The Nine

Is Kathryn Hahn Really Playing Agatha Harkness?


WandaVision debuts on Disney+ in two days and there’s still so much we don’t know about Marvel’s first major streaming series. Why exactly is the MCU’s first Disney+ show doubling as a tribute to classic sitcoms? How is Vision (Paul Bettany) alive if he died in Avengers: Infinity War? Will Wanda Maximoff (Elizabeth Olsen) have some kind of House of M-esque breakdown that ties into the X-Men’s introduction to the MCU? And is national treasure Kathryn Hahn really just playing a “nosy neighbor” in WandaVision or is she the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s version of villainess Agatha Harkness?

While we won’t know the answers to many of those questions until we see the full season of Disney+’s WandaVision, there is already a lot of compelling evidence to suggest that Kathryn Hahn might be playing a baddie. Sure, the official line on her character is she is inhabiting the tried and true sitcom trope of the silly nextdoor neighbor. However, Marvel fans aren’t buying it. It’s not just that Hahn pops up everywhere in the WandaVision trailers, but that her character “Agnes” dons a few key wardrobe items that connect her to one of the Scarlet Witch’s classic antagonists, Agatha Harkness.

So who is Agatha Harkness in the Marvel comics? And why are folks so convinced that Hahn is Harkness? (And why could these theories be pure bunk?) Here’s everything we know about who Kathryn Hahn is playing in Disney+’s WandaVision

WandaVision - Kathryn Hahn
Photo: Disney+

WHO IS AGATHA HARKNESS? AND WILL SHE BE IN WANDAVISION?

In the Marvel comics, Agatha Harkness is a super duper old witch. (No, really, she’s been alive for millennia and can remember life before the mythic Atlantis — which is a thing in Marvel comics — slipped under the sea.) She’s first introduced in Fantastic Four #94 as a sort of nanny character for the Reed and Sue’s little bundle of joy, Franklin Richards. Of course, it is soon revealed that she has more nefarious interests at heart.

Even though she made her debut with the Fantastic Four, Agatha Harkness is often associated with Wanda Maximoff, aka the Scarlet Witch. At times she was a tutor, helping Wanda develop her powers, and at other points, an antagonist.

What matters with regards to WandaVision, though, is the fact that there have been quite a few clues suggesting that Kathryn Hahn’s “Agnes” is nothing more than a smokescreen for the MCU introduction of Agatha Harkness…

Kathryn Hahn dressed as witch in WandaVision
Photo: Disney+

WHY ARE MARVEL FANS CONVINCED KATHRYN HAHN IS AGATHA HARKNESS IN WANDAVISION?

There are perhaps as many fan theories about “what WandaVision is about” as there are stars in the sky, but the speculation about Kathryn Hahn’s character secretly being Agatha Harkness boils down to three major clues in the trailers and promo pics.

The biggest clue that Kathryn Hahn’s Agnes might be a baddie is her choice of Halloween costume. In several preview clips, we see Wanda and Vision cheekily don their traditional Avengers costumes as suburban Halloween costumes. It’s a playful way of not only nodding at their character’s original Marvel comics looks but it’s visually ironic. Their characters are pretending to be normal sitcom suburbanites, but it is only in these technicolor costumes that Wanda and Vision reveal who they really are.

Agnes’s costume? The pointed black hat and cape of a traditional witch. That implies that she is…uh…really a witch! Coupled with the freaky interaction she has with Vision in the trailers — where she not only seemingly snaps out of a fugue to confirm that Vision is supposed to be dead (!!!), but cackles (!!!!) — and it’s looking more and more like Hahn is not a nosy neighbor but a stone cold sorceress.

Kathryn Hahn in WandaVision with red circle around her character's brooch

However that’s not the only detail from the trailers Marvel fans are seizing upon. In footage from the 1950s sitcom era, Hahn’s character is sporting a black and white brooch at her throat. Later, in footage from the ’70s sitcom era, she is wearing the same brooch on a chain around her throat.

Her character’s consistent accessorizing aside — which feels like a clue in and of itself — a brooch is one of the classic accessories associated with witch Agatha Harkness. Most, if not all, comic art of the character features a similar pin at the character’s throat. And then…there are the twins…

Vision and Wanda holding twins in WandaVision
Photo: Disney+

It has not gone past eagle-eyed trailer scouts that Disney+ seems totally cool with folks knowing that WandaVision will introduce Wanda and Vision’s twin sons, Billy and Tommy. So how does a human woman imbued with an Infinity stone’s power to unleash chaos magic have babies with a (dead) synthetic life form? Magic, of course!

While Wanda initially believes in the comics that she was able to conceive the children with only the help of her magical powers, Agatha Harkness drops the bombshell that Wanda’s babies are not really her babies. Rather they carry shards of the souls of a demon.

It’s sad! And complicated! But long story short: if the MCU is introducing Wanda’s twins, it makes sense to also intro Agatha Harkness.

WHY WE SHOULD STILL TREAT THE KATHRYN HAHN/AGATHA HARKNESS RUMORS WITH A GRAIN OF SALT…

If there’s one thing that The Mandalorian taught us about Disney+’s big tentpole original programming, it’s that you can’t trust the trailers. Not only did the original press run to The Mandalorian Season 1 keep the show’s biggest hook — Grogu, aka Baby Yoda — a complete secret, but Season 2’s trailers also revealed little of the show’s action.

Now Marvel isn’t nearly as obsessed with secrecy as Lucasfilm is, but the point stands: everything in the WandaVision trailers may very well be misdirection. The producers might be teasing Agatha Harkness to cover up a much bigger bad.

That said, the evidence suggesting that Kathryn Hahn is actually WandaVision‘s villain is pretty compelling. It seems she is some kind of witchy woman…even if she’s not Agatha Harkness exactly.

WandaVision Episodes 1 & 2 premiere on Friday, January 15, 2021. Individual new episodes debut weekly after that.

Where to stream WandaVision



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