This will be as busy a year for Marvel fans as ever: First, we had Fox’s Deadpool, and in the summer we’ll get Marvel Studios’ Captain America: Civil War and Fox’s X-Men: Apocalypse. To round out the year, we’ll have Doctor Strange, and of all the new faces this year’s comic book movies will introduce, this superhero might be the most obscure, even to comic book fans. But his story has a familiar arc to it, and from the movie’s first trailer, which was released on Jimmy Kimmel Live! on Tuesday, Strange could certainly hold his own in a universe chock-full of charismatic characters and larger-than-life stories.
In the trailer, we see Benedict Cumberbatch’s Doctor Strange get a magical dose of reality from Tilda Swinton’s character, the Ancient One—a very, very old sorcerer in the comics who is in charge of protecting the Earth dimension. “There are other ways to save lives,” the Ancient One explains, while showing Strange the world is a lot bigger than he’d initially thought. Strange is skeptical at first, but by the end he’s thoroughly persuaded that magic is real and that he wants to learn it.
In the comics, Doctor Strange starts out as an extremely talented, if egotistical, surgeon named Stephen Vincent Strange. Like many comic book characters, Strange had to endure the untimely death of several blood relatives—his parents, his brother, and his sister. A car accident eventually damages the nerves in Strange’s hands, ending his surgical career and sending him into a spiral as he desperately chases a cure. His last resort ends up being pivotal, as he treks to the Tibetan palace of the Ancient One (who was originally depicted as an Asian man) hoping for a cure. Instead, Strange has a startling experience that motivates him to become a sorcerer, under the Ancient One’s tutelage.
The movie is due out Nov. 4.