WRITER: JED MACKAY
ARTIST: LEE GARBETT
RELEASE DATE: NOVEMBER 24TH, 2021
In Death of Doctor Strange #3, we learn more about the Three Mothers that have arrived on Earth to attack those who use magic. More importantly, we learn of their child, to whom they serve. Meanwhile Doctor Strange participates in an autopsy on, well himself. The time displayed temporary version of the good Doctor has a chance to learn about the connections his older version has with the supporting cast, mainly his long-time love Clea. The issue ends with The Doctor and his allies storming the castle of a long-time enemy Baron Mordo in search of Doctor Strange’s missing magical talismans.
If it feels like I yadda yadda yadded the story for this issue it’s because the plot doesn’t move ahead much. We learn more about the Three Mothers and who they serve. The reveal does feel a tad underwhelming. They are basically heralds that come in advance of their big-headed master that consumes everything before him. Sound familiar? At least in the issue, they call it out as sounding like Galactus but that still doesn’t make these villains any more interesting.
The time-displaced Doctor Strange is played as a notice Sorcerer that was new to being a practitioner of magic when he was pulled from the timeline as a backup plan. While this does play well for some scenes, in this issue they go a tad too far in playing him as a novice. For example, at the beginning of the issue, we witness the autopsy of Doctor Strange. Our rookie Doctor Strange comments that if it wasn’t for his “rigorous mystical training” he would have a breakdown. I don’t buy that. One of the many things that make Strange set apart from other Marvel heroes is before he attained his powers he had been a surgeon for some time. He was not a young man either. I’m not exactly sure but I feel like he was in his 40s when he crashed his car and eventually went off on his magical mystery tour. He could handle this even without special training. At least elsewhere in the issue, he doesn’t come across as much of a novice as he has been previously.
There is a nice scene between rookie Doc and his long-time love Clea. While this version has not met Clea before, she has a long history with him and is obviously still grieving the “real” Doctor’s death. There is even a nice connection to the previous Mark Waid Doctor Strange series that clears up how Clea was left in that series. That scene and the Doctor’s raid on Mordo are the highlights of the issue.
Lee Garbett’s art continues to be a nice fit for the series. I love the look of his Ditko version of Doctor Strange. His depiction of the fear in Mordo’s face when rookie Doc is attacking his castle did a great job of showing just how powerful rookie Doctor Strange could be.
The Death of Doctor Strange #3 is the halfway point of the main miniseries. There are some nice moments between rookie Doc and his supporting cast, mainly Clea. So far we haven’t had a chance to see this version of Doctor Strange in battle. In fact previously for the most part he seemed to avoid getting involved. As he saw himself as more there to investigate his own death and settle affairs rather than fight. As mentioned earlier, it was nice to see him displaying how powerful he could be when attacking Mordo. I just wish the main villains came across as less a carbon copy of Galactus. Maybe there will be an upcoming reveal that will make the Three Mothers more interesting?