May 6th will see the release of the eagerly-anticipated sequel to Doctor Strange. Here’s what you should rewatch to get the most out of it.
Before we start, this blog will have spoilers for Doctor Strange, Avengers: Endgame, WandaVision, Loki, and What If. You’ll probably still be able to enjoy Multiverse of Madness without watching these, but the experience will be much better with the context they provide. So here’s what to rewatch ahead of Sam Raimi’s return to directing superhero movies:
It seems obvious to say, but you should check out the first film before you watch the sequel. It’s likely that Multiverse of Madness will heavily reference Strange’s first outing in the MCU. This was the first film in the franchise to talk about the multiverse. To show Strange what he wasn’t seeing, the Ancient One sent him on a whirlwind tour of different universes.
The sequel will also see the return of some characters from the first film. Baron Mordo, after becoming bitter about the abuse of power by sorcerers like Strange and the Ancient One, could possibly be an antagonist in Multiverse of Madness.
Avengers: Endgame did a lot to set up the next stages of the MCU. The finale of the Infinity Saga saw the Avengers travelling across time and space to collect the infinity stones and undo Thanos’ destruction.
The use of the stones to bring back the vanished half of the universe may have had unexpected consequences. In Spider-Man: No Way Home, Strange mentions that the second snap may have altered the fabric of reality. This quote appears in the Multiverse of Madness trailer, so they clearly want us to remember it.
This Disney+ series saw Wanda Maximoff journey through her past trauma to become the Scarlet Witch. Elizabeth Olsen, the actor behind the role, is second on the cast list and likely to play a big role in the Strange sequel. She features heavily in the trailer.
With how powerful we now know her to be, she could be instrumental in resolving whatever the main crisis of the film is. Some even speculate that she may take on the role of antagonist at some point. Her biggest desire at the moment is to get her children back. So what will she do to achieve that?
Another Disney+ series, Loki followed the version of Loki that escaped the Avengers during the second act of Endgame. It introduced the concept of ‘variants’, people who stray from the ‘sacred timeline’ and form new realities. The Time Variance Authority (TVA) clips these new realities and captures the variants.
As Multiverse of Madness takes us through the multiverse, we may see variants of characters we already know.
The chief antagonist revealed in the finale, He Who Remains, could also make an appearance. He controlled the flow of time to prevent a multiversal war between variants of himself. With the TVA now seemingly run by a variant of his and the sacred timeline now branching, how will this impact the multiverse?
The first animated series on Disney+ for the MCU was an anthology series about alternate realities. Or so we thought. It all came together at the end with Infinity Ultron attempting to cleanse the multiverse of life.
One episode centred around a variant of Doctor Strange. What if Doctor Strange lost his heart instead of his hands dealt with a Strange who lost his partner Christine. He tries to bring her back. In doing so, he destroys his universe. It’s worth noting that the universe disintegrating looks very similar to something that happens in the MoM trailer.
Spider-Man: No Way Home
We’ll keep this one short as there may still be people who haven’t seen it. But you may know from the trailer that Doctor Strange casts a spell that affects reality. This, on top of the use of the infinity stones in Endgame to alter reality, may set the stage for the chaos of this upcoming sequel.
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