Dr. Strange Film — By the Hoary Hosts of Hoggoth!

DR STRANGE is the first comic I ever read, and it is the title that got me hooked on comics, and the reason why I prefer Marvel to DC.

Most of the versions of Dr. Strange are admittedly mediocre, under the pens of writers who don’t know what to do with the Master of Black Magic, but the exceptions are shining exceptions, with storylines as good, wondrous and mindblowing as anything penned by A.E. van Vogt, Philip K Dick, or E.E. ‘Doc’ Smith.

If you want to read the good issues, find the original Steve Ditko / Stan Lee run: Strange Tales #110-#146 (1963).

The Steve Englehart / Frank Brunner run on MARVEL PREMIER, where Strange faces Robert E Howard style elder gods: Marvel Premiere #9-14 (1972) (But I would start with #3, just to get the whole story).

They continued on through the Silverdagger arc, the death of Dr. Strange, the attack of the Creators, and the destruction and recreation of the cosmos: Doctor Strange #1-28 (1974).

My one letter I sent as a child into Dr. Strange comics, complaining about an unsatisfying ending to the Dweller in Darkness story arc (#35-#38), appears in #39, for those of you collecting John C. Wright trivia.

Once or twice, a live action or cartoon version of the good doctor has appeared, usually as a guest star on Spiderman or the Hulk, and then again on his own direct to DVD cartoon. They are unexceptional and forgettable. In one, Dr. Strange and all magicians are portrayed as Martial Artists.

In a live action pilot in 1978, they changed the Ancient One into Merlin, changed Baron Mordo into Morgan le Fay, and changed Clea from a silver haired sorceress in the Dark Dimension to a college student.

Some of the scenes had a real Steve Ditko vibe to them, and I rather liked the background music by Paul Chihara. Here is it is!

(The opening dialog between Morgan le Fay her half-unseen master is precisely right for Dr. Strange, as is the astral journey at the 54 minute mark, if you just want to skip there. Also, the funkadelic Morgan theme plays at 11.30.)

There was also a 1992 effort, called DR MORDRID, which was more in the mood and flavor of Dr. Strange than any prior version of Dr. Strange.

But no one has ever done Dr. Strange correctly, not like the story lines I listed above.

What about the upcoming big budget movie?

My comment: They changed the Ancient One into a bald woman?! Is there nothing the curse of Political Correctness cannot ruin? Because the Left is not happy unless they put a fly in your soup. For your own good, you loathsome untermensch, you.

Aside from that, this looks like it is directly canonical to the comic book. There is even a glimpse of the famous rose widow of his Greenwich Village house at the end.

So the jury is still out, but I have high hopes.

Those hopes are dashed. My elation did not last long. The roaches are everywhere, and have spat on everything.


The Ancient One is traditionally depicted as male, but Feige explained that Marvel saw this figure as more of a mantle than one specific person. He told BirthMoviesDeath in an interview,

The sorcerers have been around for millennia, protecting us from things we didn’t know about until this story. There have been multiple [Ancient Ones], even if this one has been around for five hundred years, there were others. This is a mantle, and therefore felt we had leeway to cast in interesting ways.

In a time when Marvelites are calling out their favorite movie studio on the lack of female characters in these films, in comes Tilda. …  The glorified actress is no stranger to gender-bending roles, and one of her biggest strengths is playing characters that require major transformations. (See the witch in Chronicles of Narnia, the archangel Gabriel in Constantine, Madame D. in The Grand Budapest Hotel and Mason in Snowpiercer, to name a few.) Which makes her the perfect candidate to portray such a gender-ambiguous role.

So the Ancient One is gender-ambiguous now? And the idea that Marvel fans (I am one) are ‘calling out’ anyone for having too few superheroines in films is not just a stupid and nasty lie, it is also an unconvincing one: no one not already totally loyal to political correctness regards it as anything but an insolent irritant.

The very opposite is what is happening: we Marvelites are sick and tired of your political correctness turning our fun entertainment and escapism into yet one more dreary yet braindead lecture to hector us.

Dear Mindless One and other servants of Dormammu who made this movie: I doubt a single more devout fan of DR STRANGE exists anywhere on the globe, but now you’ve snubbed the fans, prostituted our beloved comic, demeaned my sex, insulted Steve Ditko, snubbed all Tibetans and magicians everywhere, insulted everyone and everything not loyal to your insular anal-cranium worldview, and … for what? What was gained…?

Nuts to you, Freakshows, and the horse you road in on.