It’s already becoming a running joke among Marvel Cinematic Universe fans to blame Mephisto for everything that’s going on in Phase Four, which all came from months of rumors claiming that the villain would be revealed as the one responsible for manipulating reality around Scarlet Witch in WandaVision.
That thread continued right up until Agatha Harkness was unveiled as the show’s big bad, before the creative team behind Loki went out of their way to guarantee that Mephisto wouldn’t be involved in the Asgardian trickster’s solo series after an early promo stoked the fires once again.
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Of course, you can’t keep the devil himself down for too long, and yesterday’s debut of the long-awaited Spider-Man: No Way Home trailer has dredged up the Mephisto chatter yet again. Based on the footage, the web-slinging threequel looks to be loosely inspired by the One More Day arc, where Peter Parker makes a deal with Mephisto to save Aunt May’s life by sacrificing his marriage to Mary Jane, who in turn convinces the baddie to have everyone forget Spidey’s true identity.
Inside the Sanctum Santorum we see Doctor Strange’s headquarters covered in snow and ice. In Dante’s Inferno, the Ninth Circle of the Hell where the devil resides is covered entirely in ice, and in several shots the Sorcerer Supreme is seen without his Cloak of Levitation, indicating that he might be an imposter. It’s a hell of a stretch, but Spider-Man: No Way Home ties directly into Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, meaning that nothing can be taken off the table until we know for sure which direction the plot of the former is headed.