Every Easter Egg in ‘Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness’
Marvel is great at cramming its movies full of Easter eggs even when there’s only one universe involved. And when there are infinite realities to play in? SO MANY EASTER EGGS. Here are all the references and cameos we found in Doctor Strange 2!
Michael Waldron’s cameo
Michael Waldron penned the script of Doctor Strange 2 and also served as head writer for Season 1 of Loki. Little did we know that Doctor Strange 2 was also going to be his acting debut! Here’s what Waldron told /Film about his surprise cameo appearance:
“If you saw the first 15 to 20 minutes, I’m in there … I’m stepping out onto the balcony with Rachel McAdams’ character, Dr. Christine Palmer, and her new husband. I step out next to them drinking a martini. And the backstory that I wrote for myself is that I was his best man at the wedding.”
Amor es amor
If you look closely at America Chavez’s jacket, you’ll see a rainbow flag pin and the words “amor es amor,” which is Spanish for “love is love.” In the comics, America is a lesbian raised by two moms, and although fans were disappointed that the movie didn’t address America’s lesbian identity, her jacket is a reference to it.
This one wasn’t a huge surprise, since Gargantos was featured in the trailer and a clip that was released before the movie’s premiere, but it’s worth including. The huge one-eyed tentacle monster chasing America Chavez is named Shuma-Gorath in the comics, but because of copyright issues, his name was changed to Gargantos for the film. Gargantos is also featured in Disney+’s What If…?, when he emerges from the Tesseract and later gets absorbed into Sinister Strange.
The WandaVision theme
When Stephen, America, and Wong are trying to figure out what to do about the monsters chasing America across the multiverse, Stephen realizes that Wanda may be able to help them. When he has the idea, the four-note WandaVision jingle plays.
There’s actually a really interesting story behind that jingle. The music for WandaVision was written by Robert Lopez, Kristen Anderson-Lopez, and Christophe Beck. They wanted to create a recurring theme to tie all the WandaVision eras together, and if you listen closely to each theme song in the series, you can hear that the show’s title is always sung to the same motif. Not only that, but the tritone embedded in the jingle is known as the “devil’s interval,” which lends the theme a subtly sinister air. That gives the jingle’s return in Doctor Strange 2 added resonance: When Stephen decides to go see Wanda, he doesn’t realize that he’s actually bringing disaster right to his doorstep.
Rintrah the minotaur
At Kamar-Taj, one of the sorcerers is a huge green minotaur. This is none other than Rintrah from Marvel comics. In the comics, he hails from the planet R’Vaal and helps Stephen when the Cloak of Levitation is torn. In the movie, he seems to be a student at Kamar-Taj.
A multiverse full of Easter eggs
Stephen’s first trip through the multiverse is a trippy extended sequence in which he and America tumble through reality after reality. As they sail through the multiverse, we get a bunch of lightning-fast Easter eggs. If you look closely, you can spot the Living Tribunal, a three-headed cosmic being that’s been referenced in both the first Doctor Strange and Loki. There’s also a sepia-tone universe that looks like it could be from Spider-Man Noir, and a futuristic universe that could be Spider-Man 2099. Finally, there’s a taxi with an ad for Grindhouse Releasing, a distributor that rereleased Sam Raimi’s Evil Dead trilogy.
Bruce Campbell as Pizza Poppa
When Stephen and America are exploring the universe they’ve landed in (soon to be dubbed Earth-838), America grabs a snack from a street vendor. However, since food is free in most universes, she doesn’t realize that she has to pay for the pizza balls she’s taken, and the vendor, Pizza Poppa, is pissed. Pizza Poppa happens to be Bruce Campbell, who has a long history of cameo appearances in Sam Raimi’s Marvel movies after starring in the Evil Dead series.
Earth’s Mightiest Hero
When Stephen finds a statue of himself outside of Earth-838’s New York Sanctum, the plaque at the bottom reads “Earth’s Mightiest Hero.” This, of course, is the title given to the Avengers on Earth-616.
Cthon and Wundagore Mountain
When the Darkhold is destroyed, Wanda forces Wong to take her to the place where it was written in the hopes of regaining access to its spells. This place is Wundagore Mountain, home of the ancient god Cthon. Both Cthon and Wundagore are taken straight from the comics, with Wundagore being the place where Wanda originally received her powers from Cthon.
Ever since the multiverse came into being in Marvel’s “Phase 4,” Marvel fans have been calling the Marvel Cinematic Universe Earth-616, the designation for the main reality in the comics. Now, thanks to Christine Palmer, the designation is official!
The Baxter Foundation
While Stephen and America are being held prisoner, Christine mentions that her research is funded by the Baxter Foundation. In the comics, the Baxter Building is the headquarters for the Fantastic Four—and sure enough, Mr. Fantastic is a member of the Illuminati.
The Illuminati Members
So many Easter eggs here! The Illuminati itself is taken from the comics, being a secret organization, made up of some of the most powerful superheroes on Earth, that controls things behind the scenes. Each member of the Illuminati is a treat for fans. There’s the long fan-cast John Krasinski as Mr. Fantastic. Lashana Lynch returns to the MCU as Maria Rambeau, who became Captain Marvel instead of Carol Danvers in reality 838. Anson Mount, who played Black Bolt in Marvel’s ill-fated Inhumans series, returns to his role, now sporting the classic tuning fork from his comics counterpart. Hayley Atwell makes her live-action debut as Captain Carter, a Captain America variant who was previously only seen on What If…?, and Patrick Stewart returns to his role of Professor Xavier, using his classic yellow hoverchair.
The Ultron Sentries
In the Illuminati Headquarters, you can see Ultron sentries escorting Stephen and guarding the entrance. This implies that Ultron exists in Earth-838, but we don’t know anything about him. It seems like he’s most likely either allied with or controlled by the Illuminati.
The Nexus of All Realities and the Book of Vishanti
In order to stop Wanda, Stephen and America try to find the Book of Vishanti, a mystical grimoire that can give a sorcerer anything they need. In the comics, the Book of Vishanti is the Darkhold’s non-evil counterpart. Stephen and America eventually find the Book of Vishanti in an interdimensional space that comics fans recognize as the Nexus of All Realities, a setting also taken from the comics.
Sam Raimi’s Oldsmobile Delta 88
Sam Raimi’s favorite car is a yellow Oldsmobile Delta 88, and it can be found in all of his movies. In Doctor Strange 2, it’s one of the spinning cars in the background of the decaying Earth that Stephen and Christine visit.
In the comics, Stephen has a sister, Donna, who gets a cramp while swimming and drowns at age 17. Stephen is unable to save her, and he grows up blaming himself for her death. In Doctor Strange 2, Stephen finally mentions Donna, making her story canon in the MCU. However, in the MCU, Donna dies when she falls through the ice while she and Stephen are playing on a frozen pond as children. Donna’s death helps explain Stephen’s aloofness and inability to get close to people.
The Souls of the Damned
After he possesses the corpse of his alternate self from another reality, Stephen harnesses the souls of the damned into a cloak that allows him to fly. One of the souls is voiced by Richie Palmer, one of the producers for Doctor Strange 2. Another is voiced by Scott Spiegel, who has appeared in multiple Sam Raimi projects and had cameos in Raimi’s Spider-Man films.
The Brazier of Bom’Galiath
In the first Doctor Strange, while Stephen is fighting Kaecilius in the New York Sanctum, he picks up a large glowing vase-type thing. “You don’t know how to use that, do you?” Kaecilius asks. The relic Stephen is holding is the Brazier of Bom’Galiath, which has appeared in the original comics. In Doctor Strange 2, Christine-383 uses the Brazier to fight back the souls of the damned that are attacking Stephen while he dream walks.
The Eye of Agamotto
In the first movie, the Eye of Agamotto refers to the amulet that houses the Time Stone. However, at the end of Doctor Strange 2, Steven manifests a literal third eye in his forehead. Agamotto was the very first Sorcerer Supreme, and in the comics, the third eye symbolizes great magical power and wisdom. It looks like Stephen might be delving deeper into the Eye of Agamotto’s mysteries.
Clea and the Dark Dimension
In the comics, Clea is a fellow sorcerer and a love interest of Stephen’s. She even becomes Sorcerer Supreme at one point. Now, she’s made her MCU debut in the mid-credits scene, in which she tells Stephen that he needs to come with her to stop an incursion happening in another universe. Notably, the reality Clea and Stephen step into is the Dark Dimension from the first movie, and in the comics, Clea comes from the Dark Dimension, where she’s Dormammu’s niece.
Any Easter eggs we missed? Let us know in the comments!
(featured image: Marvel)
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