TV REVIEW: Assembled: The Making of WandaVision
Last week, WandaVision ended with a giant epic episode that we are all still talking about. To fill in the gap between WandaVision and The Falcon and The Winter Soldier, Marvel Studios released a documentary highlighting the making of Marvel's first TV show on Disney+.
I always get nervous when Disney+ says its releasing a making of feature. Those pieces tend to be puff pieces that tell very little. So, I was pleasantly surprised to get treated to a lot of great information. Through interviews with cast and crew and lots of wonderful behind the scenes, we are treated to how WandaVision was made.
Director Matt Shakman, who astonishingly directed all nine episodes, explained the amount of love and care taken in representing the eras. Most of the time was spent on filming the 50s episode. All the props and even the live studio audience stands were straight out of the past. They even brought in Dick Van Dyke to consult as that particular episode had references to The Dick Van Dyke Show. One of the tidbits I thought was interesting was that, in order for Vision to look normal in Black and White, they had to use blue paint rather than his trademark red.
It was a delight watching Elizabeth Olsen and Paul Bettany banter. Both of them are genuinely funny people, making their credentials even more impressive in this show. You could also see how they've grown into their roles. I could never tell if they enjoyed playing them, but there is no doubt that they do after watching this documentary. I also liked how Teyonah Parris described the audition process and how she hoped her role would be Monica Rambeau...and it was! She carries a lot of pride in being an African American superhero.
One of the sections I was most fascinated by was Robert Lopez and Kristen Anderson-Lopez talking about creating the theme songs for each of the eras. Lopez went to school with Shakman who offered him the task to which he quickly jumped at. Known for writing music for movies such as Frozen and Coco, the team needed to come up with theme songs that all contained the phrase "WandaVision" and was tied around four key notes. I would loved to have heard their thought process behind the catchy and popular "Agatha All The Along."
Speaking of music, it is a travesty that there wasn't a mention of or interview with Christophe Beck, the show's composer. I listen to the score all the time and am constantly impressed about his ability to represent the different eras. It's some of the best score pieces in Marvel Studios history. So, I definitely felt that was lacking.
I always say that if there is any doubt about Marvel, they created a show about a witch and an android raising kids in the sitcom suburbs and made it the most popular show in the world. Again, it was a treat to see how all of it was pulled together. While there are things lacking in this documentary, if you are a fan of WandaVision, you're going to like this.