The Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 3 Villain Is The High Evolutionary, Played By Peacemaker Actor Chukwudi Iwuji

Well, folks, it's finally confirmed. The villain of "Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3," is the High Evolutionary. Furthermore, it's confirmed that actor Chukwudi Iwuji will be the one playing the villain. Iwuji previously appeared on "Peacemaker" as the mercenary Clemson Murn; it's likely that this jump from the DC universe to the Marvel one was precipitated by his connection with "Guardians" director and "Peacemaker" creator James Gunn.

Iwuji showed his commitment by showing up not just in person, but in costume to the Marvel Studios panel at San Diego Comic-Con. But who is this villain and what role will he play in the Guardians' swan song? Let's find out.

Who is the High Evolutionary?

The High Evolutionary is Doctor Herbert Wyndham, a geneticist who specializes in creating human/animal hybrids typically called "New Men." He first appeared as an adversary of "Thor" in "The Mighty Thor" #134-135, a two-part story by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby, where the Thunder God faced the Evolutionary's "Man-Beast" creation.

The High Evolutionary and his creations are typically based out of Mount Wundagore, hence why the New Men are often called "The Knights of Wundagore." In "Avengers #186," (co-scripted by David Michelinie, Mark Gruenwald, and Steven Grant, art by John Byrne), it's revealed that a young woman named Magda, fleeing from her old life, took refuge at Wundagore and gave birth to twins; the midwife was Bova Aryshire, a cow-hybrid new man. Those twins grew up into Wanda and Pietro Maximoff. However, considering Wundagore collapsed in "The Multiverse of Madness" and how removed Scarlet Witch is from the Guardians' side of the MCU, "Vol. 3" probably won't be using this connection.

Outside the comics, the High Evolutionary hasn't been a major presence. A very different version of the villain featured in "Spider-Man: Unlimited" where he and the New Men (here called "Beastials") ruled an alternate world called "Counter Earth." A more comic-accurate High Evolutionary appeared in cartoons "Hulk: Agents of SMASH" and "The Guardians of the Galaxy."

As you can probably tell, the High Evolutionary is one of those villains who's never quite fit into a single hero's rogues gallery. However, there are a few good reasons why it'll be the Guardians he's menacing in the MCU.

How he'll factor in

2008 crossover event "Annihilation: Conquest" by Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning was the beginning of the modern Guardians of the Galaxy team. In that event, Ultron, trying his hand at being a galactic conqueror, conscripted the High Evolutionary, ordering the scientist to download his digital consciousness into Adam Warlock's body. This inspired elements of how the MCU Vision's creation was portrayed in "Avengers: Age of Ultron."

Since Adam Warlock will be appearing in "Vol. 3," played by Will Poulter, perhaps the High Evolutionary will have some role in his creation? Creating a perfect human specimen would certainly fit the agenda of a geneticist. While "Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2" teased Adam as a creation of Ayesha (Elizabeth Debicki) and the Sovereign, there's no reason the Evolutionary can't step in to perfect the process.

Another likely connection is between the Evolutionary and Rocket Raccoon (Bradley Cooper). The MCU has already established that Rocket was the result of a gruesome experiment, and according to reports of footage shown at SDCC, the film will be spotlighting his origin. The High Evolutionary turning out to be Rocket's creator seems plausible. It would fit with a similar move Gunn pulled in "Vol. 2," making Ego The Living Planet (Kurt Russell) into Star-Lord's (Chris Pratt's) father even though no such connection exists in the comics.

If Iwuji and the Evolutionary can be half as good the villain for this film as Russell/Ego was for "Vol. 2," then we're in for an excellent trilogy-capper.