'Doctor Strange' Trailer Breakdown: Going Through The New Comic-Con Footage Frame-By-Frame

The first Doctor Strange trailer was all about table setting, introducing a lesser known (to non-geek crowds) Marvel superhero to the unwashed masses. The new trailer, which premiered at the Marvel Studios panel at Comic-Con 2016, goes all in with the big action and crazy images. This movie looks nuts...but nuts enough to break the usual Marvel mold? Let's take a closer look.

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The trailer opens with several shots focusing on the hands of Dr. Stephen Strange and this is no accident. As we saw in the first trailer (and as we see recapped here), Dr. Strange was a brilliant surgeon before he became a master of the mystic arts, a man whose intellect was matched by his physical skill.

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The real stars of this shot are Benedict Cumberbatch's sexy snake eyes, but his hands loom large in the frame. I could be reading too much into this (says the guy who regularly goes through movie trailers frame-by-frame), but this could be director Scott Derrickson going above and beyond to emphasize how important Strange's hands are to his life and career. If you're going to rip something away from a character, you need to establish just how important it is first.

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And yes, there's even a shot of those hands playing a piano, just to rub it in.

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Long story short: Strange is in a car accident and his hands receive the worst of it, requiring extensive treatment from which he will never fully recover. Here's Strange recovering in his hospital room, with Rachel McAdams's Christine Palmer sitting at his bedside. Naturally, losing the key to his life's work sends Stranger into a downward spiral that leads to a quest around the world which leads to him discovering his affinity for the sorcerer thing, so it all does work out in the end.

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So, who exactly is Christine Palmer? In Marvel Comics lore, she is one of several characters to bear the "Night Nurse" title, working in a secret clinic that treats superheroes who get roughed up on the job and can't go to a regular hospital. However, that role in the Marvel Cinematic Universe has already been filled by Rosario Dawson's Claire Temple on the Netflix series Daredevil, so this version of Palmer will probably differ from her comic book counterpart. We know that she is a surgeon and one of Strange's colleagues, but beyond that....we don't know much. MCU love interests can be a mixed bag, so let's hope she's more Pepper Potts and less Sharon Carter.

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I don't want to say that the scenes of a bearded and weary Strange wandering the world look like they were borrowed from Batman Begins B-roll, but that's exactly what they look like. Not that there's anything wrong with that! I just can't help but wonder how much of this movie will be yet another origin story and how much will focus on Strange actually being the most powerful magician on the planet.

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In the first trailer, we got to see Tilda Swinton's Ancient One literally shove Strange's spirit out of his body, allowing him to experience his first astral projection by force. Here's another angle from what appears to be the same scene, except that she's now backing the doctor into some kind of inter-dimensional barrier. Man, she really is just tossing her latest student into this magic thing head first...

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Look! It's the new Marvel Studios logo! And in a nice touch, the background is a kaleidoscope of ever-changing colors and shapes, a nod to the weird and wild magical world that Strange and his supporting cast occupy.

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There's (rightfully) been some controversy over the casting of Swinton as the Ancient One, a character who has previously been depicted as an Asian man in Marvel comics lore. Still, it's hard to get too upset at the thought of Tilda Swinton playing an ageless mystic, mainly because she's actually an ageless mystic herself in real life and did all of her own magic for the film.

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Let's blindly speculate about who this guy could be! The robe instantly gives him away as a magic user of some kind long before he starts actually, you know, using magic, but it's the yellow color that suggests where his allegiances lie. We know that the climax of Doctor Strange is a big battle between good and evil in the streets of New York and we see in later shots that at least some of guys backing up Kaecilius (more on him in a moment) are wearing yellow. So there you go: this individual is almost certain a henchman...

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...albeit a henchman with the ability to alter reality. This doesn't look like an Avengers movie, where the heroes take on an army of disposable minions who go down with a single punch. The villains here are men and women who have mastered something mysterious and absurdly powerful. Watching Strange battle villains who individually have a power set similar to his should make for a nice change of pace. And yes, the way the buildings are changing here do vaguely recall Inception, but that film's shifting of reality and perception was rigid and grid-like. This is far looser, like watching reality get filtered through, well, a kaleidoscope.

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Although the trailer doesn't make it clear what this swirling ring of fire is supposed to be or why our spotlight henchman is conjuring it, the next shot does.

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This shot (presumably from much, much earlier in the movie) finds the Ancient One taking Strange on a field trip, with that ring of fire acting as a portal that can transport the user great distances. It's a nifty way to visualize this concept for sure.

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Specifically, she appears to have taken Strange to the Himalayas. This is almost certainly a reference to the original Doctor Strange origin story, where he was trained by the Ancient One in these famous and deadly mountains instead of a massive compound located closer to the ground.

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Speaking of that compound, it looks like Strange is far from alone when it comes to training in the mystic arts under the watchful eye of the Ancient One. His studies in comic book canon are a more isolated and lonely experience, but in the MCU, he's surrounded by fellow apprentices.

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It wouldn't be a Doctor Strange story without characters consulting thick and ancient tomes full of magical knowledge, so here we are. Could this be our first look at the Book of the Vishanti, Strange's go-to reference guide? In the comics, this book is an indestructible guide to defensive "white magic," with each spell calling upon the powers of the three spirits collectively known as the Vishanti.

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Depending on who's drawing him, the mystical energies emanating from Doctor Strange's hand when he does his work can look like rigid symbols being projected from nowhere or amorphous clouds of energy. The film version seems to go with the former. It's a good look. The green glow contrasts nicely with his blue and red clothing and the design (which isn't ringing a bell for me if it's supposed to represent something specific) looks appropriately ancient.

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Could this be the magical equivalent of Tony Stark's helmet interior? A HUD from which he can operate his abilities and learn more about his enemies? He's seen using it often enough in this trailer for me to mumble "maybe" at the void.

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And here is Strange putting his growing abilities to work, constructing what appears to be some kind of crystalline barrier out of thin air. Like the dimensional portal he walked through earlier and the reality-shifting magic put in use by the villains, the effect is kaleidoscopic, shifting light and color to create something that looks like it exists far outside of natural law.

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In the comics, Baron Mordo is the apprentice of the Ancient One, who betrays him, attempts to kill him, is thwarted by Doctor Strange, and ends up becoming the main ongoing nemesis of our hero going forward. The MCU take on the character, played by the great Chiwetel Ejiofor, is a completely different take. He still appears to be the Ancient One's right hand man, but it seems unlikely that he'll go bad in this film. And if he does go bad in a future sequel, having spent two hours being a loyal friend to our hero should make that betrayal feel less naked and a lot more painful. Honestly, I'm just hoping the film avoids what the awful Green Lantern movie did with Sinestro – if he becomes a villain in a post-credits scene with zero previously seen motivation, I'm prepared to flip over my chair (before quietly and calmly returning it to where I found it because I respect other people's property).

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Here is our first look at Wong, played by The Martian's Benedict Wong. In the comics, Wong originated as Doctor Strange's manservant and the racial undertones were uncomfortable at best. In recent years, Wong has been updated to be more of an outright ally and companion for Strange with his own set of useful abilities and insights, but the movie seems to be further reinventing him. While he will undoubtedly follow Strange to New York City to act as his personal assistant/bodyguard/sounding board, he appears to be working directly with the Ancient One and Mordo when the film begins.

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As cool as it looks, Doctor Strange's red cape isn't a fashion statement. It's the Cloak of Levitation, an ancient magic artifact that allows him to fly. We know that he'll eventually don it himself, but it's seemingly under lock and key early in the film, probably under the watchful eye of the Ancient One and her followers.

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It wouldn't be a Marvel movie without the incredibly attractive male lead stripping down to show off that chiseled (and contractually obligated) physique! Cumberbatch's extra muscle isn't quite as shocking as seeing a buff Paul Rudd or a buff Chris Pratt, but it's downright odd to see Sherlock Holmes with a comic book superhero body.

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Everyone, myself included, expected Mads Mikkelsen to be playing a famous Doctor Strange villain like Nightmare or Dormammu. Instead, we were thrown a curveball. He's playing Kaecilius, and I won't lie – I had to Google that name because I didn't know a damn thing about him. It turns out that the comic book version of the character is one of Baron Mordo's disciples and lead henchmen, assisting him with all manner of dastardly tasks. The MCU version is a former student of the Ancient One who has gone rogue and plans to...do something really bad, presumably. Interestingly, Mikkelsen has said in interviews that Kaecilius' motivation actually makes sense and that he's a more complicated villain than he initially seems. Then again, that wouldn't the first time an actor has said that about a half-baked comic book movie villain. In any case, watching an actor as good as him vamp around in robes while wearing that crazy make-up should help make up for many deficiencies.

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Although the bulk of the big action shots in the film seem to come from the New York City climax, there appears to be at least one other big action scene in an urban area, complete with typical acts of mass destruction. Or not. Remember this shot and we'll return to it momentarily.

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We may not know Kaecilius' deal, but the make-up effects are killer and speak a thousand words: here's a guy whose eyes have been opened, who has seen more than anyone else was supposed to see. It's a simple effect, but it's unsettling and grotesque and looks fantastic.

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It's easy to call this another Inception shot, but the way the city appears to be curving into a spiral is such an insane and different visual. Even if the original intent was to lean on Christopher Nolan, the execution seems radically different.

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One of the aspects of this trailer I enjoy the most is just how hard magic looks. It requires years of study and the ability to read ancient books written in languages that may not exist. And then you have to pull off these spells that look like they require tremendous physical effort. In terms of raw abilities, Doctor Strange is probably the most powerful character in the MCU, but it's not effortless.

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If Scott Derrickson set out to create the iconic Doctor Strange shot, he seems to have succeeded. I have nothing to add here beyond saying that he's made my personal favorite Marvel superhero look very, very cool.

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Three things about this shot. First, this appears to be connected to the other big city action scene we mentioned above. Second, the mass destruction may be misleading, because Doctor Strange appears to be using his magic to reverse the damage and put the buildings around him back together. Third, if you squint, it looks like that's Strange and Kaecilius brawling in the streets.

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Although Doctor Strange is typically a solo act, it's fun to see him have assistance from a fellow hero (even if that hero is destined to become a villain). Seeing these two men dressed in such outlandish costumes sprinting through the streets of Manhattan is as thrilling as seeing the original Avengers line-up back in 2012. Marvel's gone unashamedly weird before, but this is new high-water mark.

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Nothing to add here beyond what you can see for yourself, but the organic nature of how the world is transforming here is just plain satisfying to look at.

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It wouldn't be a superhero movie unless someone leapt into the air and landed in a superhero pose. But since this is a Doctor Strange movie, Mads Mikkelsen lands on the side of a skyscraper and causes the entire surface of the building to ripple like water. Even if the final film uses familiar pieces, the reality and rules of this corner of the MCU are different enough to give them a new flavor.

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Doctor Strange is now one of three MCU heroes (after Thor and Vision) to rock the cape look. While his cape is a magical item with actual functionality, this means he can do that cool thing where he walks toward the camera and swishes it over his shoulder. There's a reason DC superheroes tend to wear these things: they look amazing.

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Yeah, this certainly looks like an interesting sandbox to stage a massive, earth-shaking, climactic brawl between the forces of good and evil.

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Shamballa: an ancient, mythical city written in ancient Hindu and Buddhist texts. Also: the wifi password at the Ancient One's training compound. I'll admit it – I chuckled at this dumb joke.