With the first two episodes of WandaVision — the new first installment of the Marvel Cinematic Universe since 2019’s Spider-Man: Far From Home — now on Disney Plus, Marvel fans are getting their first taste of mystery in a new post-Endgame era.
At the start of the premiere, Wanda Maximoff and the Vision find themselves in a suburban paradise where they can live a happy married life together so long as they manage to keep their superpowers a secret. Or is the town of Westview more than it appears? Well, of course it is, this is a superhero story.
The first two episodes of WandaVision haven’t revealed much as to what’s going on behind the scenes, but there was just enough to tease savvy comic readers. Let’s talk about what we saw.
[Ed. note: This piece contains spoilers for the first two episodes of WandaVision on Disney Plus.]
At this early point in the series’ nine-episode season, we still don’t know much more than the advertised premise of WandaVision. But we do get hints that some force is observing Wanda and Vision’s sitcom lifestyle. A crashed drone here, a mysterious observer with a notebook there.
And then there’s the beekeeper. In the final moments of episode 2, Wanda and Vision see a man in a beekeeper suit — surrounded by a swarm of bees — climb out of a manhole in the middle of their street in the middle of the night.
Unnerved, they freeze, until Wanda simply says “No,” and reality appears to rewind to the happy moment of parental realization they about to share before they were interrupted.
Beekeeper suits mean only one thing in Marvel comics lore: the organization known as AIM.
Time for some science
In Marvel comics, AIM, or Advanced Idea Mechanics, is an organization of researchers who reject formal ideas of ethics and prize the pursuit of dangerous knowledge above all else. In other words, it’s a secret society of mad scientists. And you’ll know them by their uniform: A bright yellow hazmat suit with black detailing and a big clear window on the hood. Fans and Marvel characters alike refer to AIM’s endless supply of henchmen as “beekeeper guys.”
AIM has already made one appearance in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, as an organization headed up by scientist Aldrich Killian, who helped develop the Extremis therapy that turned people into walking bomb-soldiers. That was way back in 2013’s Iron Man 3, and we haven’t seen anything of AIM since.
But, if we take comics lore into account, WandaVision already has one big link to AIM, both in Wanda’s MCU history, and in another aspect of the series: the commercials. Episode 2’s advertisement for Strucker watches is a nod to Wolfgang von Strucker, who we previously saw in Avengers: Age of Ultron.
In the MCU, he’s the Hydra scientist who used Loki’s scepter to give (or awaken) superpowers to Wanda and her brother Pietro at the behest of Hydra. In the comics, he’s the Hydra scientist who founded AIM as the research and development arm of Hydra.
If the man in the beekeeper suit is indeed meant to represent AIM, Strucker makes a second point of connection. WandaVision just might be setting up an old MCU foe of Tony Stark for a second appearance — just as Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings will do for the Ten Rings organization, which kidnapped Tony Stark all the way back in 2008’s Iron Man.
The field of secrets is still wide open in WandaVision, but it seems likely that we should keep our eyes peeled for the beekeeper guy’s return.