As our introduction to the wonders of episodic Marvel Cinematic Universe storytelling, WandaVision did not disappoint. The nine-episode series was a sweeping trip through American sitcom history, full of Easter eggs, Marvel lore, and even a pratfall or two. It was also a moving examination of grief and loss, anchored brilliantly by Elizabeth Olsen. While the show didn’t always stick the landing, it certainly left fans invested in Wanda and Vision (Paul Bettany), reframing the MCU romance that often felt stunted and flat on the big screen.
And now we can read how series creator Jac Schaeffer brought it all to life. Deadline has released a slate of Emmy contender scripts, including WandaVision‘s premiere episode, which you can read here. (We first saw this at IGN.) The episode, “Filmed Before a Live Studio Audience,” introduces viewers to the newlywed Avengers in a classic ’50s sitcom format. (And, of course, it introduced us to the iconic Agatha Harkness, played by the equally iconic Kathryn Hahn.)
The episode most notably plays homage to The Dick Van Dyke Show, but is also full of nods to Bewitched and I Love Lucy, among others. But this is Marvel we’re talking about, so the series did more than just pay tribute. The episode was actually shot as if the cast and crew were filming in the late ’50s or early ’60s. Kevin Feige and director Matt Shakman even consulted with Dick Van Dyke on how to nail the sitcom style.
The episode is spectacular to watch. But it’s even more astounding seeing it and all its moving parts right there on the page. Later episodes move back and forth between Wanda’s blissful sitcom world and reality. But the premiere episode almost has a more difficult job in fully committing to the sitcom aesthetic save for a single little blip of recognition. And doing so while leaving viewers invested in what’s to come.
WandaVision and its delightful sitcom run is over (for now, at least) but we haven’t seen the last of Wanda Maximoff. We last left her at Mount Wundagore and we’ll catch up with her again in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness in 2022. Or we could read the WandaVision premiere over and over again in the hopes that Marvel eventually publishes the whole season.