Will The MCU Embrace Scarlet Witch's Rich X-Men History?

There will be spoilers ahead for "Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness."

Say what you will about Wanda Maximoff, but the lady sure knows how to put on an entertaining show. That time she psychically enslaved an entire town of people so that she could live out her fantasy of a happy TV sitcom life? It remains one of Marvel's best Disney+ shows. And her murderous rampage through reality in "Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness"? A tad uncalled for, but villainy loves a drama queen.

Wanda's been piquing interest ever since she first showed off her spooky hand magic in a random post-credits scene. Six movies and a miniseries later, we've gotten to enjoy the full force of Elizabeth Olsen's incredible screen presence. So you can understand why the possibility of losing her is so upsetting. And yet, "Multiverse of Madness" dared to end on the troubling note of Wanda's sacrifice, destroying the Darkhold and disappearing under the remnants of Mount Wundagore. But let's be honest — this is a comic book movie and Wanda Maximoff is an immensely powerful witch. Surely some rocks and dark magic aren't enough to knock her off the board? Certainly not when we've just introduced the idea of multiverses and variants!

If our OG Wanda isn't able to rise from the ashes, surely another version of her is waiting in the wings. And anyway, this would be a pretty precarious time for the Scarlet Witch to make her exit from the Marvel Cinematic Universe, because it finally seems like future films will delve into the broader world of Marvel's mutants — and no exploration of mutants would be complete without Wanda Maximoff, and especially her connection to the one and only Magneto.

Wanda's witchy roots

Created in 1964 by Jack Kirby and Stan Lee, Wanda Maximoff debuted in "X-Men" #4. But much like her introduction into the MCU, she was a far cry from the Wanda that fans would come to know and love. Wanda began her comics journey as a villain, fighting against heroes with her brother Pietro (aka the speedster, Quicksilver). In this case, there was no robot army and Wanda wasn't harboring a personal grudge against Tony Stark — the twins were members of the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants, aiding Magneto's schemes for world domination.

Instead of fighting for some deep-seated belief in his philosophy, Wanda and Pietro were bound to the side of evil because they owed Magneto their life. When he first met the twins, he saved them from a mob of superstitious villagers who believed that Wanda was a witch. From that point on, Magneto would guilt the twins into standing by his side. But manipulation only lasts for so long. Once Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver began to see things from the X-Men's POV, they no longer wanted to play a role in Magneto's fight to have mutants dominate over humans. They escaped, abandoned Magneto's cause, and joined the Avengers. And so began many decades of the Scarlet Witch being a hero and fighting as an Avenger to save the world.

Over time, lots of things about Wanda and Pietro's story would be retconned for future adventures — including their powers. At first, Wanda's abilities boiled down to probability-altering hexes that mimic magic. Later in the comics, her powers were revealed as actual magic, including full-on reality warping that makes Wanda one of the most powerful beings in Marvel Comics.

The truth about Scarlet Witch and Magneto

Wanda and Pietro would later encounter their old pal Magneto in the Inhuman city of Attilan. By this point, Pietro had fallen in love and had his first child with Inhuman princess Crystal, so while fighting Magneto, the twins took special care to protect the baby from the battle. But in the middle of their encounter, Magneto said there was no need for this, revealing that he would never hurt his granddaughter. Cue the gasps! A couple of awkward Thanksgiving dinners later, Wanda suffered a nervous breakdown and lost control of her reality-warping powers. In the process, she killed several Avengers (whoops) and altered reality to create a world where Magneto ruled over humans.

You probably heard plenty of chatter about this storyline when the "WandaVision" theories were dominating the internet. It's known as "House of M," and is considered by many to be a defining Scarlet Witch tale. It leads to one of her best-known moments: when Magneto discovers that Quicksilver is responsible for this reality warp, he kills his son. Surprise, surprise — Wanda doesn't respond very well to her brother's death. In her anguish, Wanda reverts the world to the way it was, but she de-powers almost all of the mutant population.

A million more crazy comic things happen after that: Wanda goes missing, loses her memory, and almost marries Doctor Doom. In the end, her family (villainous father included) comes to her rescue. Most importantly, she stumbles across the shocking truth that Magneto isn't actually her father! Not biologically, anyway. In fact, it turns out that Wanda and Pietro aren't even mutants — their powers are a result of being experimented on by the High Evolutionary (a character that "Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3" will be introducing into the MCU).

Scarlet Witch vs The X-Men

Despite it all, Magneto still sees Wanda as his daughter. In S.W.O.R.D. (2020) #6, they even share a heartfelt reunion. Aw, villains have hearts too.

To say that Scarlet Witch has a complicated relationship with the X-Men would be a massive understatement. Though her time on the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants was brief and there was period where she considered Magneto an enemy, their father-daughter dynamic is a core part of their relationship. When heroes are close with villains, it's usually a bad sign for everyone else around them. And sure enough, the whole "House of M" debacle ends with Wanda blaming her father's obsession with mutant dominance for ruining her life. He's the reason she declares "No more mutants," and decimates the mutant population. Needless to say, the X-Men didn't take too kindly to losing their powers. Making matters much worse, Wanda is also the catalyst of the events leading up to "Avengers vs. X-Men," a conflict that famously involves the death of Charles Xavier. Yikes.

What lies ahead for Wanda Maximoff?

Besides the Magneto and X-Men of it all, Wanda's MCU storyline has followed a pretty similar path. She began as a villain and eventually found her place with the Avengers. After a tragic event, she lost herself to her powers and thus, has a beautiful, transformative arc in "WandaVision." But uh, then things get pretty messy. Since "Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness" pretty much ignores her previous emotional journey, Wanda ends up back on the path of villany. Her subsequent redemption is short-lived, thanks to all the Mount Wundagore rocks, but by no means does this have to be the end of the Scarlet Witch's time in the MCU. As the movies enter a new phase and, more importantly, a new era, there might be more room to explore Wanda's history with mutants, Magneto, and the X-Men.