Ever since the big Fox Studios buyout from Disney, fans have been dying to see the Fantastic Four and their respective characters get the attention and effort they deserve. The first instance of Marvel Studios using its newfound First Family was in quite an unexpected way, thanks to John Krasinski portraying Reed Richards in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness—he even mentioned his wife and children.
As exciting as the good guys are, however, there's another name associated with the group that audiences are squirming about seeing a return to the big screen: Doctor Doom.
Many consider Victor Von Doom to be one of the great comic book villains of all time. While his introduction to the MCU is an inevitability, patience is wearing thin for many. As of now, one of the only rumors of his upcoming appearance point toward the Laterveria-ruling baddie making his presence known at some point in the upcoming Black Panther: Wakanda Forever.
The validity of those claims remains in question. While fans wait to see when he'll join the fray, some new information on an Easter egg in Multiverse of Madness has been revealed that notes a fun Doctor Doom connection to John Krasinski's Reed Richards.
The Doctor Doom Connection
With Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness now on Disney+, fans have been having fun reliving Scarlet Witch's brutal trip through the Multiverse. On top of its streaming debut, the movie is also available to own on digital marketplaces. With that digital purchase comes another treat: an audio commentary for the film.
There are plenty of goodies to discover within the new track, but one of the most intriguing parts comes when John Krasinski's Reed Richards is on screen for the first time.
Raimi commented how Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige cast John Krasinski "because the fans had a dream of who the perfect Reed Richards would be," and thanks to it being an alternate universe, he was able to pull it off:
“It’s so funny that Kevin [Feige] cast John [Krasinski] because the fans had a dream of who the perfect Reed Richards would be. And because this is an alternate universe, I think Kevin said, ‘Let’s make that dream come true.’ I’ve always really enjoyed all of his performances.’”
The movie's writer, Michael Waldron, made it clear how "Reed Richards is [his] favorite Marvel Comics character" and that getting to write the character's first MCU appearance "was a real honor:"
“Reed Richards is my favorite Marvel Comics character, so it was a real honor to get to write his first entry in the MCU. John’s such an amazing performer and such a great partner in bringing this role to life for the first time.”
Producer Richie Palmer noted how his costume was "designed by Ryan Meinerding" and that the portal he enters through was, in fact, "Doctor Doom's Time Platform:"
“It’s exciting that costume designed by Ryan Meinerding, is a really special treat. The detail of the teleportation device he uses to get into the scene is something we took from the comics, that’s Doctor Doom’s Time Platform.”
It's exciting to finally have a confirmed Easter egg about Doctor Doom, but many might be wondering, what exactly is Doom's Time Platform?
What Is the Time Platform?
The Time Platform is something invented by the classic Fantastic Four villain Victor Von Doom, also known as Doctor Doom. The time-traveling device was first seen in Fantastic Four #5 in 1962, where Doom blackmails Marvel's First Family into going back in time and stealing the Stones of Merlin from the early 18th century.
The device is later used by the Fantastic Four in going back to ancient Egypt, where they run into Kang the Conqueror's Rama-Tut persona. Additionally, it accidentally let loose a dinosaur in the Baxter Building, allowing the Avengers to go back in time and confirm Bucky Barnes' death in World War II, and at one point, was almost dismantled by X-Force's Cable.
While the Time Platform hasn't been the subject of many important events, it did introduce Morgan le Fey from the year 1211 A.D. Fey is an extremely powerful sorceress, who in the comics is half-faerie. Not only that, but she has a direct connection to the Darkhold, as she is the one who bound the Elder God Chthon's magical scrolls to create the infamous dark book of power.
At one point in the source material, Fey and Victor Von Doom establish a romantic relationship of sorts, where she also helps him become knowledgeable in the mystic arts. Adding those tools to Doctor Doom's arsenal helped him become an even bigger threat to Earth's mightiest heroes.
A Time-Traveling Reed Richards
So what does this all mean? Well, at the end of the day, it's likely all a fun Easter egg without any ramifications. At the least, it could indicate how the Reed Richards of Earth-838 has had plenty of interactions with Doctor Doom. Maybe he's even friends with him, given how he's using what was originally his tech in the comics—that, or he had Doom killed in a similar manner to his Stephen Strange.
It's also likely that Waldron only took visual inspiration from the comics. In the context of the scene, it doesn't make much sense for Reed Richards to be entering the Illuminati chambers by time-traveling. It just seems like he has a fancy door.
Maybe when the character makes his debut on Earth-616, fans might learn more about this technology. While it almost certainly won't be the same Variant who gets the spotlight going forward, with him being dead and all, it'll be fun to see the writers take inspiration from this version of the character.
While fans know that Fantastic Four will feature the key four heroes, Doctor Doom remains a big mystery. Since he's been the big bad guy in all of the other failed adaptions of their stories, Marvel Studios is likely going to want to take a different direction with him. Might he be introduced elsewhere first? Potentially even establish his connection to the fictional nation of Latveria first, instead of his unique dynamic between Richard Reeds and his family?
All fans can do is wait and see how everything turns out.
Fantastic Four is likely to hit theaters at some point in 2024. Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness is now streaming on Disney+.