WandaVision Creator Responds to Criticism About the Marvel Studios Show's Pacing

WandaVision creator Jac Schaeffersays Marvel Studios franchise fans dissatisfied with the show's pacing will "find satisfaction" when it goes "to places that a traditional Marvel fan will enjoy." The first-time showrunner, whose Marvel works include feature films Captain Marvel and Black Widow, previously revealed Marvel Studios boss Kevin Feige encouraged the slow-burn mystery at the heart of WandaVision — which places Avengers Wanda Maximoff (Elizabeth Olsen) and Vision (Paul Bettany) into decades of classic sitcoms — and wanted to "delay the gratification." Don't touch that dial: what started as a black-and-white sitcom will soon evolve into what Bettany calls a "full MCU action movie."

"I understand it. I was worried about that, especially because Marvel fans show up with an expectation, and we are bucking that expectation [laughs] quite a bit," Schaeffer told Digital Spy about the show's pacing criticisms. "But I think that anyone who invests in the show will find satisfaction. We do take the show to places that a traditional Marvel fan will enjoy."

Last week, Schaeffer told The Hollywood Reporter that the pacing was "always a question," and the team behind WandaVision considered how long and how far they could push the sitcom aspect of what some might expect to be more traditional Marvel fare.

"To [Feige's] credit — and it's one of the reasons that I love working for him — he referred to it as 'playing chicken with the audience' (laughs). He really wanted to see how long we could hang onto it, and there was a lot of discussion about how long we could hang onto black-and-white because we knew we would go to color," Schaeffer said. "That was always a piece that's involved in the larger story. So it was really wonderful that he allowed us to really sink into the sitcom and to really delay the gratification."

Delaying the gratification of blockbuster-sized Marvel action meant "the sitcom stuff had to be good," including the series premiere filmed before a live studio audience.

"When we were putting the show together, we knew sort of what a lot of the really big moments would be, and they're mapped out. I wanted to start small," Schaeffer explained. "Kevin was 100% in for doling it out slowly. And I think he also has a lot of faith in the fans and the Marvel audience, that they're so interested in paying attention and they know they'll be rewarded, so we started out slow."

Starring Elizabeth Olsen, Paul Bettany, Kathryn Hahn, Teyonah Parris, Kat Dennings, and Randall Park, new episodes of Marvel's WandaVision premiere Fridays on Disney+.

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