Posted by:
Byron Brewer

The Brewer Report: Behold ... The Vision!


picI have missed the Vision, the original Roy Thomas created and Steve Englehart nurtured. The “synthezoid” who surprised us by saving the Avengers from his “father,” Ultron, always seeking to establish a brotherly relationship with the Grim Reaper, who made Ronan’s eyes bug out during the Kree/Skrull War when he first kissed the Scarlet Witch. Yeah, the Vision that John Byrne absolutely ruined once taking the reins of West Coast Avengers, eventually leading to Wanda’s madness and Avengers Disassembled.

Yeah, that Vision! The Vision that, I am happy to say, returned to the pages of Brian Michael Bendis’ Avengers mag this month. Thanks, Tony, and thanks, Mr. Bendis!

As you may remember, the robot Ultron is the creator of the Vision, a type of android he calls a "synthezoid," for use against Ultron's own creator, Dr. Hank Pym (Ant-Man/Giant Man/Goliath/Yellowjacket/Wasp/et al/whew!) and Pym's wife, Janet van Dyne (the original Wasp) of the Avengers. Ultron sends his new servant to lead the Avengers into a trap. The Wasp is the first to encounter the synthezoid, and describes it as a "vision" while trying to escape.

Adopting the name, the Vision is convinced by the Avengers to turn against Ultron. After learning how Ultron created him using the brain patterns of then-deceased Simon Williams (Wonder Man), the Vision becomes a member of the team. The team initially believes the Vision's body was created from that of the original Human Torch. The Avengers later are told that the time lord Immortus used the power of the Forever Crystal to split the original Human Torch into two entities: one body remained the original Torch while Ultron rebuilt the other as the Vision.

Not long after joining the team, the Vision is temporarily controlled by Ultron, and rebuilds Ultron of adamantium, and battled the Avengers before regaining control of himself. Shortly after that, the Vision first meets Wanda Maximoff and later becomes romantically involved with her. The two eventually marry, and via the Scarlet Witch's hex powers have twin boys named Thomas and William.

When the Vision attempts to penetrate an energy field erected by the villain Annihilus, he "shuts down" and even after regaining consciousness weeks later remains paralyzed and assumes a holographic form. He eventually regains control of his body and becomes team leader. Having become unbalanced by these events, he attempts to take control of the world's computers. With the aid of the Avengers, the Vision is restored to his normal self, but now closely monitored by a coalition of governments.

In a storyline called "Vision Quest," rogue agents of the United Statesgovernment, manipulated by the time traveler Immortus, abduct the Vision and dismantle him. The Avengers recover the parts, and Dr. Pym rebuilds the Vision but with a chalk-white complexion. The revived Simon Williams, however, does not allow his brain patterns to be used again to provide a matrix for Vision's emotions, explaining that the original process, done without his consent, had “ripped out his soul.” Although Williams' own love for Wanda leads him to feel guilt, he justifies his actions by claiming the Vision was never anything but a copy of him, a claim that a number of other Avengers, including the Wasp, accept even though he had on countless occasions prior to this referred to the Vision as "his brother". This, along with damage to the Vision's synthetic skin when he was dismantled, results in the synthezoid's resurrection as a colorless and emotionless artificial human.

The original Torch also returns from his own apparent demise, casting doubt on the Vision's identity. The Vision and the Scarlet Witch's children are then revealed to be fragments of the soul of the demon Mephisto, who had been broken apart by Franklin Richards shortly before the birth of the twins. The twins are absorbed back into Mephisto, which drives Wanda insane. Although she seems to recover, Wanda and the Vision separate, each operating on a different Avengers team.

Shortly after a reformation of the Avengers, the Vision sustains massive damage in the final battle with the sorceress Morgan Le Fey, and although incapacitated for several weeks is eventually rebuilt and recovers. While recovering, the Vision gives up his attempt to reconcile with his wife. Remaining a member of the Avengers, he briefly becomes romantically involved with teammates Carol Danvers (Ms. Marvel) and Mantis before attempting again to reconcile with the Scarlet Witch.

Grief over the loss of the twins, however, has proven too much for Wanda, and she attempts to alter reality to recreate them. This causes a series of catastrophic events that includes the Vision crashing an Avengers Quinjet into AvengersMansion. The Vision advises his teammates that he is no longer in control of his body and then expels several spheres that form into five Ultrons. The Avengers destroy them, and an enraged She-Hulk tears apart the remains of the Vision.

Tony Stark remedies Jen’s damage in Avengers #19.

So, as I said in my review of the above mag, welcome back, Vision. I just hope you do not become a predictable pawn in the coming Ultron War. That would be a plot without any … vision!