Four Colour Thoughts – Doctor Strange #1

The Creators – Mark Waid – Writer, Jesús Saiz – Artist, VC’s Cory Petit – Letters

The Players – Doctor Strange, Tony Stark

The Story – Stephen Strange is a little out of sorts, mainly due to the fact that he cannot practice magic anymore as it has seemingly run out.  With nothing left to do, he heads out into space to find a solution.

The Take – Mark Waid and Jesús Saiz take the reins for a new take on Doctor Strange, sending the good Doctor into the unknown so that he might find that which was lost. Overall, it is a very well-written story, one that engages the reader from the get-go and draws them into Stephen’s world and the dilemma he faces. One can see that Waid is having a good time with Strange and that it is something he has not really tackled previously, making it quite exciting. There is one problem though that cannot be overlooked, especially if one has been keeping up with the character for the past few years. When Doctor Strange was revived, Jason Aaron told a tale of the world’s magic being decimated and the slow road back to its rejuvenation of which Donny Cates then picked up and ran with. That volume of Stephen’s chronicles soon came to an end with things supposedly in a good place and continuing on the way the two authors had laid it out – with Strange getting back into the groove of things and everything slowly reverting back to the status quo. What is strange to see then is Waid essentially ignoring it and/or reversing it with no explanation whatsoever. As one reads this book, Waid tells the reader that all the magic has dried up and is gone, period. For a universe built on fairly strong continuity, it makes for a very weird situation, especially as it undermines that which came before. Taking it for what it is and given that this is a comic book and anything can happen, it is a good story, but there are questions to be answered and hopefully the man will get to those in good time. As for the artwork, Saiz is doing the best work of his career, covering all aspects including the colouring and it looks phenomenal. The creatures are frightening, the action solid and the mustache has never looked finer – overall, a truly gorgeous book. Of course, things are left on a bit of a cliff-hanger, the fate of the Sorcerer Supreme unknown, though one can guess that he will find some way out of his predicament. Altogether it was a good package and hopefully some answers will be made apparent at some point down the line.

Worth It? – Yes.

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