The Bizarre History Of Scarlet Witch And Vision's Children, Explained
Any long-time reader of Marvel Comics knows that the Scarlet Witch’s family tree is a complicated one - and that was true even before Wanda Maximoff and the Vision had “kids.” With Magneto for a (maybe) father, Quicksilver for a brother, and Ultron as her father-in-law, Wanda has always enjoyed some interesting familial dynamics, but the story of her pseudo-sons, Wiccan and Speed, is perhaps the most convoluted of all.
William and Thomas Maximoff are born in 1986’s Vision and the Scarlet Witch #12 - but born might not be quite the right word, given that their supposed father is a robot named Vision. In any case, the twin boys don’t stick around for very long, but then they’re brought back to life as in 2005's Young Avengers - kind of. The saga of Scarlet Witch and her sons is the sort that needs to be understood in detail before it can be comprehended, and even then, it’s a pretty difficult one to grasp.
When Wanda Maximoff Announces Her And The Vision’s Pregnancy, It Comes As A Surprise - Mostly Because Vision Is A Robot
While enjoying a stint with the West Coast Avengers back in the ‘80s, Wanda Maximoff shocks her teammates - and readers - when she announces her and the Vision’s pregnancy. The pending arrival of twins isn’t scandalous, since the Scarlet Witch and Vision had already gotten hitched at that point and Wanda was herself a twin, but the matter of the conception itself is rather confusing - given that the Vision is an artificial synthezoid created by Ultron.
Though the love between them is undoubtedly real, there really shouldn’t be any way for Wanda and Vision to produce a child given his robotic nature. In fact, it’s never been made clear whether or not Vision even has genitals - his “father,” Ultron, certainly doesn’t. It all added up to a fairly awkward vibe surrounding what should have been a joyous occasion, and it was only going to get more uncomfortable from there.
Everyone Accepts It As A Miracle When She Gives Birth To Twin Boys, William And Thomas, Anyway
With Wanda Maximoff’s pregnancy progressing as normal, Earth’s Mightiest Heroes and their various allies mostly learn to accept the anomaly for what it is - a miraculous immaculate conception. When she gives birth to healthy twin boys, William and Thomas, in Vision and the Scarlet Witch #12, everyone is overjoyed. Even her on-again, off-again father Magneto shows up to celebrate, and Doctor Strange presides over the event.
Wanda and Vision remain affiliated with the West Coast Avengers while they raise their sons, which makes for an interesting upbringing. Unfortunately for Billy and Tommy, however, the saga of their lives was only going to get more bizarre from there.
It Is Generally Believed That The Scarlet Witch Manifested The Children With Her Own Magical Abilities - But The Devil Is In The Details
Most of Scarlet Witch and Vision’s fellow Avengers automatically accept their children as legitimate and welcome them into Earth’s Mightiest Family - most, but not all. Wanda Maximoff’s own maternal figure and magical mentor Agatha Harkness is immediately suspicious of their origins, but ultimately deems that it must have been the Scarlet Witch’s own ambiguous mastery over mystical energy and reality that brought them into existence.
Harkness’s deduction proves half-right. It was magical energy that manifested itself into the twins Billy and Tommy Maximoff, but it didn’t come from the Scarlet Witch. Instead, the boys are eventually revealed to have been born of the dark energy of Mephisto - an all-powerful demonic figure that essentially stands in as Marvel Comics’ equivalent to the Devil.
The Horrific Truth Is Revealed When Mephisto’s Henchman Shows Up And Reabsorbs The Boys Into His Body
At some point after the birth of his sons, the Vision is wiped out and rebuilt but loses his emotional core in the process. That leaves him unable to process the horrors of Avengers West Coast #52, in which the truth of the twins’ origin comes to a head - leaving Wanda Maximoff to bear the full brunt of the ensuing tragedy.
As it turns out, Billy and Tommy Maximoff had been crafted by Mephisto using fragments of his henchman Master Pandemonium’s soul. When Master Pandemonium confronts the West Coast Avengers’ looking for his missing parts, he literally resorbs the twins into himself and wears them on his hands like a couple of puppets - truly one of the most disgusting occurrences in all Marvel Comics’ history.
Mephisto is, of course, behind the whole thing - except for some tellings of the tale in which Immortus is the mastermind - and it isn’t long before he shows up to absorb the power of both Master Pandemonium and the twins into himself, leaving Scarlet Witch and the rest of the WCA aghast.
Master Pandemonium Is Defeated, But The Twins Remain Lost - And Everyone Decides That Wanda Is Better Off Not Remembering The Whole Incident
Billy and Tommy Maximoff result from a potent blend of the Scarlet Witch’s reality-bending magic and Mephisto’s dark energy, and when the hellacious villain reabsorbs them into himself, he fully reconstitutes his own near-omnipotent power - while effectively wiping out his foot soldier Master Pandemonium in the process. The West Coast Avengers are able to escape before Mephisto unleashes his wrath upon them, but not without some significant trauma.
It is ultimately decided that it would be best for Wanda Maximoff to forget the entire incident, with her robot husband Vision already in an emotionless state at the time. Her mystical mentor, Agatha Harkness, casts a spell that suppresses Wanda’s memory of her pregnancy, her children, and especially, their gruesome demise - and everybody agrees to move on with their lives.
Everything Is Fine, Until Wanda Remembers It All Years Later And Suffers A Mental Breakdown
For years - decades in the real world, in fact - everything returns to normal for the Scarlet Witch and she continues to serve as an Avenger. After breaking up with the Vision, even after he recovered his emotions, Wanda Maximoff even finds new love in the form of Simon Williams. All the while, however, there are continual hints that she is only just barely suppressing the memory of her lost children.
One day, during a casual poolside gossip session, Janet van Dyne accidentally makes a remark to Wanda about that time she was pregnant, and that’s all that is needed to finally unlock those memories - and to bring about a full-scale mental breakdown of one of the most powerful superhumans on the planet.