Name: High Evolutionary
Alter Ego: Herbert Edgar Wyndham
First Appearance: Thor (vol. 1) #134 (Nov. 1966): "The People-Breeders!"
Super? (Has Super Powers/Special Abilities/Technology): Yes
Number of Appearances: 108
Comic Book Appearances: 107
TV, Film Appearances: 1
The High Evolutionary has very distinctive beliefs and motivations. The High Evolutionary genuinely desires to use science and evolutionary means to re-shape the world into a better, more benign, less brutal place. He apparently does not regard himself as an adherent of any organized religious group or philosophical system. He can best be described as a "Transhumanist."
Keep in mind that the High Evolutionary's brand of radical, applied Transhumanism is all his own, and is not derived from the precepts of any known organized Transhumanist group or any specific Transhumanist philosopher. The extent to which Stan Lee based the High Evolutionary on real-life historical transhumanists is not clear. Certainly there were prominent transhumanist philosophers and activists prior to the High Evolutionary's introduction in 1966, although the fairly modern term "transhumanist" had probably not yet been applied to them. The transhumanist methods and goals of the High Evolutionary have antecedents in eugenic experiments of Nazis as well as in more benign thinking by people attempting to apply genetics and Darwinian discoveries to the human condition.
On Marvel Earth it is likely that the High Evolutionary has many admirers in the Transhumanist community, but he is also probably a topic of frequent debate and disagreement among Transhumanists discussing the merits of his methods.
One example of the High Evolutionary's methods to forcibly (and sometimes violently) push his Transhumanist agenda is his "Genetic Bomb." A device he invented, the bomb was designed to forcibly evolve all humanity. The device was central to a company-wide cross-over story chronicled in one Summer's Marvel annuals. The Genetic Bomb was eventually destroyed by the Avengers.
Because the High Evolutionary's goals and motivations are so unique, they sometimes bring him into conflict with the heroes of Earth. But they sometimes make him an unlikely ally. In many stories he is best classified as a supporting character. Many noble supporting characters and even super-heroes are the product of the High Evolutionary's experimentation, including Bova (nanny to Quicksilver and the Scarlet Witch), Spider-Woman, and the New Men. He has acted as a benevolent father figure to a number of major heroic characters, including Adam Warlock, Quicksilver, Spider-Woman, Wolverine, and Thor. The High Evolutionary has even helped save the entire world, such as when he had a key role in saving the Earth from Chthon.
The High Evolutionary is not really a "hero", but nor is he a traditional self-serving "villain." He is so certain of his beliefs and so powerful in his ability to do what he wants to that he has been in the role of "villain" in many stories. But he is not intentionally "evil." Even most heroes who find themselves at odds with some of his intended experiments or plans do not regard him as "evil", per so.
Suggested links for further research about this character and the character's religious affiliation: