Written by: Jed MacKay
Art by: Pasqual Ferry
Colors by: Matt Collingsworth
Letters by: VC’s Cory Petit
Cover art by: Alex Ross (cover A)
Cover price: $4.99
Release date: March 22, 2023
Doctor Strange #1 finds Stephen Strange enjoying married life with Clea and professional life as the Sorcerer Supreme on Earth after returning from death. However, a dispute over refugees from another dimension creates more than a little marital strife.
Is It Good?
Doctor Strange #1 is fine. Jed MacKay eases the good doctor back into the world of the living with an issue that’s mostly a “day in the life” montage as Doctor Strange deals with magical problems across the world. Some problems are mildly amusing (Spider-Man loses his soul to a card shark???), and others are more serious, but the overall tone of the issue is light and relaxed until a major conflict rears its ugly head.
The opening blurb is accurate. Refugees are sent to the Purple Dimension as part of a treaty agreement, but the refugees are sure to be conscripted into slavery by the Purple Dimension’s Sorcerer Supreme, Aggamon. Stephen and Clea intervene, but Aggamon agrees to cooperate only after a lethal show of force, a display Clea cannot forgive.
As much as this issue is about Stephen Strange settling back into life, this is an issue about married life and how one spouse handles a situation that the other spouse feels very strongly about. Married readers may find this issue more relatable than expected, but I’m not sure this type of conflict makes for a captivating Doctor Strange comic.
The magical shenanigans are (mostly) amusing, and the threat of Aggamon is substantial. MacKay’s dialog is excellent, the pacing is speedy, and the humor lands when it should, but it’s unclear if establishing the big conflict as a marital rift between Clea and Stephen is going to hold anyone’s attention. In short, this comic is a wait-and-see pick.
Pasqual Ferry’s art style is immaculate and a great pick for this material. Ferry has a keen eye for whimsically flowing shapes, and that eye comes in handy with the little details that make Strange’s life magical during even mundane activities.
About The Reviewer: Gabriel Hernandez is the Publisher & EIC of ComicalOpinions.com, a comics review site dedicated to indie, small, and mid-sized publishers.
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Doctor Strange #1 walks readers through a day in the life of the recently resurrected Doctor to ease readers back into his new status quo as Sorcerer Supreme and a married man. The house calls are amusing, and the bigger threat is substantial, but the plot’s main conflict appears to be heading for marriage problems, and it’s unclear if that approach will pay off.