ByDavid Rodemerk, writer at
Watched HBO and Cinemax as a little kid before "binge-watching" was even a thing! Mom called me a TV Guide with diapers. Twitter @filmigos
David Rodemerk

The Hulk, Silver Surfer, Apocalypse. If you and your friends are avid fans of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, then I'm sure you have tossed around these names and other countless heroes and villains during your debates about which one is the most powerful. I will propose another character: Doctor Strange.

With the Doctor Strange movie arriving soon, I thought about all the crazy spells and mystical chants he's used during his wild adventures as Marvel's Sorcerer Supreme. I wonder which ones he will use in his appearances in various MCU movies? If you want know more about some of his magical artifacts, check out my post about Doctor Strange being Marvel's straight-up pimp.

8 powers that could make Doctor Strange one powerful mofo:

8. Astral Form

Doctor Strange showing off his astral form
Doctor Strange showing off his astral form
  • First Time Used: 1963
  • Issue: Strange Tales #110
  • Comic Title: "Dr. Strange Master of Black Magic!"

In the five-page story Dr. Strange, Master of Black Magic! a common man seeks out Doctor Strange to help him cure his intense nightmares. Before Strange enters the man's dreams, he projects his astral form (his spirit leaves his body) to a hidden temple where he asks The Ancient One for advice. He then enters the man's dream and finds a shadowy figure riding on a horse. We are introduced to one of Doctor Strange's enemies: Nightmare! The man wakes up (Doctor Strange is still in his trance) and puts a gun to Strange's head. Here, Doctor Strange calls upon The Ancient One's help when the amulet around his neck glows, causing the shooter to freeze in place. This gives Doctor Strange enough time to astral back into his body with Nightmare exclaiming, "You’ve eluded me THIS time, but I’ll get you YET!”

7. Crimson Bands Of Cyttorak

  • First Time Used: 1964
  • Issue: Strange Tales #124 & 125
  • Comic Title: "The Lady From Nowhere" & "Mordo Must Not Catch Me!"

Doctor Strange only mentions the Crimson Bands of Cyttorak in Issue #124, but it is in Issue #125 where we meet Baron Mordo. Mordo has ensnared The Ancient One within the Crimson Bands of Cyttorak, which are super durable red bands that wrap around. There have been various occasions where Doctor Strange has used this spell to contain an enraged Hulk within an orb created by the bands. I'm sure this is something that would put a little smile on the Mighty Thor's face as to the famous incident in The Avengers.

6. Images Of Ikonn

Doctor Strange takes down Galactus
Doctor Strange takes down Galactus
  • First Time Used: 1982
  • Issue: Fantastic Four #243
  • Comic Title: "Shall Earth Endure?"

In the previous issue, Galactus teamed up with the Fantastic Four to take down his old herald Terrax the Destroyer. After the battle, Galactus was low on energy and what did the Devour of Planets decide to feed upon on? Earth! With the help of the Avengers (Spider-Man, Iron Man, Thor, and Daredevil), the Fantastic Four did their best to try and stop Galactus. However, it was Doctor Strange who came to the rescue. With Galactus already low on power, Doctor Strange casted his Images of Ikonn spell. The spell caused Galactus to freak out! Doctor Strange said, "I reached into the darkest corners of his mind to confront Galactus with the ghosts of all he has slain." Doctor Strange wins again. The Images of Ikonn can create false images of Doctor Strange or of other people. In the case, Doctor Strange used the spell to conjure Galactus's greatest fear: the images of all the people he has killed.

5. Time Travel

Doctor Strange explaining time travel magic
Doctor Strange explaining time travel magic

  • First Time Used: 1964
  • Issue: Strange Tales #124
  • Comic Title: "The Lady From Nowhere"

In this issue, Doctor Strange is just hanging out in his astral form when he sees a spectral woman locked in a trance. Of course the good doctor helps her out and brings her back to his Sanctum Sanctorum. With the aid of the Ancient One and a candle, Doctor Strange is transported back to ancient time. Here, Doctor Strange confronts the mystic named Zota, who is responsible for the woman's predicament. The two enter into battle, and Doctor Strange emerges victorious. When he travels back to his own time, he learns that the mysterious woman was actually Cleopatra. She becomes a love interest for Doctor Strange later on in the Marvel comics.

It is interesting to note that Kevin Feige, the director of Doctor Strange, has admitted that time manipulation will play a role in the movie:

“In this film, the Eye is a very important relic that can be quite dangerous if used in the wrong hands, because it has the ability to do any number of things, the most dangerous of which is, it can sort of manipulate probabilities. Which is also another way of saying, ‘screw around with time’ — which is part of our story.” (source: Collider)

Could this possible lead to the most powerful Infinity Stone, the Time Gem?

4. (Light Of The) Seven Suns Of Cinnibus

Doctor Strange blasts some major light
Doctor Strange blasts some major light
  • First Time Used: 1979
  • Issue: Doctor Strange #34
  • Comic Title: "A Midsummer's Nightmare"

Doctor Strange's foe, Nightmare, comes back again. After reading some Shakespeare (because Strange doesn't always read magic books), the Sorcerer Supreme goes to bed. For some reason, a little rat enters the house and casts a spell. Suddenly, Doctor Strange is transported to Nightmare's realm where he blasts Nightmare with the Light of the Seven Suns of Cinnibus, which is a powerful energy blast described as a scorching, all-consuming brilliance.

3. Dimensional Travel

Doctor Strange enters the realm of Dormammu
Doctor Strange enters the realm of Dormammu
  • First Time Used: 1964
  • Issue: Strange Tales #126
  • Comic Title: "The Domain Of the Dread Dormammu"

Returning home after having beaten Mordo, Strange is summoned by The Ancient One. The Dread Dormammu, whose name has been spoken in the past, threatens to leave his dimension and come to Earth. The Ancient One says he is now too old to face Dormammu, so Strange travels to his evil dimension. Strange confronts Dormammu, and warns him not to invade Earth. But Dormammu will not speak with "underlings," and demands The Ancient One face him. Strange tells Dormammu he cannot attack his mentor while he lives and Dormammu accepts the challenge!

2. Spell Of Forgetfulness

Doctor Strange makes everyone forget
Doctor Strange makes everyone forget
  • First Time Used: 1965
  • Issue: Strange Tales #129
  • Comic Title: "Beware of Tiboro! The Tyrant of the Sixth Dimension"

Some people just have a hard time believing in magic. Doctor Strange is asked by a panelist of scientists to prove that his magic is real on television. He refuses. The scientists are in possession of the "screaming idol," which is a magical stature that they uncovered in Peru. After messing around with it, Doctor Strange and the scientists are transported to the sixth dimension. The realm of Tiboro who controlled this world with his magical lightning device. Once again, Doctor Strange battles his foe with several special incantations and becomes victorious. Since the scientists witnessed everything, Doctor Strange decided it was in his best interests to make sure they forgot everything that happened. That's when he castes the Spell of Forgetfulness.

1. Multiple Body Illusion

Can we have too much Doctor Strange?
Can we have too much Doctor Strange?
  • First Time Used: 1964
  • Issue: Strange Tales #123
  • Comic Title: "The Challenge of Loki!"

Doctor Strange versus Loki! The Trickster is up to no good as he devises a plot to take down Thor, and it involves Doctor Strange. Loki cooks up a plan for Doctor Strange to use his magic to obtain Thor's hammer. After casting a few spells, Doctor Strange realizes that Loki is trying to pull a fast one. (You would think The Sorcerer Supreme would have something in his books about Greek mythology.) Eventually, Doctor Strange confronts Loki and uses his multiple illusion spell to create clones of himself. A few issues later, Doctor Strange is strong enough to give his replicants the ability to hypnotize people.

As you can see, the great Sorcerer Supreme has quite the books of spells. He hasn't used these spells on just regular criminals. Doctor Strange has battled many different villains from other dimensions, he's contained the Hulk, and he managed to take down the mighty Galactus. If it's true that he holds the Time Gem, he might be the one to take down the Mad Titan Thanos!


Which power do you think is coolest?


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