Doctor Strange’s Glimpses Into The Future Were Probably Excruciating, According To The Russos

Doctor Strange in Avengers: Endgame

The finale of Phase 3 of the Marvel Cinematic Universe was brutal. At the end of Avengers: Infinity War half of all life was completely wiped out. But, the good news for all of them is they only had to die once. It seems that Doctor Strange may have been the most abused, as he apparently died 14 million times in the movie.

The Russo Brothers seem to have spent every waking moment since April fielding questions about the way things came to a close for the Avengers. One question, recently posed by a fan as part of a video for Wired, asks Joe and Anthony exactly how Doctor Strange's review of all possible futures works. It seems that Strange wasn't able to simply view them, but he had to actually experience them, which means he died at the end of nearly every one. According to Joe Russo...

He has to physically live them and then die in each of them. And right before he dies, he has to reset it, as we saw at the end of Doctor Strange, and do it again and take copious notes each time he does it.

That's pretty brutal. I mean, you figure in half of them Doctor Strange died with the snap, but in the other half he survived. What happened after that is anybody's guess but you have to figure that any attempt to bring anybody back failed, likely leading to Strange dying then as well.

Of course, there is a minor problem with this. In the one possible future where our heroes win, Strange falls victim to the snap. Clearly, this means that he is capable of seeing past his own death, so he doesn't necessarily have to reset things after he dies, in fact, if he does that, he never sees the solution.

But the fact that Doctor Strange died millions of times might not even be the worst part of his experience peeking into the future. As Anthony Russo explained, the act of doing so could have been equally painful, because of how long it took.

Strange has to exert an immense amount of energy to go into that state, and the amount of time he’s in this state, as we know from the history in his own standalone film, Doctor Strange, he could be in that state for who knows how long. So it could have taken Strange an immensely long time to actually review all these scenarios.

Technically this means Doctor Strange might have experienced everything we see in Avengers: Endgame, the five year time gap included, 14 million times. If you thought sitting through a three hour movie was rough, imagine doing it that many times, all in a row.

Dirk Libbey
Content Producer/Theme Park Beat

CinemaBlend’s resident theme park junkie and amateur Disney historian, Dirk began writing for CinemaBlend as a freelancer in 2015 before joining the site full-time in 2018. He has previously held positions as a Staff Writer and Games Editor, but has more recently transformed his true passion into his job as the head of the site's Theme Park section. He has previously done freelance work for various gaming and technology sites. Prior to starting his second career as a writer he worked for 12 years in sales for various companies within the consumer electronics industry. He has a degree in political science from the University of California, Davis.  Is an armchair Imagineer, Epcot Stan, Future Club 33 Member.