Monday, January 25, 2016

Will Banish Demons For Rent $$$

It's a rare day to see Dr. Strange, Master of the Mystic Arts, take time out from his duties of guarding the Earth against dimensional incursions to indulge in everyday tasks that Wong probably performs for him--so it's little wonder he would receive a few double-takes from people who happen to pass him on the street as he does a little casual shopping. Though those looks are more likely due to the fact that the good doctor neglected to cast a spell which would have everyone seeing him wear ordinary street clothes, rather than his usual and eye-catching mystic attire.

(*Yes, this is apparently how the residents of Greenwich Village spoke in 1966, daddy-o.)

But let's hope that the man's credit is in good standing with the local vendors--because as astonishing as it is to believe, it seemed that Dr. Strange, disciple to the revered Ancient One and Master of the Mystic Arts, a man who could take on the likes of Nightmare, Baron Mordo, and the dread Dormammu... er, had a slight cash flow problem back in the day.

Strange's account with this good fellow may be in arrears, but at least he finally realized that he needed to cast that clothing spell. It's bad enough if the people you do business with think you're down on your luck--but it's downright embarrassing if people think you're an eccentric on top of that.

Nor can Strange punt to Wong on this one, since it turns out his master is flat broke--and, to make matters worse, in noncompliance with city code, as well. How is Wong going to live this down at this year's Faithful Manservant Convention?

(Wait... Strange rents his sanctum sanctorum??)

And so Wong decides to dish out a little of what we'd refer to today as "tough love." Or, put another way, nothing motivates your master to get off his cloaked butt and start taking care of his personal affairs like a little master-shaming.

We aren't in a position to assess the value of Strange's trinkets, but their sale appears to be a stopgap measure--because Strange finds that in addition to selling items he's gathered from who-knows-where, he now also has to sell his dignity.

Dr. Strange as a nightclub act. Even the Mindless Ones have to be doubling over in laughter at that.

Fortunately, Strange is saved the embarrassment of pulling a rabbit (or maybe a demon) out of a hat in front of the inebriated social set--because when we catch up with him in 1980, he's quite flush, and explaining to his neighbor, Sara Wolfe (who's taken it upon herself to tidy up his desk), why a bank balance of $0.00 only receives a shrug of the shoulders from him.

Something tells me Strange's druggist is now practically tripping over himself to stock his shelves with whatever Strange might need. Still, give Strange about fifteen years, when he's bound to fall under the spell of the behemoth known as Amazon.

As for Sara, she's also scored a pretty flush job thanks to Strange's aversion to deskwork.

Sara's happy... Strange is happy... Wong is doing cartwheels.
And I think it's a good bet that Mordo's vault is missing some gold.


B Smith said...

I recall wondering, when reading that original story, just where the good doc obtained those "trinkets"....and "Get you to my vault!" - who does he think he is....Thor?

Comicsfan said...

Strange was a little abrupt with Wong, wasn't he, B? Maybe he was just feeling a little flustered by that point, and wanted to avoid the army of bill collectors that he felt were probably about to descend on his sanctum. At any rate, it looks like it's now "Get you to my wall safe," though hopefully it's followed by "...please."

Anonymous said...

"How do you wanna pay for this, Doc?"
"Er, I left my wallet in the Dark Dimension..."

david_b said...

Clear examples here.., how much I loved Ditko's rather austere and non-warmandfuzzy Doc Strange well over Gene Colan.

Gene did a lush, fantastic rendition of Stephen, but Ditko just had that more distinctive style I grew to love almost immediately. His Strange was far more cooler to me than his Spidey.

Comicsfan said...

david, I admit I'm more of a Colan fan for Dr. Strange, probably because at first I read more stories which featured his work on the title before backtracking to Ditko's tenure on the character. In this case, however, you're admiring the work of Bill Everett, who did full pencils and inks on the "destitute doctor" story--though you're partially on target in noting that Everett, like Ditko, has a distinctive style. (I must say, however, that his work here reminds me a lot of Dan Adkins.)

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