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I love Stephen Strange’s classic origin story in the comic books, and I absolutely abhor the notion of a potential Doctor Strange Movie devolving into an Iron Man spinoff, BUT…  screw it!  I’m convinced Marvel missed a glorious opportunity to cast Sam Rockwell as one of their superheroes, having already been cast as the villain in Iron Man 2 (BTW, did you know he was considered for the role of Tony Stark in the first Iron Man?).  Let’s do a bit of grit work, and get this man into the DOCTOR STRANGE movie.

Besides we few diehards, nobody knows the tale of Stephen Strange, M.D. “Oh, he’s that cool wizard from Marvel vs Capcom 3″… good work there faux nerd, you win a point.

You see, the Sorcerer Supreme owes his origins to a familiar comic book archetype: the comeback kid.   Doctor Strange was a successful young surgeon in New York.  Much like his marvel peer Tony Stark, Strange epitomized the ‘playboy’ lifestyle as only a Stan Lee creation can.  But one night after a few too many brewskies, the good Doctor decided to drive his hot little poon wagon to his glorious bachelor pad… which was an all around dick move.  Strange crashed his car, destroyed his dextrous hands, and fell from the highest echelons of the medical field.  Desperate, he traveled to the Orient in search of a healer, and while there, he encountered the Ancient One.  This wise old sage trained Strange, reshaping him as the Sorcerer Supreme, successfully transforming the narcissistic asshole into a genuinely good dude.  The entire plot of the Doctor Strange movie should rest on their relationship.

So quirky, Robert Downey Jr. would swoon

This is a bit like Justin Hammer’s tale, right?  In Iron Man 2 we watch the egotistical billionaire (perfectly portrayed by Sam Rockwell) struggle to defeat his business opponent, Tony Stark.  After a few dimwitted power plays and a failed partnership with a Russian supervillian, Justin Hammer is exposed by Pepper Potts, and the villain is tossed into jail.

Similar to Stephen Strange’s “I broke mah hands!  Not mah hands!” ordeal, Justin Hammer is now at his lowest point.  His career is destroyed, thanks to Pepper Potts and those meddling officers, so what’s a man to do?  Well, after making parole, I’d suggest running off to The Orient in search of some inner truths.  Enlightenment. Self love.  All that jazz.

That’s not as convincing of a plot point as the comic book version (where he searched for a remedy for his mangled hands), but it’ll suffice for this unique Doctor Strange movie.  At this point in our story, Hammer remains a selfish, entitled prick.  He wanders around the world, hoping for a life changing affirmation of his beliefs, but it never comes.  And after a few too many wasted nights sipping Nepalese gin in Kathmandu, then he meets him… the true blue Ancient One.  This old geezer takes the Ham-bone (as I’ve affectionately termed Hammer) under his wing, subtly enlightening the billionaire as the pair wander through Asia eating and drinking to their hearts’ content.

After a few nights of slinging sage wisdom at Justin, the Ancient One decides that this wacky convict isn’t as bad as he thought, and the old man reveals his true nature.  He explains the mysteries of the universe, teaches Justin Hammer to master the mystic arts, and decrees him the Sorcerer Supreme.

Can you imagine how perfectly Sam Rockwell would execute this role?  He’ll tactfully embody the insecure, indignant side of Justin Hammer in the first Act, an ‘idiot abroad’ in the second act, and I’m sure he’ll convincingly evolve into a more caring (but equally hilarious) Sorcerer Supreme by the third.  Best Doctor Strange movie, ever!

I know this is a wild tale, but it allows us to make use of an amazing actor (Sam Rockwell), who’d only be a one-off villain for the Marvel Universe.  After witnessing his shenanigans in Iron Man 2, that immature baddie certainly has room to mature, and transforming him into Doctor Strange is a brilliant way to do so.

What do you think?  Way too bizarre for the Doctor Strange movie?  Or a fun twist ont the classic hero?

S#!T Talking Central

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  • Jay

    Nice imagination. I could possibly dig it.

  • Pete Donegan

    I think it’s a great idea!!! Of course, his character will have to take some continuing adult education classes while in prison so he can become a DOCTOR. He’ll also need to change his name when he gets out of prison to STRANGE, for some reason.

    After all, clearly the only way to see Sam Rockwell play his Justin Hammer character again is to make Justin Hammer into a completely different character. It’s not like Marvel is making ….. oh, i don’t know….. a weekly TV show. If only! Cause then they would need weekly villains. But…. Justin Hammer only ever helped Backlash. And he’s dead :-(

    Oh, wait! I forgot about when he employed the Beetle, Constrictor, Discus, Leap-Frog, Man-Killer, Porcupine, Stiletto, Water Wizard, Force, The Death Squad, Blizzard, Spymaster, Stilt man, the Raiders, the Mauler, Crimson Dynamo, Rhino, Boomerang, Scorpion, Taskmaster, Sphinx, Barrier, Ringer, Doc Ock, Electro, Sandman. But that’s basically it. So, yeah. No option other than to make him Dr. Strange.

  • Jacob

    I think casting Benedict Cumberbach as Doctor Strange would be a better idea. I think Cumberbach could pull this character off very well

  • Dan Evans

    Rockwell could still be cast as Dr Strange, since I don’t think most people remember Chris Evans (Captain Anerica) was once the Fantastic Four’s HumanTorch.
    That is playing hero to hero compaired to villian to hero, but I think its still possible with the right writers for the movie.

    • Pete Donegan

      The Fantastic Four are a Fox owned property, while Captain America is a Disney/Marvel owned property. The Human Torch could never appear along side Captain America. They exist in separate universes. The problem is that Dr. Strange and Iron man (along with Sam Rockwell’s Justin Hammer character) would all be part of the same universe. So, if Dr. Strange were to meet Iron Man in Avengers 3 would Tony Stark just pretend he doesn’t look exactly like the guy he fought in Iron Man 2?

      • Dan Evans

        First off, I would like to mention that I did like how Steve L’s article explained how Rockwell could still be cast as Dr Strange while still in the Justin Hammer character from Iron Man 2.
        I just mentioned that Chris Evans played 2 different Marvel characters, and thought with a good screenplay it could be pulled off with Sam Rockwell for Dr Strange.

        I know that Fox owns the rights to the Fantadtic Four and the X-Men, while Disney/Marvel still have control over just about all of the other Marvel comics characters. Certain story plots could be difficult since the Marvel Universe is split between 2 film companies.
        Who knows… maybe in the future Disney will buy the FF and X-Men properties, then there could be all kinds of crazy Marvel cross-overs :)

  • R.S.

    I love Sam Rockwell but I think the perfect actor for Dr. Strange is Oscar Isaac! he’s a very brilliant and versatile actor who could bring such depth to the character! he really looks the part too.

  • Woody

    Do not make me track you down and feed you to Dormammu.
    Benedict Cumberbatch has.. MUST.. play Strange.