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The Abandoned An’ Forsaked – Your Dad’s the Whizzer?

All throughout December, we will be examining comic book stories and ideas that were not only abandoned, but also had the stories/plots specifically “overturned” by a later writer (as if they were a legal precedent). Click here for an archive of all the previous editions of The Abandoned An’ Forsaked.

In honor of the recent parentage revelation in Axis #7, we look at the brief period where the Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver thought that their dad was the Whizzer.

Enjoy!

In Giant-Size Avengers #1, the Golden Age hero the Whizzer shows up at the Avengers Mansion. Eventually, he reveals something to the Scarlet Witch (well, she sort of figures it out herself, but you know what I mean)…

This was the status quo for a few years until the notable Avengers #185-187 storyline where meet the new (and for decades the standard) status quo for the Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver…

At the same time, over in X-Men #125, we see Magneto looking at Magda…

UX125_Magda

The idea at the time was that readers could figure out that Magneto was their dad but A. Marvel wouldn’t EXPLICITLY tell you and B. they did not know it themselves, but that was done away with in the early 1980s’ Vision and Scarlet Witch mini-series where Magneto reveals that he is their dad. And that was the status quo for decades, until 2014…

NOTE: I updated this piece on December 11, 2014 due to Axis #7.

62 Comments

I remember Wanda started going by Wanda Frank after she met the Whizzer. But, nowadays she goes by the name of her adoptive father. When did she start going by Wanda Maximoff?

Did Pietro and Wanda even have last names in their early days?

After this post, I feel a strong desire to buy the tpb of the the Vision and Scarlet Witch mini-series.

That Avengers reveal was one of Marvel’s finest moments. They spelled it out enough for nearly every reader to put it all together, but the characters themselves didn’t. They left it like that for a little while, then let Mantlo show the characters finding out in the Vision & Scarlet Witch limited series.

Thanks for the walk down memory lane…

J.

I have always been a bit sceptical about the disappearance of Magda. More to the point, how does a heavily pregnant woman climb a mountain in the middle of a snow storm and find the only kitchen door to knock on for help?

There was a small hint during Dan Slott’s run on Mighty Avengers when Mordred referred to Quicksilver as ‘Son of Magda’ instead of ‘Son of Eric/Magneto’.

I think there is still an untold story to be revealed about Magda and her connection to Mount Wundagore.

Giant-Size Avengers #1 was one of the first Marvel comics I ever read and I thought it was great – I never have liked the idea that Magneto was their father.

Having the Whizzer and Miss America be their parents seems like a very Roy Thomas-type of idea. It was a bad idea, though, because having a mother who was active in World War II would’ve definitely caused problems with the timeline down the road. I wish writers would think about things like that before tying characters too heavily to certain time-periods.

I was such an X-Freak and all this stuff was decided before I even read comics. I find it amusing that Magneto and Quicksilver seemed to have a father and son thing going even during the orignal run of Kirby and Lee X-Men. I have the hardcover of the first 10 issues. I can see why people might hate it. It’s a different point of view, I suppose.

Mary: Magneto’s no better in that respect, because having been in a concentration camp during WWII is a pretty important part of his back story.

@butler, magneto has been deaged at least once

I don’t think it is fair to reproach Marvel writers from the seventies for not taking into account the long term timeline implications- although I’m sure they are surprised/happy/gratified that anybody is reading comics nowadays at all, let alone arguing about the continuity thereof.

And I think Dan Slott’s Mighty Avengers was quite deliberately pregnant with all kinds of continuity implications, and I love him for it, but really, at this point, well, hell, somebody could declare that Magda was an alternate future Skrull impersonating a cloned Space Phantom planted by Norman Osborn to mess with Spider-Man that was brought back to life after SuperBoy Prime punched time itself and the future writer would have to say ‘well, it’s a good start, but it’s been done.’

always found it interesting to try and keep the truth that magneto was the father of wanda and quicksilver marvel writers came up with the old character the whizzer as the guy who wound up with them only to be a dead beat dead fleeing over his wives demise. though i also wonder how did Magda climb up the mountain when she was pregnant.

Ronald Jay Kearschner

December 13, 2011 at 1:18 am

First, the idea of a superhero named “The Whizzer” always made me giggle. And I too can’t believe Magda or the Frank “stillborn” baby haven’t turned up in new stories.

Was it possible for the readers to figure out Magneto was the father by only reading The Avengers 185-187? I bought the issues at the time and didn’t work it out. But I knew he was the father because of an X-Men comic, that came out during this Avengers story, where there was a cut-away scene of Magneto pining over a woman called Magda.

No, Mars, that was the neat way they did it. You’d only know the truth if you read both issues. But if you read both issues, it’d be really obvious.

Bernard the Poet

December 13, 2011 at 3:26 am

I was probably about ten when I read Avengers #185-187 – not to mention the preceding storyline about a superpowered gypsy violinist, who also claimed to be Wanda and Pietro’s father. At the time, the story seemed impenetrable and never-ending. In hindsight, it was my first experience of the continuity porn that runs like a scar through all of DC and Marvel’s work.

Whether Micheline and Byrne liked Roy Thomas’s idea that the Whizzer and Miss America were Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch’s parents or not, did they really need to spend in total something like six issues to undo it? And asking readers to believe that there were two heavily pregnant women visiting Wundagore at the same time is far worse than the original plotline.

And I’ve never believed that Quicksilver and the Scarlet Witch could have spent all of those months in the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants without Magneto drawing some conclusions about their paternity.

I remember buying that Avengers annual as a back issue & thinking “Huh? The Whizzer?” As others will and have commented, it’s a very Roy Thomas thing to do in a story.
I hear what you’re saying, Mary Warner. Mind you Magneto has also been tied to World War 2 and no-one seems to mind, but as he was a child I guess the Marvel timeline can get away with it. However, he does seem to be a more natural choice of parent.

If I remember correctly, Magneto didn’t know about who they were when he recruited them, and didn’t find out until not long before they did.

And, it was just on the other night on late-night Disney XD – The comment on The Whizzer’s code name from the Spiderman cartoon. I wish I could remember the exact quote, but it pretty much summed it up.

randypan the goatboy

December 13, 2011 at 6:07 am

continuity porn?…elaborate…The plot thickens.

@Ronald, In the 90s Spider-Man cartoon they did a storyline involving the Red Skull and his actions during WWII. When someone mentioned the Whizzer to Spidey he laughs out loud and makes fun of the guy’s name.

I thought it was canon that the Whizzer and Miss America sought out Wudagore because their first child was a horribly dangerous, radioactive mutant. That character later turned up in Avengers, with the Whizzer explaining where he came from and helping defeat him.

It wouldn’t be stretching things too much for Magda to seek out a place of wonder and power in the hope the occupants could protect her and her children from her husband.

Continuity porn was Roy Thomas’ field of expertise. Nobody could wank back issues and turn the resulting substance into comics plots like Roy Thomas. No continuity fix was too pointless for Roy Thomas; he was the godfather of continuity-fixing for its own sake.

If Thomas were working at DC today, he would spend the next decade carefully “explaining” DC’s revamped continuity in his stories – which may be neat for old fans, but when I was a kid I HATED Roy Thomas’ stories because he was clearly obsessed with tying every single character with decades-old characters whose only conceivable significance was that Thomas had read about them as a kid. I mean, seriously: Writing a whole story in order to “reveal” that Marvel’s modern speedster was the son of an obscure golden age speedster who had an embarassing name… what was the point of that revelation? At least Magneto was a character that people were actually using in stories, not just a distant fond memory; meanwhile the Whizzer was a forgettable footnote that nobody younger than Thomas cared about, with no dramatic value beyond the continuity-obsessive “hey, what if THIS fast guy were the child of that other fast guy I read about when I was 9? EXCELSIOR!”

When I first learned about old pulp-hero The Spider, I was genuinely surprised that Roy Thomas had missed the opportunity to “reveal” that The Spider was actually the secret identity of either Spider-Man’s father or Uncle Ben. Of course, the most likely reason for that “missed opportunity” is that Marvel never owned the rights to The Spider (for which we should all be grateful).

Bernard the Poet

December 13, 2011 at 8:54 am

I don’t love Roy Thomas’s ret-con, but I do think ret-conning ret-cons, often only makes things worse.

Undoubtedly the original ret-con, ‘ you always thought that Quicksilver and the Scarlet Witch were mutant outcasts from a Gypsy community, but NO, they are in fact the long-lost children of the Whizzer and Miss America!’ is bad.

Following up with ‘you always thought that Quicksilver and the Scarlet Witch were the long-lost children of the Whizzer and Miss America, but NO, because Magneto’s wife also gave birth (and died) up exactly the same mountain!’ just makes a bad story worse.

I don’t mean to single out Micheline and Byrne, they are not the worst offenders by a long chalk. But I’d like to see Editors take a stronger line on ret-cons and continuity porn. Fine, if a writer really has a first class story to tell, then he should be able to do it, but we’re not just getting the really first class stories, are we?

If a writer comes in and says he wants to re-write Character X’s origin, reveal an untold chapter in Character Y’s past or iron out that continuity glitch from Character Z’s first series, then the editor’s default position should be to say, “no, give me something new.”

I don’t know, I’m torn on the whole thing. On the one hand, I see what everyone’s saying about retcons and about the inconsistencies in this particular one… but, on the other, Magneto as Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver’s dad has always made sense to me. I think we could maybe chalk it up as worth it, if only so Wanda and Pietro don’t have a dad named after a bladder condition.

“If a writer comes in and says he wants to re-write Character X’s origin, reveal an untold chapter in Character Y’s past or iron out that continuity glitch from Character Z’s first series, then the editor’s default position should be to say, “no, give me something new.””

This is how I feel about a lot of comics as a whole. I dont want to see Barry Allen reimagined or Another take on Supergirl or Ultimate Phoenix Saga or any of these rehashes of the same shit over and over again. Editors should be able to tell Geoff Johns I don’t give a fuck who you liked as a kid, we arent bringing Hal Jordan back, make something new.

I’m almost 30 years old and this rebooted DC feels old to me, I grew up with Wally and Kyle and the 90s mainstays, so going back to the 60s guys feels like a huge step back. I worry that a new generation of writers will do the same thing. Editors need to push more new writing.

I know this is off topic, as much as I loved both story lines, but I’ve always thought “Wundagore” was an annoyingly stupid, stupid name. Was it supposed to evoke the name of a real world place?

And don’t get started on “Genosha”!

This is how I feel about a lot of comics as a whole. I dont want to see Barry Allen reimagined or Another take on Supergirl or Ultimate Phoenix Saga or any of these rehashes of the same shit over and over again. Editors should be able to tell Geoff Johns I don’t give a fuck who you liked as a kid, we arent bringing Hal Jordan back, make something new.

New characters in established roles is not the same as pushing new ideas or making something new. It’s just pushing old ideas with new window dressing. Even if for a short time Wally or Kyle were significantly different than their predecessors, it didn’t last long. Wally in particular became just Barry Allen lite by the end of his tenure. And his Rogues Gallery was the same as Barry’s as well.

How many retconned origins is the High Evolutionary involved in? LoL

joec-

I hadn’t ever thought about it until today, but I just realized that I love ‘Wundagore.’ Not pretension whatsoever, it is just nice and silly. I’m not sure where ‘Genosha’ came from.

Brian from Canada

December 17, 2011 at 6:44 am

I always got the impression that Roy was following Stan & Jack’s earliest motives to repeat the successes of the past into the present: Lee & Kirby brought back Human Torch, Captain America & Sub-Mariner (and later Toro), and now Thomas was bringing the later 50s heroes like Whizzer, Red Raven & Miss America back. Not to mention there’s a story in the middle when Bucky conjures up The Vision and The Patriot.

And it did make sense as a story, because powers weren’t established that they couldn’t be genetically passed… and DC was milking their 40s line pretty well too at the time IIRC.

What I find FAR more interesting is the way modern writers are going back to the same well. We’ve seen stories with The Angel and The Patriot, not to mention the Agents of Atlas. If only we knew what happened to Terry Vance and Sun Girl ;-)

The whole Magneto family thing is bizarre. Polaris, Quicksilver, & Scarlet Witch are obviously his kids or related to him, I’m just surprised it took Marvel so long to go with it. Even in the old Brotherhood stories there was a feeling of it. It seems to be by coincidence, but Magneto & Quicksilver always looked alike with the hairstyle and attitude.

In the same aforementioned 80s Vision/Scarlet Witch miniseries, there is an issue where The Whizzer is on the scene and Pietro and Wanda are fully aware they are not his children, but cannot bear to break it to him. Two issues later, Magneto shakes down Bova and finds out he is the sibs’ papa, and he hunts them down and breaks the news.

Is Polaris Magneto’s kid? It seems like she is half the time. But then Polaris had a sister. Was she Mag’s kid too? And there was a girl named Anya who died when she was 2. I keep waiting for her to turn up alive and wel.

Brian from Canada

December 18, 2011 at 3:57 am

Manta:

Anya died in a fire. Erik uses his powers against the people who started it, which is why Magda (pregnant with the twins) flees to Wundagore.

As for Polaris, it was originally established that she WASN’T a child of Magneto, and it was just coincidence that she had similar powers.

Chuck Austin changed that in recent years with the explanation that Magneto lied for her benefit… though that seems rather out of sync with the past stories, as that he immediately showed concern for the twins after he learned about them — so why not her?

Roy Thomas was basically a pioneer of everything that’s been wrong with comics in the last forty years. If only Stan had told him to cut the crap.

I like some of Roy Thomas’ retcons. Not all, but I’ve enjoyed enough of them.
The Whizzer’s name is nothing. Remember, this is a guy who got super-powers (and cured a fatal snakebite) from a transfusion of mongoose blood.

To be fair, it might have been radioactive mongoose blood.

Hammerheart: actually what you described is the reason why I love super-hero comics so much. Thomas as a comic fan himself wrote what he loved and that he loved was what many fans loved too. all the Golden Age stuff was great and playing continuity, doing retcons was fascinating and made the super-hero Worlds even more interesting. As a kid you hated that, as a kid I loved it, because it was showing me a World, especially all the GA that I didn’t know existed.

Younger readers don’t understand, but at the time the idea of “Wanda and Pietro are the children of the Whizzer and Miss America” made perfect sense.And it wasn’t just Thomas being nostalgic for the comics of his youth, either. When Roy Thomas came up with this idea, the Invaders were an ongoing series that Marvel was pushing in the mid-70’s, within which the Whizzer (who was basically 1940’s Quicksilver`) and Miss America (a red-headed woman who resembled Wanda, even to the point of wearing a mostly scarlet costume with a cape) were pretty much the only romantic couple for most of the run. While Invaders was pure retcon, the characters really do date back to the 1940’s. Anyway, it’s not surprising that Marvel would try to pump up the Invaders which had middling sales by tying it into the current Avengers continuity, particularly since two of the Invaders, by complete coincidence, bore a resemblance to Wanda and Pietro.

Incorrect Citizen Alan. Giant Size Avengers #1 was 1974; the Invaders didn’t debut until the following year (Giant Size Invaders #1). The Whizzer and Miss America were minor, occasionally seen players in the Invaders, more associated with the Liberty Legion until near the end of the Invaders’ run. They weren’t particularly romantic: There was more attention to the Torch crushing on Spitfire who was interested in Cap, if I recall (surprisingly no use of Peggy Carter, though I don’t think Cap met her until late in WW II).
I didn’t have a problem with the Whizzer being tagged as the dad, but it had nothing to do with Invaders.

It makes much less sense to have Magneto as their father given his sexual interest in the Scarlet Witch when she was in his Brotherhood. And I’ve always liked legacy characters and I like the connection between the two Golden Age heroes and Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch.

“First, the idea of a superhero named “The Whizzer” always made me giggle”
Worse that his costume is yellow.

He got his powers from mongoose blood. I think he’s past being embarrassed by anything.

I just reread a Roger Stern Avengers that recaps Wanda’s life. When thinking back to what she’s been told about her birth, Magda walking away into the night virtually screams “This woman is still alive somewhere!” I’m amazed nobody ever followed up since far less significant characters have been endlessly mined for stories.

Just re-reading the comic where The Whizzer reveals that he’s Wanda and Pietro’s father, and I thought – wait, Magneto’s their father! So glad to have this cleared up. However, The Whizzer and Miss America have another son, Nuklo, and it was *his* radioactivity which killed Miss America. So, did she actually die from the stillborn child? Or was the stillborn child not actually stillborn, and, in fact, Nuklo?

No, Nuklo was born first. The stillborn child was the second child, a few years later.

To add more confusion to this re-con wank: In 1972, Roy Thomas introduced “The Invaders” (which were based on The All-winner’s Squad, who got re-conned when Stan Lee re-conned Capt. America and Bucky) at the end of The Skrull-Kree War. Rick Jones mental powers were unlocked by the Supreme Intelligence and Rick created The Invaders, who along with The Avengers stopped the war.><

recall that Magneto got regressed by his own Alpha mutant creation to be younger for quite a while. Recall also that it has been stated a few times in the comics, cannot recall specific issues, that mutants age much more slowly than the general populace int he comics too.

that would explain while Wanda and Pietro are not something like in their 80’s now. but also recall that in comics time passes much more slowly too. Where you might have been collecting a particular book for several years in real time, in comics time only a few months may have gone by….

New characters in established roles is not the same as pushing new ideas or making something new. It’s just pushing old ideas with new window dressing. Even if for a short time Wally or Kyle were significantly different than their predecessors, it didn’t last long. Wally in particular became just Barry Allen lite by the end of his tenure. And his Rogues Gallery was the same as Barry’s as well.

You act like that’s an unavoidable problem. Kyle never became Hal.

God, I’m going to miss magneto being the twins legitimate father. Sigh

Brian you should edit this article to include the X-Men page. The very month that Avengers revealed the twins mother was Magda was the very same month that X-Men showed Magneto pining over her — and Byrne drew both issues, so the face confirmed it (Byrne faces aside).

The current editions of the Knights of Wundagore trade include the page from X-Men now, plus the letters page from Avengers where readers who figured it out write in demanding confirmation

It is possible again that the Maximoffs are the children of the Whizzer and Miss America.

Unlikely. Odds are extremely high that their parents (or at least one of their parents) is an Inhuman.

Brian you should edit this article to include the X-Men page. The very month that Avengers revealed the twins mother was Magda was the very same month that X-Men showed Magneto pining over her — and Byrne drew both issues, so the face confirmed it (Byrne faces aside).

The current editions of the Knights of Wundagore trade include the page from X-Men now, plus the letters page from Avengers where readers who figured it out write in demanding confirmation

Sure, I’ll add it in for you.

The thing I hate about these kinds of changes, particularly the now Magneto is NOT their father, is that it isn’t done for any reason. It’s not because something didn’t make sense so they wanted to create an answer to rectify it or even to create a Better story. It’s just a “hey let’s just change it so Magneto is not her father for no reason”. I’m not adverse to change so long as it’s not “just cuz” (which means that somewhere down the line someone will either change it again or change it back ‘just cuz’). If they do resolve who SWs real father is at some point, it’s not going to be a more interesting story, other than the fact that it’s different from what was known or thought before. Then like I said it will just get changed back later, or changed to something different that also isn’t any more interesting.

I expect it will get changed back if & when Marvel / Disney are finally able to get back the movie rights to the X-Men characters.

I would say that this is a case of the tail wagging the dog, but the fact is that the Marvel Studios movies are reaching a much wider audience, as well as making Disney a whole lot more money, than the actual comic books. So I don’t really know which one is the dog and which one is the tail any longer.

Make Jonathan Drew their father…………………………….

In my mind, Magda is alive and well.

…and going by the name “Mystique.”

Chaim Mattis Keller

December 14, 2014 at 8:09 am

I’m definitely hoping that the MCU goes with the Whizzer-Miss America origin as canonical. The “Agent Carter” series would be a great place to introduce those characters, and if they’re connected to early SHIELD, then it would make sense that Hydra (in a European base, yet…Wundagore Mountain, perhaps?) got their hands on the children, as per the trailer scene in Captain America: The Winter Soldier.

I guess they could argue that Whizzer and/or Miss America were Inhumans.

I could see Magda’s real reason for fleeing Magneto was infidelity and, after he murdered a town for letting his actual daughter, Anya, die, fearing what he might do if he found out that his beloved wife was carrying someone else’s child.

I can also see that Magneto can be reinstated as Scarlet Witch/Quicksilver’s biological dad; Scarlet Witch’s hex powers/chaos magick powers are, at their peak, retcon powers. Between reshaping Xorn to resemble Magneto, removing the mutant gene at the end of House of M,and the shenanigans of Axis, the mentally unstable Scarlet Witch had at least three points where her subconscious could change “the blood” connection of either Magneto or herself and Quicksilver so that she could have a family more to her liking.

Then again, Wanda has already tried to shoehorn Mephisto’s soul as her twin sons; still not sure how Speed and Wiccan exist. Unstable woman that makes up family as she goes along .In a few years, they’ll probably reveal that Pietro is also a fictional creation of Wanda’s powers and he didn’t really exist until the incident that caused her to leave the Maximoffs in the first place and she needed a protector. Pietro claims amnesia from that time but really, he didn’t exist.

@Brian Cronin
Given that at least Whizzer (not sure about Ms America) is currently considered to be a mutant despite having no ties to X-Men he’s probably on top of the list of mutants waiting to be turned into Inhumans.

But I’m still suspecting that Marvel won’t reveal the twins to be Inhumans in the MCU. However they obviously aren’t going to be mutants because of the No More Mutants teaser.
I have a theory that they might be revealed to be the children of Baron Strucker who experimented on them to give them powers. After all Baron Strucker already had twin children in comics that got powers from his experiments. So they might essentially be merged with his children, the Fenris twins.
This way they can still have a bad guy as a father whom they can angst over for using them for his own ends and have daddy issues about but it’s just going to be a villain that Marvel can use in their films

@Bob
IF that were true then the fact that Nightcrawler and Scarlet Witch had a kid in an alternate universe would be pretty effed up.

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