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The Strange Library: Ten Essential ‘Doctor Strange’ Comics

strange-feat

Doctor Strange is a second-tier character in the Marvel pantheon, but he's making the leap to the big leagues thanks to the latest Marvel Cinematic Universe movie. To help get you up to speed with the character, we've compiled a list of ten of the best Doctor Strange stories ever published. These are the stories that will introduce you to his major foes and his main supporting cast, and get you acquainted with all the many great talents that have worked on the character over the years.

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On The Cheap: Comixology’s Doctor Strange Sale Brings You ‘Triumph And Torment’

Mike Mignola
Mike Mignola

This week sees the release of Marvel Studios' latest cinematic offering Doctor Strange, starring Benedict Cumberbatch as the arrogant and enigmatic sorcerer. In anticipation of the film's release, Comixology has a sale on some of the most must-have Doctor Strange collections, including one of the very best original graphic novels Marvel has ever released.

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Enigma The First: How ‘Omega the Unknown’ Was A Comic Out Of Time [Sci-Fi Week]

Omega the Unknown #5, art by Gil Kane.
Omega the Unknown #5, art by Gil Kane.

The first thing you notice about Omega the Unknown, Marvel's short-lived mid-'70s sci-fi series, is its narration. Like most Bronze Age comics, it's densely narrated, but something about this the narrative voice in this work is different; rambling, like a Beat poet. It hops from adjective to adjective, not in the grand carnival barker style of Stan Lee, but like a hepped-up poet taking joy in his words and phrases. Deliberate, but seeming not to be; that's probably the best way to describe the way writers Steve Gerber and Mary Skrenes narrated their bizarro epic.

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Storyteller Supreme: The Character-Based Brilliance of Roger Stern

CA_SternHulkSupes

Spider-Man. Superman. Starman. Doctor Strange. The Avengers. These are just a few of the characters Roger Stern has left his mark on over the course of his long career in comics.

He rose from passionate fan to consummate professional over the course of a few years in the '70s, and went on to play a role in some of the most entertaining (and successful) stories of the ensuing decades. He co-created the Hobgoblin, and was a major force behind the death (and eventual rebirth) of Superman. He's one of comics' most reliable writers, known for his consistently tight plots, his strong characterization, and his continual creativity.

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Filed Under: , , Category: Anniversaries, DC, Marvel

Electric Bluegaloo, Act 11: Double Trouble

Electric Bluegaloo, Act 11: Double Trouble

Of all the strange transformations Superman has undergone in his 78-year history, none has been quite so derided as the year where his familiar costume and powers were replaced with a blue and white "containment suit" and a tenuous relationship with electricity. But that raises the question, was it really all that bad? Two decades later, we want to find out, so ComicsAlliance is taking a look back at the Electric Blue Era of Superman to find out not just what worked, but if anything worked. This is... Electric Bluegaloo.

This week, the two Supermen come to a disagreement that literally drives Lois Lane out of the country --- and that's just the beginning of their problems.

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Electric Bluegaloo, Act 5: Olsen Vs. Intergang

Electric Bluegaloo, Act 5

Of all the strange transformations Superman has undergone in his 78-year history, none has been quite so derided as the year where his familiar costume and powers were replaced with a blue and white "containment suit" and a tenuous relationship with electricity. But that raises the question, was it really all that bad? Two decades later, we want to find out, so ComicsAlliance is taking a look back at the Electric Blue Era of Superman to find out not just what worked, but if anything worked. This is... Electric Bluegaloo.

This week, Jimmy Olsen is marked for death by Intergang and Lex Luthor finally goes on trial for his crimes!

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Ask Chris #287: The Death And Return Of Superman

Ask Chris #287, background art by Dan Jurgens and Brett Breeding

Q: I’m reading The Death and Return of Superman, and it's way better than I've remembered. Why do people hate it if it works? And am I crazy to say this was the last time DC did right trying to contemporize Superman? -- @robotfrom1984

A: It seems like a lot of people have been working their way through the Death of Superman over the past few weeks, which probably has a lot to do with DC recently putting the entire saga out in four gigantic paperbacks. I even spent the last week reading through it for the first time myself --- I'd read Death, of course, but I never made it through the rest of the story to get the whole weird picture.

That said, I'm not sure that it's actually all that hated. I mean, sure, it's easy to dismiss it for its excesses, but it's a hugely successful story that, for better or worse, defined Superman for a decade. And like you said, when you read it all at once, you can see that it does a whole lot that goes way beyond just having Superman get punched to death by a bone monster.

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10 Essential Eras of Captain America Comic Books

Captain America 10 Essential Comic Book Runs

You might have heard that there's a new Captain America movie coming out on April 4. If Marvel's marketing department has gotten its way, this news may very well be tattooed on the inside of your eyelids in phosphorescent ink. Let's say, however, you've never read any Captain America comics before, but now that he's been legitimized as a multi-million dollar film franchise, you're suddenly very interested in that dude with little wings on his head carrying around one of Uncle Sam's rims.

Since being created by Jack Kirby and Joe Simon all the way back in 1941, the hero also known as the Sentinel of Liberty has passed through the hands of some eminently talented writers, artists and editors. Some of these creative teams depicted Cap's adventures for a few months -- some of them for a few years -- before passing the torch to the next creators to keep the flame (or trademark) alive. In comic books, these tenures are called "runs," "series"  or "eras," and they're the readers' way of distinguishing one era of a character's saga from the next. Chances are you're not sure where to dive into a a publishing legacy that's spanned more than 70 years, so here is a list, in chronological order, of the Sentinel of Liberty's 10 most interesting and influential comic book runs.

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Faustian Themes And Theatrical Beauty In ‘Doctor Strange and Doctor Doom: Triumph and Torment” [Review]

Strange and Doom

If you’ve never read Doctor Strange and Doctor Doom: Triumph and Torment, it’s doubtful that you’re in some peculiar minority that has its own scholarship or anything. The book was released as an original graphic novel in 1989 and has only been in print sporadically since then, so it’s not hard to believe that so many have never come across it. But among a certain subset of fans, it's maintained a reputation as something of a forgotten classic, a rare treasure that savvy readers should excavate. This week it got a lot easier: Marvel released a new paperback edition of the 80-page story, along with a handful of related stories. So how does it hold up?

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Marvel Unearths Lost ‘Doctor Strange’ One-Shot by Roger Stern and Neil Vokes

strange

As an auspicious start to a most welcome initiative, Marvel Comics announced this week Doctor Strange: From the Marvel Vault #1, the first in a series of previously unreleased works finally seeing the light...

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