Doctor Strange 2’s Wanda vs. Illuminati Scene Is the Darkest in the MCU
Through nearly 30 movies and several TV shows, the Marvel Cinematic Universe has found a way to merge the superhero genre with many other styles, ranging from spy thrillers to Captain America: The Winter Soldier at gonzo space opera who are the guardians of the galaxy films with discreet philosophical drama by Black Panther. But as the movies went on, they increasingly circled the horror without fully embracing it — until now. The MCU finally embodies horror in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness — with one streak, in particular, darker than anything in the franchise so far.
The MCU hasn’t fully embraced horror as a genre – although it has flirted with it at times. Trippy sequences in movies like Spider-Man: Far From Home and strange doctor hinted at the lengths the universe could go, and shows how Wanda Vision and the zombies of What if…? proven horror could serve as the backdrop for superhero stories – both surreal and visceral. But Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness fully commits to that tone, especially once Wanda Maximoff doubles down on her furious side and goes wild in multi-reality. At the end of her assault on Kamar-Taj, Scarlet Witch twisted her body into unnatural poses and reduced some wizards to ashes. But that’s nothing compared to his complete rampage on Earth-838.
Reality is home to the Illuminati, a collection of heroes who had seemingly replaced their world’s Avengers as Earth’s Mightiest Heroes. After defeating Thanos in their timeline, the group was confident that they could easily handle Wanda. But when the Scarlet Witch arrived, she quickly showed just how deadly and dangerous she could be when unleashed. Using her powers, Wanda quickly obliterated Black Bolt’s mouth (meaning his scream backfired and destroyed his skull) while she untangled Reed Richards’ elastic body and popped his head off. afterwards. While a variation of Captain Carter and Charles Xavier do their best to deal with it, Scarlet Witch simply cuts the former in half with her own shield while snapping the latter’s neck. Captain Marvel came closest to Scarlet Witch in raw power, but even then Wanda scored a victory – crushing her under a massive statue.
Notably, all of these deaths occurred On the screen, showing a willingness to tackle the dark subject head-on. Although they lacked gore, there was still a genuinely horrifying element to them – especially for Black Bolt, whose head seemed to crumble in on itself after his accidental death. Heroes didn’t die heroically, they died suddenly — and in the case of Mister Fantastic, yelling. With the heroes of this world decimated, Doctor Strange, America Chavez and Earth-838 Christine Palmer have little recourse but to flee Wanda directly.
The sequence transforms Wanda, nominally an Avenger and once a hero, into an actual movie monster. At this point, she’s become an unstoppable force, a reality warper ready to kill hundreds if it gives her her family back. The sequence is specifically shot like a horror movie, with a handful of effective jumps and a seriously spooky design for the crazed Wanda.
There’s little in the superhero genre that can match the sheer scares of Doctor Strange’s latest outing as a whole, with plenty of unsettling imagery sprinkled throughout. Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness. But it’s this sequence, with Wanda pursuing the heroes despite their best efforts and leaving behind dismembered corpses, that really stands out for its inherent horror. It’s such a dark turn that Strange piloting his variant’s corpse, using a cloak crafted from the disembodied spirits of the damned, pales in comparison. Wanda’s massacre of the Illuminati is by far the most violent, brutal, and terrifying sequence in the franchise so far.
To witness the MCU’s most gruesome streak yet, Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness is now playing in theaters.
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