Ok, Who Is Mads Mikkelsen Playing in Doctor Strange?

Wednesday, 13 April 2016 - 10:06AM
Doctor Strange
Wednesday, 13 April 2016 - 10:06AM

The first Doctor Strange trailer has finally dropped, and while we got a good look at Chiwetel Ejiofor's Baron Mordo, we got only the briefest glimpse at Mads Mikkelsen's mystery villain, but it was enough to make us completely confused about (and intrigued by) the character he's playing:

In the trailer, he seems to generally take human form, although with some eccentricities. We got a closer look from set photos as well:

Many have speculated that he'll be playing Dormammu, as the supervillain is Doctor Strange's most prominent antagonist in the comics. But Dormammu is a godlike being, and judging from Mikkelsen's appearance, he is playing a villain who is at least on a human-ish scale. Plus, Kevin Feige described his character as a fellow "sorcerer," while Dormammu is an extradimensional energy being:

Opening quote
"Mads' character is a sorcerer who breaks off into his own sect. [He] believes that the Ancient One is just protecting her own power base and that the world may be better off if we were to allow some of these other things through."
Closing quote

This actually narrows it down a lot, because most of Doctor Strange's villains are mystical beings, mostly demons. As far as I know, the only important villain who is a fellow sorcerer is Baron Mordo, and that's the only villain we know Mikkelsen won't be playing. 

So who is he, then? It's possible that Feige's "allowing other things through" comment is an indicator that Mikkelsen's character is serving as a human host for an extra-dimensional demon, which means he could be just about anybody (and brings Dormammu back into the mix). But my theory is that this comment is actually a hint that Mikkelsen's character is a demon-worshipper. If you look closely, Mikkelsen's character has a red mark on his forehead, which is somewhat similar to the one worn by the Sons of Satannish:

Sons of Satannish

This cult of human beings worships Satannish, an extra-dimensional demon who grants humans power in exchange for their souls (and has the most hilariously on-point name this side of Damien Darhk). This seems like the most likely option, since Mikkelsen definitely has a cult-ish look about him, and since he's been characterized as the "main villain," it makes sense that he would have a more powerful being on his side. 

And best of all, Satannish is the creation and agent of Dormammu. Although we're pretty much guaranteed to see Dormammu at some point, either in this film or the sequel, I wouldn't be surprised if they wanted to save that particular villain for later, especially since he's powerful enough to become the new Big Bad of the Marvel Universe after Thanos. Making Satannish the primary villain of this movie would put off that introduction while also opening the door for it, which seems like the smartest move.

Doctor Strange hits theaters on November 4.
Science Fiction
Comic Book Movies
Doctor Strange

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