The new­est di­men­sion of the Marvel Uni­verse

SFX - - Front page - Nick Setch­field

Doc­tor Strange is more than just a movie. It’s an almighty sum­mon­ing spell, crack­ing open re­al­ity it­self and un­leash­ing all man­ner of dark forces and oc­cult phe­nom­ena into the Marvel Cin­e­matic Uni­verse. Se­ri­ously, peo­ple, cast a pro­tec­tive hex while you can – this is the stuff they don’t tell their share­hold­ers…

Yes, the in­tro­duc­tion of Earth’s Sorcerer Supreme un­locks a whole new vault of comic book mythol­ogy, from mind-melt­ing mys­ti­cal realms – the As­tral Plane and the 13th Di­men­sion are just beg­ging for the big screen – to a de­monic pan­theon of po­ten­tial vil­lains, from Black­heart to D’Spayre, Mephisto to Baphomet.

It’s also a chance to ex­plore Marvel’s colour­ful ros­ter of su­per­nat­u­ral heroes. Per­haps fu­ture films will see Bene­dict Cum­ber­batch team with the likes of vam­piric ’tec Han­ni­bal King, witches Wic­can and Pixie, fel­low sorcerer Brother Voodoo or even Dai­mon Hell­strom, the Son of Satan, a tri­dent-wield­ing ex­or­cist try­ing to step out from his dad’s horned shadow. Great con­cepts, great vi­su­als: per­fect cinema.

And if Marvel want an el­dritch take on the Guardians of the Galaxy then who bet­ter than ’90s faves the Mid­night Sons – or even ’70s su­perteam the Le­gion of Mon­sters, an un­easy al­liance of such macabre mis­fits as Man-Thing, Ghost Rider and Mor­bius the Liv­ing Vam­pire. In the comics Doc him­self led the Avengers of the Su­per­nat­u­ral, a mag­i­cal spin on Earth’s Might­i­est Heroes.

We prob­a­bly won’t see the stu­dio’s icons reimag­ined as the rot­ting, flesh-crazed Marvel Zom­bies… But then who thought a talk­ing rac­coon and a walk­ing tree would ever front a block­buster?

It’s the Cum­ber­back once more.

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