Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness is one of the most highly anticipated entries of the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s fourth phase. And now, just to make things even more exciting, we’re hearing that it may feature an unanticipated antagonist in the form of Wanda Maximoff herself.
The Scarlet Witch debuted on screen alongside her brother Pietro in the 2015 film Avengers: Age of Ultron, as did her love interest, Vision, both of whom acquired their powers as the result of experimentation with Infinity Stones. The two were both eventually destroyed by Thanos in the culmination of 2018’s Avengers: Infinity War after one of the most emotionally charged sequences in the franchise saw Wanda reluctantly using her immense power to simultaneously hold off the Mad Titan, while destroying the Mind Stone and Vision along with it. Only to see Thanos use the Time Stone to reverse her actions and tear the Mind Stone from Vision’s head, killing him in front of her all over again.
When Wanda returned in 2019’s Avengers: Endgame, she proved a formidable match for a younger Thanos, tapping into her rage to nearly destroy the warlord single-handedly. She seemed more or less at peace with Vision’s death by the end of that film, too. But it now appears that the combination of her overwhelming power and unresolved grief and guilt will make her the prime target of the villainous Nightmare, an entity that rules over the borderlands of madness and myths within the Dream Dimension and who’s said to be the main antagonist of Doctor Strange 2.
And according to sources close to WGTC – the same ones who told us Taskmaster would be the villain in Black Widow and Bill Murray was returning for Ghostbusters: Afterlife, both of which are now confirmed – Wanda’s storyline in Multiverse of Madness will be a direct result of the events of WandaVision, which Kevin Feige has said will be essential viewing in order to “understand everything in future Marvel movies.” From what we’ve been told, it seems that her narrative across both projects will incorporate elements of Brian Michael Bendis’ 2005 comic book event House of M. For those unfamiliar, this saw Wanda rewrite all of reality to make mutants the dominant species on Earth after the deaths of her two sons, who are already being cast for WandaVision.
Specifically, we’re told that by the time the film kicks off, Wanda is starting to go crazy and beginning to lose her mind due to what happens at the end of the aforementioned Disney Plus show. Her powers are growing, too, and as mentioned above, she’s being influenced by Nightmare. Her powers are starting to crack a hole in reality as well as she’s desperately trying to get her children back, who she loses at the end of WandaVision when Nightmare makes her realize that the reality she created for herself isn’t real and destroys it.
This sets Wanda down a dangerous path and while she won’t exactly be considered a full-out villain in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, her desire to use her dangerous powers to get her kids back combined with Nightmare’s sinister influence will definitely make her a foe for Doctor Strange, with the Sorcerer Supreme said to be trying to reshape reality back to what it was with his magic and stop her and Nightmare.
Of course, given the recent departure of director Scott Derrickson over “creative differences,” parts of the script might now change before production begins. But the pieces certainly look to be falling into place for the Scarlet Witch to take a villainous turn following WandaVision, with the fan favorite character said to be losing her mind and ending up in a very dark place by the time Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness kicks off. And given that this intel lines up with much of what we’ve been hearing lately, and that it comes from the same sources who told us Wiccan will debut in WandaVision months ago, which is now confirmed, we’ve no reason to doubt it.