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'Doctor Strange' #1 (LGY #427) makes Stephen Strange crucial and supreme
Marvel

Comic Books

‘Doctor Strange’ #1 (LGY #427) makes Stephen Strange crucial and supreme

This issue shows how important Stephen Strange is in many heroes’ lives.

Doctor Strange has had quite a journey under Jed MacKay’s guidance, and he embarks on a new path this week with a newly minted Doctor Strange #1. He’s died, become the Sorcerer Supreme of the dead, watched his wife Clea rise up and take his place, and come back to life. It’s a return to form in the new Doctor Strange, which sees him back in charge, but now he’s got Clea by his side, and all is good. Now, that doesn’t mean he’s relaxing and taking any vacations anytime soon!

Doctor Strange #1 opens with a nice recap of where Doctor Strange is and how he’s finally content with his roles as husband, Sorcerer Supreme, and hero. In a beautifully rendered nine-panel grid, we get a sense of where we left off with Strange #10. Pasquel Ferry’s thin, clean-looking art creates a calming effect in this opening and throughout the story. Matt Hollingsworth’s colors add to that calming effect with a subdued color palette.

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The general vibe of this book is that Doctor Strange is finally content, but he’s busier than ever. The book feels rewarding page after page, thanks to check-ins with various Marvel characters. MacKay makes Doctor Strange feel essential and valued with multiple heroes popping up and even ties in Spider-Man’s current situation as an outcast. It’s a nice change of pace for the character since he’s been isolated in his own adventures, or at least apart from the main goings-on of other heroes. He feels vital to everyone, and it shows in this issue.

Doctor Strange

Doctor Strange doesn’t fight alone these days.
Credit: Marvel

The main conflict set up in this issue involves a key figure who was involved in Doctor Strange’s death. Acting as a kind of international dignitary of Earth and of other dimensions, Doctor Strange is forced to deal with them. This doesn’t make Clea very happy and sets her and Stephen up as possible murderers by the time we reach the cliffhanger. This is a misdirect, of course, but there’s a mystery afoot as far as who could be the killer.

Capping off this issue is a backup story by MacKay and artist Andy MacDonald involving the Freaky Doktor Zee. The art is much more detailed in this backup, focusing on Wong and his new role that was actually teased on Friday. A similar theme pops up in this backup as was in the main story involving making peace, not war, even if punching and fighting might seem like the logical first step. As with Stephen Strange’s desire to heal rather than fight–he’s a doctor, after all–MacKay shows Wong take a similar tact. The backup helps add context and layers to the main story, enhancing both.

MacDonald’s art is great here, with tons of detail and great action. When Wong is put under a kind of spell, there are some fun psychedelic stripes pulling the characters out from the background with colors by Ian Herring.

Doctor Strange #1 is a great start to a new, happier time for Stephen Strange. Maybe more importantly, Doctor Strange feels as important as ever in the Marvel universe, as is shown here, actively helping other heroes and being a big part of keeping a balance of good in the world. Make no mistake, Doctor Strange is an exciting start you and all the magical entities out there will enjoy.

'Doctor Strange' #1 (LGY #427) makes Stephen Strange crucial and supreme
‘Doctor Strange’ #1 (LGY #427) makes Stephen Strange crucial and supreme
Doctor Strange #1 (LGY #427) review
Doctor Strange #1 is a great start to a new, happier time for Stephen Strange. Maybe more importantly, Doctor Strange feels as important as ever in the Marvel universe, as is shown here, actively helping other heroes and being a big part of keeping a balance of good in the world. Make no mistake, Doctor Strange is an exciting start you, and all the magical entities out there will enjoy.
Reader Rating1 Votes
8.7
Feels like a new era as Stephen Strange is happier and more productive than ever
Sets up a murder mystery that'll be fun to unpack
Clean main story art adds a calming effect
Though the cliffhanger is supposed to make you question who did the murder, the full-page splash is rather simplistic and lacks wow-factor
9
Great
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