Episode 8 of WandaVision is upon us and with the mounting exposition and action-packed sequences, there are a lot more burning questions in our minds that need answering. For starters, is Agatha Harkness a Scarlet Witch? The opening sequence, in conjunction with the cliff-hanger, definitely put seeds of doubt in many minds.
But before we begin, be advised that there are going to be some spoilers in this article. So, if you’re already aware of what went down in episode 8, or don’t mind the extra info, here’s the clarification that you may be seeking.
Nope, but she’s a very powerful witch nevertheless
Besides being cinematically fantastic the opening sequence of episode 8 was a little more confusing than revealing. Sure, it sets up Agatha as a really old witch, existing as she was in 1693 in Salem, being tried for her witchcraft by the members of the covenant. But it does put a doubt in the mind of viewers whether she is a Scarlet Witch.
The simplest answer, in a word, is a resounding no. Scarlet Witch is not a title or a designation, or a creed for that matter. There is only one Scarlet Witch and that’s Wanda Maximoff, who is the Scarlet Witch. Agatha, on the other hand, as her comic book origins tell, has always been an old, and greatly powerful, witch, who can use her magic to good effect.
When tried for practicing dark magic and witchcraft, her powers literally suck the living souls out of the overbearing mages who were trying to snuff her out. We’ve already seen how well she can suppress Wanda’s powers, through carefully placed runes, and bring out the magical lassoes on the street. So, clearly, she’s well trained and has the makings of a very powerful witch. Plus, her wealth of knowledge (for exposition purposes) and comic trickeries make her an indispensable character.
But the Scarlet Witch is Wanda Maximoff’s comic name, chiefly because, well, she wears scarlet. It was definitely cool that someone finally uttered Wanda’s moniker, the first time in MCU.
They did it!! They finally called her The Scarlet Witch in episode 8!! And man! Wanda, baby. My heart aches for you.#AgathaHarkness#Wanda #ScarletWitch #WandaVision #Wandavisionbash pic.twitter.com/gJbR0hLylU
— Queen Vendetta 👑🤬😈 (@smashman) February 26, 2021
But there’s a reason why that only happened now. Calling Wanda the Scarlet Witch is an admission of fear and an indication that Wanda has turned villainous, and gone past the point of no return. This, it seems, is what Agatha fears – that Wanda has powers that reign supreme which, if left unchecked, will bring about the next doom. Agatha knows about Wanda’s traumatic past and worries what level of magical destruction (and mind-swipe horrors) she might be capable of engendering. It is yet uncertain if she will train Wanda (like she did in the comics) and be her mentor and guide. It appears that will have to inevitably take place if Wanda is to remain hinged and able to keep her powers from controlling her. Even if it doesn’t, it seems that the Scarlet Witch is coming nevertheless.
— jose ᱬ✵ wandavision spoilers (@parkerhours) February 26, 2021
Other than not being a Scarlet Witch, Agatha does have one thing going for her – she is a great tool for MCU to expand its reach and open up the possibility of bringing in characters from different universes and blending in interesting storylines to enhance the already rich body of work that’s come before.
The fact that she pulled Pietro from an alternate time-line clearly tells us what sort of sorcery she is capable of. Many have even theorized that Pietro is actually Mephisto, but whether such conjectures amount to anything or not we’ll have to wait and watch.
From bringing in Mephisto to the possible introduction of the X-men, there’s much that Agatha Harkness, and WandaVision on the whole, have opened up wide. In all this, she’s definitely a witch, just not a scarlet one.