‘Wandavision’ episode one review: A sitcom that plays its part

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Walt Disney Company & Marvel Studios

Elizabeth Olsen is Wanda Maximoff and Paul Bettany is Vision in Marvel Studios’ WANDAVISION, exclusively on Disney+. Photo credit: Walt Disney Company & Marvel Studios

Oscar Torres, Arts and Entertainment Co-Editor

With over a year hiatus of Marvel content, the first part in phase four of the Marvel Cinematic Universe has finally arrived with the release of “Wandavision,” Marvel Studio’s first series exclusively on Disney Plus.

The hype surrounding this series was high because the promos showed this was going to be a different kind of series than Marvel’s movies and other shows.

Episode one starts with a 50s themed intro showing Wanda Maximoff and Vision — played by actors Elizabeth Olsen and Paul Bettany — driving to their new home in fictional town Westview as a newly married couple, greeting the neighbors.

The opening is loosely based on the “Dick Van Dyke Show,” which is a pretty clever nod and reference to a classic sitcom. The entire episode is in black and white adding in the emersion of it being a 50s-60s era sitcom.

(Fun fact: Dick Van Dyke actually assisted with this series, helping the director to make the show feel like it could’ve been made in the ‘50s, with the limitations that they had back then.)

After the opening sequence, we then cut to both of our characters having a conversation about a date in the calendar, wondering what it could mean.

Before they have time to question it though, Vision leaves for work, putting his disguise on first. Wanda, meanwhile, stays home and ends up meeting one of their new neighbors named Agnes. They both have a conversation which ends up with Wanda planning an anniversary surprise for Vision.

At work, Vision gets reminded of what today is when his boss Mr. Hart reminds him that Vision is hosting dinner for him and his wife. Vision calls Wanda about the dinner party that they mixed up with a different day.

It then cuts to a commercial about a toaster created by Stark Industries plays the repulsor blast SFX when toasted.

After that commercial, Vision takes his guests to his home as both Wanda and Vision try to cook up a dish without them knowing their powers.

Wanda successfully cooks up breakfast for all of them, but when the Harts ask them a bunch of questions, Mr. Hart begins choking on his food with Vision ultimately using his powers to save him.

The episode ends with a person who could be a member of S.W.O.R.D watching and studying Wanda in this fictional sitcom called WandaVision.

The first episode was unique. Though some people may not like the sitcom vibes, I personally enjoy it. Growing up with sitcoms like “That 70’s Show” and “Full House” it was always enjoyable for me. To see “WandaVision” take this genre as opposed to the usual action genres is refreshing.

The fact that producers used so much detail with the 50s vibes shows how much they know the genre while maintaining an MCU movie feel with how eerie this place is portrayed. The audience feels like nothing is what it seems.

Acting-wise, the actors do a good job playing as characters from a 50s sitcom, with both Olsen and Bettany reprising their roles. Although they feel like different characters, there is a bit of resemblance to how they are in the previous Marvel movies. The other actors are also good, with Katheryn Hahns doing a great job playing Agnes while also hinting that she’s not who she appears to be.

The jokes were funny, albeit a bit corny, but I enjoyed it. Marvel is known for such comedy and it shines in this series.

With everything in place, I can say that “WandaVision” is a pretty unique show that does something different and takes the Marvel Cinematic Universe to places that I didn’t expect it to see.

I give the episode ★★★★☆, a great first episode and a series that audiences will have to continue to find out more about the people and the world Wanda and Vision are in.