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The Secret Marriage Visit Marvel Comics

My favorite moments of my run on CAPTAIN AMERICA & THE FALCON were the by-play between Captain America and Wanda Maximoff, The Scarlet Witch. An exotic and often unknowable Eastern European type, Wanda has been written many ways over the years. She is most typically an also-ran, a face in the crowd of Avengers who hasn't a lot of business going for her. She intrigues me because we really don't know her. We think we do, I mean, she's been around long enough for us to take her for granted, but we really don't know her in any real depth. Speaking for myself, I saw her as fragile and almost child-like, requiring the constant overseeing of her brother Pietro (Quicksilver), with whom Cap would have clashed had the book survived into Year Two. I actually modeled Wanda after my ex-wife (who is, of course, thrilled to be mentioned so much on my website). As I've written about her, she was the kindest human being Id ever met. Generous to a fault and possessed of an almost ethereal grace and innocence. Anointed. The rarest of rarities, an intelligent and sophisticated woman who still possessed a childlike innocence and sense of wonder. Possibly the most noble soul I have ever known. Like Wanda, she was not an American but had an Old World quality about her.

For his part, I saw Cap as  being oddly vulnerable emotionally. There was a chink in his magnificent armor, just the smallest egress to the soft underbelly a trusted and valued teammate like Wanda could exploit. Wanda's inexplicable turn to Cap unnerves him. And, what catches Cap totally by surprise is not so much her desire for him but his need to be loved. I see Steve Rogers as a guy who has sacrificed his humanity for a greater purpose, but that humanity, that need and desire for community, remains an ongoing vulnerability. He's never seen Wanda--a woman he's always considered more or a less a child--in this light. And the guilt he feels for exploiting her to fill the void in his own humanity is the basis for the overwhelming sexual tension between them.

I'm really grateful to Marvel Senior Editor Tom Brevoort for allowing this very odd and very unexpected business between them. Unfortunately,  the power of this arc was blunted somewhat by fans assuming Wanda had lost her mind over in Avengers Disassembled. Had we done this in CAF Year Two, absent Wanda's Avengers meltdown, this business would have been so much more powerful as these two people struggle through a romance ultimately doomed by the sheer complexity of duty, family, honor and generational factors.

Artists Joe Bennett and Jack Jadson, aided by Transparency Digital, did a fabulous job with this. The subtleties of Wanda and Steve's expressions allowed me to back way off and let the pictures do the talking. I'm grateful we were able to do this, though I wish we'd had more room and more time to really delve into the myriad of possibility this plotline presented.