Marvel Studios has cemented itself in the film industry as one of the most recognizable and appreciated film studios of the 21st century. Starting with 2008’s “Iron Man,” Marvel has garnered quite a bit of success from their Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU), and attracted new fans, while pleasing old fans. Their movies have been extremely successful, with one of them, “Avengers: Endgame,” even becoming the highest-grossing film of all time.
However, while they are well-known for their blockbuster, action-packed feature films, the newest installment in the MCU seems to be the exact opposite of that. On Jan. 15, Marvel Studios released their first Disney+ original series, “WandaVision.” The series gathered quite a bit of attention from Marvel fans prior to its release due to its confusing trailer, and having seemingly nothing to do with the MCU in any way besides the main characters.
The series focuses on two lesser-known superheroes, Scarlet Witch, who goes by the name Wanda in the show, and Vision. Instead of fighting crime and saving the world, they are a married couple starring in a family sitcom set in the 1950’s.
Marvel does an outstanding job capturing the feeling of sitcoms from the 1950’s. The costumes, the music, and the set design are all perfectly designed to look like they came right out of “I Love Lucy.” They even use special effects similar to what would’ve been used at the time, such as reversing footage to show Wanda magically fixing a broken plate.
One of the more impressive aspects of the show is the acting itself. Elizabeth Olsen and Paul Bettany, who play the roles of Wanda and Vision respectively, do a perfect job of portraying an average suburban couple from the 1950’s, from the way they talk, to even the little things like their hand movements and facial expressions.
The series launched with two episodes, and releases a new episode every Friday. Each new episode is set in a different decade, and as such represents sitcoms from their relative decades. For instance, the 1980’s episode bears resemblance to “Full House,” and the 2000’s episode resembles “Malcolm in the Middle.” Just like the initial episode, the proceeding episodes perfectly encapsulate the era they’re set in, from the set design, to the costumes, and even the music.
Each episode follows a basic premise. Wanda and Vision are trying to live normal lives in the suburbs of Westview, N.J., and attempting to keep their superhero powers a secret to their neighbors. Each episode also follows a generic sitcom plot, such as Vision’s boss coming over for dinner, and entering into a talent show. There only seem to be three recurring characters that play roles in every episode. Vision, Wanda, and their next-door neighbor, Agnes, who helps the main characters overcome whatever conflict they may have, just like an average sitcom.
However, this isn’t just an average sitcom. There’s a sense of mystery that surrounds the entire show, and makes one wonder if there’s something a bit more sinister occurring in the little town of Westview. It’s this that keeps people invested in the show, and desperately waiting for the next episode to air.
“WandaVision” is a very unique show. The mystery surrounding the fact that this has seemingly nothing to do with the MCU, combined with the brilliance of paying homage to classic sitcoms from multiple decades, combine to create a show that will leave fans dying to know what happens next. This isn’t the only series from Marvel coming exclusively to Disney+. There are many more on the way, such as “The Falcon and the Winter Soldier,” and “Loki,” both of which will release later this year, exclusively on Disney+. We can only hope that these new series will bring as much entertainment as “WandaVision” has to offer.