When the newest trailer of Doctor Strange In The Multiverse Of Madness was released during the Super Bowl, plenty of people got to see the different things that we are going to expect to appear in the movie. One such scene involved a dark and scary Doctor Strange that seems to have a deformed or zombie-like face. So, who is this zombie version of Doctor Strange, and how does he connect to the movie?
This zombie Doctor Strange is most likely the zombified version of the character from Marvel’s What If…? episode entitled What If… Zombies. Considering that the movie will be exploring different multiverses, there is a chance that this zombie character is from the same universe of the zombies storyline.
Even though a lot of people dismissed the What If…? episodes as mere non-canon side stories in the MCU, you can actually get a lot of different insights from that series, as it could be possible that this zombified version of Strange comes from that universe. Then again, it could also be possible that this is just a messed-up version of dark Doctor Strange, who has the ability to transform.
Who Is Zombie Doctor Strange Seen in the Trailer?
One of the most surprising scenes that we saw in the newest Doctor Strange In The Multiverse Of Madness trailer that aired during a Super Bowl commercial is the horrifying image of Doctor Strange near the end.
In that scene, Strange seems to have a face that decayed for unknown reasons and has an appearance that is seemingly deformed. On top of that, shadowy figures can be seen behind him. But who is this zombified Doctor Strange in that scene?
Those who have seen the What If…? series that is available for streaming on Disney+ would be familiar with this zombie character, as an entire episode was dedicated to a universe full of zombies.
Basically, for those who don’t know, What If…? is an animated Marvel series that explores the different possible scenarios that could have occurred in the MCU through the eyes of the cosmic being called The Watcher. Basically, the episodes explore altered versions of the storylines that we have seen in the Marvel movies.
One such episode is entitled What If… Zombies. In this episode, Hope brought back a zombie virus when she traveled to the quantum world to bring her mother back to the real world. This zombie virus took over the world. And things got worse when the Avengers turned into zombies, as they were able to retain their original powers.
The characters that were turned into zombies in this episode included Doctor Strange, although he wasn’t quite as featured as some of the other zombie superheroes. However, a good portion of the episode was dedicated to the angry zombie version of Scarlet Witch, whose powers were uninhibited.
This very same zombie universe appeared in the final battle against an Infinity Stone-powered Ultron when a portal to that universe opened. However, not even the zombie version of Scarlett Witch was a match for him.
But there is also a good chance that this version of Doctor Strange is not the same zombie Strange we saw in What If…? but is actually just dark Doctor Strange that transformed. It appeared in the trailer that the dark version of Steven Strange is also in the movie, as this character was given his own episode and a starring role in What If…?.
Dark Doctor Strange started out as regular Steven Strange, who lost Christine Palmer in an accident instead of injuring his hands. He used the Time Stone to repeatedly return to that point in time so that he could change it, but Christine was always killed because that was an absolute point in time that could not be changed.
In his pursuit to change that absolute point in time, Strange did unthinkable things to gain power as he even learned how to absorb all sorts of beasts and creatures so that he could increase his own magical abilities. However, he realized the hard way that he still couldn’t save the love of his life, as he ended up losing his entire universe in his pursuit of power.
So, going back to the movie, there is a good chance that this Doctor Strange variant is the very same one that the MCU variant spoke to in one of the scenes. It could be possible that he used his dark powers to transform into a hideous being that looked like the zombie-like Doctor Strange in the trailer.
However, considering that the Strange we saw in the trailer was quite hideous, we are leaning towards the possibility that this is the zombie version that we saw in the What If… Zombies episode in the What If…? series.
How Will Zombie Doctor Strange Connect to Multiverse of Madness?
Considering that Doctor Strange In The Multiverse Of Madness is going to take the multiverse route while combining elements of horror with the movie, there is a good chance that this zombie-like character in the movie is actually the same zombie Doctor Strange that we saw in the What If… Zombies episode in What If…?.
Of course, the reason why that is a possibility is that the movie explores all of the different universes clashing with one another to the point of madness. The What If…? storylines all occur in different timelines or universes that are different from the main MCU timeline.
As such, it could be possible that the movie will explore openings or portals from all sorts of different universes connecting with one another, and that is how the zombie version of Doctor Strange appears in the movie.
Zombie Doctor Strange Possible Powers & Abilities
As mentioned, when the zombified characters in the What If… Zombies episode were turned into zombies, they still retained their powers and abilities. That is why Scarlet Witch was still ridiculously powerful in the movie and why all of the other superheroes still knew how to use their tech and gadgets.
So, in that regard, it is possible that zombie Doctor Strange still has the same powers and abilities that Doctor Strange does. But he uses it in a manner that looks darker and scarier to fit his zombie persona.
That means that he could still possibly use spells such as the Mirror Dimension, Images of Ikonn, Crimson Bands of Cyttorak, Sacred Sword of Vishanti. And he could possibly use them in a way that is darker than the usual but still just as effective as the way the regular Doctor Strange uses them.
For example, in the trailer, he could have been using the Images of Ikonn when shadowy figures and hands were shown behind him. After all, he used the same spell to show dozens of arms behind him before the different images manifested into their own versions of Doctor Strange when he fought Thanos in Infinity War.
So, based on what we saw in the trailer, if the zombie Strange was about to cast the Images of Ikonn, the real Doctor Strange and the others could be in real trouble, especially when they have to face dozens of Doctor Strange zombies surrounding them.