaVision’s next episode, here’s what you need to know about the big reveal and what it could mean for the MCU for years to come.
pietro maximoff (in the mcu)
Before we get to Peters Uncle Pietro, let’s revisit the original Mercury from the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Played by Aaron Taylor-Johnson (Kick-Ass, Tenet), Wanda’s twin brother made his first and only appearance in Age of Ultron (unless you count that quick cameo in Captain America: The Winter Soldier post-credits). ). Although Pietro and Wanda are crucial to the plot, they both have limited roles and are linked for most of the film. (one of the most memorable scenes in wanda sin pietro, for example, occurs when hawkeye gives her a pep talk and says, “the city is flying, we are fighting an army of robots, and i have a bow and arrow; none of this makes sense.”)
pietro and wanda are products of wolfgang von striker’s experiments with the scepter, the device loki used to wreak havoc on the avengers that contained the mind stone. The twins turned to Striker and Hydra after their parents were killed by Stark-created weapons in war-torn Sokovia. And so, like Wanda, Pietro is a character born of grief. Gifted with enhanced speed, Pietro, along with his sister, joins forces with Ultron to take down Tony Stark and the Avengers.
When Pietro uses his powers, he moves like a blur across the screen and has an arrogant, short-tempered personality to match his super-speed. But in a messy film that focused more on world building than its own plot, introducing not only Wanda, Pietro, and Vision, but also Ulysses Klaue and Wakanda as it set the stage for the events of Captain America: Civil War. and Infinity War— Pietro never gets much time to shine before taking a few bullets to save Hawkeye and a Sokovian kid in the final battle against Ultron. Hawkeye later pays tribute to him by naming one of his sons Nathaniel Pietro Barton, but beyond that, Pietro is largely ignored in the films that follow. Now, with Peters in the role, it remains to be seen where Pietro de Taylor-Johnson stands. Will the previous iteration just be forgotten or even deleted?
pietro maximoff (in the x-men universe)
Until 2019, Fox also held the rights to the character, and the X-Men version of Pietro couldn’t have been more different, not even sharing the same name. Coming out before Age of Ultron hit theaters, 2014’s Days of Future Past casts Peter Maximoff as a rebellious young American who helps Wolverine and Professor Xavier free Magneto from his imprisonment in the 1970s. Peter, who lives in his mom’s basement, he’s a super-speed mutant who’s become a bit of a kleptomaniac, which, I mean, can you really blame him?
Without any tragic events anchoring his origin story, Quicksilver is less serious than his Russian-accented MCU counterpart, and his scenes are generally to comedic effect. He also doesn’t get much of a role in his first X-Men movie, but unlike Pietro in Ultron, Peter has one of the most memorable scenes in what was a far superior movie. instead of always moving too fast for our eyes to catch on screen, in days of future past, we get to see what super speed looks like from quicksilver’s perspective as he mans a group of guards in the pentagon :
After Magneto is released, Peter’s purpose in the film is largely over, although Evans reprises his roles in the subsequent X-Men films, Apocalypse and Dark Phoenix.
Speaking of the metal-bending mutant villain, Magneto is actually Peter’s absent father in the X-Men universe. the father-son connection is hinted at in days of future past, when peter mentions that his mother once knew a guy who could control metal, and confirms that magneto is his father in the next film, which takes place a decade later. (That’s really all you need to know about those last X-Men movies; it seems even Oscar Isaac wished the apocalypse had never happened.)
with the fox properties now under the disney umbrella, the two pietros have merged into wandavision. but with only a few seconds on screen last week, we still don’t know what it will look like. will petro still be an “upgraded” product of an infinity stone, or will he be the first mutant in the mcu? Will he and wanda be recognized as children of magneto or will they keep their sokovian lineage? if pietro really is alive again and here to stay after the events of wandavision, hopefully he’ll at least bring some of his slow motion action sequences with him.
in the mcu
With an alternate Pietro stepping into the MCU in WandaVision, Marvel begins its Phase 4 by plunging deeper into the multiverse. Marvel has been dipping its toes into alternate universes since 2015’s Ant-Man and 2016’s Doctor Strange, but whether it’s Scott Lang taking a subatomic trip into the Quantum Realm or Stephen Strange making bargains in the Dark Dimension, most visits to other dimensions have been brief, always hinting at a greater role for the multiverse some time in the future. The most recent MCU film, 2019’s Spider-Man: Far From Home, toyed with an introduction to other versions of Earth, but mentions of the bigger multiverse in that film were little more than a deception from the villain Mysterio.
the arrival of the x-men version of pietro on wandavision, assuming some of his mutant backstory is carried over with it, could point to the multiverse as a means of entry for some of the many characters whose film rights have reverted to marvel after disney bought fox in 2019. characters like nightcrawler or beast could now finally meet spider-man or hulk. And yet, as recently as 2019, Marvel Studios boss Kevin Feige said that “it will be a long time” before the X-Men enter the MCU. Maybe he was just misdirecting, or maybe that feeling changed when head writer Jac Schaeffer told him the idea of bringing Pietro back in Wandavision.
In addition to the confirmed return of Ryan Reynolds as Deadpool, will other actors from various Fox X-Men films reprise their roles in the MCU as well? Can we expect Hugh Jackman to return to that 4,000-calorie gluttonous diet to reprise her iconic character for the eleventh time on screen? Or is the return of Peters as Quicksilver simply a fun one-off deal that will live and die again in Wanda’s reimagined sitcom reality, until the X-Men actually join the MCU “a long time from now”?
even beyond the return of the x-men or the fantastic four, the mcu has already presented clearer plans to build the multiverse. Disney+’s upcoming series Loki will resurrect the Asgardian trickster (again) after he managed to escape during one of Endgame’s time travel events, and first looks at the show provide a glimpse of Loki dealing with various worlds, universes , and timelines as he literally takes on a bunch of time cops. And despite what Tom Holland says, the next Spider-Man movie will feature Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield dusting off their red and blue tights to star opposite Holland. Ultimately, WandaVision will lead right into Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, an early sign that there’s more to Wanda after Westview.
If this is all starting to sound like a dizzying mess, well, that’s because it is, at least for now.
back in westview
For the purposes of WandaVision as of now, Pietro is playing a classic sitcom trope of a long-lost relative who comes to visit out of the blue. And it looks like cool Uncle Pietro has popped onto the scene just in time for Billy and Tommy to experience their very first Halloween (a sad truth for two 10-year-old boys; that’s the sort of childhood experience you miss when you rapidly age up).
And yet Pietro’s insertion into WandaVision may be deliberate misdirection to send Marvel fans into a frenzy before revealing that some villain is messing with Wanda’s head behind the scenes. (With less than half of the season remaining, there’s still a lot to learn about Dottie and Agnes, for example.) pietro could just be another manifestation of wanda’s pain as she continues to lose control. Or maybe Westview really did provide a perfect opportunity to reprise Pietro for later movies or TV shows, playing on the fact that, from Darrin Stephens in Bewitched to Aunt Vivian in The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, actors of comedies can suddenly change in a moment. moment notice in a long-running series.
but if last week’s big reveal really is an attempt to bring in the x-men, it’s possible that wandavision is also sacrificing some of its premise for the sake of the bigger picture. most of the tweets and summaries after last week’s episode focused on pietro’s arrival before anything else, despite the fact that “in a very special episode…” the vision finally realizes that wanda was manipulating and terrorizing the residents of Westview, and Scarlet Witch steps out of her sitcom reality for the first time to threaten the director of S.W.O.R.D. face to face.
wandavision had built efficiently through its first five installments, while standing on its own as a refreshing reboot for the mcu. Now, with the arrival of a mutant, the show can look so far into Marvel’s future that it loses sight of its present. But if WandaVision’s big fourth episode, which seamlessly tied the events of Endgame to Westview, is any indication, the big gamble may be worth the confusing wait.