Warning: The story contains spoilers for No Way Home.
We all loved WandaVision, but one person who was missing from the series was Doctor Strange. Dr. Stephen Strange, played by Benedict Cumberbatch, was earlier slated to appear in the season finale of WandaVision before he reunited with Wanda Maximoff in Doctor Strange In the Multiverse of Madness, but Marvel Studios ended up cutting Doctor Strange from the finale. The Disney+ series is set weeks after Strange and Wanda Maximoff are blipped back in Endgame. However, the series instead ended with Wanda Maximoff transforming into the Scarlett Witch and unleashing her powers against Agatha Harkness, played by Kathryn Hahn.
Why was Doctor Strange Cut Out Of WandaVision?
“Some people might say, ‘Oh, it would’ve been so cool to see Doctor Strange.’ But it would have taken away from Wanda. We didn’t want the end of the show to be commoditized to go to the next movie,” Marvel Studios boss Kevin Feige told Rolling Stone at the time about the decision not to have Strange appear in WandaVision.
No Way Home Explains His Disappearance
Spider-Man: No Way Home reveals that Wong is the new Sorcerer Supreme, a title that was awarded to him on “technicality” as Thanos had snapped Strange, alongside half of the universe, out of existence for five long years in Infinity War. Strange, being the Master of Mystic Arts and yet not the ruling Sorcerer Supreme, may have been forbidden from interfering with Wanda’s hex cast over the New Jersey suburb.
We all saw in No Way Home that Strange doesn’t defy Wong, like the trailer suggested, instead, Wong ends up granting Strange permission to cast a magic spell and make everyone forget that Peter Parker is actually Spider-Man. Wong’s concession is that Strange leaves him out of the mess as he goes for a vacation in Kamar-Taj.
Shang-Chi revealed what Wong actually does while away: namely cage fights to make money against his friend, Abomination on the other side of the world. We also come across Wong investigating the magic of Ten Rings wielded by Shang-Chi, eventually learning that the Rings emit a beacon out into the universe.
It is not until Wanda Maximoff wields her magic, becoming the Scarlet Witch in the finale of WandaVision, that she registers on the radar of the Sorcerer Supreme. In the trailer for Doctor Strange In The Multiverse of Madness, which rolls after the end-credits of Spider-Man: No Way Home, Strange finds Wanda inside a cabin, assuring her that he’s “not here to talk about Westview.”
“We need your help,” Strange says after shots of an injured Wong. “What do you know about the Multiverse?”
Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness releases on May 6, 2022.