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|“||I'm still me, I think. But... that's not what everyone else sees.||„|
|~ Scarlet Witch speaking with Vision|
|“||You guys know I can move things with my mind, right?||„|
|~ Scarlet Witch in Civil War.|
|“||You took *everything* from me! (Thanos: I don't even know who you are.) You will.||„|
|~ Scarlet Witch to Thanos in Endgame|
Wanda Maximoff, also known as Scarlet Witch is a superhero and a major character of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. She is a cameo antagonist of Captain America: The Winter Soldier, one of the two titular tritagonists (alongside Quicksilver) of Avengers: Age of Ultron, one of the tritagonists of Captain America: Civil War, one of the titular tritagonists of Avengers: Infinity War, and a major character of Avengers: Endgame. She will return in WandaVision and Doctor Strange: Into the Multiverse of Madness.
She is portrayed by Elizabeth Olsen, who also portrayed Elle Brody in the 2014 Godzilla film.
Having dealt with tragedy and turmoil at such a young age, Wanda desired to free her country from the terrors of war. This desire grew to such a point that she volunteered to be experimented on by HYDRA, eventually gaining the formidable powers she now possesses. Compared to her brother, Pietro, Wanda is quieter and less aggressive. Despite that, she appears to have full control of her power and would not hesitate to use it on her enemies to achieve her goals. She was not the type to face a foe in direct combat, opting to disable her foes with her powers when their guard is down.
Despite her desire to destroy the Avengers, she ultimately chose to betray Ultron after learning his true intentions and sided with the very people she tried to take down. This shows that Wanda is willing to set aside personal grudges for the common good, as she ultimately joined the Avengers in evacuating Sokovia and opposing Ultron.
Her hatred for Tony Stark's role in the destruction her country endured and the death of her parents motivated her to implant visions of a bleak future into his mind, thus setting up the events that led to the eventual destruction of Sokovia. Wanda acknowledges this to Hawkeye, sordidly blaming herself for the carnage and questioning why she let such chaos happen.
However, after being encouraged by Hawkeye, Wanda displayed great courage and selflessness, aiding him in fighting off the Sentries and protecting and escorting civilians to safety before standing alongside the Avengers in wiping out most of Ultron's forces. This is paramount by how she chose to stay behind and guard the key, reiterating that it was her job, and making Pietro promise to come back for her only when everyone else is safe.
Wanda and Pietro share a deep, emotional bond, though they would occasionally bicker like normal siblings. Wanda was looked after by Pietro and she would always rely on him for support. Pietro's death by Ultron's hands unleashed a fury within Wanda that pushed her to leave her post and rip out Ultron's central processor to make him feel the pain he inflicted, avenging her beloved brother.
Despite the pain of losing her brother and the loss of her home, Wanda still chose to join the second team of Avengers, led by Captain America.
Powers and Abilities
- Psychic Powers: Maximoff has psychic abilities that originate from her mind. Her powers allow her to read and alter the minds of others, as well as affect the physical real world with her own mind, and alter the fabric of reality. Her powers do require direct focus and control to maintain and to disrupt her focus would be to prevent the use of those powers. Hawkeye was able to do this by attaching an electric device to her head, War Machine did this by shooting her with a sonic weapon, and Proxima Midnight did this by hitting her head with the hilt of her sword. Her powers often require hand gestures, and restricting her hands and arms can also prevent the use of her powers, such as when she was placed in a straight jacket on the Raft. When she uses Mental Manipulation to inflict emotional pain on others, she experiences that same emotional trauma with them, leaving her in mental anguish, as we see in the Age Of Ultron. Wanda's telekinetic and psionic energy manipulating abilities increase in capability when she experiences emotional turmoil or an increase of confidence. Wanda's power increased when she grew more confident due to Hawkeye's talk to her making her an Avenger. When Pietro died, Wanda lashed out in sorrow, boosting her powers to destroy many Ultron minions around her. Wanda's powers were temporarily weakened in the Civil War due to her guilt overpowers accidentally causing the deaths of many. In Infinity War after her gaining more of an understanding of her abilities and more confidence, her powers were accomplishing way more impressive feats while still not even testing the limits and capabilities of her powers. During Endgame she was enraged by Thanos aiming to take his life, amplifying her powers through a subtle confidence and a greater understanding. This granted her the capability she needed to kill Thanos with ease.
- Telekinesis: Maximoff has the ability to mentally move, levitate, and manipulate objects through force of the mind. She can also affect and control particles and molecules, as well as physical forces such as kinetic energy, friction, pressure, state of matter and even gravity, allowing her to fully control matter and energy at the molecular level. She demonstrated this when she moved wooden blocks around while imprisoned in Wolfgang von Strucker's secret facility. She pulled them apart with her power, and suspended them in the air, removing all motion and gravity from the pieces. Maximoff used this power to stop an off-rail train in Seoul, and tear apart Ultron Sentries. Her telekinesis is enough to break through Vibranium as she did manage to rip Ultron's primary body apart to get his central processor. Maximoff was able to telekinetically lift up and throw an armed goon of Crossbones, a knife, Vision, and Proxima Midnight. Maximoff was able to draw a copious volume of gas from a building and manipulated it by spreading her Psionic Energy through every molecule of gas making it dissipate completely, and temporarily contained an explosion and lifted it away from innocents. Maximoff threw cars and rubble at Ironman, Spider-Man, and War Machine. Wanda was able to freeze a soldier's arm when trying to grab his gun, Black Panther's arm, Black Widow's leg, and Proxima Midnight's blade in mid air, and hold back a collapsed Watchtower from a long distance. In Scotland, she was able to deflect Proxima Midnight's attacks and redirect the force back at her. Wanda also has shown great precision with her telekinesis, as she was able to heal Vision's wounds by telekinetically repairing it at the molecular level. In Wakanda, Wanda was able to lift multiple of Thanos' Threshers and redirect them back at Thanos' Outriders. After her Resurrection, Wanda's telekinetic capabilities had grown, allowing her to lift 2 large pieces of debris and launch them at Thanos, hold back Thanos' sword and break it, lift Thanos high in the air while crushing him and his armor, and even hold back a Levithan.
- Psionic Energy Manipulation: Maximoff can harness her Psionic energy from her mind that she uses to manipulate matter with to create blasts, beams, and waves of psionic energy under her telekinetic spheres of influence. This energy can still the fast movements of her targets to improve her focus on them so she can use telekinesis to input further damage, or she can use it to rip apart the matter of her targets. She used this prominently against Ultron's robots during the battle of Sokovia. Her Psionic energy was even able to destroy the Mind Stone, and hold back the other 5 Stones at the same time in Wakanda. After her Resurrection, Wanda's empowering had increased the damage of her Psionic blasts. She forced Thanos to go on the defensive side with her attacks, and her psionic energy had been able to knock back Thanos' sword made of Uru metal while her telekinesis broke it.
- Levitation: Maximoff can levitate herself from extreme height through telekinetic and psionic means. She first learned this by pushing herself into the air by blasting psionic bolts of energy into the ground, then uses telekinesis to lift herself in the air, and then she comes down by blasting psionic energy to the ground to slow down her momentum for a soft landing. She first learned this when starting off with the New Avengers, then in the events of Civil War, she could lift herself higher and for a longer period of time. This improved in Infinity War, where she could stay longer and higher, but could telekinetically lift other objects at the same time. After her Resurrection and Empowerment, Maximoff was able to Add to telekinetically lift herself in the air without the need to blast energy from her hands, just lifting herself with telekinesis and she could stay in the air in one place without needing to come back down. Her multitasking improved as well. She was able to fly and telekinetically lift 2 large pieces of debris with ease. She was even able to fly and hold back a Leviathan.
- Force Field Generation: Maximoff is able to create highly durable fields of psionic energy that can deflect incoming attacks. These durable barriers of energy can dissipate from loss of concentration or from too much force. Ultron's minions were eventually able to break through it, along with the blasts from Thanos' ship. Wanda also uses this to increase her durability to a large extent by forming an amour of psionic energy around herself to save herself from incoming blows, or to cushion extreme impact(high falls etc.). She used this when being blasted by Promixa, first into a window without a scratch, and second when falling from an extreme height.
- Telepathy: Maximoff can read the minds of others, being able to sense the thoughts and emotions of others. She does this through a neuro-electric interface. With this she can also communicate telepathically and view their memories. Sometimes when she focuses on specific targets, her eyes glow a dark red color. She used this to view Tony Stark's memories and view his worst fear that she put in his mind, she tries to see into the Mind of Ultron, but failed because of his lack of a human brain, she used this to view the memories of the Avengers to show them their worst fears. She temporarily used this to merge her conciseness with Ultron's to see his plans for world destruction. Maximoff used this to when she peeked into the heads of many Sokovians in order to mind control them to get to safety away from the city. The last time she used this was her sensing the death of her brother Pietro Maximoff like she had seen it in person.
- Mind Manipulation: Maximoff is able to control the inner workings of neurons in other's heads, allowing her to manipulate their thoughts, memories, senses, and mental state as a form of hypnosis. She can also use this to make her victim hear, feel, and see whatever she wants(most notably something the person fears or a traumatic past experience) through illusions. This power is possible through a neuro-electric interface, just as her telepathy is. She was able to use this ability to cripple the Avengers, forcing them each to recall the darker events of their pasts and were put inside daydream-like visions of them that subdued them. When this ability is in use, Maximoff's reddish energy takes a more mist-like form, floating into the head of the victim in the form of neurons. The effects also distort the victim's iris coloration, causing them to shine a dark reddish color. This also allows her to control other people's actions, as she did with a considerable number of civilians in Sokovia to aid in their evacuation, causing them to experience a form of sleepwalking and making them all get up and leave the city. Maximoff's mental power is strong to reverse the effects of the Mind Stone, one of the most powerful objects in existence, as shown when she freed Dr. Helen Cho from the stone's control. She can also manipulate the memory and senses of others at will, induce sleep or pain and create illusions without any difficulty.
- Reality Altering: Based on new Marvel reports, Wanda will gain the ability to alter the fabric of Reality with her own mental Psionic Energy in her upcoming show WandaVision. Detailing that her powers will change the MCU forever and that she will use this power to try to restore Vision's soul. This power may be reminiscent of her Illusion Casting, but instead of her manipulation the human mind's perception of Reality, she manipulates Reality itself through her mind.
In chronological order:
- Avengers: Age of Ultron Prelude - This Scepter'd Isle
- Captain America: The Winter Soldier
- Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.
- Season Two
- The Dirty Half Dozen (mentioned)
- Season Two
- Avengers: Age of Ultron
- Captain America: Civil War
- Avengers: Infinity War
- Avengers: Endgame
- WandaVision (upcoming)
- Doctor Strange: Into the Mouth of Madness (upcoming)
- In the comics, Quicksilver is a mutant and a founding member of the Brotherhood of Mutants, being initially identified as the son of Magneto (Erik Lehnsherr) and his then-wife Magda Lehnsherr (née Eisenhardt) in Vision and the Scarlet Witch #4 (1983), 19 years after Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver's first appearance. Magda leaves Erik while pregnant and takes sanctuary at Mount Wundagore in Transia, the home of the High Evolutionary, where she gives birth and later dies. The High Evolutionary then places them instead in the care of the Romani couple, Django and Marya Maximoff, who raise them as their own children. Prior to that, in Giant-Size Avengers #1 (1974), they were revealed to be the biological children of Golden Age superheroes The Whizzer and Miss America, a fact that was later retconned. In Avengers & X-Men: AXIS #7 (2014), it was revealed that Pietro and his sister have no blood ties to Magneto and are not related after all. In Uncanny Avengers #4 (2015), it is confirmed not only are they not related to Magneto but they are also not mutants, as the High Evolutionary was the one that genetically altered them as infants, giving them their powers, before returning them to their true parents, the Maximoffs.
- Although Wanda's comic book moniker was never spoken by anyone during the course of the film, Iron Man did disparagingly refer to her as a "witch", alluding to her Scarlet Witch moniker.
- The credits did, in fact, credit her as "Wanda Maximoff/Scarlet Witch".
- In the comics, Wanda married Vision and had two sons with him.
- Wanda ultimately destroying Ultron's primary body in the film is probably an allusion to the fact that her powers in the comics are considered one of Ultron's most significant weaknesses.
- Kevin Feige confirmed that Wanda is an actual witch, with her various powers actually being her involuntarily casting magical spells.