The highly anticipated Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 is finally within grasp, and while you know plenty about Star-Lord, Gamora, and Rocket, you probably don't know much about Ayesha, aka that gold lady from all the trailers. Played in the film by Elizabeth Debicki, there's been suspiciously little footage of her, even though she's supposed to be one of the film's main villains. With that in mind, we've assembled a quick course on everything you'll need to know about Ayesha before seeing her on screen Thursday night. And don't worry. There are no spoilers from the film in this piece.
Much like several of the characters James Gunn has adapted into the MCU, there probably won't be much in common between Ayesha and her comic book counterpart. Movie-Ayesha is the High Priestess of the Sovereigns, who at the beginning of the movie hires the Guardians for a mission -- a mission that quickly goes sour and makes her an enemy. But knowing comic book backstory usually teases what to expect from a character in a movie, so here are five things to know about Ayesha/Paragon/Her/Kismet/Whatever she's going by these days.
Ayesha Is An Artificially Created Being
Though she looks pretty alien, Ayesha is unlike most beings. She was a creation of a group called the Enclave, a quartet of scientists who wanted to genetically engineer a new superior human race that would master the Earth. The being they created in their Citadel of Science (also known as "the Beehive") became known as Him, and, wouldn't you know it, he turned against his creators and set out to chart his own destiny. Well, anything worth doing is worth doing twice, so the Enclave tried again. But THIS time the being they created... also wasn't down to be their puppet and entered a cocoon to finish its evolution. What emerged would one day call herself Ayesha.
Ayesha Was Originally A Male Character Named Paragon
Ayesha has taken many names over the course of the years, but she originally was known as Paragon, a gray-skinned male character. Paragon was the second being created by the Enclave and like his predecessor, he wasn't exactly vibing what the Enclave was putting out for him. He smashed up the Beehive (with help from Doctor Strange and Hulk, oddly enough) and then cocooned himself to cook a bit longer. From inside the cocoon, Paragon sensed the existence of the Enclave's first experiment, Him, and believed that his purpose was to mate with Him in order to create a race of perfect beings. When the cocoon eventually reopened, Paragon had become a gold-skinned female going by the name of Her, and she set out for the stars to find Him, or as he's more popularly known: Adam Warlock.
Adam Warlock and Ayesha Are Two Peas In A Pod
Yep, Adam Warlock and Ayesha were both created by the same kooky science cult. There are no other beings like the two of them in the entire universe, which is probably why Ayesha -- then going by Her -- felt they were destined to mate. But the timing didn't exactly work out because, by the time she had left her cocoon, Adam Warlock had died in battle with Thanos. Not letting death get in the way of her booty call, Her set out on a mission to resurrect Adam. She eventually does so, but he came back without his soul. Now just a hunky husk of his former self, Her realized her mistake and put him back in a cocoon in the hopes that he would one day heal. Adam and Ayesha would eventually be reunited, but he would ultimately reject her affections, leaving Ayesha heartbroken. This is all to say that it'd be very surprising if Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 didn't use Ayesha to make some sort of connection to Adam Warlock.
She's Got Mad Cosmic Juju
Ayesha and Adam Warlock have almost the exact same power set. She's capable of manipulating cosmic energy, an energy source wielded by some of the most powerful characters in the Marvel Universe. Ayesha's cells effectively function as batteries, absorbing the cosmic power around her to use for a variety of functions. Cosmic energy is basically everywhere at all times, so she has a limitless amount of power. Ayesha uses this power for flight, enhanced strength, speed, durability, and energy projection. At times, she has even shown the power to rearrange matter on a molecular level. She is also, for all intents and purposes, immortal. The movie version of the character has yet to show off any of these abilities, but they are there on the table.
Ayesha Is Always On The Hunt For That Special Someone
When Adam Warlock didn't turn out to be her soulmate, Ayesha realized that there were plenty of other fish in the sea, and when you're capable of space travel, there are a lot of oceans to check out. In addition to participating in some heroics, most of Ayesha's time was spent searching for the ideal mate, which maybe explains why she was never the most compelling character. At one point, she held a contest to find a suitable mate but neglected to make it optional. She chose Quasar, Hercules, Wonder Man, Hyperion, Doc Samson, and Forgotten One as her contestant, forcing them to wear reproductive pods on their necks to see how they would react. Quasar was the only one who didn't destroy his, leaving him the "winner" and the object of her affections. Quasar's girlfriend then literally beat Ayesha so hard she was forced to go back into a cocoon, but she later would tag along on Quasar's adventures. She was kinda like if Pepe Le Pew could fly through space, but her movie counterpart seems a bit less boy crazy.