After months of anticipation, Dr. Strange starring Benedict Cumberbatch finally came out this past week and I had a chance to see it on Friday night. In one of the opening scenes, there is a shot of the New York skyline. If you look closely you will see Avengers tower amongst the sea of buildings reminding us that this is a story that takes place in the same universe. Growing up I did not read the Avengers or any of their related character comic books. I was more interested in the X-Men and Spider Man. Dr. Strange is one of the comics I definitely avoided and frankly had not even heard of much. When it comes to the movies, the Avengers and all their individual characters are definitely head and shoulders above the X-Men and Spider Man ones. Though the more recent X-Men movies are getting better and I look forward to the new Spider Man Homecoming coming out next Summer. As for Dr. Strange, it keeps with the rest of the Avengers related movies in the sense that it was exceptional entertainment worth watching.
The only other times I have seen Benedict Cumberbatch previously was in Star Trek Into Darkness back in 2013 where he was just alright and in Sherlock in which he was amazing. It’s this amazing that he brought to Doctor Strange. It is a delight watching Cumberbatch pull in the range of emotions a complex character such as Dr. Stephen Strange goes through as he transforms from an egotistical successful doctor to a broken man and back to an egotistical superhero. It’s almost as if he is is becoming the Iron Man of this current generation of Avengers movies as they try to slowly phase Tony Stark out.
Dr. Strange as a whole is an origin story so through most of it you see his character going through self discovery, trying to hold onto his life as neurosurgeon Dr. Stephen Strange. It is not until the very end that you finally see Strange as who he actually is supposed to be, a hero. In fact, he even seems to be a hero to heroes, offering to help another Avenger in a bonus after credits scene. This leads me to believe he will play an even bigger role in the Infinity Wars, the next Avengers movie which is due to come out May of 2018.
Dr. Strange being part of the Infinity Wars makes sense since he also happens to have the Time Stone, one of the six Infinity Stones major Avengers bad guy Thanos has been hunting down over the course of most of the Avengers movies. If you have not been keeping up with the Avengers movies then you are probably going to get very lost wondering what that stone has to do with anything. As a quick refresher I will run each of them down.
The Space Stone was the very first Infinity stone that initially showed up in Captain America The First Avenger. It is a blue glowing cube called the Tesseract that let’s you pretty much travel anywhere you want in the universe but was initially used by Hydra to power weapons back in World War 2 against the Allies. Captain America showed up, foiled Hydra’s plans and then went down on an airplane in the Arctic where he ended up frozen alive for about 70 years. When he was finally discovered and revived, the cube was also recovered and sent to SHIELD for analysis. After some time the cube opens up a space portal through which Loki shows up. Loki made a deal with Thanos to deliver the Space Stone to him in exchange for an alien army that invades earth in hopes of enslaving humanity.
The Mind Stone is like a really powerful computer and can be used to control other people’s minds. It is the one Infinity Stone Thanos actually had before giving it to Loki to help in his world conquering plans. Loki used it in his scepter to control SHIELD scientist Erik Selvig and Hawkeye in the first Thor movie. Eventually Loki was defeated and lost his scepter to the Avengers. They gave it to SHIELD for safekeeping but ended up with Hydra. The Avengers got it back and Tony Stark used it to create Ultron, an artificial intelligence peacekeeping program that decided humanity was the enemy. Ultron used the scepter to build a new humanoid robot body and used the stone to give it life. With the Mind Stone in it’s forehead, it imbued the robot with intelligence and a mind of it’s own. This new robot called Vision realized Ultron is the enemy and helped defeat it. Vision is now one of the Avengers.
The Reality Stone, also known as The Aether, is a red liquid that gives the host incredible strength, power and other super powers. It first showed up in Thor: The Dark World where it was initially used by the Dark Elves to fight the Asgardians but were defeated. The Asgardians then hid it away in their treasure room but it was stolen back by the Dark Elves. Thor and his fellow Asgardians defeated the Dark Elves and retrieved it again but this time gave it to The Collector for safe keeping since it obviously could not be kept safe in Asgard. At the end of Guardians of the Galaxy The Collector’s room was blown up so we are not sure what has happened to this stone. We may have a clue when Guardians of the Galaxy 2 comes out next May.
The Power Stone is the Orb in the Guardians of the Galaxy that Thanos sends Ronan the Accuser to find. It is a powerful energy source that can blow up entire planets. Star-Lord finds it in a cave first before getting it stolen by Ronan. Star-Lord and his fellow Guardians get it back and use it to destroy Ronan. They finally give it to the Nova Corps for safe keeping.
The Time Stone can be used to manipulate time and is inside the Eye of Agamotto which was kept in Kamer-Taj, the place where Dr. Strange went to to find healing. While getting trained Dr. Strange happens to find it in the library. While reading about it he starts learning how to use it before being stopped by the other sorcerers who tell him it is dangerous. Near the end Dr. Strange actually wears it around his neck and uses it’s power to help save the day. Afterwards he left it in Kamer-Taj but who knows what will happen with it next since Thanos is out to get it.
The final stone is the Soul Stone and has yet to be seen. Hopefully it will show up in Guardians of The Galaxy 2 and if not that then in Thor: Ragnarok coming out next November where Dr. Strange is sure to show up in since he told Thor he would help him with his problem in the bonus credits scene at the end of Dr. Strange. Spiderman: Homecoming is coming out next July but I doubt any of the infinity stones will show up there but you never know. Either way all six infinity stones will eventually all show up together in the Infinity Wars.