Wanda’s Wasted Role in Avengers: Infinity War

I know I’m almost a month late to the party, but that’s because I didn’t see Avengers Infinity War until last night. I hadn’t even planned on seeing the movie, but my friend, who had just finished Thor Ragnarok, had insisted that I come with her to see this one.

I walked into the movie knowing the synopsis of the film already, and knowing what happens in the comics (I’m going to try and keep this as spoiler-free as possible, as people are still trying to see the film), so I wasn’t really surprised by any of what happens in the main story arc. What happened instead was that I got confused.

It’s difficult to make a film as big as Infinity War, with so many character arcs, not confusing. Half the time there was so much going on at once that my brain was going into a mild overload. But what really got me confused was what I have to say was the biggest plot hole of the movie- Wanda’s power.

In the film series, she is known to be a very powerful mutant. In Captain America: Civil War, she was even described as a “weapon of mass destruction”, which rings pretty true to her original comic character. Wanda seems to have an endless amount of capabilities, and has enough power to destroy an infinity stone. But how her powers are portrayed, powerful as they are, are very toned down from her comic version.

In the comic series, Wanda Maximoff, or Scarlet Witch, is what is known as a Nexus Being, which is a living focal point of Earth dimension’s energy. She gained her abilities by being born in proximity to the elder energies of the god Chthon with her twin, where she developed a mystic bond with the god. The result gave her unimaginable power. She has the power to alter reality on a grand scale, which includes reviving dead ones and reincarnating others, although she does not have the full training to control all her powers.

In the film series, she is not a Nexus being, having been created through experimentation with a special branch of Hydra. As the films develop, the power she has seems to multiply (that or she is gaining more control over it), although she has yet to bend reality on a large scale. An important matter is though, that Wanda can destroy an infinity stone.

Why is this important? Well, when you look at the context of the whole film, it was about preventing Thanos from obtaining all six stones. While destroying the time stone seemed almost impossible, given that Doctor Strange was nowhere near Wanda, Wanda had the capability to destroy the other ones from the start, and perhaps even the gauntlet itself. She could have easily useful as a forefront for destroying the gauntlet, but throughout the film one slap would knock her down for a seemingly endless amount of time. The ability for her to be knocked down so easily, despite having such power, was to me kind of a cheap shot to make it that much easier for the plot to occur (and for subsequent films to happen). She had some cool fight scenes, but was ultimately muted (come on, she could have totally done more damage on the battlefield than Thor).

But, you know what? To try and show the full might of Wanda’s powers might have been too complex for an already complicated film. Yes, she could have easily done a lot of things throughout the film series, and in particular in Infinity Wars, but trying to have it all there might have added a detail too much. But still, seeing her get knocked down for ages by one slap was a bit infuriating.

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