MCU: Tragic Details Teased For Doctor Strange's What If...? Episode

By Aeron Mer Eclarinal Updated:
Benedict Cumberbatch as Stephen Strange, What If Logo

The multiverse is the Marvel Cinematic Universe's next big thing on both the big screen and and throughout the Disney+ shows. While Loki is taking its time with a deep dive into the alternate reality and time travel concepts, another show in the form of What If...? is not far behind. 

The upcoming Marvel series is the MCU's first foray into the animated realm, and it will tackle different realities while showcasing unique takes on the franchise's beloved heroes. For example, it has been confirmed that one episode will feature Peggy Carter taking the super-soldier serum, thus cementing her transition into Captain Carter. 

What If...? presents a plethora of possibilities for all MCU characters, whether they are a hero or a villain. Marvel Studios producer Victoria Alonso already hyped fans for the show's debut, promising fans that there will be “full of surprises” when it drops on Disney+. 

As for one of those surprises, new details have emerged about the upcoming appearance for Doctor Strange. 


The Illuminerdi shared in a report that the version of Doctor Strange that will come in What If...? found magic after the death of his true love, essentially leading him down a darker path.

This alternate Sorcerer Supreme will be infused with dark and dangerous magic as he uses these newfound abilities to change his past. 


The first trailer for What If...? already hinted at the existence of a dark version of Doctor Strange, but details of how this alternate portrayal came into life remain minimal. This new rumor should shed some light on the matter. 

On a plot level, showcasing a darker and more dangerous version of the Sorcerer Supreme creates an opportunity for What If...? to present the repercussions of a corrupted Master of the Mystic Arts.

By showing the death of his true love, presumably Christine Palmer, the episode could tackle a different journey for Stephen Strange. This path could lead Strange to betraying the Ancient One, Wong, and the rest of the Sorcerers to take over Kamar-Taj and the Sanctums.

Given that the trailer potentially showed the main version of Doctor Strange facing off against this evil version, it could hint that live-action Strange is now aware of the multiverse shenanigans that both WandaVision and Loki kicked off. Although this series is animated, it could show fans the first glimpse of the Sorcerer's reaction to the mayhem. 

The rumor also implied that the Time Stone will be involved, bringing back a key tool from Strange's arsenal of weapons. Once this evil sorcerer is defeated, it's possible that the main Doctor Strange will regain the Time Stone, and this could explain the Eye of Agamotto possibly returning in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness.

All will be revealed when What If...? premieres on Disney+ sometime later this 2021. 

- In This Article: What If...? (Season 2)
Release Date
December 22, 2023
Jeffrey Wright
- About The Author: Aeron Mer Eclarinal
Aeron is a news/features writer and Content Lead for The Direct who has been working for the site since March 2020. From writing about the inter-connectivity of the Marvel Cinematic Universe to having an extended knowledge about DC TV's Arrowverse, Aeron's expertise has since expanded into the realm of reality TV, K-drama, animated, and live-action shows from Netflix,  Disney+, Prime Video, MGM+, Peacock, Paramount+, and Max. When he isn't writing and watching all things MCU, Aeron is heavily invested with the NBA (go Celtics!) and occasionally watches thrilling matches in the WWE.