For the Scarlet Witch, serving as a pawn and an unsuspecting villain is nothing new.

The moment has come for the Scarlet Witch to take the lead in her own narrative because Wanda Maximoff deserves better now .

The MCU has been developing Wanda Maximoff, or the Scarlet Witch, as a crucial character over the past few years, and the just released Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness reveals just how she fits into the bigger picture. The road she has followed in comic books, though, is fairly similar to her present MCU journey, and, to be honest, it is all heartbreaking and scary.

Wanda has been portrayed as one of the most powerful characters in the Marvel Universe since her introduction in 1964’s X-Men #4. Wanda has connections to the larger cosmic mythos of the Multiverse, which have frequently made her the protagonist in some of the most significant Marvel stories ever told.

Despite this, the publisher has repeatedly used his or her opportunity to portray her as a villain who is under the power or influence of darker forces rather than giving her the credit she deserves as an A-list hero.

Wanda’s ability to change probability and rewrite reality has had a significant impact on Marvel continuity and has been the impetus for some of the publisher’s most important moments ever. However, despite being influenced by the whims and plans of others, she still seems unable to change the course of her own destiny.

Most of Wanda’s major stories centre on the various ways Wanda’s control over her own abilities has been undermined, with frequently terrifying results, dating back to her adoptive father Magneto. Wanda has almost always been the target of villains’ schemes because they comprehend her power better than she does.

The Marvel Cinematic Universe has adopted this style, with Wanda making her villainous debut in Avengers: Age of Ultron after receiving her powers as a consequence of consenting to a Hydra experiment. Wanda was controlled by the film’s evil android title character. Even WandaVision, which dealt with Wanda’s trauma and her ability to choose her own destiny, did so with a plot that revolved around Agatha Harkness seeking to control and manage Wanda’s magical skills.

She also appears as the antagonist in Doctor Strange’s Multiverse of Madness, where her quest to recover her missing children while under the magical power of a greater evil entity is echoed in the plot. Of course, this information contains spoilers.

So why, even in stories that focus on Wanda Maximoff’s increasing influence and significance inside the Marvel Universe, is she frequently cast in the role of narrative device rather than protagonist? And maybe more crucially, when will Wanda become the protagonist of her own tale?

Wanda Maximoff, the Scarlet Witch from birth

For the Scarlet Witch, serving as a pawn and an unsuspecting villain is nothing new.- feature iamge 1

Alongside her brother Pietro Maximoff/Quicksilver, Wanda Maximoff debuted in Marvel Comics as a villain as a member of Magneto’s Brotherhood of Evil Mutants. However, Wanda and Pietro’s tale gradually evolved into one of the most complex stories in the early Marvel Universe, portraying mutant outcasts who were duped by a cunning antagonist who promised them protection from the ills of a society that despises them.

In Avengers #16, after several of the original Avengers quit, Wanda and Pietro were some of the newcomers that Captain America added to the team, along with ex-villain Hawkeye. The once evil members of Cap’s so-called “Kooky Quartet” had a heroic transformation under his direction, and they went on to become pillars of the Avengers even after some of the original members made a comeback and additional new members were recruited.

In particular, Wanda joined Earth’s Mightiest Heroes and swiftly rose to the position of squad leader for a generation. The romance between Wanda and the synthezoid Vision, who joined the Avengers, became one of the main stories of the book.

In terms of her status inside the Marvel Universe and her ongoing story, this phase of the Avengers represents Wanda Maximoff’s apogee. Her abilities continued to grow, becoming her one of the team’s largest powerhouses and the pivotal component in many of their most important missions. However, Wanda’s trajectory—both in terms of her power levels and her character arc—inevitably attracted the attention of more sinister powers, thus this was not to last.

The Lasting Quest

For the Scarlet Witch, serving as a pawn and an unsuspecting villain is nothing new.- feature iamge 2

On some way, that’s a joke since Mark Gruenwald, the author who unintentionally started Wanda’s next chapter as a captive to her own power and those who would wield it, was a well-known kind guy. On the other hand, the villains he developed as fresh foes for Wanda and the Avengers, as well as the brand-new aspects of Wanda’s past and abilities, more than qualify as negative influences on the budding Scarlet Witch.

The demon Chthon, who built the aforementioned Darkhold, was the beginning of it all. Chthon gave her some of his power over chaos at birth, making her not only the most powerful user of the “Chaos Magic” found in the Marvel Universe, but also the intended vehicle for his own essence to return to Earth.

After being defeated by the Avengers while under Chthon’s control, Wanda was finally set free and used her enhanced abilities to exile Chthon. But this increase in magic power (and her subsequent instruction in witchcraft by Agatha Harkness) attracted the attention of at least three more of the Marvel Universe’s deadliest villains, who all wanted to master or kill Wanda and her powers.

The quest of vision

For the Scarlet Witch, serving as a pawn and an unsuspecting villain is nothing new.- feature iamge 3

The first was Mephisto, whose evil influence surreptitiously helped Wanda create her and Vision’s twin kids through magic. When Mephisto exposed his scheme and Wanda’s children vanished along with his magic, Wanda had her first severe breakdown.

Her position as a “Nexus Creature,” a being of particular power in the Marvel Comics Multiverse, bedevilled her at every step throughout Mephisto’s machinations, as did the Avengers’ old foe Immortus (one of the main variations of Kang the Conqueror). Wanda and Vision’s marriage was effectively ended by Immortus’ plots, which caused Vision to die and then resurrect without feeling, leaving Wanda with yet another profound psychological scar.

In two limited series starring Vision and Scarlet Witch, many of these tales were presented separately from the Avengers. Even while this signified Wanda’s transition from ensemble actor to solo star, the limited series Scarlet Witch wouldn’t give her her own solo starring role until 1994.

Scarlet Witch: Broken down

For the Scarlet Witch, serving as a pawn and an unsuspecting villain is nothing new.- feature iamge 4

The Avengers were briefly imprisoned in a pocket dimension and thought to be dead in the main Marvel Universe when the figurative straw that broke Wanda’s psychological back arrived. When they came back, their old foe Morgan le Fay (mother of Mordred the Mystic, Chthon’s servant, and enemy of Wanda) kidnapped the Scarlet Witch and used her own magical power to steal Wanda’s ability to write reality, turning the Avengers into her servants in her new universe and imprisoning Wanda in the villain’s lair.

In order to protect her from Morgan le Fay’s power, Wanda revived the deceased Avenger Wonder Man. She then used pure “Chaos Magic” to remove a swarm of deceased Avengers who had been turned into zombies by the villainous Grim Reaper. However, it also resulted in Wanda’s brief, catastrophic return to outright villainy and the most egregious abuse of her person and authority to date.

The Avengers Clint Barton/Hawkeye, Scott Lang/Ant-Man, and Wanda’s own ex-husband Vision were all slain in what seemed to be a series of random attacks. The Scarlet Witch, who was lash out and manipulating reality all around her while blaming her involvement with the Avengers, and the members of the team themselves, for everything she had endured since joining their ranks, was revealed to be responsible for the seemingly unrelated events, which also involved attacks on other Avengers.

When it was all over, Wanda fully unleashed the power of her reality-warping powers, rewriting the Marvel Universe and created the House of M reality. Even However, it was eventually discovered that Wanda’s brother Pietro had persuaded her to construct the new world, thus it wasn’t totally her fault.

The Avengers finally undid Wanda’s modified reality. Wanda found a new target for her rage, however, in the entirety of mutantkind, notably her adoptive father Magneto, when the world reverted to normal and the manipulation of her psyche and talents was made clear (then still believed to be her biological father – more on that in just a moment). Wanda used one more reality-bending spell, saying, “No more mutants,” which rendered all but 198 of the countless numbers of mutants in the Marvel Universe powerless.

Wanda then vanished after that. Her twin sons Billy and Tommy, whose magically generated souls were born into actual physical bodies, helped found the Young Avengers, which later set out on a mission to find their mother, among the ruins of the Avengers.

And they did discover the Scarlet Witch and the reason behind her assault on the Avengers in “Avengers: Disassembled.”

Wanda’s kids’ campaign

As it turns out, Wanda is still used as a pawn by someone else in a plot that was written to at least partially redeem her and make her consider the consequences of her actions. Avengers: The Children’s Crusade, the narrative that reintroduces Wanda to the team, reveals that Wanda was, you guessed it, magically persuaded into attacking the Avengers by none other than Doctor Doom, one of the most potent sorcerers in the Marvel Universe.

Additionally, it is revealed that Doom intends to wed Wanda, whom he has magically deluded, in order to completely usurp her control over reality and “Chaos Magic”—you guessed it—again.

In the end, Wanda is liberated from Doom’s control, but she is denied a reunion with her ex-husband Vision until many years later. Additionally, the other Avengers treat her with child gloves and finally decide against letting her rejoin the team. Then, when she is eventually permitted to rejoin the Avengers, it is the so-called “Unity Squad” of Uncanny Avengers that take Wanda personally and continuously remind her of what she has done and been made to do.

And if that weren’t enough, Wanda and her brother Pietro were also revealed to be genetically engineered super-beings produced by the High Evolutionary during her tenure with the Uncanny Avengers. It was a surprising revelation that Magneto wasn’t even their biological father, but rather simply a creepy old man who used to enjoy controlling youngsters.

The Witches Road and the Scarlet Witch

The reappearance of Wanda eventually resulted in her first solo ongoing book, James Robinson’s Scarlet Witch, which at last allowed her to stop being someone else’s puppet and become the main character of her own tale.

The plot established Wanda as the chief wielder and protector of a special kind of sorcery classified as “Witchcraft” through a series of one-shot issues that were each individually illustrated by a different artist to fit the scenario in each issue.

A Wanda marries  Wanda vision?

After WandaVision, which put Wanda in the MCU on track to appear in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, it appeared for a brief period of time that Marvel Comics was preparing Wanda to take over as Sorcerer Supreme from the departing character in the Death of Doctor Strange limited series.

The Trial of Magneto, a narrative that reshaped Wanda’s connection with mutantkind and even part of how she interacts with Marvel’s idea of magic, was taking place as she was caught up in her own death and resurrection. She was even battling the Darkhold once again in yet another Wanda-centric story centred around the book of evil magic, according to the whims of comic book continuity timelines.

But in the end, Wanda Maximoff once again found herself in the comics’ background when Clea assumed Strange’s position as Sorcerer Supreme. However, Wanda has a few glimpses of the position she’s earned, if not ever occupied, as one of the top Marvel heroes prior to her current time of relative lethargy on the page.

On the mutant island of Krakoa in the aforementioned Trial of Magneto limited series, Wanda is murdered by an unidentified attacker. Magneto uses the Krakoan resurrection techniques to create her revival even though she isn’t really a mutant anymore.

It turns out that Wanda had this planned all along. Despite eventually accusing Toad of her “murder,” Wanda’s demise was actually a carefully planned magical suicide, carried out as part of a complicated ritual to both reform her own spiritual self while in her Astral form and to open Krakoan resurrection to the spirits of deceased mutants who had no genetic records to be brought back from. This effectively sealed Wanda’s final atonement for almost eradicating mutantkind years earlier.

Additionally, Wanda guides a team of Marvel superheroes in Darkhold who have been infected by the Darkhold in an effort to defeat Chthon, the Darkhold’s originator and demon lord. They ultimately succeed, and as a consequence, the hero Omega the Unknown is reborn.

Even in these tales, Wanda is subject to the whims of others. First, during a trial that ultimately results in her banishing an innocent mutant to an eternity of torment in Krakoa’s pit—a particularly evil deed in many ways—and then in Darkhold, where she submits to the demon that has stalked her for her entire life in order to promote another, less well-known hero.

However, the authors of Trial of Magneto and Darkhold have explicitly said that they wanted to give Wanda more of a sense of agency and make her more of her own hero. The Marvel Cinematic Universe has since used the chance to once again transform her into a villain in one of the most high-profile heel-turns for the MCU ever, before supposedly murdering her off, undermining that progress.

The MCU may still have some redeeming strategies for Wanda, but the constant reiteration of these themes for a character who is simultaneously supposed to be growing more powerful and more aware is grating. Wanda’s key narrative is once again defined by the loss of her family and the escalation of her powers beyond her control.

Whatever happens to Wanda Maximoff, aka the Scarlet Witch, it’s time for her to emerge from the shadow of evil forces and formidable villains and assume her rightful place as one of the most prominent witches and magicians in the Marvel Universe. Thankfully, Marvel Comics has at least set her up to do so, should they ever decide to bring her back.



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