We’ve arrived at the 90s/early 00s in our weekly journey through the decades in WandaVision, a trip that paused for breath only once, for episode 4’s extended, gripping exposition that brilliantly placed the show’s events in a very specific time and place in the masterfully woven MCU continuity.

After last week’s jawdropping cliffhanger, which opened up the possibility of more than just the MCU being wrapped up in the WandaVision faux-sitcom reality, it’s Halloween in Westview (has anyone else noted the town name in relation to the show: WestView/WandaVision?) and there are questions to be asked of and by our new guest star. After the events of previous weeks, amid his suspicions growing that things are not what they seem, Vision himself also starts poking around – with somewhat unforeseen results. In the ‘real’ world, the Lewis/Rambeau/Woo team are taking matters into their own hands too…

As we’ve come to expect, the decade appropriate detail here is sublime as always, though it’s a little less time-specific this week. Initially I suspected we’d jump from the 80s to the 90s, but the title sequence – which gives real Malcolm in the Middle vibes – as well as a movie shown playing at Westview’s cinema, muddy the waters a bit. The faux ‘commercial break’ this week is another aspect that really impresses me in the show overall, showcasing a very impressive level of care being taken in every aspect of what’s unfolding – another great little piece of incidental detail with some creepy, perhaps foreshadowing, undertones. It being Halloween in Westview, there’s also the opportunity to see our characters in costume; the comic accurate outfits seen here are a lovely nod to the source material.

Ever since episode 4 gave us so much detail on what’s going on, there’s been the sense that we’re seeing a Lost-style mystery unfold that isn’t afraid to give us answers at a decent speed while still retaining an air of mystery in a few aspects of the story. With only two episodes to go, it’s still anyone’s guess as to how everything is going to play out – but it still feels like a one-of-a-kind experience that’s given us a story grounded in the MCU, but with a tone and events that prove Marvel Cinematic Universe stories can go almost anywhere at this point. It also feels like we’re watching a real event in TV show terms, week on week – I’m going to miss my visits to WestView when the series comes to its end in a few episodes time.

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