Everyone’s favorite Sorcerer Supreme has taken a long and eventful astral trip from the comic book page to the movie screen. Here are some things that you may not know about “Doctor Strange” before Benedict Cumberbatch took up the mystical mantle:
Doctor Strange was created by “Spider-Man” creator Steve Ditko (with help from Stan Lee), first appearing in anthology title “Strange Tales” # 110 in 1963.
Following standard comic book secret identity naming practices, Doctor Strange’s alter ego—Stephen Strange—has the same syllable starting both names, just like Peter Parker and Reed Richards, because it makes the name easier to remember, according to Stan Lee.
Though Doctor Strange’s costume (mostly blue, with the red Cloak of Levitation and the golden Orb of Agamotto) is iconic, Marvel has changed his costume several times, including twice with a full-face mask. It’s now back to being very close to its original look.
This “Doctor Strange” film is not the first time the Sorcerer Supreme has been adapted for the screen. There was a much-panned 1978 TV movie called “Dr. Strange,” with actor Peter Hooten in the title role.
Doctor Strange is a joiner: He’s famously a founding member of the Defenders, a part of the powerful Illuminati and a member of the Avengers, among other groups.
There are a lot of doctors in the Marvel Universe. Doctor Doom and Dr. Reed Richards (Mr. Fantastic) are scientists; Doctor Strange and Thor’s alter ego, Dr. Donald Blake, are surgeons.
He has a kooky catchphrase: “By the Hoary Hosts of Hoggoth!”
While Doctor Strange series have struggled to endure in the past with cancellations and rebirths and subsequent cancellations, it is clearly his time to shine: There are currently two different Doctor Strange series being published by Marvel Comics, aside from two other one-shots. —Ruel S. De Vera