Who Is Strucker in the MCU, Explained


[Editor’s note: The following contains spoilers for WandaVision, Season 1, Episode 2.]

There may only be two episodes of WandaVision available to stream on Disney+, but that doesn’t mean we’re hurting for mysteries to dig into. The new Marvel Disney+ show has done a cracker jack job of setting up some big questions that will need to be answered as episodes continue to roll out every Friday. One of those questions arose in Episode 2 during the in-episode commercial, which looks like it will become a regular feature of the show. The commercial was an advertisement for Strucker watches and that name bears a lot of importance in Wanda Maximoff’s (Elizabeth Olsen) life. So, who exactly is Strucker and why is his name appearing in a fake commercial in an episode of WandaVision?

Just to recap: The name “Strucker” appears in the 1960s-themed Episode 2, specifically in the in-episode commercial that cuts in right after someone attempts to contact Wanda via the radio. The commercial shows a dashing couple played by characters only known as Commercial Man (Ithamar Enriquez) and Commercial Woman (Victoria Blade). The commercial sees the couple dressed in their best, preparing for a night out on the town. The commercial voiceover tells us that a man’s look is not complete until he’s wearing a Strucker watch. The camera then cuts to a close-up of the watch, which shows the Strucker name as well as the word “HYDRA” and the symbol for the criminal organization. The voiceover tells viewers, “Strucker: He’ll make time for you,” which bears an ominous double meaning as it refers to the company making watches but also to a man who will put all of his focus on a special subject.

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Image via Disney+/Marvel Studios

The name “Strucker” is not just some fancy brand name used to hock expensive timepieces for that special man in your life. MCU fans will know that “Strucker” refers to Baron Wolfgang von Strucker, a formidable enemy of the Avengers in both Marvel Comics and the MCU. In the comics, Strucker rises to infamy as a member of the Nazi party before going on to have associations with HYDRA and HYDRA’s infiltration of S.H.I.E.L.D. at one point. Strucker is also notably the founder of A.I.M., or Advanced Idea Mechanics. A.I.M. is an organization composed of the most brilliant scientists on the planet engineering ways to bring down the governments of the world. So, TL;DR: Strucker is one bad dude.

Strucker is also introduced into the MCU as the man who experimented on Wanda and her twin brother, Pietro (Aaron Taylor-Johnson), after the twins volunteered to become test subjects. In the MCU canon, Strucker’s (Thomas Kretschmann) experiments are the reason Wanda and Pietro have their powers. (This is much different in the comics.) Strucker first appears in Captain America: The Winter Soldier, showing up in the same mid-credits scene which introduces Wanda and Pietro (Aaron Taylor-Johnson). The villain then has a meatier part in the first act of Avengers: The Age of UltronDuring his time in the second Avengers movie, Strucker is established to be calculating and ready to attack, but not entirely above surrendering when the going gets tough. He is cautious to unleash Wanda and Pietro on the Avengers, too, but soon the twins decide for themselves that they would like to do whatever it takes to strike back at Tony Stark, since he is the man responsible for manufacturing the bomb that killed their parents as children living in Sokovia. Strucker is eventually killed by Ultron, removing him from the MCU arc for good.

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Image via Marvel Studios

We have to wonder why exactly Strucker’s name is appearing in WandaVision. Currently, it seems likely that all roads lead back to Wanda. The Strucker watches commercial and Stark toaster commercial both reference pivotal figures in Wanda’s life, men who helped form her into the person she is today. The WandaVision trailers has also hinted at Wanda potentially being the reason all of this — Vision’s reappearance, the sitcom world, S.W.O.R.D. monitoring what appears to be a pocket universe in a town called Westview — and, as the line between fantasy and reality blurs, she brings in more of her past to create a more stable fiction. It’s also possible that the references to Strucker and Stark in the commercials are the doing of S.W.O.R.D. in an effort to safely draw Wanda out of an otherwise unstable world. Or maybe, just maybe, some version of the Strucker-created A.I.M. or HYDRA faction has infiltrated Wanda’s mind and is once again controlling her.

At this point, every theory about Strucker’s reappearance in the MCU (albeit, just in name at this point) is possible. It’s still very early on in WandaVision‘s run, which means more answers will be coming soon. That said, we should not ignore the fact that Strucker was mentioned so early in WandaVision and should keep an eye out for future references to Strucker, A.I.M., and HYDRA.

WandaVision Episodes 1 and 2 are now available to stream on Disney+. New episodes will be released every Friday. Before you go, learn more about the sitcom and genre influences in WandaVision.

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