Doctor Strange Damnation 1 NM Variant Connecting Cover Smallwood Multiverse Mad


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Doctor Strange Damnation #1 Cover B Variant Greg Smallwood Connecting Cover (Marvel Legacy Tie-In)

Written by Donny Cates, Nick Spencer
Art by Rod Reis

The city of sin gets its biggest sinner yet. When Doctor Strange raises Las Vegas up from its destruction during SECRET EMPIRE, he inadvertently opens a big door for the embodiment of evil, MEPHISTO! The devilish villain takes the city for himself and sets his sights on the rest of the world. It’s going to take heroes from all over the Marvel Universe to defeat him, but there’s nothing simple about fighting the lord of Hell.

One could argue that the most significant event to take place during the course of Secret Empire didn’t involve Captain America’s heel turn, but rather the complete and total destruction of Las Vegas. It’s a little strange in retrospect that there’s been so little fallout from or even acknowledgment of that major event in Marvel’s Legacy books. The Damnation crossover looks to be Marvel’s belated attempt to rectify that problem. But for fans of Donny Cates’ Doctor Strange run, all that truly matters is that we’re getting more of a good thing.

Damnation builds directly on the aftermath of Secret Empire and Cates’ first Doctor Strange arc, as a newly empowered Strange attempts to singlehandedly will the Vegas of old back into existence. But if we’ve learned anything from Cates’ run so far and Jason Aaron’s before it, it’s that magic always carries a cost, especially spells of this magnitude.

Much of the appeal of Cates’ main series carries over. He and Nick Spencer bring a light touch to the supernatural realm. There are clear stakes to this conflict as Strange and Mephisto jockey for control of an entire city. But at the same time, the story has a fun, irreverent quality to it. It doesn’t hurt that the writers are able to find a middle ground in terms of their collective voice. Regardless of how scripting duties may have been divided on this book, the prose shows shades of both Cates’ style and Spencer’s.

Rod Reis is a fitting choice to draw this miniseries, both because of his work on Secret Empire and the fact that his ethereal style and use of color lend themselves so readily to the supernatural realm. The fact that so much of this issue unfolds with glitzy casinos and hedonistic demons as a backdrop just makes this creative pairing gel that much better. Reis is adept at conveying the magical energy and horror elements fueling this conflict, while also highlighting the physical comedy and character banter that are so crucial to Cates’ Doctor Strange work.

Near mint, 1st print. Bagged & Boarded.