Whether you’re an avid comic book enthusiast or a casual moviegoer, you’ve probably noticed the rise of superhero movies being pumped out by Hollywood over the past decade. These movies have destroyed box office records and surpassed all expectations. The mainstream hero films such as Captain America, Iron Man, and Thor were all successful films and shaped the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) into what it is today.
There is no surprise that superhero films centered around iconic heroes do well at the box office. What is surprising is the amount of love and praise for the off-the-wall films like Guardians of the Galaxy and Deadpool. One movie includes a fourth-wall breaking, comedic mercenary wearing red tights and the other has a talking raccoon with a tree as a best friend. Even with the lack of beforehand knowledge of these characters, everyone seemed to enjoy these movies. I expect this same “strangeness” to make Dr. Strange one of the most successful Marvel movies this year.
Most people have never heard of Dr. Strange, let alone know how he will fit into the MCU. This article contains all of the information you will need to know about the Sorcerer Supreme before watching the movie next month.
Who Is Doctor Strange?
Before he became the Sorcerer Supreme, Stephen Strange was an arrogant, successful neurosurgeon who believed that money was more important than helping others. Strange suffered severe nerve damage in his hands in a near-fatal car accident. He spent most his money on dozens of surgeries to make his hands usable again.
As a last resort, he spends his remaining money on a plane ticket to Tibet to find a healer known as the Ancient One.
Being a man of science, Strange was quick to dismiss the possibilities of magic and the mystical arts but agreed to stay and study under the Ancient One in the hopes of healing his hands.
After cutting through the mystic veil of reality and having a change of character, Strange quickly excelled in the mystical arts and was handed the title of Sorcerer Supreme. This made Dr. Strange the protector of Earth from all magical and mystical threats.
His fellow apprentice and arch-nemesis, Baron Mordo had been an apprentice of the Ancient One since his youth and was now passed over by a new, arrogant American.
The main villain in Dr. Strange is Baron Mordo’s disciple, Kaecilius. In all of the comics he acts as a messenger and assists Mordo in kidnapping the Ancient One and battling Dr. Strange The trailer show Mordo and Strange working together instead of fighting each other, but we should expect to see their rivalry unfold throughout most of the film. It is possible that Mordo is mentally controlling Kaecilius and Mordo’s true nature will be shown after Kaecilius is defeated.
What are Dr. Strange’s Powers?
We have seen magic in the film industry and have probably memorized every spell Harry Potter has used. Dr. Strange will give a new outlook on how magic is used. He doesn’t need a wand made of phoenix feathers. Instead, Strange studies and practices to master spells and enchantments.
Dr. Strange can do more than shine a bright light disarm his opponent. He has the ability to turn invisible, phase through walls, shoot mystic bolts, banish magical beings to other realms – such as the Dark Dimension – transmutation, telekinesis, flight, teleportation, astral projection, protective shields, and time manipulation – just to name a few of his numerous abilities.
Dr. Strange draws his powers from magical entities such as Agamotto, Hoggoth, and Oshtur. These three entities make up the Vishanti trinity, a trio of god-like beings that lend their powers to the Sorcerer Supreme and help defend the Earth from mystical threats. Without the help of the Vishanti, Dr. Strange would still be able to use magic but it wouldn’t be enough to take down a powerful villain.
Along with having mystical powers that could overtake Thor or even the Hulk, Dr. Strange is a master of martial arts. He can hold his own is a hand to hand fight with Captain America and Black Widow, even without his powers, but I doubt we will see him utilize this skill set in the MCU.
How will Dr. Strange fit in with the rest of the MCU?
If we look back over MCU over the years we can notice all of the hints and missed references to Dr. Strange. We have seen small hints that a Dr. Strange movie was on the horizon, from the Eye of Agamotto in the Asgard’s treasure room in Thor and Ant-man entering the quantum realm to Agent Sitwell telling Captain America that SHEILD knows about Stephen Strange in Captain America: Winter Soldier. With all of these interconnections already in place, it was only a matter of time until Dr. Strange was brought into MCU.
One of the main reasons fans believe Dr. Strange is being brought into the MCU now is to introduce a new infinity stone. If you have been following the MCU timeline closely, you know that five out of the six Infinity Gems have been exposed so far. It is only a matter of time before they find their way into the Infinity Gauntlet.
The Power Gem gives its wielder access to all energy and power that does or ever exist in the Marvel Universe. This was the first time we were aware of the Infinity Stones in the MCU. Ronan kept the stone for his own cruel will, to destroy Xandar. Thanks to the Guardians of the Galaxy, Xandar was saved and the Nova Corps locked the gem away in a safe location.
The Space Gem allows the user to move any object anywhere in space and to exist in any or all locations in space. We first saw the Tesseract in Captain America: The First Avenger and later in the Avengers. This gem allowed Loki to transport to SHIELD headquarters and open a whole through space to bring the Chitauri army to New York City.
The Reality Gem allows the user to fulfill wishes and create new realities, even if it may seem impossible. Malekith used the Aether was used to create a dark matter and alter reality itself in the beginning of time and sought to bring a dark reality back into existence in Thor: The Dark World. The gem may not have been in a solid state throughout the film, but rest assured that it is still the Reality Gem.
The Mind Gem allows the users to strengthen and enhance their mental and psionic capabilities. In Avengers: Age of Ultron Vision – the embodiment of Jarvis – was given a yellow stone that made his powers stronger than the other Avengers. This allowed his conscience to be brought into a living, synthetic body. The Mind Stone gives Vision his ability to use his mind to phase through objects and shoot powerful blasts.
That only leaves the Soul Gem and theTime Gem. Since the Soul Gem is usually connected to Adam Warlock and the Guardians of the Galaxy, I think that the Time Stone will appear in Dr. Strange. It has been widely speculated that the Eye of Agamotto, a mystical item used by Dr. Strange to see through disguises and illusions, contains the Time Gem.
As I mentioned earlier, Dr. Strange has the ability to manipulate time so this could be how Marvel will try to incorporate the last Infinity Stone into the film. If it does contain the last infinity stone, we could see Dr. Strange helping the Avengers – hopefully Spiderman as well – fend off Thanos when he comes to Earth in search of the six infinity stones. This is the most logical path for Marvel to take if they are trying to incorporate Dr. Strange into other movies. The most logical path for you is to get the theaters November 4 and enjoy Dr. Strange.