The Marvel Cinematic Universe is huge, a Hollywood powerhouse that’s shaping the film industry. But it wouldn’t exist without the flimsy yellowed pages of our favorite comics. And those wouldn’t exist without the imaginations of the amazing creators who made them. While WandaVision might seem like a series most concerned with TV, it’s also arguably the most comic book focused MCU project yet. Each episode is filled with nods, references, and scenes taken directly from the books that inspired it. Digging through the issues is one of the most fun things about watching the show.
To share the joy, we thought we’d curate a list of comics that have been directly referenced in the series so far. Some of these are concrete influences and others are possible easter eggs which seem to be very, very relevant to the series.
All hail the first appearance of Vision! Yep, the number on that little helicopter (turned S.W.O.R.D. drone) references this iconic issue: 57. The story from Roy Thomas and John Buscema introduces Vision as he appears at Avengers Mansion. His origin has echoes of what we saw in Age of Ultron, but differs when it comes to how he was created. This is a great example of peak Silver Age comics and is definitely worth a closer look now that the new status quo of Vision’s existence has been revealed in WandaVision.
One of the many issue numbers that seems to pop up in episode four, this one shares a timely theme of mind control. With so much of WandaVision centering on lack of agency and someone controlling others, this seems too much of a coincidence to dismiss. Plus, there’s the fact that it features both Wanda and Pietro. It’s a super fun and silly issue about a poisoned chess genius, a super computer, and a mind control helmet. While it might not be super pertinent in regards to narrative, these old issues are full of possible bits and bobs that could be included in the future. Thor also appears, nodding to the return of Darcy in this episode!
Lots of Avengers action here, mostly because of Wanda and Vision being team members at the time. This reference pops up when we hear Monica Rambeau mention her mother is in Room 104. This comic features the disappearance of Pietro Maximoff. It’s also an X-Men-heavy issue as the Avengers battle the mutant-killing robots known as the Sentinels. Pietro’s disappearance at the end of this issue reflects his absence in the MCU. Most interestingly, though, is the fact that in this issue Wanda is used as a power source for a weapon to destroy the world. Sounds like something that might be important going forward…
In the S.W.O.R.D. base, we see a massive computer screen featuring the letter and number combo “A105,” which of course led us here. Continuing the arc of missing Pietro is this intriguing little story. While it’s mostly concerned with some shenanigans in the Savage Land, there are some very interesting Wanda and Vision moments here. A grieving Wanda is desperate to find her brother, but gets waylaid by her duty to the Avengers. Most intriguing is the fact that Vision considers transplanting his consciousness into the dead body of Simon Williams, Wonder Man. Creepy!
In this truly wacky issue, we get some more great Simon Williams action. While this doesn’t seem like it’s going to tell us much, it seems like a thematic nod. Why? Well, it’s a story about Wonder Man and Hank McCoy battling underground monsters who pop out of manholes in a strange and unassuming neighborhood… sound familiar? Plus, those very monsters are the result of secretive scientists below ground. Basically, it sounds like whoever wrote WandaVision might have picked this one out of a dollar bin as a kid.
This riotous Avengers issue features some very interesting potential antagonists (or allies) for Wanda. During the technicolor tale, the team fights a nefarious crew called the Enclave. Interestingly they first appeared in a Fantastic Four issue named “What Lurks Behind the Beehive.” With all the beehive-centric teases in WandaVision so far, this seems pertinent to say the least. So keep an eye out for the Enclave and enjoy this totally wild superhero story as you prepare for the next episode.
We met a certain terrifying version of Vision in episode four, and he’s right on the cover of this issue, smooching someone who isn’t Wanda. Another number from the S.W.O.R.D. base monitors (348) hints at this wild comic, another Vision-centric story. Here, though, Vision meets the wife of the (non-Wonder) man who he based his brain patterns on after being wiped and becoming White Vision. Any story about White Vision seems extra important right now. Plus, as we move towards the show’s midpoint, Vision seems to be waking up to what his wife’s doing. While he can’t stop her as a shambling corpse, he could potentially seek out a new form of artificial intelligence, restoring himself and becoming a different synthezoid.
Strange Tales #143
Here we have another mind control-themed issue seemingly referenced in episode four. We see the number 143 on the back of the cop car along with the number 1966. That’s not a coincidence as this issue was released that year! While Wanda isn’t featured here, we do get HYDRA and Nick Fury. The famed military man is being mind controlled, just like the inhabitants of Westview. Other than that, this is just a solid and strange issue.
(The) Vision and the Scarlet Witch
These miniseries—1982 and 1985, respectively—established the suburban status quo of WandaVision. Not only that but the gorgeous and surreal stories center characters like Agatha Harkness, Norm, and even introduce the pair’s children, Billy and Tommy. Aside from all of that, during the episode two opening we see the helmet of Grim Reaper, who’s a major villain in the Vision and Scarlet Witch comics. If you’re looking for classic comics that shaped WandaVision, then you couldn’t do better than both of these great limited series.
Even if most of these comics end up as just little fun easter eggs and have no wider implications, this is a super stack of classic comics for you to enjoy until the next episode of WandaVision!