Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3‘s main villain, Chukwudi Iwuji’s High Evolutionary, beats three MCU antagonists at their own game but is still surpassed by a legendary Marvel bad guy. The original Guardians of the Galaxy’s MCU journey comes to an end in Phase 5 with their fight against the High Evolutionary, which they never expected but were forced to pursue when Rocket Raccoon’s life was suddenly put on the line. Despite his lower power in comparison to villains like Ronan, Ego, and Thanos, the High Evolutionary ended up becoming the Guardians of the Galaxy’s archnemesis.


As it turns out, the High Evolutionary was the Guardians’ biggest villain all along, as he used a painful process to create Rocket Raccoon, designed the Sovereign, and was responsible for Adam Warlock’s attack on the Guardians. However, the High Evolutionary’s goals have little to do with Star-Lord’s team. Instead, he only wants to create the perfect creature regardless of how big his trail of death and destruction becomes while he attempts it. It’s only until the Guardians investigate Rocket Raccoon’s origin that they discover who the High Evolutionary is and how cruel his methods are.

Related: Everyone Who Dies In Guardians Of The Galaxy 3

The High Evolutionary’s Motivations Are Clearer Than Kang The Conqueror’s

The High Evolutionary and Kang the Conqueror in the MCU

Both Kang the Conqueror and the High Evolutionary are MCU villains driven to mass destruction by anger. In Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania, Kang the Conqueror can barely contain his rage while working alongside Ant-Man and his family to get out of the Quantum Realm, so much so that he abandons his truce with Ant-Man and his constant mistreatment of MODOK motivates Darren Cross to betray him. As he explains, Kang resents the Council of Kangs for banishing him. However, flashbacks reveal that he already was destroying entire universes before his exile, though Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania doesn’t reveal the reason why Kang the Conqueror is set on destroying the multiverse.

Chukwudi Iwuji’s High Evolutionary also displays his burning anger while explaining his motivations in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3. While he doesn’t reveal the exact reason for his resentment, he makes it clear that it’s his obsession with perfection that leads him to torture and kill countless living beings. His obsessive desire to create the perfect creature makes it difficult for him to accept failure. Both Kang and the High Evolutionary want to have control over every existing life form, but while the High Evolutionary has a clear motive behind his villainous ways, Kang the Conqueror seems like a villain who seeks violence just for the sake of it.

The High Evolutionary’s Plans Make More Sense Than Gorr The God Butcher’s

The High Evolutionary and Gorr the God Butcher in the MCU

Both the High Evolutionary and Gorr the God Butcher struggle to accept defeat. In Thor: Love and Thunder, Christian Bale’s Gorr the God Butcher holds a grudge against the gods after his daughter dies, so he kidnaps every Asgardian child to catch Thor’s attention and steal Stormbreaker, which he uses to gain access to Eternity, an entity above all MCU deities who can grant any wish. Given how Gorr loses all faith in the gods, it makes little sense that he goes on a quest to beg a miracle from a higher being — and even less sense that he resorts to kidnapping children instead of fighting Thor head-on.

The High Evolutionary also holds little kids captive and motivates the heroes to save them. However, the children play a key role in the High Evolutionary’s plans, as they are test subjects in his experiments to create the perfect species. In fact, the children the Guardians of the Galaxy save are more important to the High Evolutionary than anybody else. He could have continued to improve his experiments and even achieve his goals if the Guardians hadn’t learned about Rocket Raccoon’s tragic backstory.

The High Evolutionary Is A Smarter Villain Than Ultron

The High Evolutionary and Ultron in the MCU

Like the High Evolutionary, Ultron seeks the creation of a perfect species by obliterating a planet and redesigning it to his image, only that instead of organic creatures, he wants to design perfect robots. But while Ultron has all the knowledge of the internet at his disposal and can make countless simultaneous calculations in his artificial mind, his plans were always deeply flawed. Instead of keeping a low profile and destroying Earth by activating all nuclear weapons remotely, Ultron devises a convoluted plan to lift Sokovia into the sky and turn it into a vibranium-powered meteorite. Naturally, the Avengers stop such an extravagant plan pretty quickly.

The High Evolutionary successfully destroys a planet that doesn’t fit his vision, and he kills countless other creatures before anybody can intervene. He even establishes OrgoCorp, a cosmic company that supports his twisted experiments across the galaxy. The High Evolutionary keeps a close eye on the evolution of his creations, and when he wants to discard them, he does it so quickly and effectively that they don’t see it coming. Considering what he does to Counter-Earth, it’s possible that the High Evolutionary has destroyed multiple planets without raising red flags in the cosmos. It’s only until Rocket Raccoon is accidentally involved that the Guardians step in to stop the villain.

Related: Guardians of the Galaxy 3 Post-Credits Scenes Explained: The MCU’s Cosmic Future Revealed

The High Evolutionary’s Goal Is Similar To Thanos’ – And That’s Where He Falls Down

The High Evolutionary and Thanos in the MCU

Finally, the High Evolutionary’s wish to improve the universe by interfering with nature is quite similar to Thanos’ wish to attain universal balance by wiping out half of all life. Neither villain can accept nature as it is, and both believe themselves to be higher beings who have a say in the way life works. However, Thanos’ villainous plans and motivations are much more developed than the High Evolutionary, as Avengers: Infinity War takes more time to establish Thanos’ self-righteous beliefs as genuine attempts to save the universe. Thanos’ arc has various clear layers as he displays sorrow, regret, and paternal love, but also cruelty and vanity.

The High Evolutionary isn’t a lesser villain as a result, as his irredeemable sadism makes him a different kind of villain. Still, he’s at a disadvantage with little screen time to fully develop his nuances and backstory. The High Evolutionary makes an impact as a smart, believable, and highly effective villain in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, and he may stay at the top of MCU villains as the franchise continues. However, Thanos’ protagonist role in Avengers: Infinity War will likely continue to be hard to defeat by future MCU villains.

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