Spoilers for WandaVision’s first two episodes lie ahead.
The Marvel Cinematic Universe has finally returned, but viewers re-entry into the sprawling franchise isn’t quite what we’re used to. WandaVision has kicked off Phase Four, and the trippy, sitcom-inspired show represents a major shift from the norm for Marvel Studios. In its first two episodes, the show has taken viewers to the 1950s and ‘60s and, in doing so, the series draws inspiration from classic shows like The Dick Van Dyke Show. With this, the creatives at Marvel actually consulted with the TV legend Dick Van Dyke, and WandaVision’s director says he gave a perfect response when asked about his MCU knowledge.
WandaVision director Matt Shakman and Marvel Studios head Kevin Feige met with Dick Van Dyke for lunch around the time they promoted the show at 2019’s D23. The two Marvel creatives had a great conversation with Van Dyke at Disneyland’s Club 33, during which they explained the concept of the Disney+ show.
Shakman remembers that Van Dyke wasn’t too familiar with the MCU when they first spoke to him. But as he recalled to ET, the legendary performer responded to their explanation of the franchise’s success in the most Dick Van Dyke way possible:
We did have to give him the explanation, and he didn't seem to be too fluent with the MCU. It was great. He did say at one point during our lunch, ‘Oh, I hear you guys have had some great success. That's wonderful. Congratulations. What did you just put out?’ And Kevin, who's great, obviously Kevin is this mastermind of this incredible creative endeavor that's had so much success, he said, ‘Well, yes, well, we just put out Avengers: Endgame.’ And [Dick] was like, ‘Oh, Avengers: Endgame? Oh, great. Fantastic.’ He said, ‘Yep, it's actually the biggest movie of all time.’ ‘Oh, great. Is it-- What! The biggest movie of all time?!’ He was like, ‘That's amazing!’ It was so sweet to see Kevin realize and Dick realized what they were talking about. It was really fun.
Just when you thought Dick Van Dyke couldn’t possibly get any more delightful, he casually and pleasantly responds to the success of Marvel Studios, a company that has amassed billions of dollars and produced the highest grossing-film of all time. You can’t help but love it.
So far, WandaVision is doing Van Dyke, Mary Tyler Moore and other TV legends proud. The show has accurately captured the feel of vintage sitcoms and appears set to keep the momentum going. Of course, the show will soon get a bit more in tune with the MCU, as evidenced by some of those creepy moments. But until it ventures into more familiar territory, fans will continue to enjoy the wild ride leading up to the finale.
New episodes of WandaVision drop on Fridays on Disney+.