Annlyel explores the journey of two of the Marvel Universe’s most prolific stars
Scarlet Witch and Star-Lord; two different characters and yet, they’re similar in almost every way. Both characters, before Avengers: Infinity War only had two appearances in the franchise. Star-Lord, of course, played the most extensive role of the two as both of the Guardians of the Galaxy films revolved around his story while Scarlet Witch was relegated to side character status.
They have both had difficult pasts. For Star-Lord he lost his mother at a very young age and ended up being abducted by the Ravager, Yondu, who used him for thievery and whatever other shenanigans Yondu could get his hands into. It was a semi-traumatic experience as Yondu continuously threatened young Peter Quill with the possibility of being eaten by the crew. But, his hard upbringing made him tougher and he would learn to appreciate Yondu’s tough love.
Wanda Maximoff was living a normal life until her apartment building became the shocking side-effects of STARK industry’s corrupt system. Her parents were killed in the explosion and she and her brother had to learn how to fend for themselves. HYDRA took them in and began experimenting on them, transforming them into living weapons. It was a nightmarish situation but they survived it, and she too grew stronger because of it.
Both characters, unsurprisingly, have love interests which are, of course, the basis of this post. Star-Lord fell for green-skinned assassin Gamora while Wanda Maximoff grew affection for her fellow red-skinned, Mind Stone wearing Avenger, Vision.
For Star-Lord and Scarlet Witch, their love lives didn’t really kick off until Infinity War where we got to see them finally participating in legitimate relationships instead of occasional flirting. But for both Peter Quill and Wanda Maximoff their love for their partners would become the challenges they would have to face in the fight against Thanos.
Gamora and Vision both contained something valuable that Thanos needed. For Gamora, she knew the whereabouts of the Soul Stone. For Vision, he literally had one of the Infinity Stones lodged in his forehead. For Peter and Wanda, they would be faced with the most difficult choices in their lives; having to kill the ones they love in order to keep Thanos from fulfilling his horrific mission. It was a very hard choice but they were forced to that reality.
When Peter was tasked with having to kill Gamora he almost couldn’t but his love and trust for Gamora allowed him the willpower to pull the trigger. Thanos, however, had another idea. He tormented them by allowing Gamora and Peter to think they were doing something heroic just for him to use the Reality Stone to turn the blast that would’ve killed Gamora into bubbles before taking her.
Wanda was also faced with the exact same situation when Thanos arrived on Earth to take Vision’s stone. Vision told her to kill him because only then would they be able to save the galaxy and even though she wished there was another way to defeat Thanos she reluctantly obliged to his wishes. Using her powers she destroyed him but once again Thanos had the upper hand, utilizing the Time Stone to turn back time and retrieve the Mind Stone anyway.
You see, both Wanda were faced with near identical scenarios and yet Scarlet Witch is a hero and Star-Lord is somehow a failure. Why is that? Because Star-Lord’s love for Gamora caused him to make the worst mistake of his life; punching a partially sedated Thanos in the face.
Iron Man and Spider-Man were mere inches from removing Thanos’s Infinity gauntlet, thus winning the battle and saving the galaxy, but when Peter Quill learned Thanos had sacrificed Gamora to retrieve the Soul Stone he couldn’t handle it. He began punching Thanos in the face, ruining the plan HE created and thus sealing the galaxy’s unnerving fate.
Would Wanda have done the same thing if she was caught in that situation? Would she have been able to wait until the gauntlet was off of his hand before attacking him with the full wrath of her abilities? I’d like to believe so.
You see she’s a woman and women are less spontaneous. We can hold our feelings in and wait for the right moment to release those emotions while men are just…well, men. Hence, we come away from the film praising Scarlet Witch for her valiant sacrifice and haranguing Star-Lord for his blundering idiocy.
The question is; if Peter Quill is revived in Avengers: Endgame will he find a way to redeem himself? Can he fix the mistake he made with a heroic return that’ll leave us all cheering for him? I surely hope so.
In the meantime, I will continue to watch Infinity War with the hopes that Gamora and Vision’s sacrifice won’t go unrewarded.
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