A couple of days ago Marvel released the first teaser trailer for Doctor Strange - a movie that, according to Kevin Feige, has been more than 10 years in the making. And if Captain America: Civil War already promises to surpass any major event coming from Marvel, Doctor Strange will certainly make us look forward for the future.
And we say that based on just a simple teaser trailer that, pretty much like any good teaser, doesn't reveal anything at all.
Obviously, we do see the titular character, his friend (soon to turn foe, we believe), the obvious baddie of the movie (who may not be the only one, though), and even the Ancient One. And saying that this was a nice surprise is understating it.
So what can we say about Doctor Strange, by taking a look at the comics, at the teaser trailer, and at the entire MCU?
A much needed origin story
Whenever we get a reboot of Spider-Man, Batman, Superman, and very few others, we always say that the origin story isn't needed. And that is because everybody now knows how these very popular superheroes came into existence.
But Doctor Strange is different - without any pun intended. And that is because, even if he is well known among comic book fans, he is still a newcomer into an already established shared universe (let's face it, the majority of the audiences know the heroes of the MCU without knowing their comic book counterparts).
So an origin story is more than welcome at this point. We, those who have followed Doctor Strange's history thus far, know that he was a brilliant surgeon, who had a terrible accident and lost his ability to operate, but then discovered that he could help in a different way.
But this is something completely new for the audiences - and the novelty of the character is perfectly captured in the teaser. Yes - it is an origin story, but one that we actually wanted to see for a first time.
Reshaping one's life
In the comics, after a horrible accident prevents him from doing his work, Stephen Strange wastes his entire fortune searching for a cure, for some way in which he could get back his dexterity and, thus, purpose in life. However, he finds none.
Until one final point in which he hears that there might be someone who can help him. So he travels to meet the Ancient One, whom he calls a fraud. But the healing he was promised wasn't a physical one - but rather of a spiritual kind.
And this is basically the first teaser trailer, the path Stephen Strange takes to become Doctor Strange, a Sorcerer Supreme.
This isn't too much and it may not have too big an impact in the long run. However, we cannot ignore the similarities between Doctor Strange and Iron Man. Both of them are geniuses in their domains - one as an arms developer, the other one as a surgeon. Both are handsome men, sporting just about the same amount of facial hair. Both find themselves at some turning point in their lives, meaning that they have to reassess everything they have previously done.
So if Tony Stark is captured and then refuses to build any more weapons, changing his entire personality in the process, Doctor Strange suffers the same kind of transformation. From a literal jerk, only set on making the most for himself, he becomes altruistic and finds a way to help even more people than before.
What does that mean?
Well, call us Cumberfans, but we do believe that Doctor Strange will be the biggest deal in the MCU starting with Phase IV, just like Robert Downey Jr.'s Iron Man was the face of the entire shared universe for three Phases.
Magic in the MCU
Until now, the Asgardians were the only beings that used magic in the MCU - and even they explained magic as being highly advanced science. So, in a way, we haven't seen this side of the MCU until now - well, at least not properly.
So will Doctor Strange bring magic into the MCU? He should, right, because he is called the Sorcerer Supreme?
The teaser trailer gives us a couple of glimpses to this end - however, nothing too consistent coming from Stephen Strange, except for his hand movements. The still unknown character portrayed by Mads Mikkelsen is, however, doing some pretty nifty magic tricks that could put Loki to shame.
But is this pure sorcery, or is it something else? At this point we are inclined that it is. However, given the fact that Feige once said Ant-Man will be the first to visit other dimensions, only to be followed by Doctor Strange, we are not totally certain. The chakras and all the things Stephen Strange doesn't believe in might just be some other forms of science. Weird science, that is…
But, hey, even if that happens, they will at least show Cumberbatch doing his awesome hand dance moves.
The Ancient One
In the comics, the Ancient One is an old Asian guy - not in the movie, though. In a move that surprised everybody, Kevin Feige announced Tilda Swinton and said that the gender shouldn't count too much when it comes to the most powerful sorcerer in the world.
However, no matter how controversial the move was, it didn't actually stir too many fans - Marvel is best known for making such casting choices. And, apparently, it will pay off in Doctor Strange as well. Tilda Swinton looks actually pretty good when bald and when kicking Stephen Strange into the astral plane.
One thing we should mention, though - she does have some pretty interesting scars on her head. And we don't have any idea where she got them.
Friend of foe?
In the comics, Baron Mordo is one of the most well-known enemies of Doctor Strange. However, he wasn't always like that. Instead, just like Stephen, he was also a pupil of the Ancient One. However, when he saw that the master had another favorite, he rebelled and allied himself with some of the greatest magical entities in the comics.
In the movie, Baron Mordo cannot be said to be a villain, since he is seen with Stephen Strange quite a few times. Furthermore, the leaked pics from the New York set made it clear that both Mordo and Strange will be fighting the same enemy. But until what point?
The teaser doesn't say anything too explicitly. But the way in which several scenes with Mordo play out (particularly one in which he is with the back at the viewer) makes us believe that, in the end, he will become a villain.
Pretty much like Loki, he will have us guessing throughout the entire movie.
The obvious villain
Whoever Mads Mikkelsen is playing is one of the villains of Doctor Strange. But is he the only one?
At this point, we only have what Marvel previously said - that his character used to be a pupil of the Ancient One, who broke loose and who started his own magical sect, with his own followers. And that isn't too much to go on.
There could be a couple of hints in the look that Mads Mikkelsen is sporting, namely in the way his eyes seem to be burned from the inside, as if he were just a vessel for some powerful entity who is trying to escape into the world. And, in this case, and just like in many other MCU flicks, Doctor Strange will also have a hidden villain that works as a puppeteer, having his/her will being done by the obvious baddie.
Who could that villain be? But before that"¦
One of the most persistent rumors about Doctor Strange is that its main villain won't be such a famous one, being used just to introduce the audiences in the weird world of magic. Thus, the villain rumored to be played by Mads Mikkelsen is Kaecilius, who was in the comics a pupil of Mordo (hence explaining the turned back of Chiwetel Ejiofor's character).
After turning evil, Kaecilius manages to open a portal toward a different dimension - one inhabited by malevolent beings. Thus, Kaecilius is the one acting as a puppet in the first Doctor Strange movie, with the big baddie waiting to be revealed further down the line.
From here on, if this rumor proves to be true, we can suspect that Mordo will also become interested in his former pupil's findings and, along the way, become corrupted himself.
So what kind of malevolent being could that be?
Possible Doctor Strange uber-villains
As said, these are just speculations - but Dormammu is almost immediately mentioned by the fans. The interdimensional demon is a likely candidate because he is also one of the most powerful villains in the Marvel comic books, thus actually having the pedigree to replace Thanos as the biggest threat in the MCU.
If that is the case, we can expect a couple of hints and teases to be dropped in the movie, with maybe even a credits scene showing him in his full fiery glory.
Another name which pops on the web just about as much as Dormammu is Nightmare - though there isn't too much evidence in the trailer to suggest that he is indeed going to show up later on in the MCU.
Changing the MCU
A couple of days ago, Benedict Cumberbatch said that the Marvel Cinematic Universe won't end with the Infinity War. It will continue, and it will reinvent itself. Eventually, after the threat of Thanos is removed, the present roster of Avengers will disband, leaving space for new ones.
An actress for Captain Marvel hasn't been announced just yet. Black Panther will certainly be there, and so will Ant-Man. Spider-Man, at the moment, cannot provide a worthy villain to threaten the entire shared universe in the way Thanos did - and, as far as the Inhumans are concerned, Feige said that at this moment the project is uncertain.
The only one remaining is Doctor Strange. The actor portraying him is the best known among the new Avengers actors, while the villains from the comics are the most powerful. We are more than certain that this is the path to be taken in the Fourth Phase of the MCU.
The screenshots are taken from here.