If you’re a fan of the X-Men films then you already know what we’re talking about. The first time we meet the mutant known as Quicksilver, he wraps smiles all over our faces with the scampish manner in which he flits about, arriving in one place and then another before Wolverine and Charles can finish a blink. We find that really cool and catch ourselves wondering how he does that.
The scene in the kitchen of the Pentagon is brilliantly conceived and even more brilliantly produced. Displaying a realistic manner in which a mutant could not only travel fast but still interact with those things around him in an intelligent way, he makes us see Peter Maximoff’s power as more time travel than lightning movement. And we’re hooked. A funny, sometimes silly character with one of the coolest powers yet displayed on the big screen is a perfect compliment to the serious Magneto, the dour Professor X and the grumpy Wolverine. And unlike the disappearance of Nightcrawler after an especially good appearance in X2, the filmmakers wisely decided to not only include Quicksilver in X-Men: Apocalypse, they expanded on him. Here are 15 interesting facts about one of everyone’s favorite heroes.
15. His Real Name Is Pietro Maximoff
In X-Men: Days of Future Past, we are first introduced to Quicksilver living in a suburb of Washington D.C. He’s shown as a slacker teenager, living in his mom’s basement, stealing pretty much anything he wants. His mom, after answering the door, calls him Peter. In the actual Marvelverse, he is Pietro Maximoff, a boy who is a native of a small Eastern European country where he grew up as a gypsy. The Americanization of his name is simply from the director’s desire to make his presence in 1970s America seem more natural. Unlike the appearance of Quicksilver and Scarlett Witch in the Avengers flicks, we have seen no mention of twin sister Wanda in the X-Men series. There is a reason for this. We won’t say that she’ll never appear in the X-Movies because, let’s face it, these things are money-making machines, but she likely won’t for a while. Why? Well, before we can go into that let’s establish exactly what he is.
14. He’s A Mutant… Kind Of
This one basically depends on your source material. The original Marvel comics backstory on Pietro and Wanda Maximoff is really similar to the Avengers movie version. Born in Europe, their parents supposedly killed as youngsters, they started on the dark side and eventually joined the good guys. But then the movie takes a wild turn by insinuating that they received their powers from being “modified” or “enhanced” by one of the Infinity Stones rather than being mutants, which the comics originally show they are. However, later, after joining the Avengers, they aren’t. Confused? Let’s move to the X-Men movie version. As mentioned above, change his name to Peter, eliminate the twin sister and…we don’t even get to hear the word mutant. Since he’s in a movie about mutants, we’ll just assume that. So, in one world he’s enhanced and in the other he’s a mutant. Why? Well, we can sum that up with the next entry.
13. He Is The Subject Of Litigation
The multiple versions of Quicksilver are due to one simple reason: big money. Now, while the reason may be simple, the particulars are anything but. Not wanting to get too far into it, both Marvel Studios and Fox Entertainment own Quickie and twin sis The Scarlett Witch. At one time there was a battle in the courts over which entity could use the characters and in a Solomon-like decision, it was said that both could. Here comes the frustrating part; Marvel, which is a division of Disney and produces the Avengers movies, doesn’t use Magneto (who is their father, comic book-wise) nor call them mutants. Fox, who produces the X-Men movies, doesn’t use The Scarlett Witch. There are more characters which are in this limbo as well, but so far these two have been the focus of the trouble. For fans, ideally, Disney eventually purchases Fox’s rights to these characters so they can all appear together in Marvel flicks. Still, don’t count on it happening anytime soon.
12. He Doesn’t Just Run Fast
Finally getting past the duplicity of the character, we can start to dissect his powers. In the 1940s, there was a Marvel character named The Whizzer. He was around when Steve Rodgers and Bucky Barnes were battling WWII foes with a group called the Liberty Legion. He was initially thought to be the twins’ father, but his power was pretty much just being a jazzed-up Jesse Owens. Quicksilver, on the other hand, is able to interact with his environment while moving. It gets a little philosophical here but think of it like this. If you run faster than your brain can register, either your thought process has to speed up equally or your brain must be able to slow things down so that you can consider your options. Otherwise, if Quicksilver picked up an object he wanted to hit someone with, he would have to physically stop moving fast in order to swing the weapon. As we have seen in the movies, he is able to somehow warp time so that events take place in one speed for him and another, far faster one for normal folks.
11. His Shoes Need To Be Explained
Friction generates heat. Feel your tires after you’ve been driving on the highway for a while. Even with vulcanized rubber, they’re pretty darned warm. Not that Pietro’s shoes couldn’t be made out of a fancy material, but it would be nice if eventually they told us what or how. Perhaps he has them manufactured by Michelin but even then, there’s a reason race care drivers pull into the pits two or three times a race to have their tires changed. Unless it’s explained that his power is indeed somehow time related and the laws of physics cease to apply while he’s in his speed mode, his shoes should look like two old newspapers that were run over by a rototiller when he stops. And his feet should feel like a rack of ribs in a Memphis BBQ house. Surely an explanation isn’t too much to ask for some rabid, ticket-purchasing fans who simply love this guy. At any rate, as shown above, Adidas and Marvel are getting together to market shoes related to the movies. They’re no fools.
10. He’s A Gypsy
Or he’s a gypsy-in-law. Would you believe step-gypsy, perhaps? As previously mentioned, Pietro and Wanda grew up in a mountainous region in Eastern Europe. Adopted as babies by gypsies Django and Marya Maximoff, the children were raised as their own. After they were forced to flee their village when it was attacked by superstitious locals, their adoptive parents assumed to be killed, the two were found wandering in the wilds by Magneto. Coincidence? Not even.
Magneto drafts them into his Brotherhood of Evil Mutants and they fight both X-Men and Avengers. Eventually they switch sides, becoming Avengers in a second generation of the team, not unlike the story line in Age of Ultron. Quicksilver spends a great deal of time in the comics battling daddy issues. It’s actually sort of a formative part of his character. And just when he thinks he’s come to grips with his scattered familial back ground, he is hit with the sledgehammer we know is coming….
9. Magneto Is His Father
Or is it Darth Vader? No, it’s Magneto. Still, the plot device sounds familiar, does it not? This isn’t really a surprise to you even if you only follow the movies but the master of all things metal is eventually revealed to be the actual father of the Maximoff twins. The story gets strange now as a highly evolved cow named Bova acted as a midwife when Magneto’s wife Magda gave birth to the twins. Tragically, Magda died soon afterward. Magneto was crushed at his wife’s death and the entity who evolved the cow, known as the High Evolutionary, gave the kids to the gypsy couple. Later, Magneto forces Bova to reveal the truth to Pietro and Wanda and that is when he recruits them for his villainous mutant team. Since, as we’ve discovered, Magneto will not appear in the Avengers films and Wanda likely won’t appear in the X-Men versions, it will be interesting to see how the relationship is fleshed out.
8. He Has Android Issues
The X-Men movies have not been all that subtle in their use of mutants as a substitute for the many races, creeds and sexualities which have been marginalized and even feared throughout history. But robotophobia hasn’t been addressed nearly as much. When The Scarlet Witch first starts off on a romantic relationship with the realistic but still mechanical man, The Vision, Pietro is not amused. This is not terribly hard to understand as it does not represent marrying outside her own race or religion but outside the very species to which Wanda belongs. As the two grow closer, and marriage is talked about Quicksilver even renounces his sister for a short time. Fortunately, his temper cools and eventually he sees the Vision as the stand-up automaton he is and gives his blessing. The relationship between the two has already been hinted at in Age of Ultron and expanded a bit in Captain America: Civil War.
7. His Inhuman Component
In the Marvel world, races and powers are not limited to one planet, one universe, one age or one dimension. Many other races exist, mostly light years away, though they still seem to meet at or near the Earth quite often. One of these is known as the Inhumans. Supposedly bred by an alien race called the Kree from early humans on the planet Uranus, the Inhumans developed their own advanced society which thrived. Quicksilver came into contact with a mutagen developed by the Inhumans while trying to restore his powers after a battle with Magneto. It effectively made him a part of their race and even though he eventually had the substance removed, it has been suggested that he still retains elements of that power and characteristics of the race – characteristics he could conceivably pass on in his genes. If he truly does, he and Wanda could have different DNA and not be regarded as twins any more. Leave it to Marvel to figure a way to split up biological twins.
6. He Was A Teacher
Quicksilver was one of the head instructors for a school called Avengers Academy which took young super-powered people and tried to train them for the adventures and dangers they would face as adults. Along with Tigra, Justice and Speedball, Pietro worked in the Academy in Avengers’ Mansion during a comic book run called the Heroic Age. Of course things didn’t go smoothly and some rough episodes occurred. Specifically when a student named Finesse tricked him into teaching her about his exploits in Magneto’s Brotherhood of Evil Mutants. If Marvel desired to introduce some new, lesser known characters into its Avengers series, the idea of a school would be a fair idea for how to accomplish it.
5. He Has Other Powers
In Days of Future Past, we witnessed him seem to walk on walls during the kitchen sequence. We have to assume that this is kind of a centrifugal effect of his speed going in a circle. It does not appear like he can walk straight up walls from a standing position. That would make him kind of a stop-motion Spider Man. And he can’t fly apparently as needs solid items like walls to brace against. In the comics, another facet of his abilities was when he would create a vortex or whirlwind, decimating things in his path. That would look awfully cool in the slow motion setup for the next movie. Pietro moving in far smaller circles, object and debris around him reacting to his movements while he decides where to move and create the most havoc. This would be a nice offensive addition to a character that has largely displayed powers for defense so far.
4. His Death In Age of Ultron Wasn’t Definite
We’re moving back to the Avengers version again (can’t tell the players without a scorecard). Aaron Taylor-Johnson, who played Quicksilver in the second Avengers movie, was interviewed soon after and admitted that Joss Whedon wasn’t 100% sure he would die, even taking preliminary steps for future uses of the character.
“It’s [the] Marvel universe, ” Taylor-Johnson said, “It was very much our intention to kind of go the way we did. There was a costume designed for whether… if I didn’t [die]. Which was #@!& really cool. I was like, ‘Oh my God.’
I’m not sure if I really can really go down that realm, but you know, yeah, it was definitely an alternative, that I think they had to play with. But, it was very much set from the very beginning, and Joss had in mind to tell the story that he told… and I was very game for that, as well, because I think it really gives [the movie] sort of an emotional twist to it. A surprise.”
Of course, like soap-operas, it would surprise no one if eventually Quicksilver resurfaced none the worse for wear. Maybe he would come back if they made a movie about his non-mutant origins because…
3. He Could Be In The Upcoming Inhumans Movie
Pure conjecture here but since the mutant/non-mutant history of the twins is so central to how each franchise does and, in fact, must use the characters, a prequel featuring the silver haired hero could be easily worked into the continuum. As we delved into above, his comic book relationship to the Inhuman race would be a useful tool to both introduce the race and how it came to be as well as giving the audience more of a favorite character. Since we’re pretty certain they were not born on the far side of Uranus (although a change to that story would hardly be a surprise), an explanation that the Infinity Stones were ingrained in the creation of the race (in the movieverse) would seem plausible. The Inhumans is set to be released in 2018, so there is plenty of time and there are plenty of films yet to be seen to see if a lead up to this scenario is present.
2. Quicksilver Has A Daughter Who Is An Inhuman
More potential fodder for the movie. In one of his many battles, Pietro gets nearly mangled and is taken under the car of an Inhuman woman named Crystal. The two become and item and eventually Crystal gives birth to a daughter named Luna. Surely by now you’re not expecting one of these men in the Marvel Universe to be a good father and raise his daughter, are you? Quicky and Crystal’s relationship does not last, and he bails on them. Daughter Luna gets the last laugh, though. Being born of mutant and Inhuman blood, somehow she was born with the powers of neither species. Eventually, she undergoes the process which changes her to an Inhuman and gains the power to sense truth and falsehood. Busted! If there’s one power a deadbeat dad hates it’s the power to tell when he’s lying. We suspect Luna’s lie-o-meter was working overtime every instance she came into contact with him and eventually he was outed. Hopefully, she was able to get back child support out of him as well.
1. He’s An Arrogant Schmuck
This is something you can only have gathered from reading the Marvel comics over the years. The movie versions do not even hint at the obnoxious, boorish and pretentious attitude the comic Quicksilver always exhibited. With both words and actions, Pietro comes across as a guy you’d most likely want to take a poke at within a few minutes of talking with him. Impossible to know what his voice was like in the comics but you are left imagining a member of Britain’s royal family admonishing you for tracking mud into Buckingham Palace. Especially since his two initial film appearances depict him as a younger man, fans are left with the impression of a nice, everyday guy who just happens to have an Eastern European accent. Nothing could be further from what comic readers know about him. Just the mentions above of daddy issues, abandoned children and mixed races should be enough to suggest this guy isn’t Peter Parker. As his film persona gets more mature, we’re hoping to see a small glimpse of it come out.