Agatha Harkness
Agatha Harkness.
Textless variant cover of Midnight Suns #3 (November 2022).
Art by InHyuk Lee.
Publication information
PublisherMarvel Comics
First appearanceFantastic Four #94
(January 1970)
Created byStan Lee (writer)
Jack Kirby (artist)
In-story information
Team affiliationsDaughters of Liberty
Witches of New Salem
Strange Academy
PartnershipsFantastic Four
Scarlet Witch
Notable aliasesProf. Emeritus Harkness
  • Extensive knowledge of magic and magical objects
  • Magic mastery

Agatha Harkness is a character appearing in American comic books published by Marvel Comics. Created by writer Stan Lee and artist Jack Kirby, the character first appeared in Fantastic Four #94 (October 1969).[1] Agatha Harkness is a powerful witch and one of the original witches from the Salem witch trials.[2] The character debuted as the governess of Franklin Richards and as an ally of the Fantastic Four.[3] She trained the Scarlet Witch / Wanda Maximoff in the art of magic.[4] She is the mother of the supervillain Nicholas Scratch. Agatha Harkness has also been a member of the Daughters of Liberty.[5] Initially an elderly woman, she managed to become young again and increased her strength.[6]

Kathryn Hahn portrayed Agatha Harkness in the 2021 Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) miniseries WandaVision, and is set to reprise her role as the star of the spin-off series Agatha.

Publication history

This section needs expansion. You can help by adding to it. (February 2021)

Agatha Harkness debuted in Fantastic Four #94 (October 1969), created by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby.[7] She appeared in the Avengers Disassembled storyline,[8] in the 2022 Midnight Suns series,[9] and in the 2023 Scarlet Witch Annual series.[10]

Fictional character biography

Agatha Harkness and her familiar, Ebony


Agatha Harkness was introduced as the governess of Franklin Richards.[11] She easily fended off the Frightful Four when they came to abduct Richards, and admitted to the Fantastic Four that she is a witch.[12][13] She then aided the Fantastic Four in battle against Annihilus.[14]

Through the actions of her son Nicholas Scratch, she was revealed as a member of the previously unknown New Salem, Colorado, a colony of witches of whom she had been the leader. Scratch had taken control of the town and persuaded its inhabitants that Agatha betrayed the community's secrets by working for the Fantastic Four. She was abducted and taken back to the community with Franklin to stand trial.[15] The Fantastic Four followed and came into conflict with Salem's Seven, Agatha's grandchildren fathered by Scratch. The Fantastic Four defeated them and freed Agatha. In the process, Scratch's evil was revealed to the community of New Salem and he was banished to another dimension.[16] Agatha became the magical tutor for the Scarlet Witch in the use of witchcraft.[17]

Scratch and Salem's Seven returned, and Agatha foiled their attempt to conquer the world.[18]


Eventually, Salem's Seven took over the New Salem community again. They captured Agatha and killed her by burning her at the stake, though Agatha soon made her presence known to Wanda in what appeared to be a post-death astral form. In an ensuing battle between the Scarlet Witch and Salem's Seven, the entire community's energies were drawn into Vertigo of the Seven, who lost control of them. Wanda managed to capture some of the energy and funnel it away, but the entire town was destroyed. Following hints from Agatha's astral form, Wanda channeled the remaining energy to become pregnant with twin children of Vision, her android husband.[19]

Later, Agatha resurfaced, again alive and well, when Wanda's infant children began exhibiting odd behavior (disappearing for brief periods of time) and Wanda became unstable after her husband's dismantling; Agatha provided no explanation for her return.[20] After Mephisto claimed that Scarlet Witch's children were actually fragments of his own soul and reabsorbs them, Agatha briefly mind-wiped Wanda's memory of her children in an attempt to help her deal with the trauma. Agatha later restored those memories soon after when Wanda became a pawn in a complex plot by Immortus. Agatha aided the Avengers in their battle against Immortus.[21]


"Avengers Disassembled"

Further information: Avengers Disassembled

Wanda, again having no memory of her children, angrily confronted Agatha about their existence. Nick Fury of S.H.I.E.L.D. found what appeared to be Agatha's corpse in her home and concluded that Agatha had been dead for a long time.[22] Some time later, a partially amnesiac Wanda tells Clint Barton she is under the care of her "Aunt Agatha" in a small apartment.[23] However, this version of Wanda was later revealed to be a Doombot that replaced the real Wanda at some point.[24]

Ghost life

Agatha has since made her presence known in the New Multiverse as a ghost. She appears to Wanda and confirms her death at the hands of her protégé.[25] She also concurrently serves as the omniscient narrator of Vision's ongoing solo title, having induced precognitive visions through an arcane ritual involving the murder of Ebony at some undetermined point before her death.[26] Agatha fights alongside Wanda and the spirit of her biological mother Natalya Maximoff against a physical manifestation of Chaos which is attempting to destroy witchcraft. The two spirits channel their magic through Wanda and, after Quicksilver is summoned, they manage to defeat the being once and for all although this has gravely wounded Order, the Goddess of Witchcraft. Natalya sacrifices herself to restore Order and, in doing so, also returns Agatha to life. Despite noting that her and Wanda's paths are intertwined, Agatha chooses to have some time to herself to enjoy being alive again.[27]


The Daughters of Liberty

Agatha Harkness later appears as a member of the Daughters of Liberty where she taught magic to its members. At the time when Captain America figured out that Dryad is a revived Peggy Carter, Agatha teleported herself to inform him that the threats that the Daughters of Liberty have been facing are connected with Aleksander Lukin's sister Alexa.[28] Agatha later briefed the Daughters of Liberty's latest recruit Shuri about the situation involving Selene having Sharon Carter's soul. She then proceeded to transport herself, Sharon's Iron Patriot appearance, and Shuri to where Selene is located.[29]

Midnight Suns

During the battle with Corina (now calling herself Korrosion), a gigantic explosion of energy was unleashed due to the Black Mirror's destruction and neither Korrosion or Agatha Harkness were anywhere to be found. But, it turns out that the explosion had sent them back to their homeworlds where they belong. With her youth restored, Agatha had been gone into hiding ever since.[30]

Restoring the Darkhold

After taking out Necrodamus before he could launch an attack on Scarlet Witch, Agatha goes to meet her at her new Emporium witchcraft shop. The two exchange some small talk before Agatha brings up the topic of Chthon (which was sealed inside her soul) and the Darkhold (which Wanda had absorbed). Scarlet Witch thinks she's strong enough to take on this burden, while Agatha believes otherwise as she has become aware of several threats looming in the shadows looking to take advantage of Wanda. The two then have an interesting witch-fight that ends with Agatha conceding defeat. However, part of Agatha Harkness' fight against the Scarlet Witch was secretly about gaining access to the Darkhold trapped in Wanda Maximoff's soul. While Scarlet Witch is busy fending off attacks, Agatha slithered her way inside and ripped out Chthon's heart.[31]

Powers and abilities

Agatha Harkness is a powerful magic user.[32] She is also an expert in arcane knowledge.[33] Harkness can manipulate magical forces for numerous effects by invoking beings or objects existing in vast dimensions tangential to Earth through spell recitations, such as psychokinesis, levitation, and the tapping of extra-dimensional energy.[34] She erased the memories of Wanda Maximoff dealing with her children with a spell.[35] She displayed powerful telepathic abilities.[36]

Agatha Harkness was initially an old woman who used used her powers to extend her life for centuries.[37] However, she later somehow got de-aged back to the prime of her life.[38]


Agatha owns a familiar black cat named Ebony.[39] She possesses the capability to transform into a large ferocious wildcat who possesses great strength, speed, and claws.[40] Ebony was sacrificed so her owner could gain precognitive powers.[41] However, she is later resurrected through unknown methods.[28]


Critical response

Deirdre Kaye of Scary Mommy called Agatha Harkness a "role model" and a "truly heroic" female character.[42] The A.V. Club ranked Agatha Harkness 38th in their "100 Best Marvel Characters" list.[43]

Marvel Cinematic Universe

Main article: Agatha All Along

Brady Langmann of Esquire ranked Agatha Harkness 4th in their "Best Characters in the Marvel Cinematic Universe" list.[44] Richard Fink of MovieWeb said Harkness became "incredibly popular" and gained a "loyal fanbase" after Agatha All Along went viral.[45] Cat Hampton of Collider called Harkness a fan favorite because of her theme song.[46] Ben Saffle of Comic Book Resources stated Agatha Harkness gained a "fandom following her antics" in WandaVision which resulted in her starring in her own spin-off.[47]


The character of Captain Jack Harkness from Doctor Who and its spin-off Torchwood was named after Agatha Harkness.[48]

Other versions

Ultimate Marvel

An alternate version of Agatha Harkness appears in Ultimate Fantastic Four. This version is a young woman and claims to be a S.H.I.E.L.D. psychologist sent to evaluate the Baxter Building think tank.[49] It is later revealed that her S.H.I.E.L.D status was faked and she is really an ancient empathic being that destroyed Atlantis.[50] Known as the Dragon-of-Seven or the Hydra, it can exist as a single creature or as seven seemingly separate ones. In her form as a group of seven individuals, she posed as the superhero group Salem Seven.[51]

In other media


Video games


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