You should definitely meta about Tony and Wanda and how Tony's given way more leeway for what he's done as opposed to Wanda
Okay so. There is a huge disparity in the treatment of Wanda and Tony. Tony stans are virulent* in their defence of him, while Wanda stans, fans or her defence squad are pushed to defend her or point out the holes in other’s arguments - they’re pushed on the defensive from the start because Stark Stans love to focus on the fact that, as we are shown in the films “Wanda wrongs Tony first”.
*Yes, virulent. Like a virus. They’re awful and as far as I care, should be eradicated.
Yeah, right. Long before Wanda ever touched Tony Stark’s mind, Tony did something to her. Unintentionally. Unknowingly. Indeed, he may not have even been directly involved, it may have been Obadiah Stane’s fault, but, for narrative and thematic reasons, I think it would resonate more with Tony’s sense of guilt, blame and responsibility if it was in some way his fault. If Tony Stark had willingly sold weapons to NATO, who were involved in the Balkans unrest, or to the US government who later interfered in the unrest in the Balkans* - unknowingly making a situation worse with his weapons as Yinsen tells him. If it’s simply Obie’s fault, selling them behind his back, I think it removes a lot of the narrative impact from Tony’s shouldering the blame for his weapons - which he designed, which his company and people he trusted sold, which were then used in ways that hurt civilians, intentionally or not.
The fact of the matter is Tony Stark’s company - his company then, before he gave over power of it to Pepper - sold weapons that orphaned the twins. The twins, as ten-year-old children, hated the man who, as far as they knew, had orphaned them. Who had sold the weapons. Who had power and money and means and was praised - who, if he had sold weapons to NATO, for use in the Balkans conflict, may well have been praised for his part in such a so-called “peacekeeping” initiative - … and whose weapon had taunted them for two days in the rubble, as they waited above the bodies of their dead parents. To quote This truly fantastic meta by @eatingcroutons:
With all this going on, Maximoffs would have grown up knowing nothing but war, and with a deep-seated hatred of the foreign powers that had occupied and violated their homeland and people. Orphaned, desperate and powerless, it makes complete sense for them to jump at von Strucker’s offer to become something more. Like many of their compatriots, they volunteered for his experiments when he showed up with Loki’s staff in 2012.
The thing is, in explaining this, I’m not trying to justify Wanda’s actions to you. I’m sure there are many fans of Tony who’re going to insist that that’s exactly what I’m doing, but I’m not. This is simply an explanation of the upbringing and background - and ultimately trauma - that led to her decision. Just as Tony’s trauma has affected much of his behaviour to ultimately toxic ends.
[Source: Where’s The Alcohol?: Revisiting Tony Stark’s Glossed Over Alcoholism. The meta largely covers comics!Tony’s alcoholism, but I think the degree to which Tony drinks in the films, and his attitude towards alcohol, as well as his generally reckless behaviour, all speak to someone with some very unhealthy coping mechanisms]
So there’s that. Both of these characters have severe trauma and that affects not just how they see the world, but how they access and interact with the world. In simple terms, both characters have what amounts to excellent fic fodder! They’re both deeply fucked up with deep-seated issues, a desire to make amends for the wrongs they’ve done:
[Source: Avengers: Age of Ultron, the Battle of Novi Grad. Clint to Wanda, offering her a chance to make amends - which she takes]
TONY: I saw that I had become part of a system that is comfortable with zero accountability.
REPORTER: What happened over there?
TONY: I had my eyes opened. I came to realise that I have more to offer this world than just making things that blow up. And that is why, effective immediately, I am shutting down the weapons manufacture at Stark Industries … until such a time I can decide what the future of this company should be, what direction it should take, one that I am comfortable with and that is consistent with the highest good for this country as well.
[Source: Iron Man 1, Tony’s press conference on his return, shutting down Stark Industries’ weapons manufacture after seeing what it’s doing to people first hand]
So, if we’re getting into an argument of who hit who first, it was Tony. This is a farcial debate, because both characters seem able to move forwards from this, and grow up rather than clinging to it - Wanda sacrifices her vengeance to defeat Ultron and proceeds to do everything in her power to make amends afterwards, staying on as an Avenger while Tony has been actively making amends since, like Wanda, he was made aware of what his actions were actually doing. If we’re getting into an argument over who has learned, both of these characters have remarkably similar arcs and have both learned a lot from their starting points. Both of these characters lost their parents at a young age due to factors beyond their control, both sought to do something in response to this (the twins fought the injustice of their country and it’s unrest too try to make a safe place for it’s citizens, so no other children would be orphans like they were, Tony spent his entire life trying to live up to his father’s demands and expectations.), and both, when they realised their ways of going about this (for the twins, trying to destroy Stark, who they blamed for much, for Tony, the creation, manufacture and sale of weapons) were doing considerable harm… both stopped, and both proceeded to try to not just make amends for what they’d done, but actively undo it - Wanda fights back Ultron’s drones, tries to save lives on the train and pre-emptively in Novi Grad and fights alongside the Avengers, while Tony halts the manufacture and sale of his weapons, tries to track down his Stark tech and works as an Avenger, trying to prevent disaster.
There’s other similarities too. They both lose people who are either important to them, or who are integral to their character arcs. Tony loses his parents, yes, but also Obie, who turns out to have betrayed him and Yinsen, who taught him what his weapons did, and the loss of Coulson impacts him incredibly - “We are not soldiers!”. Wanda loses her parents, her city and her brother, as well as sacrificing the vengeance that supported her for so long.
They both learn that those they’re working with may not be the right ones - Obie in IM1, but also learning of his father’s work with Anton Vanko in IM2 and the likely accidental or invisible ties between Howard’s presence in SHIELD even as SHIELD was early on riddled with HYDRA and, of course, Ross and the Raft. The twins sign on to work with what they think is SHIELD, only to later learn it’s HYDRA - this isn’t fan speculation, believe it or not, but canon.
[Source: This Scepter’d Isle prelude comic for Avengers: Age of Ultron. Note List saying “our Iron Man, … our Avengers”. They’re claiming to be SHIELD as this was before CATWS and the reveal of HYDRA. Many thanks to @emmasdiamondheart for reminding me this panel exists]
And of course, after this, they work with Ultron, only for Wanda to learn his intention to destroy the world, which they of course cannot condone (when Ultron asks them not to get involved on the train Wanda responds “What choice do we have?”). Both Wanda and Tony repeatedly place trust in the wrong people and feel deep responsibility for this. And even Wanda’s continued anger at Stark when she knows he is the better choice than Ultron (“Ultron cannot see a difference between saving the world and destroying it. Where do you think he gets that from?”) makes sense - while Tony stopped making and selling weapons for and to others… he’s continued to make the best and worst weapon of them all - his own Iron Man suits, which he has kept wholly for himself - even Rhodey had to steal his suit, because Tony trusts so very few people. Indeed, like Steve, in some ways he does believe that sometimes the best hands are his own, even if he is very willing - and may even in a way find it comforting - to be held accountable for things.
There’s also a big one left. A really big one. A huge big one. And while every Stark Stan may try to justify it, it only goes to show the huge disparity between how Tony’s anger is treated vs. Wanda’s.
[Source: Captain America: Civil War. Tony stating his intent to kill Bucky Barnes for the death of his mother - a death Bucky was not in control of, as the brainwashed Winter Soldier, but is being blamed for anyway, and a death long ago.]
[Source: Avengers: Age of Ultron. Wanda putting fear into Tony Stark’s mind in order to bring about his downfall - an action done under the belief that blame was to be placed at Tony’s feet, regardless of if it was or not, and for deaths long ago.]
This is where the disparity comes in - a huge disparity, a disparity that I am pretty damn sure has it’s roots in classism, racism and sexism.
Tony is allowed to attack Bucky. He’s defended for it. He’s given justifications. And after it all, his fans still write fics where he apologises to Bucky and everything is fine and dandy. Wanda, on the other hand, is vilified. Is insulted from here to hell and back, is blamed for everything Tony does wrong from AOU onwards, is used to justify Tony’s every action - even Tony’s insults towards her:
“It’s a 100 acres with a lap pool. It’s got a screening room. There’s worse way to protect people. She’s not a U.S. Citizen and they don’t grant visas to Weapons of Mass Destruction.”
[Source: CACW, Tony to Steve, justifying Wanda’s illegal house arrest that happened against her knowledge… which kind of invalidates a house arrest when the person could break it simply by popping out to the shops.]
People buy into the in-universe media’s narrative that Wanda caused the explosion (she didn’t. We literally see Crossbones setting off the bomb he’s wearing). There are people who call her a murderer because she couldn’t contain an explosion - even though she contained it long enough to get it out of range of the people in the market, undoubtedly saving all of their lives. Indeed, the onus there if anything should have been on Steve, the one who was directly confronting Crossbones - but he got distracted, and Wanda, an Avenger still being trained up, still without a full grasp of her powers, had to step in when the bomb was set off.
[Source: Captain America: Civil War. Wanda self-flagellating over her perceived failure to save the lives of the Wakandans.]
Wanda displays much the same hallmarks as Tony Stark, has a very similar arc and very similar responses to trauma and mistakes (drive for vengeance and desire to make amends most notably).
And yet, Wanda is blamed, insulted, vilified. Tony Stark is praised, defended and others are trodden down so he may be raised up. Why is this?
It’s really very very simple:
Tony is a cis male (ostensibly) straight guy, born and raised in America to immense wealth, with a genius level intellect, constant snark and Daddy issues to make even Tyrion Lannister or goddamnit Jon Snow cry. He’s America’s 1%, he’s got guilt issues up the wazoo and his sarcasm and snark makes him many people’s favourite archetypes in one - and so they defend him to the death.
What’s Wanda got?
Wanda is a woman from Eastern Europe who grew up first in a block of flats which were later destroyed due to the war-torn nature of her home country and from then, is said to have lived on the streets according to Marvel. She and her brother were deeply codependent as a result of their trauma, and, in order to have the power needed to take the vengeance they had sought since they were ten (reminder! they were children when they imprinted on this idea) they let themselves be experimented on by people they later learned were Nazis.
Oh, and she actually managed to in-part take that vengeance on Stark.
That’s the reason she’s hated. She’s a woman. She’s Other with her Eastern European accent. She’s Different with her powers no one can explain. She was poor. She’s foreign and lesser and a she. And then she attacked a fandom fave due to misconceptions that she believed in her whole life - that her upbringing and country only continued to emphasise:
[Source: Avengers: Age of Ultron. Sokovian graffiti of Tony Stark as Iron Man, his face plastered over with dollar signs.]
It’s xenophobia. If you count in the Roma and Jewish background of the twins in comics, then it’s also racism. It’s certainly sexism, likely classism. These things mean that few will consider her… for her. For her character arc, for her trauma. Few will sit down and notice the similarities between her and Tony, few care. Instead, they hate her for her act of vengeance. They don’t try to understand why.
[Source: Captain America: Civil War. Vision explains the science behind the fear response to Wanda due to her powers in-universe. And yet - so few both in the MCU and out of it - where it doesn’t actually matter - care to delve into the whys and werefores and Wanda’s treatment.]
They just hate.
And it fucking sucks.
End Note: If you should want a truly excellent fic written to battle these issues with how Wanda is perceived and treated in and out of universe, may I recommend to you all Soldier, Weapon, Stranger, Monster by the wonderful @tobermoriansass, who has been such a help in writing this meta.