Today’s Super Comic: Doctor Strange #2 (2015)

DoctorStrange2I’ve never been much of a Doctor Strange fan. I’ve liked him as an occasional guest star throughout the Marvel Universe, but I’ve never gotten into his solo series.

But this latest attempt at series has me interested so far. (And by “so far,” I mean the two issues that are available on Marvel Unlimited as of this writing.)

The second issue takes us on a tour through Doctor Strange’s highly dangerous home/headquarters, the Sanctum Sanctorum, which allows artist Chris Bachalo a chance to shine. Bachalo has always specialized in unconventional layouts, in which the panels seamlessly bleed into each other and strange creatures run amok wherever they please, so he’s a natural fit for the Sorcerer Supreme’s weird magical world. Here, he gives each surreal room in the Sanctum Sanctorum its own brand of crazy, resulting in a comic that never lacks for visual appeal.

Writer Jason Aaron’s take on the character seems to be that Doctor Strange is New York’s weirdest doctor, in that he’s the guy who treats supernatural maladies that afflict ordinary people. (How this compares to previous writers’ takes on the character, I haven’t read enough to say.) His “patient” in this issue is a librarian from the Bronx who has creepy mouths growing on the top of her head. Not the sort of thing a conventional hospital can treat.

This issue is mostly just laying a foundation for future stories, but I’m curious to read more. And that’s a sign of a successfully executed comic.

Writer: Jason Aaron

Penciler: Chris Bachalo

Inker: Tim Townsend, Al Vey, and Mark Irwin

Publisher: Marvel

How to Read It: recent back issues; Marvel Unlimited; included in Doctor Strange Vol. 1: The Way of the Weird (HC)

Appropriate For: ages 13 and up