The Marvel Cinematic Universe has always trained fans to look ahead. To uncover the mysteries. Piece together the connections. Nowhere has that been more evident than in WandaVision, Marvel’s first Disney+ TV series. Fan speculation and excitement for WandaVision was so feverish, in fact, it’s almost a shock that the next show in the MCU, The Falcon and The Winter Soldier, comes only a few weeks later.
With WandaVision, the world saw how Marvel fans would react to getting a nice piece of content every week for the first time—and they were ravenous. Social media, blogs, and vlogs alike all trying to figure it out in real-time. The team behind The Falcon and The Winter Soldier saw that and, with their show on deck, began to feel the heat.
Last weekend, io9 spoke with The Falcon and The Winter Soldier writer and executive producer Malcolm Spellman and asked him about the fan environment post-WandaVision. Did seeing how the fans reacted to the first series recontextualize how he looked at his own show?
“You feel immense pressure from that, right?” Spellman said of the internet’s reaction. “WandaVision is a mystery and a puzzle in and of itself. And that’s going to trigger fans, especially Marvel fans. They know this whole mythology. They know the books and who knows where it could be going. And of course, that’s going to fire them up.”
“Our show is much more open in the storytelling,” he continued. “And I’m hoping that fans will sort of take what’s happening in the moment [of the show] and the urgency and humanity of what’s happening in the moment at face value, because we’re not playing with as much of a mystery thing.”
Which isn’t to say there won’t be mystery or intrigue in The Falcon and The Winter Soldier or that there won’t be plenty to dig into. It just won’t necessarily be “Who is behind it all?” or “Will Reed Richards show up?” It’ll be more like “Why are these characters reacting this way?” and “What does this say about the world?”
We dug into a lot more with Spellman, including the kinds of things fans should be thinking deeper about while they watch this Marvel series. Find out more when the rest of our interview runs later this week. The Falcon and The Winter Soldier debuts Friday on Disney+.
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