As everyone knows, the Super Bowl brings a lot of special commercials and teaser trailers for upcoming movies. During the Super Bowl halftime, one of the most awe-inspiring trailers was for the upcoming Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness film. A trailer that needs at least two viewings, if not more, to fully appreciate all the chaos happening in it as every scene reveals more and more of Stephen Strange’s bizarre travels through the infinite possibilities that is the Multiverse.
Picking up right after Spider-Man: No Way Home, Doctor Stephen Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch) is faced with the consequences of tampering with the fabric of reality. The good doctor is haunted by dreams of his home, the Sanctum Sanctorum in ruins, skeletons lying everywhere, and the stairway from his home leading up to infinite skies.
We see a girl strapped by magic bindings, behind her a star-shaped portal, and in front of her a monster. Hard-core fans of the Marvel comics know this to be America Chavez, a girl that can open star-shaped portals that lead to the Multiverse. Doctor Strange then wakes up from this inexplicable nightmare hyperventilating in his bed.
Dr. Strange’s most trusted ally Wong (Benedict Wong), comes on-screen and warns him, “You opened the doorway between universes, and we don’t know who or what went through it.” as he looks upon the city of New York literally ripping apart. He then seeks counsel from an old friend, Wanda Maximoff, also known as the Scarlet Witch (Elizabeth Olsen). One of the most powerful characters in the world of Marvel with the power to control reality appears in the trailer a total of five times. She tells Strange that her now-dead lover Vision once told her that the Multiverse is dangerous. Though it isn’t apparent what role she will have in the story, she is clearly central to the overall plot.
Fans who remember the first Doctor Strange movie will remember that Stephen learned his magical abilities at a hidden temple high up in the Himalayan mountains. We see an ominous dark cloud coming over a temple of Shaolin monks and magical beings such as a Minotaur. The minotaur is most likely Ritrah, a wizard apprentice from another world (Dr. Strange #51, 1988). This army of Shaolin monks and magic disciples will face an enemy that will prove too great to conquer, as one of the scenes in the first trailer from back in December reveals a defeated Wong in a ruined temple.
A friend turned foe Baron Mordo (Chiwetel Ejiofor) tells Strange, “Your desecration of reality will not go unpunished,” as the world around him is falling apart. It is unclear whether Baron Mordo now works for a higher society controlling the Multiverse, such as the TVA from Loki’s Disney+ series, or an entirely new organization.
It is speculated that it may just be the infamous and very exclusive small group of Illuminati from Marvel Comic Books. Its members are high-ranking super-powered heroes such as Iron Man, Professor X, Black Bolt, Black Panther, Namor, Mr. Fantastic, and Doctor Strange himself, who hold small gatherings to decide the fate of the world. This speculation is not entirely baseless as we see Dr. Strange taken prisoner by Ultron-looking robots in front of a high court of justice that is veiled in darkness at.
The unmistakable voice of Patrick Stewart, who enacts Professor X in the X-Men movies, can be heard saying, “We should tell him the truth,” as Benedict Cumberbatch stares baffled back at the court.
Even though America Chavez is a lesser-known character of the Marvel comic book world, she and Dr. Strange can be seen opening up multiple of her star-shaped portals during the trailer. The young lady will take the Doctor on a mind-altering ride as they appear to be jumping together from one universe to another in fast succession to the point that their very essence is ripping apart.
Things only get stranger onwards as Stephen faces an unhinged version of himself from a different universe claiming, “Things just got out of hand.”
This is followed by fast sequences of an epic battle between Scarlet Witch and someone who has very similar powers to Captain Marvel but is, in fact, not Captain Marvel herself. An ongoing internet theory is that it might be the Superior Iron-Man, a Tony Stark from another reality whose armor, instead of being built out of nano-technology, is made almost entirely out of a biological substance almost like Venom’s Symbiote, and it glows orange when he gets mad, hence the orange flames.
During the trailer, one of the most enlightening moments is Strange looking up at a statue of himself in front of the Sanctum Sanctorum from another reality. It is almost certain that in this parallel universe, Stephen had died a hero by saving his world.
1:42 – 1:59
We can appreciate Strange and Wong fighting together against a giant Starfish monster in the streets of New York City. America Chavez seems to be involved in the fight as she screams, “Look out!” right before the One-Eyed beast with tentacles tosses a bus at them, Strange cuts the flying bus in half with his magic.
The Scarlet Witch reappears in the trailer talking to Strange about double standards. “You break the rules and become a hero. I do it; I become the enemy. It doesn’t seem fair.” This statement strongly hints that Wanda may be the ultimate enemy in the film.
She appears to be concentrating in a circle of candles and concentrating her reality-altering magic. She may have grown bitter after the loss of Vision in the battle of Wakanda in Avengers: Infinity War and finding out her two twin sons were created out of her own subconscious in WandaVision. She might be trying to summon her perfect reality as she did in Westview.
The trailer’s last and most terrifying image is a sort of zombie wizard, probably another incarnation of Doctor Strange. It could also be the reanimated dead Stephen Strange, that died a hero in the parallel universe. He doesn’t seem all too happy to be resurrected from the dead as a zombie as he quite frighteningly casts dark magic with multiple arms.
Marvel has released one of the most jaw-dropping trailers ever with as much information as can possibly be crammed into two minutes. As the internet continues to seek answers and figure out what it all means, there is only one certain thing. All will be revealed when Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness releases on May 6th.
Check out the madness that is this trailer: