The year 2020 was supposed to be Marvel's debut of Phase 4 with Black Widow and The Eternals, and also the year the MCU expanded from the big screen to the streaming world of Disney+. But the coronavirus pandemic waylaid those plans. The Phase 4 films have now pushed back to begin in May of 2021. As for the Disney+ TV series, the planned first show, The Falcon & The Winter Soldier, was rescheduled to arrive in March. Instead, Disney+'s WandaVision is now the first MCU series out of the gate on streaming premiering on Jan. 15, 2021.
Although WandaVision features a pair of MCU players who are less popular than Falcon or Winter Soldier, the series turned out to be a fun one. It's a tribute to old-school TV sitcoms, with black and white episodes that harken back to The Dick Van Dyke Show and Bewitched. Episodes were filmed in front of a studio audience, a brand-new experience for career film actors Elizabeth Olsen and Paul Bettany, who star in the show.
Here's everything we know about the series so far, including who will star in it, what Marvel elements it will bring in, and what it will be about.
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WandaVision's official trailer arrived on Sept. 20, 2020. It gave fans their first look at the wacky sitcom homage WandaVision was aiming to create. Moreover, it hints that despite the glossy sheen of TV fantasy, this world was not all it seems.
On Dec. 10, Disney+ released another WandaVision trailer that gives a peek behind the curtain of Wanda's fantasy life.
The newest promo, which arrived after the first three episodes aired, finally gave fans their first look behind the fantasy.
The first three episodes had left fans wondering where some of the promised crossover characters were. It seems they've been just outside Wanda's bubble the whole time.
Like the trailer, the WandaVision posters were full of references suggesting Wanda's fictional dreams are slowly peeling away.
The biggest one is the wallpaper in the top poster above. That flocking pattern is a direct callback to the House of M comics aesthetic. For those unfamiliar with the House of M comics, the plot revolves around the Scarlet Witch experiencing a mental break during which she attempts to alter the fabric of reality to bring back her lost loved ones.
But that's only the beginning. The lamp over the TV, which looks awfully like the Mind Stone embedded in Vision's head.
Things don't get better in color either.
Note as the posters travel through the decades — the '50s to the '60s to the '70s — the wallpaper won't stick.
By the time fans reach a world of color TV, the wallpaper is no longer just a peeling corner. It's a hole eating away at reality. What has Wanda done?
All Disney+ shows, including WandaVision, were promised to be rooted in the MCU film world from the outset. That means the same actors from the big screen would reprise their roles on the small screen, with Elizabeth Olsen as Wanda and Paul Bettany as Vision, both of whom were introduced in 2014's Avengers: Age of Ultron.
WandaVision will also introduce Kathryn Hahn as Agnes. Since the series is a sitcom sendup, she plays the recognizable trope of the "nosy next-door neighbor," who will likely pop up for comic relief at the worst possible times.
But since this is an MCU spinoff, the cast is mostly made up of secondary characters fans will remember from the Marvel films. Kat Dennings reprises her Thor role as Jane's intern, Darcy Lewis. Randall Park returns as FBI agent Jimmy Woo from Ant-Man & The Wasp.
But before fans meet them, there's Teyonah Parris, who plays the grown-up version of Monica Rambeau. Fans will remember as an 8-year-old in the 1995-set Captain Marvel. When fans first meet her, she's working undercover in Wanda's fantasy bubble, posing as Geraldine. But the fiction doesn't last long.
'WandaVision' Plot Details
Like all Marvel projects, the MCU is playing this somewhat close to the vest. The first three episodes mostly played the show straight, as if it really was Marvel's Golden Age of Sitcoms.
However, though something is going on, the show is Marvel's first love story. After all, Wanda and Vision's relationship is one of the few among the superhero set to have met while fighting villains together before falling in love. Their meet-cute started in Avengers: Age of Ultron. Over the next few films, they attempted to snatch away stolen moments with hopes of one day living openly if the Sokovia Accords were lifted. But Vision's death at Thanos's hands in Avengers: Infinity War ended their relationship before it could truly begin.
Now, alone and grieving, Wanda has created a world where Vision is still alive, living in a fantasy of suburban bliss. But fans are starting to wonder why Rambeau would need to go undercover if Wanda's romance is so harmless. They're also wondering if it's really Wanda's fantasy at all.
Back when Marvel originally planned WandaVision for a spring 2021 release, its arrival was supposed to coincide with the May 2021 big-screen debut of Doctor Strange & The Multiverse of Madness.
Marvel has confirmed even though the series bowed in January while Doctor Strange has bumped back to March 2022, the two stories are still linked. That suggests Wanda's world could be something that mucks up the space-time continuum and perhaps puts the whole universe in danger. Or maybe the villain keeping her there is someone only Doctor Strange can take down.
'WandaVision' Premiere Date
WandaVision premiered on Friday, Jan. 15, with two episodes on Disney+, and is planned to run nine installments, all told, with a finale on Mar. 5, 2021.
As of right now, Marvel is billing all its MCU streaming shows as limited series, so it is unknown if there will be a second season.
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