Breaking Down What Doctor Strange’s Post-Credits Scenes Mean For The Marvel Universe
If you bolted from the theatre as soon as the credits started to roll on Doctor Strange, then you really need to sort out your priorities. Everyone knows Marvel saves the best for last when it comes to its long-standing tradition of post-credits scenes—and Doctor Strange boasted not one but two additional sequences at the end of the trippy superhero flick.
[Warning: If you don’t want to know what happens, click away now.]
Typically, these brief scenes are used to hype the next film in the franchise, dropping hints and clues for eagle-eyed fans. But Strange skipped right over the next Marvel release, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, and instead gave us a much needed dose of Chris Hemsworth.
The mid-credits scene, shot by Thor: Ragnarok director Taika Waititi, opens with Thor (Hemsworth) asking Strange, now the master of the New York Sanctum Sanctorum, for his help in locating his father, Odin. Strange, who’s been entrusted with safeguarding Earth from dimensional threats, understandably questions Thor’s decision to bring his emotionally unstable brother Loki (Tom Hiddleston) to New York City, where Thor believes Odin is. (Remember: It was Loki who brought a horde of Chitauri to invade Earth and caused a whole lot of destruction.)
We haven’t seen Thor since he disappeared, presumably back to Asgard, at the end of Avengers: Age of Ultron, but it appears that wherever he went, he figured out Loki’s big ruse of shape-shifting into Odin and usurping the king, casting their father into the unknown. Strange ultimately agrees to help the God of Thunder find Odin if, once they do, Thor and Loki (and their “family drama”) return to Asgard without any fuss.
Up until now, plot details about the third Thor flick have been relatively sparse. We know that the film will bring together Thor, Loki, and Mark Ruffalo’s Bruce Banner, who also hasn’t been seen in the Marvel Cinematic Universe since the end of Ultron. And now we can officially add Strange to the mix. Back in August, a revealing photo snapped on the Australia set of Ragnarok showed Thor in his street clothes holding a business card with the location 177A Bleecker St—the Greenwich Village address of New York Sanctum Sanctorum.
It also makes sense that Waititi would recruit Benedict Cumberbatch for a Ragnarok cameo. After all, the MCU is gearing up for a major crossover event with Avengers: Infinity War, and who better to bring Strange into the fold than a fellow outsider like Thor?
Meanwhile, the post-credits scene seemed more focused on setting up a Doctor Strange sequel. In it, Chiwetel Ejiofor’s Mordo, the disillusioned sorcerer who left the Kamar-Taj at the end of the film, pays a special visit to Jonathan Pangborn (Benjamin Bratt)—the formerly paralyzed man who told Strange where he could find the Ancient One — to tell him that he’s come to the realization that the role of a sorcerer is to “twist things out of their proper shape, stealing power, perverting nature.” Before Pangborn can strike, the sorcerer pulls the magical energy from the poor guy’s chest and he falls to the ground, paralyzed. “Too many sorcerers,” the newly minted Marvel villain explains.
Mordo’s evolution from friend to foe shows the makings of a compelling villain—something the MCU has struggled to produce in the past. (It’s also a hell of a lot better than Mordo’s origin story in the comics.) He’s a man whose faith was challenged in Doctor Strange, taking issue with not only the Ancient One’s use of dark magic but also Strange’s use of the Eye of Agamotto to manipulate time. In the end, he walked away from the Kamar-Taj because he didn’t believe in what they were doing anymore. Now he’s on a mission to stop all sorcerers, including his former friend and ally, Doctor Strange.
We’ll most likely have to wait until the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s Phase Four to continue Strange’s story, but at least we know the Sorcerer Supreme has an excellent villain awaiting his return.