As the latest news about Doctor Strange (played by Benedict Cumberbatch) and the exciting changes he brings to Marvel’s Cinematic Universe rolls out, the Sorcerer Supreme now finds himself at the center of the superhero movie world. Undeniably the hottest (and only) superhero film of the fall, Marvel’s latest adventure is unique to the MCU in that it officially opens a mystical can of worms for their movie world. As Strange heads to theaters this November, his four-color counterpart is about to meet with history.
Our first look at Doctor Strange and the Sorcerers Supreme #1 comes from CBR. Marvel’s latest preternatural adventure, from writer Robbie Thompson (Silk) and artist Javier Rodriguez (Spider-Woman), sends a weakened Doc (thanks to his magically-rending adventures in “Last Days of Magic”) hurtling into ancient Camelot to confront an ancient evil, The Forgotten. In the process, the drained Sorcerer Supreme joins up with a team of the planets foremost supernatural guardians. Writer Thompson said “it’s more ‘Dirty Dozen’ than Avengers,” before explaining how the historic team-up comes together (via Marvel):
“Well, it starts with Merlin—as in Camelot’s Merlin. He assembles the team, but our very own Doctor Strange quickly falls into a leadership role in the group. Merlin is happy with that at first, but then isn’t so sure, when he finds out Strange is not operating at full power post “Last Days of Magic.”
The series comes with a run of delightful variants by artists such as Jamal Campbell, Javier Rodriguez, John Tyler Christopher, Mike Deodato, Rafael Albuquerque, and Skottie Young. Take a closer look at the Ditko-influenced psychedelia and time-rending magical mayhem below:
In addition to some power-struggles, Thompson delved into the rest of the team, including their unique properties and their major malfunctions. He said:
“We’ve got Sir Isaac Newton, who is a delightful sociopath, and he’s brought along his minion, a slightly evolved Mindless One called the Mindful One. He and Strange have unpleasant history we’ll learn more about in the book. Then there’s Wiccan, from the future, which is a bit of a shock for Strange; if Wiccan’s the Supreme in the future, what does that mean for Strange’s fate? Next up there’s Kushala, who is a Native American sorcerer, a powerful Supreme who is haunted by her actions and is bound for redemption. And then we have Nina, a mysterious sorcerer from Brazil in the 1950’s. She’s a fun, noir-inspired character, a total badass who is used to working alone. And last, we have The Ancient One, or as we’ve been calling him, The Not-So-Ancient-One. He’s a teenager and hasn’t yet become the Supreme we know and love. This is a major shock for Strange, seeing his mentor in a completely different light.”
He also discusses some of the challenges facing the collected sages and new discoveries awaiting them and readers:
“Basically what we’ll learn is that magical time travel comes at a price; Merlin sought out the best, but he’s found them at times in their lives when they’re at their worst, weakest, or most vulnerable. This is a group that was built on the fly; they don’t see eye-to-eye and tensions will escalate right from the jump.”
While this isn’t the first time Doctor Strange has teamed up to face down impending danger, it is one of his closest encounters with a gaggle of his magical peers throughout time and space. It also sounds as though, the Sorcerers Supreme come together during weaker phases of their lives. As a result, what should be a group of the most powerful magic users ever wind up being a group of the most powerful magic users ever struggling to bring their A-game back. It will be interesting to see how this affects their abilities to defeat The Forgotten in its attempt to destroy all magic.
The mystical team-up also has some interesting potential applications throughout the MCU itself. With Scott Derrickson teasing several outings in the works for Doctor Strange, this gathering could be a primer for possible mystical team-ups in future. Either way, Sorcerers Supreme #1 looks like a supernatural adventure of the highest order.
Doctor Strange and the Sorcerers Supreme #1 arrives in book stores and online October, 26 2016.