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Doctor Strange, Sorcerer Supreme #32: Review

Aug 1991
Roy Thomas, Chris Marrinan

Story Name:

Silver-tongued devil

Review & Comments

4 stars

Doctor Strange, Sorcerer Supreme #32 Review by (April 2, 2021)
Silver Dagger 1st appeared in Dr Strange (1974) #1-5. The ex-Cardinal of the Catholic Church studied magic in order to rid the world of sorcerous evil, but in #5 he was taken into Agamotto's realm. SG managed to escape in Marvel Team-Up #76-77 involving DrS and Marie Laveau, the Witch Queen of New Orleans, but he was sent back.

In Strange Tales (1987) #10 DrS lost an eye battling Ghaszaszh. He wore an eye-patch until another journey to Agamotto's realm in #7 of the current series, where supposedly now-repentant SG gave his own eye to Strange as a replacement.

Silver Dagger was free in 1 of the tales in Marvel Comics Presents #54-59 where he led a troop against werewolves including Werewolf By Night (Jack Russell). And now he's here to claim that the eye-swap was a cunning ruse.

Anyway this issue may be Roy Thomas' way of explaining the dichotomy between the repentant SG in our #7 and the once-more anti-magic villain in MCP#54-59.

This issue claims that there are 2 versions of the Eye Of Agamotto, which DrS wore at different times. However, technically, the 1st version was called the Amulet Of Agamotto. To add to the confusion the Eye is often, as here, distinguished from the current Amulet which houses it.
The Amulet, Eye and Orb Of Agamotto are sometimes called the 3 Eyes Of Agamotto. But when much later the Savage Avengers series refers to the 3 Eyes Of Agamotto it doesn't seem to mean these 3 objects because DrS has all of them but SavAv says the other 2 Eyes are in the possession of an Asgardian dragon and supposedly lost in time.

Nox was considered to be the same as the Greek Nyx, who also pre-dated the other Olympian Gods. But the actual Nyx will appear in the Avengers: No Road Home series, and Nox is now considered a separate being.
Deimos and Phobos will appear with Nox in our #39. Apart from that their only other app is Phobos in Avengers #100. the tale of their death by Hercules and Thor is untold.
Psycho-Man débuted in Fantastic Four Annual #5 but Nox's involvement is new.
Thog the Netherspawn featured in Man-Thing tales starting with Adventure Into Fear #11, and he was defeated by MT & Dakhim in the last issue (#22) of MT's 1st (1974) series. He returned in the last issue (#10) of MT's 2nd (1979) series. He was part of a demon mash-up in Defenders #99-100 and again in their #105.
The Mystery Men mini-series will reveal a 1930's plot by Nox.

D'Spayre was created by the Dweller In Darkness, and was working for him in his 1st app in Marvel Team-Up #68 when he was defeated by Dakhim & Jennifer Kale, Man-Thing and Spider-Man.

Nightmare is a long-time foe of Dr Strange dating from their joint 1st app in Strange Tales #110. Eternity 'swatted him like a fly' in #182 of the DrS series that continued its numbering from Strange Tales.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Doctor Strange, Sorcerer Supreme #32 Synopsis by Rob Johnson
In Infinity Gauntlet #1 Thanos made half the population of the universe (including of Earth) disappear. Then earthquakes rocked Earth in IG#2, and Adam Warlock claimed that was the Mad Titan's doing too.

The buildings around Dr Strange's Sanctum are razed to the ground - he only saved his house with a quick spell. Warlock and Silver Surfer are discussing the magnitude of the quake. Dr Doom says they should be discussing who should lead the crusade against Thanos, ie him. Stephen Strange tunes them all out and recalls a conversation that occurred after the end of #30 when his other-dimensional lover Clea arrived by magic.

She was angry because he'd magically put her to sleep in #26 while he went off with Topaz to battle a werewolf, a vampire and a demon (#26-30). He claimed he was only trying to keep her out of danger after she lost the throne of the Dark Dimension, and the power that went with it, to Dormammu and then to a combination of Umar and Baron Mordo (#21-24). But she was angry that he treated her like she was still his disciple and left in a huff. But he had to put all that aside when Silver Surfer came crashing through his roof (beginning of IG#1).

Now he wonders if Clea has vanished just like his servant Wong and Wong's fiancée Imei (and apparently Topaz has gone too). He intends to go find out but Warlock stops him, saying that they must be prepared to act at a moment's notice.

DrS's alien disciple Rintrah orders Pip The Troll to take his cigar outside. But Rintrah follows him, intent on doing his own search for his master's soulmate. Both of them are feeling eminently dispensable to the higher powers inside the house, so Pip decides to join him. Rintrah casts a spell to make them look more human, but does nothing about their large disparity in sizes.

They see someone preaching fire and brimstone in Washington Square Park. He declaims that the recent events are a punishment from the Lord for allowing blasphemers, idolaters and sorcerers to live among them. And the worst of all is Dr Strange. Rintrah recognises him as Isaiah Curwen, Silver Dagger, an old foe of the Doctor. But Curwen detects *him* and sets his armed guards on him. Pip tries to help but the enemy magician dissolves their concealing spell and they have to run from the crowd. Isaiah lifts his eye-patch and reveals the ability to strike Rintrah down with an eye-blast.

But just then Dr Strange himself takes a hand and encloses himself and Silver Dagger in a mystic dome. SG says he's come to take back the eye he gave him which DrS is using to replace the 1 *he* lost. But now SG says it was all a cunning plan. He was pretending to be repentant until he could escape from Agamotto's realm with another eye. Since then he led a small devout army against some werewolves but when he was bitten his troops turned on him. But he used his new eye control their minds. And he's using the eye now to show Strange all these events.

Dr Strange realises that Curwen has the Eye Of Agamotto. But recovered Rintrah points out that Stephen is wearing that gem. However Isaiah explains that DrS used to wear a different Eye until his mentor the Ancient One gave him an upgrade (Strange Tales #127) and gave the old 1 back to Agamotto. And now SG's stolen it and implanted it in his eye socket.

What follows is a duel of Agamotto's Eyes. 2 beams of force meet in a stalemate, but Curwen also throws his silver dagger and Strange can't spare the effort to defend against it. However the dagger is shattered by Clea who has returned to check that Stephen survived the vanishing and the earthquakes. But the effort of penetrating his mystic dome took a lot out of her so the rest of the battle is up to DrS. Pip and Rintrah have dealt with Curwen's henchmen but they can't help Stephen either.

The exchange of coruscating forces causes SG's speechifying platform to crumble beneath the combatants, but they continue to fight floating in the air. But suddenly Silver Dagger's force beam turns back and splits into the bars of a cage around him. And his eye goes blind. Agamotto has arrived (in the hookah-smoking caterpillar form he uses in SG-stuff). He explains that he *let* Isaiah steal the old Eye to see if he'd really reformed, which he hadn't. So now he takes SG back to his realm.

Clea and Stephen apologise to each other, and kiss and make up before Strange has to go back to the Thanos problem.

2nd story:-

The Book of the Vishanti: A Gathering of Fear Part 2

Again some different creators:- Jean-Marc Lofficier is Roy's writing partner, Larry Alexander pencils, Tim Dzon inks and Clem Robins letters.

6 of the 7 Fear Lords are left at the meeting after Scarecrow walked out last issue. He, Kkallakku the Fear-Eater and the Lurking Unknown explained themselves then, and now the host, the Dweller In Darkness, calls on the mysterious Nox to tell her story.

She explains that she derives pleasure rather than nourishment out of inspiring fear in mortals. She also works more indirectly, which is why few know of her. She claims to be older than the Olympian Gods but once posed as Aphrodite to seduce Ares and bear him twin sons Deimos and Phobos (terror and fear), but they were killed by Hercules and Thor. She guided Psycho-Man to create his Fear/Doubt/Hate device, but he was defeated by the Fantastic Four. She arranged for the demon Throg to find the Nightmare Box, but he too met defeat at the hands of Man-Thing and Dakhim The Enchanter.

D'Spayre interrupts to say he was working for the Dweller when he too was defeated by Man-Thing and Dakhim along with his disciple Jennifer Kale and Spider-Man. He claims that MT was created not only to protect the Nexus Of Realities but also as a weapon against the Fear Lords, because everyone knows that whatever knows fear burns at the Man-Thing's touch.

Now it's the turn of Nightmare to interrupt. He pours scorn on the others and says that he feeds on fear when humans are asleep, but is careful to allow his victims to recover to maintain his supply. D'Spayre points out that Nightmare has been defeated many times by Dr Strange and others, and Nox reminds him he was swatted like a fly by Eternity.

Nightmare retaliates by asking the Dweller to recount *his* defeats by mortals. The Dweller In Darkness claims they were mere setbacks, and his overall plan is still progressing.

Which he will describe to them next issue.

Chris Marrinan
Mark McKenna
George Roussos
Chris Marrinan (Cover Penciler)
Mark McKenna (Cover Inker)
? (Cover Colorist)
Letterer: Pat Brosseau.
Editor: Mike Rockwitz. Editor-in-chief: Tom DeFalco.


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Doctor Doom
Doctor Doom

(Victor Von Doom)
Doctor Strange
Doctor Strange

(Stephen Strange)
Silver Surfer
Silver Surfer

(Norrin Radd)

Plus: Agamotto, Dweller In Darkness (He Who Dwells in Darkness), D’Spayre, Kkallakku, Lurking Unknown, Nox, Rintrah, Silver Dagger.

> Doctor Strange, Sorcerer Supreme: Book info and issue index

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