WandaVision has delighted viewers with its homage to classic sitcoms, including the Malcolm in the Middle and Bewitched. But it seems that while there were other possibilities in the mix during the making of the Marvel Disney+ series to parody, the creators decided in the end to focus on family-related sitcoms.
“There are a great many wonderful shows like Taxi or The Office that could’ve been inspirations, but the ones that we focused on were the ones that were about family because that’s obviously what Wanda yearns for,” director Matt Shakman told Entertainment Weekly.
“She loses her family when she’s young, she loses her brother, she loses Vision and the family that might have been. So the family sitcoms were the strongest thematic connection to that.”
Elaborating on the creation process, the director explained: “I mean, obviously we didn’t recreate any one show. We were always trying to create WandaVision. In the ’50s, we were drawing inspiration from I Love Lucy and Dick Van Dyke, and I know there are some purists who will say, ‘Yeah, well, it’s late ’50s, early ’60s.’ [Laughs].”
“But yes, we took inspiration from all kinds of different shows, and we were picking the shows that we felt were incredibly timely and timeless. They were so popular in their moment and their era when they came out, but they also continued to be really good and live on.”
Speaking of other sitcom possibilities, Shakman continued: “So we did look at Full House, we did look at Family Ties, we did look at Growing Pains. We looked at so many different shows, and I have some small nods in there.”
A more explicit Full House reference would have had extra significance, of course, given the meta link with Elizabeth Olsen’s real-life sisters Mary-Kate and Ashley’s roles in the original show.
He added: “There’s an opening title sequence to episode 5, where we do the crane shot from Full House, where they’re having the picnic, or we run through the park with them as a nod to Lizzie growing up just behind the camera on that show.”
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