“The Stronghold of Doctor Strange!”
Tales of Suspense #41
Written by Stan Lee & Robert Bernstein
Pencils by Jack Kirby
Inks by Dick Ayers
The insidious Doctor Strange makes his first appearance in this issue of Tales of Suspense and unfortunately it’s a bit of a bum note to start off on. Like a lot of villains thus far in the Marvel canon, motives are sketchy and powers are even more ambiguous. Far from what he would eventually become under the guise of Steve Ditko (though it’s popularly thought that this incarnation has nothing to do with the actual Dr. Strange created by Steve,) Lee and Kirby’s Strange is something of a mad scientist gone rogue who wants to give the world to his beloved daughter. Well, hey, at least he’s got some heart, right? And sure, it’s a decent enough story ostensibly speaking, but once again we get silly mind-control antics, Iron Man breathing in fumes from flash-light batteries and crushing canon balls like he was The Thing. Still, it’s an improvement over last month’s train wreck; so there’s that. Plus we have Kirby and Ayers on the art, which makes things a whole lot more tolerable—though we still have the whole Invincible Oscar Man thing going on.
For a nominal fee, of course.
MY SCORE: 3.0 (out of 10)