In plain sight

WandaVision trailer may reveal an Avengers 5 villain more ruthless than Thanos

Evolve or die.

Details about Avengers 5 are as cloaked in mystery as Dr. Strange's deli lunch order. The Marvel Cinematic Universe is planning to expand its offerings in Phase Four, beginning with WandaVision on Disney+ in January. While it’s unclear when Earth’s Mightiest Heroes might team up again to defeat the next big bad, it’s possible that WandaVision will set the stage for the introduction of the High Evolutionary in Avengers 5, whenever that movie's release date finally arrives.

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WandaVision will see its titular characters trapped in a sitcom-based alternate reality, but they won’t be there alone. The first two trailers for the Disney+ series revealed that Agatha Harkness and Monica Rambeau would be stuck in there with them, both of whom have also lost their memories somehow. However, Wanda and Vision have a third and unexpected neighbor named Herb, who pops in briefly to greet the pair. He seems nice enough (albeit random), but we know that anyone within close proximity to Wanda and Vision must be there for a reason, right?

High Evolutionary, is that you?Marvel

Is Herb the High Evolutionary?

As it turns out, Herb could actually be short for Herbert Edgar Wyndham (aka, the High Evolutionary). First introduced in 1966’s The Mighty Thor #133, the High Evolutionary has a lot of powers, including telepathy, telekinesis, and the ability to control matter and energy. The character has creepy, robotic armor and superior intelligence that has been compared to galactic beings. This combination is a recipe for disaster and chaos. A perfectionist to violent degrees, the High Evolutionary excels at scheming in a bid to advance the evolutionary stage of humanity.

The High Evolutionary often fits the stereotypical description of a “mad scientist” and is willing to go to great lengths to enhance human genetics. His own advanced intelligence has been manipulated by the Celestials, ancient cosmic beings who created the Eternals, and he’s also faced imprisonment at their hands. The villain is powerful, controlling, and would make for a formidable foe against the Avengers, who have yet to battle someone with so much ruthless ambition who is also a human. (Take that, Thanos and Ultron!)

What’s more, the High Evolutionary plays a crucial role in the manifestation of Wanda and brother Pietro’s powers. While the pair have historically been mutants and the children of Magneto in the comics, 2015’s Uncanny Avengers altered their origin so that their powers were the result of the High Evolutionary’s experimentation.

The High Evolutionary is a dangerous villain and could be hard to beat.Marvel

Avengers 5: High Evolutionary

If the Herb in WandaVision is actually one and the same, then it’s possible he’s already begun testing humans. It can’t be a coincidence that the stranger in the Disney+ series is named Herb, right? Perhaps he’s working to advance Wanda’s powers in his plans for perfecting humanity. After all, Wanda is a powerful witch, but the MCU has yet to reveal the full extent of her abilities.

If the High Revolutionary is successful, he could move on to other superheroes before the Avengers get wind of what he’s been up to. In the comics, the supervillain plotted to mutate Earth’s entire population before he was thwarted by the Avengers. This very same story could play out onscreen. Plus, if the villain is at least acquainted with the Celestials, it could bring the Avengers and the Eternals together in a big battle against him in Avengers 5. Ultimately, it’s possible that WandaVision will act as the foundation for the next major MCU event.