Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness is poised to be the Avengers-lite crossover event of Phase 4. Just as Captain America: Civil War and Thor: Ragnarok united heroes from across the Marvel Cinematic Universe in a solo sequel, Multiverse of Madness will bring together Benedict Cumberbatch's Stephen Strange and Elizabeth Olsen's Wanda Maximoff, as well as limitless Variants of both current and legacy Marvel characters.
Since Doctor Strange 2 began its marketing campaign in the post-credits scene of Spider-Man: No Way Home, most of the film's secrets have been kept close to the vest. The second trailer revealed the return of Patrick Stewart's Professor X in an off-screen vocal cue, as well as the mysterious introduction of an energy-emblazed hero.
While the two aforementioned reveals were blatantly showcased, Multiverse of Madness has plenty of hidden Easter eggs throughout its promotional material.
Doctor Strange's Unexpectedly Important Wrist Watch
The good doctor is pulling up to the Multiverse iced out.
As discovered by Reddit user TranslatorWest5416, the first trailer for Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness featured a familiar wristwatch in an unforeseen location.
This Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Ultra Thin Perpetual, which was featured in one of the opening frames of the first teaser, can be seen clasped on the hatch door that presumably leads to a rift in space and time.
The watch's time on the hatch door's wheel is short-lived, as it disappears in the following frame.
The now cracked watch was gifted to Strange by Rachel McAdams' Christine Palmer in 2016's Doctor Strange and is embroidered on the inside with a loving message.
The Key to the Multiverse?
Just as Steve Rogers' pocket compass served as a reminder of his roots, Doctor Strange's broken wrist watch could serve as an anchor in a literal sense.
Clasping this watch to a hatch door that likely leads to some sort of Multiversal gateway would serve as a breadcrumb. The surrounding debris hints that this could be one of many doors, meaning Strange would need to explicitly mark which one takes him back home. In Inception terms, Strange's Jaeger-LeCoultre could be his totem.
Venturing even deeper into the Captain America parallels, this watch is the sole object the former neurosurgeon brings with him to Kamar-Taj in 2016's Doctor Strange, the same way the Peggy Carter compass is one of the few things Cap keeps from his time in the 1940s.
If this totem theory is to be believed, the watch's disappearance in the following frame indicates Marvel is up to trailer trickery once more and the hatch door Strange, Chavez, and Palmer look through is not the same one as the previous frame's. Either way, look for these hatch doors to be keys to Multiversal travel.
Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness hits theaters on May 6.