The X-Men’s Hellfire Gala has come to an end with a tragic death – with Marvel Comics murdering one of the greatest members of the MCU’s Avengers.
This article contains spoilers for X-Factor #10.
Marvel Comics has just murdered a member of the MCU’s Avengers. The modern X-Men comics have seen the entire mutant race – hero and villain alike – unite on the living island of Krakoa. They’ve established a mutant utopia there, with mutants combining their powers to even conquer death itself. The millions of mutants who have been killed over the years are gradually being brought back to life through a synergy of superhuman powers and Cerebro technology.
The X-Men recently called the Hellfire Gala, an opportunity to show the world what they’re capable of. It was certainly impressive, beginning with the introduction of a new X-Men roster and moving on to the terraforming of Mars and the declaration Storm is now Regent of the Solar System. But Marvel has long been teasing the Hellfire Gala would end in tragedy, with the mutants waking up the day after the celebrations to discover a dead body.
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This all builds to a head in X-Factor #10, by Leah Williams, David Baldeon, David Messina, and Lucas Werneck. The issue follows the various members of the X-Factor team through the Hellfire Gala and continues into the next morning. Prodigy is being visited by his lover Speed, the reality-warped “son” of Scarlet Witch and Vision, when they see a woman laid in the grass outside the Gala grounds. To their horror, this isn’t somebody who’s had too much to drink – it is the dead body of the Scarlet Witch. Speed has stumbled upon his own mother, murdered.
Scarlet Witch is basically the devil to Earth’s mutants, dubbed “The Pretender,” because for years she was incorrectly believed to be a mutant – and because at one point she used her Chaos Magic to depower the majority of the world’s mutants. She was invited to the Hellfire Gala by Magneto, the man who she had long thought family, but chose not to come until after it had wrapped up. Wanda Maximoff arrived when Magneto was the only one left, and she and Magneto reconciled in a touching scene in SWORD #6. It seems this was the last thing Scarlet Witch did before her death.
The scene in SWORD #6 had seemed touching and emotional, but it carried an odd undercurrent that led to theories that Magneto was about to kill Scarlet Witch. “Sometimes what is real is not the same as what is true,” Magneto explained to Wanda. “And sometimes it takes two to pretend. You are my daughter, Wanda. You will always be my daughter. And I will do what I must to make things right.” Certainly, Magneto is the one who’s going to carry the blame for the crime, because this story will lead straight into The Trial of Magneto, with the X-Factor team investigating the murder. It’s possible his intention is to manipulate the X-Men’s Resurrection Protocols to force them to bring Wanda back – but as a mutant.
One thing’s for sure; Marvel may have just killed off one of the MCU’s biggest heroes, but it won’t last. Marvel recently rescheduled the long-delayed Darkhold event, in which Scarlet Witch would be forced to gather the world’s greatest heroes in order to close an ancient book of dark magic. Death has long been a revolving door in X-Men comics, but questions remain as to how Wanda Maximoff died, why she was killed, and how Scarlet Witch will return from the dead.
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