It’s official. Evil Doctor Strange, Shuma-Gorath, and Mordo are in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness.
Multiverse of Madness, directed by Sam Raimi (Spider-Man, The Evil Dead) and written by Michael Waldron (Loki) and Jade Halley Bartlett, is primed to be a major crossover event that will build off of the conclusion of No Way Home, as well as the events of Loki, WandaVision, and even the animated anthology series What If …?
Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness arrives May 6, 2022.
Evil Doctor Strange
So far, the teaser hinted that this alternate Dr. Strange is more scathing and darker, leading many to believe that it’s Dr. Strange Supreme. He first appeared in Marvel’s animated series What If…?, in episodes: What If… Doctor Strange Lost His Heart Instead of His Hands?” “What If… Ultron Won?” and “What If… the Watcher Broke His Oath?”
Dr. Strange Supreme was a twisted version of the original character, plagued by the madness of loss. When his wife Dr. Christine Palmer (Rachel McAdams) died, he was consumed by his grief, descending down a dark path to try and revive her.
Though, he didn’t just stop at studying. In order to amass the amount of power he needed, he absorbed the energy of other magical beings. Despite all warning signs, he tampered with the very fabric of reality to bring Palmer to life again. Through this, Dr. Strange Supreme brought disastrous consequences upon his own universe – and it seems like he might do the same for this one.
The trailer even seems to hint toward this. The voiceover could potentially be from Dr. Supreme Strange’s perspective, noting that he “never meant for any of this to happen… Things just got out of hand.” The brief feature of Dr. Christine Palmer at their wedding could be a further clue, painting him as an evil man with a sympathetic past.
In Marvel Comics, Shuma-Gorath is a pre-historic monster who ruled Earth because of its immense powers. Shuma-Gorath had several universes under his rule and feasted on human sacrifice on Earth. Interestingly, Shuma-Gorath is one of the immortal “multi-angled ones” who came from Canververseto to Earth about a million years ago.
Shuma-Gorath is a scary being who can communicate and control others across multiple dimensions. He possesses unparalleled mystical powers, making him one of the most powerful entities across the multiverse.
The monster’s reign ended on the planet when a time-traveling sorcerer Sise-Neg banished him from the Earth. However, Shuma-Gorath managed to return to the Earth-realm several times, but he found Doctor Strange standing against him. In fact, in the comics, Shuma-Gorath was summoned back to earth to lay waste of Manhattan during Thanos’ invasion. But obviously, the mightly Avengers stop Shuma-Gorath from getting his full powers, and they eventually defeat him.
Interestingly, this is not the first time we have seen Shuma-Gorath in the MCU. The ancient being appeared in the fourth episode of What If, when the Evil version of Strange encounters him while seeking more power. And now, both Dr. Strange Supreme and Shuma-Gorath are coming in Doctor Strange 2.
When we last saw Mordo, he paid fellow sorcerer, Jonathan Pangborn, a visit in his workshop during the Doctor Strange post-credit sequence. In it, we learn that Mordo had left Kamar Taj many months after the events of the film took place. He talked about how he had a revelation and that the true purpose of a sorcerer was to “twist things out of their proper shape… stealing power… perverting nature.” He absorbs Pangborn’s power and strips him of it before finishing with what he sees wrong with the world: “Too many sorcerers.”
Following the MCU timeline we’ve prepared, we know that it’s been approximately around 7 years since we’ve seen Mordo. It is possible that during that time, he’s been searching for other sorcerors and possibly absorbing their magic as well. Now, at the time, this ability seemed rather new, but thanks to WandaVision, we know that both sorcerers and witches have the ability to absorb the energy from another magical user, so it is possible that during his time in exile, Mordo could have learned this ability from other persons or means. That plot will certainly carry over into the Doctor Strange sequel, but how exactly is the question.