The second episode of WandaVision is full of references and easter eggs from the world of wonders, most of which can be seen during the animated script (you’ll see the Grim Reaper’s helmet, commercials featuring Bova, Agatha Harkness, and Ebony, and a statue that looks like Whizzer), but there’s more. In episode 2, Wanda and Vision attend a neighborhood show where they present a magic show with the stage names Glamor and Illusion, respectively. Well, names aren’t the point, because Illusion and Glamour are a pair of thieves and crime fighters with magical powers in comics, a couple in costumes like Wanda and Vision…. and they have a strong connection to the main characters. Let’s go over it together.
Ilya and Glynis Zarkov were born somewhere in Eastern Europe and came into the world as mutants. They found each other, fell in love, got married …. But although they loved each other, the world didn’t like mutants at all, and they were in constant danger, with bigotry and hatred wherever they went. The man and woman decided together that it would be much safer for them to hide their true nature, so they emigrated to the United States, where no one knew who they were, and reinvented themselves by pretending to be normal people. To make a living, they became stage magicians, calling themselves illusion and glamour, using their powers on stage and pretending that their achievements were nothing but prestige. Of course, since Elijah was able to manipulate the molecules of anything he touched and Glynis was able to manipulate the molecules of his own body, the duo had incredible success and soon opened their own club in New York, the Magic Manor. However, they were not cut out for city life, so they decided to move to Leonia, New Jersey, near New York City, but in the quiet and suburbs, as they liked it. But aside from their true nature, there was another little secret that Illusion and Glamour shared: They didn’t exactly live off the proceeds of their shows, at least not exclusively, since they were also professional thieves. They traveled all over the country, and when casinos, theaters, and clubs called them for performances, they took the opportunity to steal jewelry or artwork from people they deemed unworthy of owning it, using the performance itself as a cover and alibi (usually turning the glamour into money or gas to slip off the stage during the disappearance, steal what they wanted, and come back to finish the prestige). Everything was going perfectly for them until a new set of neighbors arrived in Leonie.
The former visionary avenger and scarlet witch, newlyweds, moved to Leonie and suddenly found themselves in front of the illusion and glamour of the region’s most eccentric inhabitants. Unfortunately, the two superheroes were immediately greeted by local fanatics who did not want mutants in their midst and would not tolerate the unnatural mutant-machine alliance: Their house was burned down, but they decided to defy human fanaticism and bought a new house near their first one. Ilya and Glynis realized that they could draw a lot of attention to themselves and even expose them and make them the next target of haters, so they decided to protect them for now: while patrolling the old Avengers’ yard, they heard a group of locals trying to plant a bomb in their house, so they used their powers to scare them without directly exposing themselves. But the vision heard the noise and intercepted them: Believing they were the ones threatening him and his wife, he attacked them, and Illusion and Glamour had to defend themselves. During the fight, the two men eventually managed to calm the android down and explain what had happened: Ironically, a good friendship was born out of a gesture of pure self-interest, and Illusion and Glamour became the first true friends in Leonian before Vision and the Scarlet Witch. Ironically, even the two thieves began to consider the heroes true friends, as the former vigilantes were the only ones who knew the secret of their true identities. The two couples spent a lot of time together: On the one hand, Illusion and Glamour invited their new friends to the Magic Mansion for their show; on the other, they were joined in their adventures by Vision and Scarlet Witch, and Illusion Witch’s heroes and mentor, Agatha Harkness, helped against Thorn and Samhain. When the two illusionists were hired in New Orleans, Vision and Scarlet Witch gladly followed them, but this time it would be more complicated: Illusion and Glamour actually had to hide a small detail from their friends, namely that they were career criminals, while getting their hands on the necklace they were after….
Ilya and Glynis Zarkov are an adventurous couple, deeply in love with each other and enjoying the benefits of the unique life they have chosen for themselves. Glamour can control the molecules of anything it touches, change the physical state of objects, make them fly, decompose, or reconfigure after their irrevocable destruction (it even reconfigures the Book of Samhain by touching a handful of ash and making the fragments disperse again); rather, Glamour controls its own body on a molecular level, making it gaseous or liquid, extremely elastic or hard as stone, and it even divides its body into segments that it continues to control with its mind. It seems they both started learning real magic after their encounter with the Scarlet Witch, as they both became targets of Inferno, a demon who consumes magic users. Imaginative and incredibly clever, illusion and glamour come together in a romance of pulp: Thieves, adventurers, theatre wizards, even superheroes, they go where the adventures are and always come out smiling.
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