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Why Marvel Fans Need To Pay Attention To The Butterflies In WandaVision Episode 3

There's one question on everyone's minds after episode 3 of WandaVision. It's not "How did Geraldine know about Ultron?" or "Are Billy and Tommy the same Billy and Tommy from the comics?" or "How did Vision come back and why is he acting so strange" or "What the heck is even going on?" No, the line of questioning burrowing its way deep into the skulls of the show's viewers is, and will continue to be, "'Sup with the butterflies?"

It might be a coincidence, but butterflies seem to be a running theme in the series, appearing on Vision and Wanda's calendar in the show's first episode before being whoopsie-doodled to life in episode 3. It could be nothing. Or — and follow us here — it could be the loose thread that unravels this whole mystery.

Theoretically, it all goes back to House of M, Brian Michael Bendis' 2005 Marvel Comics event series that may-or-may-not-have-been-but-totally-was referenced on WandaVision via that bottle of wine that means more than you think in the debut episode. If you're not familiar, House of M tells the story of Wanda changing the world into a extravaganza of wish fulfillment via serious psychosis after she (whomp-whomp) kills Vision. The Earth is changed, and nobody knows it, with two exceptions: Wolverine and a new character called Layla, whose powers could best be described as "deus X machina."

WandaVision and the Butterfly effect

Meet Layla Miller, a.k.a. Butterfly, a mutant whose initial glut of superhuman powers rival the specificity of a can of Bat Shark Repellant. One of the things Marvel wants you to forget about the Scarlet Witch is the way she reshaped the universe during House of M. Thankfully, Bendis willed Layla Miller into existence. In the midst of all that House of M insanity — both literal and figurative — Miller discovers that she has an astonishing ability: She is apparently immune to alternate realities. Even more helpfully, she has the capacity to snap other people out of their blissful states of acceptance, filling their brains with their memories of life outside of the fantasy world created by Wanda.

With Layla's help, a team of re-awakened superheroes manages to stick a wrench in the gears of Wanda's dystopia, inevitably ending in more drama and intrigue. Layla's story just gets more complicated from there, with time travel and secondary mutations hitting from every angle, but it's worth mentioning that when she pops up in the pages of X-Factor not long after the events of House of M, she's been branded with a new moniker: "Butterfly." 

Butterflies wind up becoming a recurring motif in the character's life. She even, in another weird parallel, brings a dead one back to life. Again, it might be a coincidence, but butterflies being supernaturally animated feels like a very specific pull, especially in light of all of the other House of M-centric WandaVision references.