Doctor Strange 2 Continues to Squander the MCU’s Sorcerer Supreme

The following contains spoilers for Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, now playing in theaters.

When the mantle of Sorcerer Supreme got introduced in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, many assumed it would be as important as it is in the comics. In the books, whether it be Doctor Strange or Brother Voodoo, the title-holder was the greatest mage around, tasked with fighting off scary supernatural threats. However, since Strange lost the title in the MCU, the role, now occupied by Wong, has been treated more like a joke. And sadly, Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness continues to waste the Sorcerer Supreme, taking away his majesty and offensive flair in battle.

The mantle was passed to Wong on a technicality after Endgame, but since then, he hasn't been a figure of authority or an innovator in the field. The only things he's been a part of are fighting with Abomination as part of some side hustle and getting drunk with Shang-Chi and Katy. In fact, it's only in Shang-Chi's post-credits, where Wong and other heroes study the beacon the Ten Rings emitted, that he felt vital to the world.

Multiverse of Madness, though, took the opposite approach by giving Wong only one proper action sequence, fighting the giant octopus in the film's opening. His use of martial arts was so dynamic that it left fans eager to see him work with Strange and battle enemies later on. But Wong quickly got wrapped up by the tentacles and needed Strange to save him. And to make matters worse, when Scarlet Witch waged war on Kamar-Taj, Strange was the one who went for the diplomatic chat.

Wong should have been there as a leader. Instead, all he did was bark orders to troops to defend the palace. When Wanda eventually attacked, Wong didn't even unleash unique spells or differentiate himself from the pack, which the Sorcerer Supreme is supposed to do. Wong also didn't get to destroy Wanda's copy of the Darkhold because that job went to a lesser mage, which felt like a missed opportunity for him to have a brutal battle with Wanda and lose but still show he was one of the best around. Unfortunately, Wong got made into Wanda's hostage, selling out the location of the real Darkhold and becoming her tour guide to Mount Wundagore.

The movie also reinforced that Wong didn't get stronger and wiser in his new role. Sure, after he got thrown off the Wundagore cliff, he emerged to face Wanda's golems. But while he stabbed one with his blade, the others got taken care of by Zombie Strange, who had to rescue his superior. Wong could have used flying spells, bent rules for teleportation without his sling ring and done so much more with some unexpected enchantments he picked up during his travels.

Instead, Wong was a constant victim with a depleted arsenal whose main contribution was to get Strange to bow before him to show the doctor wasn't as arrogant as many thought. Let's hope the MCU makes this mantle into a power player moving forward because it's way too serious a position to treat so flippantly in a film that needed a magical leader. Wong obviously has what it takes, but the franchise has to let him loose.

To see how Wong's Sorcerer Supreme gets wasted, Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness is now in theaters.

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