Janet Van Dyne was born to a Caucasian father and Asian mother in 1976 on a military base near Dusseldorf, Germany. She eventually went to college in America at NYU, where she shared a room with Betty Ross and started seeing Henry Pym, an unstable scientific genius who sometimes abused her, especially early in their relationship when he hit her twice. The first time he put her head through the bathroom door, and the second time he punched her so hard at a Christmas party that he split the roof of her mouth in two. Betty Ross also claimed that several times Janet appeared to be missing chunks of hair. However, Janet chose to stay with Hank and eventually married him because she believed the good times she shared with him made the bad times worth it.
It was implied her low self-esteem stemmed from the fact that Janet was also a mutant, a fact she kept hidden from everybody except for Hank himself. As a mutant, she could generate a wasp-like sting which she discharged through her hands and shrink her size. Sometimes Janet ate bugs, formed larval nests and laid egg-like constructs, side-effects of her insectoid genetics. She chose to work with Hank at S.H.I.E.L.D.'s Super-Soldier Research Facility under Bruce Banner, where Janet allowed Hank to take the credit for supposedly recreating her powers by scientific means by secretly using her mutant DNA, as Pym continued to make various scientific breakthroughs based on his genetic studies of Janet.
The Pyms were later promoted to head the research and development wing of the US government's new superhuman strike force, the Ultimates, with Banner as their deputy and Betty Ross as their communications officer.
Hank attempted to change, going on a medication, and Jan believed that joining the Ultimates could be a new start for them as Janet enjoyed her status as a celebrity. But later the tensions of losing and humiliating himself in a battle with the Hulk, and his jealousy of Jan's flirtations with Captain America, led to a heated argument between the couple, resulting in Henry hitting her once again. Jan retaliated, and the battle between the two grew more vicious. When Janet resorted to using her mutant powers, shrinking to wasp size, Henry retaliated by donning his Ant-Man helmet and commanding an army of ants to attack her. After the fight Janet was in a state of anaphylactic shock, caused by receiving multiple ant stings at wasp size. Captain America beat her husband into a humiliated pulp for assaulting his wife, despite the fact that Henry grew to giant size in the practically one-sided fight. However, when Captain America visited Janet Pym afterwards, the news made her even sadder. To Mrs. Pym, her hopes for saving her marriage had been destroyed.
Janet was captured by Chitauri at wasp size and smuggled out of the Triskelion to their base in Arizona. She was rescued by Black Widow and with the rest of Ultimates, fought off the alien invasion. Afterwards Captain America and the Wasp came together and started dating, despite attempts of a deeply rueful Hank Pym to make amends and the fact she had not formally divorced Pym as her husband. A while later Jan started to get bored with the relationship, due to the generation gap between them and all of Cap's friends being elderly, and secretly began seeing Hank again (though the relationship has been platonic so far). She recently walked out on Steve and met up with Hank in a bar.
The invasion of America by the Liberators failed to take Janet in to account. They discounted the possibility that someone whose only ability is to make herself "smaller and weaker" could be a threat. By the time they found her, Janet had made her way to the cells in the Triskelion where Captain America was being held under suspicion of murdering Hawkeye's entire family. Soldiers working for the Liberators entered his cell and found two metahuman signatures. Although Janet was easily subdued, they failed to realize that she had already liberated her boyfriend.
In the fight back against the Liberators, Hank had given Janet the Giant Man serum just in case of emergency. Growing bigger, Wasp is able to stomp Swarm just once. When the Ultimates decided to become independent of S.H.I.E.L.D., Janet became the team leader due to her experience on the team where she reinstated her husband's membership on the team for helping defeat Ultron despite the disagreements of many of her fellow teammates.
During the flood in New York City in the beginning of the Ultimatum event, Wasp was separated from her team and was found by Hank Pym and Hawkeye dead and eaten by Blob. Pym avenged her death by biting off Blob's head. Before Pym's death, he requested his team members take Janet's body to his lab and activate "the Jocasta project".
Wasp and her fellow Ultimates were resurrected by the Maker when he rewrote the Multiverse in order to merge all realities into one to help Eternity fight the First Firmament. When the Ultimates from the Prime Earth arrived on Counter-Earth and confronted the Maker for his actions, which were actually giving the First Firmament the upper hand against Eternity, Wasp and her teammates were ordered by him to attack the other Ultimates, and kill them if possible. Wasp didn't take part in the brawl. Instead, she talked with Giant-Man about what he remembered before their deaths. Eventually, the members of both teams realized they shouldn't be fighting each other, and worked together to help Eternity gain the strength to finally defeat the First Firmament. After that, Wasp and the other Ultimates decided to travel the Multiverse to hunt down the Maker.
Janet Van Dyne is a mutant whose mutation granted her a number of behaviors and insect-like traits. As a side-effect of this mutation, Janet had some insect-like behavior, such as the propensity to lay eggs and eat insects. Some of her abilities include:
- Size Reduction: Janet's primary mutant power was the ability to reduce her bodily size through force of will. Janet appeared to have some control over her exact proportions, as she was able to fit inside the Hulk's nose and also be longer than the hand of an average man. She retained her normal strength while reduced in size. In addition, Janet was limited by her body's natural neurological reflex that prevented her from shrinking to below a certain size.
- Flight: When reduced in size, a pair of insect-like wings grew from Janet's back. These wings allowed her to fly at an unknown maximum speed.
- Bio-Electrical Blasts: Janet was also capable of producing blasts of bio-electrical energy that she called her "Wasp Stings". These stings varied in potency, depending on her size. While her size was reduced, Janet could utilize painful shocks that harmed even superhumanly durable beings. While at full size, however, her blasts would kill a human in the same way that a lightning bolt would.
- Size Addition (Formerly): Prior to his death, her husband Hank Pym gave Janet a sample of his Giant Man serum that he developed from her own mutant powers. Janet used this serum in a time of need, and grew sixty feet in height while gaining strength and durability. She then used this power to kill the Red Wasp by crushing her under her foot.
Janet earned double Ph.D.s, one in molecular biology. She was moderately fluent in German. Skilled in unarmed combat
The capability of a regular woman.
The capability of Janet's sting is dependent on her size. Also, at small size, Janet is at risk of getting crushed.
- Her husband claimed that Janet ate bugs and nested in a larval cocoon when she was afraid during times of mutant hysteria and that she also laid eggs every six weeks and had poor personal hygiene.
- Janet wrote one of her doctorates on the work of Otto Octavius.
- Janet admitted to suffering with the eating disorder bulimia for years.
- 71 Appearances of Janet Van Dyne (Earth-1610)
- 7 Minor Appearances of Janet Van Dyne (Earth-1610)
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- 37 Images featuring Janet Van Dyne (Earth-1610)
- 4 Quotations by or about Janet Van Dyne (Earth-1610)
- Character Gallery: Janet Van Dyne (Earth-1610)
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