When the first teaser trailer for Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness was revealed at the end of Spider-Man: No Way Home, fans were left shocked by what appeared to be the live-action Marvel Cinematic Universe’s first overt connection to Disney Plus series What If…?.
In fourth episode “What If… Doctor Strange Lost His Heart Instead of His Hands?”, Benedict Cumberbatch’s grieving hero ends up tearing apart the very fabric of reality to try and prevent the death of Christine Palmer, which ultimately leads him down the path towards becoming the conflicted, deadly, and dangerous Strange Supreme.
We all thought that was the variant who appeared to flash a devilish grin at the end of the Multiverse of Madness promo, but Cumberbatch claimed in an interview with Total Film that they are categorically not one and the same. The actor said the alternate reality rogue is “nothing that you’ve seen before. What If…? is a beautiful riff of a potential. And this is something different”.
Even though Cumberbatch has ruled out one connection between Sam Raimi’s superhero sequel and the fan favorite animated show, the most recent TV spot did confirm that we should expect Hayley Atwell’s Captain Carter to make an appearance, so at least one dot will definitively be joined.
Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness is a tantalizing six days away, and if Marvel are happy to tease Professor X and Captain Carter so openly, then many more top secret surprises must be in store.