Marvel’s upcoming Ironheart TV show may finally bring Mephisto into the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU).
According to Deadline (opens in new tab), the demonic entity will make its debut in the Marvel Phase 5 project. Marvel is said to have chosen Sacha Baron Cohen (Borat, Trial of the Chicago 7) to play Mephisto, whose potential appearance as the devil himself would make a fascinating sight. By prominent Marvel leaker MyTimetoShineHello (opens in new tab)Marvel originally met with Giancarlo Esposito (Breaking Bad, The Mandalorian) to play Mephisto, but he turned down the role.
The report comes a few days after initial rumors of Cohen’s hiring spread across the internet. Multiple MCU members, including MyTimetoShineHello (opens in new tab) and MCU status (opens in new tab), stated that Cohen’s Mephisto would appear in Ironheart. Given MyTimetoShineHello’s history, it seemed likely that this was the case, and Deadline’s own report only adds more fuel to the fire.
If Mephisto makes his MCU debut in Ironheart, it would take a long time to arrive. In early 2021, when WandaVision – the MCU’s first TV show – aired on Disney Plus, viewers became increasingly convinced that Mephisto was the one pulling the strings at the back of the TV series. Fan speculation became so great, in fact, that it drove WandaVision’s online theory mill for weeks on end – not to mention the boost it gave the Disney Plus subscriber base.
Unfortunately, Mephisto was never revealed as the main antagonist of WandaVision. That job fell to Agatha Harkness, who is getting her own Disney Plus show or special presentation from Marvel sometime in 2023.
However, with Ironheart set to explore the battle between technology and magic – Anthony Ramos’ The Hood, the series’ main villain, is another magic wielder in the Marvel universe – it looks like Marvel is ready to introduce Mephisto to the MCU at last. Let’s just hope this isn’t another mystical mistake.
Analysis: Who is Mephisto, Marvel’s version of the devil?
Mephisto is the Marvel Universe’s version of the Devil, who was introduced to the comic book giant’s sizable rogues gallery by Stan Lee and John Buscema in December 1968. Mephisto made his comic book debut in The Silver Surfer #3, and is largely inspired by by Mephistopheles – a demon from German folklore who originally appeared in the legend of Faust.
As an immortal being, Mephisto is an extremely powerful supervillain with numerous abilities. By manipulating the forces of magic, Mephisto can grant himself superhuman strength, the ability to shape-shift, project illusions, alter time, and manipulate people’s memories. He also cannot be harmed by most weapons, which is not good for the vast majority of Marvel heroes. If Mephisto’s physical form is destroyed, he will end up reforming in his realm as well, so there’s no way to really beat him. Oh, and he’s been known to collect the souls of interested parties by trading with them. Hey, he’s the devil after all.
While he has predominantly been a thorn in the side of the Silver Surfer and the Ghost Rider iteration of Johnny Blaze, Mephisto has also struggled with other notable Marvel superheroes. He also battled Thor, the Fantastic Four, Doctor Strange, Vision and Scarlet Witch – hence the WandaVision links – and Daredevil. He also appeared in the 1985 Secret Wars II comic book series, as well as Avengers West Coast.
However, Mephisto is arguably best known for his appearance in the controversial Spider-Man comic book titled One More Day. Here, Mephisto agrees to save Aunt May from Peter Parker after she is mortally wounded by a stray bullet. To save her, though, Peter and Mary Jane are forced to give up their marriage to Mephisto in exchange – a decision that alters their personal timelines, causes Mary Jane to completely forget who Peter is in his everyday and super-human ways. hero, bring back Harry Osborn. to the afterlife of him in Spectacular Spider-Man #200, and results in their daughter never being born. Talk about a unilateral agreement.
J. Michael Straczynski and Jose Quesada’s four-issue comic book in 2007 was so divisive that, to this day, it’s considered the most polarizing Spider-Man story ever created. Fans and critics called him “totally disrespectful” and “harmful” to the Spider-Man character as a whole.
Still, from Mephisto’s perspective, it was the ideal run for comics. The controversy surrounding One More Day has catapulted Mephisto back into the Marvel spotlight, with the villain making notable appearances in a number of comics since then, including War of the Realms and Sinister War.
Mephisto has appeared in non-Marvel comic projects before, such as Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends, the 2007 film Ghost Rider, and various video games. Ironheart, however, will mark his MCU debut – and it will be very interesting to see if he appears in other magical or supernatural-based MCU productions in the future, such as the Doctor Strange 2 sequel Agatha: Coven of Chaos, Blade, What If. …? season 2, and the two Avengers movies arriving in Phase 6.
For more MCU-based content, check out our Marvel movies in the order hub. Alternatively, read our ranking of every MCU villain so far, or find out what happened at the end of She-Hulk’s first season.