Thursday, March 31, 2011

Intro to Comics: Sorcerer Supreme (Upgrade)

(I first wrote this back in June, this is an expanded version, so enjoy.)
            You more than likely haven't heard of Stephen Strange.  Dr. Strange is a Marvel comics character that was invented by Stan "The Man" Lee to be the number one go to magic guy for superheroes.  He comes from the school of convenient birth names that allow him to simply go by his real life moniker and still sound like he is possessed of a superhero code name.  Strange holds the distinction of also being the worst dressed Marvel Character of that era, not lacking at any moment a sufficient amount of garish jewelry, leopard skin gloves, sash belts, and porn star facial hair arrangement.  It does however look like he'll be getting a live action movie soon, so maybe you'll eventually find out about him.

Seriously, look at this fashion disaster.
            The origin of Dr. Strange is actually a simple one.  Strange was a gifted surgeon, living the high life of a wealthy doctor who delighted at his own smell until one day he was in a terrible car accident which damaged the nerves in his hands.  Unable to manipulate surgeon's tools any longer Strange spent his accumulated wealth searching the world for a way to reclaim his lost gift, wishing to return to his life saving work.

Not really making steps forward in the costume department Stephen.
            His search took him to the far East where he met the Ancient One, a master of mysticism and alternative medicine.  Pleading to be cured he was turned away, there was nothing the Ancient One could do to help Strange reclaim his old life.  Distraught Strange fled to the outskirts of the Ancient One's temple home and found Baron Mordo, who was the Ancient One's gifted apprentice.  Strange observed Mordo plotting to kill the Ancient One and went to deliver a warning.  The attack prevented and Mordo banished Strange was offered a position to learn the ways of the mystic arts, and guard the world against supernatural threats as the Sorcerer Supreme.

Apparently The Ancient One is more of a Yoda type figure in Marvel history these days.
            Strange from that point on began his studies, taking ownership of "The Eye if Agamoto", and took on a collection of allies in his effort to protect the world.  His bodyguard and manservant Wong being the first ally Strange found his greatest support in the super hero community.  Joining first the Defenders, a team with he Silver Surfer (cosmic space hero), the Incredible Hulk (gamma powered super scientist), and Namor (the Prince of Atlantis).  The Illuminati, a group that included Iron Man (technical genius and leader of the Avengers), Professor X (creator of the X-Men), Mr. Fantastic (leader of the Fantastic Four), Namor (again), and Black Bolt (king of the Inhumans, a super society that lives on the Moon)  Strange then joined the Avengers with Spiderman, Wolverine, Luke "Power Man" Cage, Iron Fist, and Spider Woman.  Strange also met his current girlfriend Night Nurse, a talented healthcare professional specializing in the treatment of superhero injuries.  "Dr. Strange and the Night Nurse," Spiderwoman says it sounds like a show she would watch, I think it sounds more like a porno, (but who am I to judge).

Defenders, responsible for the protection of the universe
Illuminati, Secretly running the Marvel Superhero community
Night Nurse, she cures what ails ya
            Strange fights mystical threats like Dormamu, a demonic prince of a dead parallel Earth who wishes to destroy our world as well; Mordo his longest arch rival for the title Sorcerer Supreme; Doctor Doom, who has spent as much time mastering the magic of Eastern Europe as he has spent building time machines; Nightmare, the living manifestations of all the worlds unconscious fears; Mephisto, the Marvel Universe's version of Satan; and lately he has battled his own insecurities, and as we all know, insecurities are the things that keep everyone from becoming a hero... The more you know.

Doctor Doom in his magical leather armor, made from the flesh of his first love.  Regardless of how sympathetic and cool Doom is, you must always remember how huge a bastard he is.
            Doctor Strange passed his title onto fellow magic hero Brother Voodoo recently (now Doctor Voodoo), unable to deal with the stresses of super-heroing any longer.... That lasted all of five minutes.  Doctor Voodoo had some problems.
            See Brother Voodoo was haunted by the ghost of his dead sorcerer brother, hence his moniker, the Brothers of Voodoo, not just that he was a black guy.  But the real problem with the character is that although he had a cool concept, a built in sidekick that may just be his own insecurities made manifest via his necromancy, and that he had sweet threads, he was even more obscure than Stephen, who at least had the title of "Created by Stan Lee" to fall back on.

You can give him this though: man could dress himself with a hell of a lot a style
            Sadly, the Brothers Voodoo met there end in an epic plot.  Agamoto, the magical god whose eye is the chief source of Dr. Voodoo's powers, wanted his eye back.  Turns out he is one of many cosmic beings playing chess with the multiverse and he had written off our world as sacrificial pawn.  The Avengers banded together along with Doctor Strange and Damian, The Son Satan and commenced to fight like the world was burning, because the world was burning, a hole had been ripped in the heavens and hosts of demons made of light started ripping shit up.  Voodoo, Strange, Damian, and the rest of the Avengers channeled their collective power into Wolverine and sent him into the rift to fight against Agamoto for the fate of the world.  When Wolverine, combined with Iron Fist's Kung Fu and Spiderman's sarcasm wasn't enough, Dr. Voodoo sacrificed himself to seal the breach and save the universe.  I think he had held the title of Sorcerer Supreme for about a year... Lame.

Wolverine with the Powers of Luke Cage, Spiderman, Iron Fist, Son of Satan, Dr. Strange, Dr. Voodoo, Mockingbird, Jewel, and the Thing... Well, maybe not the Thing, but he definitely got the Thing's wit to go with Spiderman's quips.
            So now Dr. Strange is on the Avengers, the Eye missing, and there is no Sorcerer Supreme for the time being, until the live action movie is inevitably made and they just have Stephen take up the role again as status quo is god in the Marvel Universe.

Seems to have figured out how to dress himself though, so there is something good to come out of this.

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