Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness marked a new milestone for the MCU, as it made extensive use of story details from Marvel Studios’ very first Disney+ series, Wanda Vision. While Elizabeth Olsen proved to be the main villain in Strange’s second solo outing, her journey into Wanda Vision setting the stage for interesting plot threads more than a year in advance.
Due to the unique format of this series, fans have been on a crazy journey through the history of American television sitcoms. This included nods and references to six decades of hit television shows, The Dick Van Dyke Show and Delighted at modern family and Office.
With this unique format, many episodes brought TV-style advertising paying homage to much of Wanda’s history. From a toaster made by Stark Industries to a watch named after Baron Von Strucker, each got fans thinking about what they meant in the grand scheme of things.
Now that both Wanda Vision and Doctor Strange 2 are in the world, one of those commercials stands out specifically thanks to Wanda’s eventual mission in the latest MCU movie.
Wanda’s Nexus influence in WandaVision
Episode 7 of Wanda Vision featured the last of seven commercials for various MCU-related products as part of Wanda’s reality-based sitcom inside the Westview Hex. The latter promotes the drug Nexus, which is presented as acting to “anchor yourself to your reality, or the reality of your choice.”
“Feeling down? Like the world goes on without you? Do you just want to be left alone? Ask your doctor about Nexus. A unique antidepressant that works to ground you in your reality. Or reality of your choice.
Side effects include feeling your feelings, comforting your truth, grasping your destiny, and eventually, more depression. You should not take Nexus unless your doctor has cleared you to go on with your life.
Nexus, because the world doesn’t revolve around you. Or does he?”
Initially, fans thought it was a nod to the NEXUS global internet hub in Oslo, Norway, which was introduced in 2015 Avengers: Age of Ultron, Wanda’s first full-length MCU film. Tony Stark traveled to this location in an attempt to locate Ultron via the internet as the villain struggled to bring Paul Bettany’s vision to life.
Ultimately, it was one of the only commercials that didn’t have a surefire connection to the MCU or a definitive explanation of how it connected to Wanda’s past. However, Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness can offer new meaning to this ad by casting Xochitl Gomez’s America Chavez as the “Nexus Being” within the MCU.
In the comics, the term “Nexus Being” is used for individuals who only have one version of themselves across the multiverse. Although the MCU doesn’t specifically use this term, America Chavez reveals that she can’t dream, which means there are no other variations of herself. This would mean that the young hero is by definition a Nexus Being.
So how does this relate to Wanda Vision? As the advertisement uses the drug Nexus as a means to solve all the woman’s problems that afflict her, the advertisement can be seen as an allegory of how America (the Nexus being) can also be used to solve all Wanda’s problems. The fact that Nexus can anchor someone in “the reality of your choice” seems to be a direct reference to the fact that America can take Wanda to any reality she wants: one where her family is real.
It may also show how powerful Wanda Maximoff really is, as she could have shown her ability to see the future.
Wanda Maximoff’s true power revealed in Doctor Strange 2
Wanda Maximoff unleashed more power in Doctor Strange 2 than in any previous MCU project, making it clear that she is one of the most powerful beings in the franchise, if not the more. Even so, if this ad was meant to tease America Chavez’s presence in the greater multiverse, it may have pointed to the moment Wanda first realized that America was a person who interested.
Even though America didn’t appear in his and Strange’s universe until the first moments of Doctor Strange 2, Wanda had enough power and more than one way to search the multiverse for answers to her problems. As the ads mostly deal with Wanda’s past to begin with before showing a future event in the Nexus ad, this could represent Wanda’s growing power and hint that she has the ability to see potential futures.
By the end of the series, Wanda had also delved into the pages of the Darkhold, opening her eyes to magic she had never known, including the knowledge of dream walking she used in Doctor Strange 2. The ad may have told the Scarlet Witch where to look next, showing Wanda someone who could travel the multiverse and give the grieving mother exactly what she wanted – a world with her children.
But even with Wanda having learned Darkhold magic before her apparent death in Doctor Strange 2, there may be another party responsible for leading her down this path in the first place. This would be the witch who first showed the Scarlet Witch what the book was capable of – Kathryn Hahn’s Agatha Harkness.
Was it Agatha from the start?
Even though Wanda created the Westview Hex on her own, Agatha Harkness made her presence felt alongside Wanda Visionthe main character throughout its nine-episode run. The villain of the series sought to find out how Wanda learned to do “magic on autopilot,” hoping to take some or all of that power for herself.
When it comes to Wanda and America, however, Agatha was the first to reveal the existence of the Darkhold to Wanda, showing her the first signs of a path to happiness.
In the second post-credits scene of episode 9, Wanda could hear the voices of her twin sons, Billy and Tommy, calling her from across the multiverse after she abandoned them with the Hex. Thinking back to the Nexus commercial, could Agatha have been the one who had this in Wanda’s head before she even introduced her to the Darkhold itself? Agatha may have altered the ads to manipulate Wanda, with the Nexus ad showing the Scarlet Witch what she could have if she took the plunge.
Both Wanda and Agatha played significant roles in the creation and evolution of the Hex, with Agatha’s influence clearly having an effect on Wanda throughout the series. It could have been yet another level of depth in Agatha’s villainy as she attempted to take Wanda’s power away from her, which ultimately led to Wanda discovering America Chavez and researching the youngster’s abilities.
Whatever the definitive theory, it is clear that the Wanda Vision the ads were meant to get fans thinking about how the material really related to the Scarlet Witch. Ultimately, his interactions with America Chavez in Doctor Strange 2 were an almost direct result of that influence, pushing Wanda Maximoff down her dark path and ultimately helping America launch her run as the Young Avenger.
The nine episodes of Wanda Vision and Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness are now streaming on Disney+.