Eric S Brown
Marvel once again launched a new Dr. Strange ongoing series in 2018. Much of that series is now collected in trade paperback. The first of these trades, titled Across the Universe, begins with Dr. Strange losing his powers. He is cut off from all magic. With no other choice, Dr. Strange reaches out to Tony Stark, aka – Iron Man, for help Stark suggests that Strange go into outer space in search of magic to replenish the power that he has lost. Stark provides Strange with a craft and the good doctor ventures into the cosmos in search of magic. He soon finds himself teamed up with an alien named Kanna. Their search for magic and magical items takes them to many worlds. Strange finally regains his power and sets out to prove himself as once again being this dimension’s supreme mage but the story continues to be set in space and told in a more Science Fiction tone. All of this is a pretty novel premise. It does start out with a bang. Sadly though, it grows stale quickly. No one wants to pick up a comic that’s supposed to be about a wizard and magical battles to read about spaceships and high tech gadgets.
In the second trade paperback of this new Dr. Strange series, titled Remittance, the story does finally return to Earth. The first half of its story is spent tying up the loose ends of the plot that began in Across the Universe. While Strange has his magic back, it’s still not a traditional Strange story. His costume has changed to appear more high tech and he’s not quite what he used to be. Things continue to settle and fall into place as the second trade’s story line progresses. By its end, we see the return of some of his old foes and allies. I can’t highly recommend the beginning of this run of the new Dr. Strange title but it’s not completely bad either. One simply can’t go into expecting to read what they are used to in a Dr. Strange series.