After 13 films in eight years, we find ourselves on the crest of a brand new wave of movies from the Marvel Cinematic Universe – and it is Doctor Strange that’s spearheading this shake-up. The studio has released a veritable avalanche of promotional footage, specifically geared toward highlighting this new perspective, as the giant of the comic book adaptation introduces magic and mysticism to its stable of superheroes.
Until the release of Guardians Of The Galaxy in 2014, the Marvel Cinematic Universe was largely Earthbound. Even the introduction of Thor and his Asgardian home fed directly into a story that took place right here on our planet. Indeed, it was Thor that provided the previous expansion of the MCU – bringing in an inter-galactic element that was taken further by the arrival of Thanos and the Chitauri alien race in 2012’s Avengers, and further still with Guardians Of The Galaxy.
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So, we have a film universe that was tethered to planet Earth, and slowly opened to include other worlds. Now, two years on, we have the next expansion – alternative dimensions and other realities. Having hinted at the possibility with Ant-Man’s science-based 2015 excursion into the Quantum Realm, the Marvel Cinematic Universe is now ushering in an age where anything really is possible with the power of the Sorcerer Supreme and, with that, the knowledge of a greater range of threats to humanity.
This is a challenging endeavour for the studio, which has tasked writers C. Robert Cargill and Jon Spaihts, and writer-director Scott Derrickson, with bringing Doctor Strange to the big screen. It’s challenging because the character, while beloved by his fans, is actually far from mainstream in the world of the Marvel comic books. He has nowhere near the profile enjoyed by Captain America, Spider-Man, or The Incredible Hulk before their big screen arrivals were scheduled. So, the question is, who is Doctor Strange, and what makes him tick? Well, let’s take a look….