Since the Disney Plus Marvel TV show began last month, fans have been feverishly theorising over who the antagonist of the series could be.
Many believed an Easter egg in the very first episode revealed Marvel Comics character Mephisto as the big bad while others think Wanda Maximoff (Elizabeth Olsen) herself could have turned to the dark side.
While there is plenty of evidence to support both these theories, the latest episode seemed to reference yet another villain who will be extremely familiar to comic book readers.
*Spoilers follow – you have been warned*
The sixth episode continues following the surprise return of Wanda’s deceased brother, Pietro, here played by Evan Peters who played the same character in the non-MCU X-Men franchise.
Aaron Taylor-Johnson previously played Pietro in the MCU meaning Peters’ appearance sent shockwaves throughout the Marvel fan community.
This latest outing shows that Pietro has since become a fully-fledged part of the family, bonding with Wanda and Vision’s children over the Halloween period.
However, fans aren’t convinced that Pietro is actually Pietro and instead believe that he is a terrifying Marvel villain in disguise.
Firstly, Pietro is revealed to be fully aware that the sitcom world Wanda seems to have created for herself is fake.
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It’s the continued mention of a certain word, though, that has some fans convinced Pietro is a force for bad. That word is “nightmare”, which is spoken by Pietro himself as well as by SWORD agent Hayward (Josh Stamberg).
In the comics, Nightmare is the ruler of a Dream Dimension and, crucially, has the ability to draw power from the psychic energies of the subconscious minds of dreaming beings.
As we’ve seen a few times now, the residents of Westview appear to be dreaming. While we’re led to believe it’s because they’re under Wanda’s spell, could it be that Nightmare is holding them all ransom via Wanda?
At one stage, Wanda even tells her brother, when he asks how she created this world: “I don’t know how I did it. I only remember feeling completely alone, empty – just endless nothingness.”
One theory suggests that Wanda could be being manipulated by Nightmare following the trauma of Vision’s death in Avengers: Infinity War.
Corroborating this idea is the scene in which Wanda suddenly sees the deceased version of her brother much like she saw the dead version of Vision (Paul Bettany) a few episodes back. Wanda could simply be under Nightmare’s spell.
Backing up this theory even further is the fact that Nightmare is a huge character in the Doctor Strange comics, and Wanda herself will be a main character in the forthcoming sequel Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness.
It’s because of this that it seems extremely likely WandaVision is setting up that very film, which is due to be released on 25 March 2022.
“They said ‘nightmare’ quite a few times this episode. That’s weird. That’s suspicious,” one viewer wrote.
Another added: “‘Nightmare’ keeps being mentioned, why is that?”
Someone else called it “obvious foreshadowing” with one fan saying Pietro “knows way too much to be real”.
Wanda puts it best herself near the beginning of the episode when she says about her brother: “He’s just full of surprises” – revealing himself as the show’s primary villain would be one hell of a twist.
Viewers also expressed their surprise at what they believed to be a reference to X-Men character Wolverine in the new episode.
WandaVision continues on Disney Plus on Fridays.
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