A couple weeks ago, the two best teams in the NFL met on a field to fight out for who was the best team of the year; this is a huge deal. However, perhaps an even bigger deal is that this pre-scheduled combat creates an excuse for us to see a lot of trailers for upcoming films and TV series and one of the biggest reveals of the day was the Disney + promo that gave us our first look at three of Marvel’s upcoming projects on Disney Plus: Loki, Falcon & the Winter Soldier, and WandaVision.
It’s that last one, WandaVision starring Elizabeth Olsen and Paul Bettany, that I want to highlight in this article, in particular — she and Vision have kids? Go back and watch the WandaVision parts of that trailer and you can see very quick nods to them having kids. There’s a crib in one shot, in another Vision is holding a pacifier and in another one there’s a little kid’s art on the fridge, so it seems that Marvel may be bringing us a storyline where Wanda and Vis have kids. Or maybe have kids. Like, alternate reality kids? Maybe?
Okay. I hope you like esoteric roller coasters because, if you continue to read this article you are pulling down the proverbial safety bar and agreeing to all the dips and spirals!
First of all — we all know Scarlet Witch and Vision, yes?
Scarlet Witch is the daughter of Magneto and his deceased wife, Magda, but was raised by a small farming family in the Wundagore Mountains found in Transia. The small family bore the name “Maximoff;” hence where she gets her name Wanda Maximoff. Magneto didn’t know he had children and both Wanda and her brother Pietro, a.k.a. Quicksilver, didn’t know that Magneto was their dad. In fact, they always just assumed that the Maximoffs were their parents. In Vision and the Scarlet Witch #4, this all changed when the truth was revealed to all of them.
Scarlet Witch has what are commonly referred to as “hex powers.” This mostly meant that she could make weird shit happen around her — you know, like a witch. However, this all eventually changes, but we’ll get more into that in a couple paragraphs.
Vision is the “son” of Ultron, created in Avengers #57 to be the ultimate missing link between humans and machines. Ultron, whose brain was based on brain patterns from his creator, Hank Pym, used the brain patterns of Simon Williams, a.k.a. Wonder Man, when he created Ultron — and it was this that caused Vision to see the good in humanity and turn on his creator to become an ally with the Avengers.
Though the Avengers were initially untrusting of him, as he was the creation of one of their deadliest enemies up until that point, Vision quickly proved that his ability to phase his body to a semi-solid state, ability to fly and to shoot lasers from his forehead, along with his lightning fast computer brain, were a huge advantage on their side of the fight between good and evil. And, despite the fact that some heroes have an uneasy relationship with having a “robot” or “android” on their team, most are quick to point out that he is a “synthezoid,” essentially meaning that his body, despite being manufactured by inorganic materials, has an organic likeness to it.
Okay. We good on those two?
Great. Moving on to a how a human and an android have dem babies.
Way back in 1973’s Avengers #109, written by Steve Englehart and penciled by Don Heck, Wanda Maximoff, a.k.a. Scarlet Witch fell in love with Vision, a.k.a… The Vision. Quicksilver thought it was icky that his sister was all about love with a robot and Hawkeye was upset because he was all about Wanda, but Wanda and Vision persisted in their relationship.
But it’s not until the Celestial Madonna saga, which revealed Mantis to be … the Celestial Madonna — yes — the Mantis we know from Guardians of the Galaxy 2.
At this time, Scarlet Witch was training with an actual witch, named Agatha Harkness, learning how to control and hone her hex powers. In ‘74’s Giant Sized Avengers #2, Wanda finally realized just how powerful she was, capable of calling forth control of the elements, controlling organic matter, pulling comets out of the sky — you know, the basics. After realizing just how powerful she was, she fully dedicated herself to learning more from Harkness — she did this in Avengers Mansion while literally everyone else was having a huge incredible adventure through time.
This is also when, in Avengers #133, the Vision traveled back in time, to 1939, to discover that he was actually built from the remains of the original Human Torch, created by Phineas T. Horton. That’s not necessarily important to the story of their kids — it’s just a fantastic fact about the vision.
Interestingly enough, the rest of the Avengers team went back in time to see what started the Kree/Skrull War thousands of years earlier.
Coincidentally, the writer of the Avengers at this time, Steve Englehart, who was also the writer for Doctor Strange, has gone on record saying he was doing a lot of LSD at this time…
Finally, in Giant-Size Avengers #4, Vision and Scarlet Witch are married.
Soon after, they leave the Avengers and start their own title, The Vision and the Scarlet Witch and, in issue #12, with the use of magic, Scarlet Witch conceives two twin boys and gives birth.
She names them Thomas and William.
That’s all pretty straight forward, right? However, then we get to 1989’s West Coast Avengers #52. Remember the roller coaster I mentioned earlier — here’s where it gets to about a hundred loop-de-loops in a row.
In a huge fight with a mystic villain named Master Pandemonium, Scarlet Witch found her children suddenly ripped away from her. Then, to her horror, she watched her babies morph into the hands of the villain they were fighting.
And then this happened …
And this …
Yes. That is actually what happened. Comics are the best.
It turns out that Master Pandemonium was a washed-up Hollywood executive who, after losing two of his limbs in a car accident, made a deal with Mephisto to save his life — however, Mephisto took his soul from him and scattered it in five pieces across the world.
So later on, when Scarlet Witch wanted to have children with Vision, but could not because he is a synthezoid incapable of procreation, she created children by magical means. What Wanda was unaware of, however, was that the souls of her of two magical little twins — William and Thomas — were two separate pieces of the five-way shredded soul of Master Pandemonium. It should be reiterated here — Wanda was unaware that her boys had been born of magical means or that she’d “used” two shards of a desperate Hollywood executive to create her progeny.
Except — they are actually NOT shards of Master Pandemonium, they are actually shards of Mephisto’s soul, scattered by Franklin Richards in Fantastic Four #277 — he was merely tricking Pandemonium into doing his dirty work for him. However, once Mephisto had all the pieces of his soul back, including the two pieces that had created William and Thomas, Agatha Harkness was able to use that to re-disperse those elements and — well — here’s how Agatha Harkness explains it.
So … yeah. Harkness saves the West Coast Avengers by pulling them back to our plane of existence and then, in a move she considers charitable, erases the two boys from her memory entirely.
That’s all in 1989.
In 1998, under the writing prowess of Kurt Busiek and artistic power of the one and only George Perez in The Avengers #10 (vol. 3), Wanda learns from Agatha Harkness that she’s now learned how to channel chaos magic and, soon after, she and Vision renew their broken relationship.
That’s important, but we don’t need to get into details — just know she’s even more powerful now than she was previously.
Now, fast forward to the genius of Brian Michael Bendis in 2004’s The Avengers #500, which kicked off the seminal Avengers storyline, “Avengers Disassembled.” Here, Wanda is clued in that, at some point in her life, she had children; however, as hard as she tries, she can not remember her children. So, she seeks the help of Doctor Doom, who gains control over her mind and sends her on a parade of destruction against the Avengers which results in the destruction of Avengers Mansion and the deaths of Ant-Man Scott Lang, Vision and Hawkeye. This gets a little confusing because some of the storyline with Doctor Doom was not inherent in the series, so they did a bit of retconning in YEAR Young Avengers: The Children’s Crusade.
But the damage was done. Wanda’s powers were far more destructive than anyone knew and now she blamed the Avengers for erasing her memory of her children. So, her twin brother, Quicksilver, convinced her to rewrite reality so that all the heroes had everything they’d ever wanted and where she and her family were the royal family that ruled over the entirety of earth — that’s where we get YEAR’s The House of M, where she brings her kids back to life.
However, when House of M is over and she returns everything back to the way it was — with the exception that she erased over a million mutants of their powers —
— we soon learn that Billy Kaplan and Tommy Shepherd are the reincarnated souls of her two children.
Okay, this needs a little more explanation, so just, hold on, because we’re coming to the last dip in this ride. Remember when Master Pandemonium absorbed Scarlet Witch’s two twin boys? Okay, so Mephisto then absorbed them, but the power was too great and it sort of magically blew him up, re-releasing those two souls. One of those souls went to Frank and Mary Shepherd of Springfield, New Jersey, and the other soul went to Jeff and Rebecca Kaplan in the Upper West Side of Manhattan.
And no one ever knew it.
Now, there’s a lot more to discuss after this as Young Avengers: The Children’s Crusade, zipped up a lot of the story, revealing to Scarlet Witch that her two children were now alive and, not only that, they were both very powerful heroes, one being the speedster named Speed, who takes after his uncle Quicksilver, and the other being Wiccan, who is a magic user who, depending on the storyline, may one day take Doctor Strange’s place as Sorcerer Supreme.
And now, the roller coaster has returned to the station and the safety bar has been released. Everyone please make sure to gather your belongings and exit the car to your right.
This article was originally published on 2/21/20