Monday, January 18, 2021

ROKU Alters Streaming Device MENU THEME to Promote DISNEY+ MCU Series “WANDAVISION”

While the COVID pandemic still has most big-screen blockbusters held up from releasing in cinemas worldwide (save for those that have been premiered on online streaming instead), Marvel Studios has decided to kick-start their Phase 4 of the multimedia-spanning Marvel Cinematic Universe early this year. This was helped by the fact that MCU-4 is comprised not just of films but streaming live-action series, the first of which – “WandaVision” – has started on Disney+ Friday last week. In a celebratory promotion of this surreal superhero drama, digital media device developer Roku has “allowed” Wanda Maximoff and her husband Vision to give their streaming service interface a makeover.

According to Comic Book Resources, Roku Inc. had the streaming menu interface of their Roku digital streaming devices altered to evoke the motif of Marvel Studios’ “WandaVision.” This was pointed out on social media by Ryan Penagos, Vice President and Creative Executive of New Media for Marvel. Penagos posted a short clip on Twitter showing the home page interface menu of his TCL Roku TV. The background of the icons and text showed a varnished wall and a retro 1950s TV set. At one point, a media selection shifted a promo image of “WandaVision” into view, shaped like a rounded square so that it could “fit” right into the screen borders of the background TV.

The 1950s aesthetic is evocative of the pilot episode of “WandaVision,” as well as the fourth wall-breaking elements of the show starring Elizabeth Olsen as the psionic Wanda and Paul Bettany as the android Vision, members of the Avengers as introduced in the MCU films. Mysteries about regarding the circumstances of the two, as Vision was supposedly killed in 2017’s “Avengers: Infinity War” (so was Wanda, though she was revived in 2018’s “Avengers: Endgame.” Why the two are suddenly married and seemingly living in a 1950s-style neighborhood that seems like an in-universe retro TV show is the driving mystery here.

So far, “WandaVision” has released two episodes on Disney+, with a total of 9 episodes planned up until March 2021. Other Disney+ Marvel series with connections to the MCU Phase 4 include “The Falcon and the Winter Soldier,” “Loki,” “Ms. Marvel” and “Hawkeye.” Movies that are part of Phase 4 include “Black Widow” starring Scarlett Johansson, set to premiere this May 7, 2021 after being delayed twice from May 2020 due to the COVID pandemic.

Image from Reddit


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