By the Hoary Hosts of Hoggoth, it's a good time to be a Doctor Strange fan. Marvel Studios have already proven that they can propel relatively obscure properties such as Ant-Man and the Guardians of the Galaxy to record-breaking heights, and it looks as if the studio are set to work their magic once again with Doctor Strange when he makes his cinematic debut on November 4.
Honestly, if you had said to me five years ago that a new trailer for Doctor Strange would premiere at the 2016 Olympic Games, I would have assumed that you'd been possessed by Dormammu! But here we are, witnessing Benedict Cumberbatch in the role, complete with the Clock of Levitation and that signature goatee.
So What's The Trailer About?
The minute-long teaser opens with Tilda Swinton's voice-over as the Ancient One, where she explains how magic works within the MCU;
"Through the mystic arts, we harness energy and shape reality."
This is great and all, but for those unfamiliar with the comics, it may seem like Doctor Strange and the other magic-users in the MCU just possess unlimited power, bending reality on a whim. If that was really the case, then the Avengers could just throw Doctor Strange in Thanos's way and take him out in seconds, preventing any unnecessary deaths. Unfortunately for the Avengers though, this isn't how Doctor Strange's abilities will work.
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What Magical Spells And Items Can We See In The Trailer?
Through years of extensive training and rigorous study, Doctor Strange became the Master of the Mystic Arts, using a wide range of spells and magical items to combat the forces of darkness that threaten to overwhelm our world.
The last trailer featured Stephen Strange's astral form in more detail, but that's not the only power that magic-users like the good doctor have up their sleeves. While we don't know the full extent of Doctor Strange's abilities yet in regards to the MCU, the newly released Olympic trailer contains a number of exciting tidbits which reveal more than first becomes apparent.
Inter-Dimensional Travel - In the comics, Doctor Strange uses the Wand of Watoomb to open dimensional portals and travel long distances. This ability can be seen early in the trailer when both Strange and a mysterious figure step through orange gateways, although it's unclear whether the artefact will appear in the film.
Magical Chains - At one point in the trailer, Doctor Strange creates chains of energy that thread between his hands, which he then unleashes a moment later like a whip, attacking his adversary. This could either be a physical manifestation of the Crimson Bands of Cyttorak, a binding spell that draws its power from the same deity as X-Men's Juggernaut, or it could simply be a lesser-known spell referred to as the Chains of Krakkan.
Book of the Vishanti - No Doctor Strange story would be complete without the Book of the Vishanti, an indestructible tome that contains defensive spells written by three ancient beings known as the Vishanti — Agamotto, Oshtur, and Hoggoth. It would be rather surprising if the book that Cumberbatch casts a spell from in the trailer isn't the one and the same, although Marvel Studios do like to stray from canon on occasion.
Eye of Agamotto - Hidden without the Amulet that clasps Doctor Strange's cloak together, the Eye of Agamotto is arguably the Sorcerer Supreme's most valuable item. While its key function is to see beyond any disguise or illusion, the Eye possesses a wide range of abilities that also work when the good doctor travels in his astral form.
Cloak of Levitation - It's hard to deny that Doctor Strange looks rather dashing with that unique cloak of his, but this unique magical artefact is far more than just a fashion statement. As the name implies, the Clock of Levitation enables Doctor Strange to fly without expending too much magical energy and lies entirely under his mental control. Unfortunately, the signature goatee that completes the look doesn't possess any equally impressive magical abilities that we're aware of — although who knows what could happen in the future of the MCU?
It's difficult to know exactly how much control Doctor Strange will hold over these abilities in the final film, as Marvel decided to tread the well-worn origin route with this one, but to be fair to the studio, this should work in the movie's favor as few know who Doctor Strange is outside of comic book shops.
The November 4 release date may seem far away right now, but it's not like we've been starved of Doctor Strange's presence. You only have to watch the video below to see how the Sorcerer Supreme has actually been running around under our noses this whole time.
Which magical abilities would you like to see most in Marvel's Doctor Strange film?