Sam Raimi's Signature Car Actually Has A Second Cameo In Doctor Strange In The Multiverse Of Madness

As previously featured in the virtual pages of /Film, Sam Raimi's "Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness" — currently available on Dinsey+ — featured one of the director's notable trademarks: The appearance of his own yellow 1973 Oldsmobile Delta 88. Both Raimi and his frequent collaborator Bruce Campbell have gone on record multiple times confirming what fans have seen with their own eyes: that the Oldsmobile has made its way into almost every single one of Raimi's movies but one.

According to Bruce Campbell, who repeated the story on the Disney+ documentary "Assembled: The Making of Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness," Raimi's Oldsmobile was, in order to fit it into Raimi's western "The Quick and the Dead," stripped down to its chassis and covered with a wagon. Raimi has said that part of the car's engine block and part of its camshaft made an appearance in "Oz the Great and Powerful." The only film that Raimi's car does not appear in is his baseball drama "For the Love of the Game," as its scenes were cut. 

In "Multiverse," when the title character visits a hazy, forbidding, apocalyptic dimension bereft of proper gravity, the Olds can be seen briefly floating in midair, held aloft by dissipating physics. In the above photograph, one can see it hanging in the center of the frame.

In "Assembled," however, Marvel head honcho Kevin Feige points out that the Oldsmobile actually makes a blink-and-you'll-miss-it second cameo ... in the form of a monster truck toy. Feige, a fan of Raimi's knew that the car would have to appear somewhere, and seemed excited to see the old Delta 88 included. 

The toy 88

To remind the reader, the plot of "Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness" involves the wicked Scarlet Witch (Elizabeth Olsen) attempting to locate an alternate dimension where she lives in suburban bliss with two young sons. She frequently dreams about these two imaginary sons, and she is convinced that dreams are in fact visitations to alternate dimensions. In her dreams, she is a typical sitcom mom, and her kids are typical sitcom kids, and she wants nothing more than to live in a sitcom, complete with a posh kitchen, a sun-dappled yard ... and a toy-cluttered floor. 

On the floor of the Scarlet Witch's longed-for home is a monster truck toy — seemingly of the Hot Wheels variety — of Raimi's Delta 88. It's never the focus of the frame, and one couldn't see it unless they were looking very closely, or if a Disney+ documentary pointed it out to them. 

To disappoint ambitious collectors, it must be said that such a toy was never produced in real life. There is no Hot Wheels or Matchbox version of the Oldsmobile Delta 88 in monster truck form, and especially not in the pale yellow that Raimi prefers. Although — and you can find them on — Kodak once put out a die-cast NASCAR tie-in toy of an Oldsmobile Delta 88. An ambitious fan could perhaps track down the right shade of paint and make a Raimi toy all their own. 

Reading too much into it

Note: Look very carefully at the above screengrab from "Multiverse of Madness." You can see the Delta 88 on the floor. 

To put on the over-analysis hat: Was the Oldsmobile toy a clue? 

In the mythology of the MCU, the suburban bliss experienced by the Scarlet Witch was initially introduced in the TV series "WandaVision," wherein the character used her reality-warping powers to take a small American town hostage and force it to live life as it appeared in several of her favorite TV sitcoms. Her children, in that series, were constructs of her powers, culled from her subconscious mind. In short, her kids weren't real (Why she can't simply magically manifest the same children a second time is a minor plot quibble unaddressed in "Multiverse"). 

In this alternate universe, the Delta 88 is not a real feature of the world, but a miniature facsimile. The "real" world, Raimi may have been saying, was the one that contains a real, full-size Oldsmobile. In the alternate dimension where the two sons exist — the "fake" world — the Oldsmobile is altered, warped, not in its natural state. It's the wrong version of the world. It's an artifice. Raimi could have been broadcasting how this reality — even if it exists as a parallel universe — is not the world where the Scarlet Witch belongs. Indeed, as the villain of the story, she is the only one who suggests moving to another universe and staying there permanently. As all the heroes state: Other dimensions are to be eschewed in favor of one's home dimension. 

Although I wouldn't mind living in a dimension with Delta 88 monster truck toys in it.