The multiverse is here and boy is it mad. Sam Raimi’s Doctor Strange sequel is the kind of wild and weird superhero movie we love. But it’s likely to leave viewers with a ton of questions. Of course, we’re here to answer them all. So if you’re wondering about that ending and what the [redacted] reveal in the Doctor Strange 2 post-credits scene means, then look no further. But if you haven’t seen the movie, beware because from here on out heavy spoilers abound! We’re explaining the ending, mid-credits scene, and post-credit scene of Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness.
What Happens in the Ending Scene of Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness?
After traversing the Multiverse with the help of America Chavez, Doctor Strange does the unthinkable. In order to beat the Scarlet Witch, he Dreamwalks into a corpse of his alt-universe self. Using the terrible power of the Darkhold, he manages to reach Mount Wundagore. Once there he traps Wanda before she can steal America’s powers. Though the young girl can’t physically beat the Scarlet Witch, she uses her portal-opening powers to show Wanda’s sons the monster their mother has become. Wanda is so horrified by their reactions that she brings Mount Wundagore down on herself. The act destroys the Darkhold in every single universe. We leave her fate in question as Wong relocates America to Kamar-Taj, where she begins to study the Mystic Arts.
All seems well until Stephen Strange returns to New York. Walking down the street, Stephen can’t quite believe his luck. He’s danced with death, done some casual necromancy, and hypocritically used his powers against Wanda for doing the same thing with her powers. Strange has seen some of the most famous Marvel characters meet their gruesome end at the hands of his own teammate, and yet here he is, wandering safely in New York. That is until he begins to hear a buzzing and falls to the ground screaming. But what happens in the final moments of Doctor Strange 2? Well, when Stephen Strange looks up at us, Danny Elfman’s score swells, and a third eye opens on his forehead.
Why Does Doctor Strange Have a Third Eye in His Forehead and What Does it Mean?
In the context of Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, it seems likely that the third eye we see at the end of Doctor Strange 2 has arrived because of Strange Dreamwalking using the Darkhold. We know this because we see Sinister Strange with a third eye first. And he warns his alt-universe self that Darkholding will take its toll. We see that toll in the ending scene of the film, just before the credits begin to roll. While there is comic book precedent for the Sorcerer Supreme to have a physical manifestation of a third eye, it’s usually in the astral form of the character and is deeply connected to his most famous artifact. Interestingly, the third eye appearing at the end of Multiverse of Madness goes some way toward answering a fan fave question.
Many MCU lovers wonder why Strange still wears the so-called Eye of Agamotto despite the fact that he no longer has the Time Stone. As director Sam Raimi explained to Cinema Blend recently, “the Eye of Agamotto still has magical properties even without the Time Stone—as any true fan of Strange would know. So it still reveals to him things that are unseen.” That’s important in the context of the ending of the film as it hints that perhaps Strange’s connection to the Eye is like that in the comics, where the Eye resides inside his amulet. Maybe using the Darkhold created a direct connection between the two, allowing the Eye to become a part of Doctor Strange. That would align with the way that the Eye worked in the comics, occasionally becoming a third eye of the Sorcerer Supreme who wields it.
So what we’re seeing here is likely a mix of both the lore established in the movie and the Doctor Strange comic book backstory, a history that Raimi clearly knows a lot about. It’s a fitting ending scene for Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness.
Is There a Mid-Credits Scene in Multiverse of Madness?
Oh yes, there is a mid-credits scene in Doctor Strange 2, and it continues the heavy metal madness of the final moments of the movie! Stephen wanders through New York rocking a stylish blue shirt and red scarf. All seems to be well until a strange blonde woman (Charlize Theron) in a striking purple superhero costume appears in front of him. She slices through the air, opening a portal to the Dark Dimension. “You caused an Incursion and we’re going to fix it,” she tells him. “Unless you’re too scared.” Then Stephen Strange transforms into his super-self, his scarf becoming his cape and his blue shirt becoming his classic costume. In a nod to its cosmic origin, his third eye opens as he follows her into the Dark Dimension. If you’re wondering what that is, it’s the place we saw Strange battle Dormammu in the first movie and a key comic book location.
Who Does Charlize Theron Play in Multiverse of Madness?
Charlize Theron plays a character called Clea in the mid-credits scene from Multiverse of Madness. And we’re surprised that she took so long to show up. In the comics, Clea is a major Doctor Strange character and plays a huge part in his life and story. She first appeared in 1964’s Strange Tales #126. That was not too long after the Sorcerer Supreme himself debuted. Though she looks human, Clea is actually the superpowered cosmic daughter of Umar. And if you’re counting demonic cosmic family trees, it also makes her the niece of Dormammu. Yep, Doctor Strange’s ally and love interest is also related to his most famous enemy. At times she has also held the mantle of Sorceress Supreme of the Dark Dimension. And currently, an alt-universe version of Clea is the Sorcerer Supreme in the main Marvel Comics timeline in the new series Strange. Now she’s here in the MCU, in the form of the fabulous Charlize Theron. Keeping up?
What Do Clea’s Presence and Doctor Strange’s Third Eye Mean for the MCU Going Forward?
The big takeaway from MCU Clea’s mid-credits appearance in Doctor Strange 2 is that cosmic happenings are afoot in the future of Marvel’s cinematic world. Also, Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness spends a lot of time establishing that Stephen and Christine will never work in any universe. His last interaction with Christine from Earth-838 (the Illuminati universe) sees her telling him he needs to open himself up to love. And then his most famous comic book girlfriend shows up. So you can assume that we’ll see some Stephen and Clea romance in our future. On a bigger picture scale, it means Wong will probably take over as Earth’s true mystic protector as Stephen heads out into the multiverse with Clea to help her fix his past-and-alt-universe mistakes. We’ll likely see both Clea and Doctor Strange back again whenever the MCU decides to handle Secret Wars and the inevitable implosion of the Multiverse.
Wait… But Is There a Doctor Strange 2 Post-Credits Scene?
Yes, baby! There is a Doctor Strange 2 post-credits scene. Because Pizza Poppa always gets paid.
Featured Image: Marvel Studios