Warning: Major SPOILERS Ahead For Doctor Strange In The Multiverse Of Madness
Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness takes the Marvel Cinematic Universe to a whole new corner of storytelling, with director Sam Raimi revisiting his horror roots with this film, fashioning a truly unique movie within the mega-franchise.
This multiversal film features a number of shocking and violent deaths throughout its run, some of which are oddly reminiscent of certain popular horror films. If MCU fans are looking to delve deeper into horror after experiencing Multiverse of Madness, their favorite of these deaths could inform the first film in their foray.
After being confronted by the Illuminati, Doctor Strange learns of the fate of his Earth-838 variant, who had used the Darkhold to defeat Thanos. His compatriots, after learning of his treachery, prompted Black Bolt to use his immensely powerful voice to rip the Sorcerer Supreme to shreds, an execution by his own friends.
For audiences who preferred the more nuanced manner of decease wherein one is betrayed by their own friends, the Scream franchise is perfect. This slasher series explores and satirizes the genre of horror itself, all while secretly weaving threads of betrayal that lead to the villainous reveal of certain characters as Ghostface.
While fans were certainly excited to see Sir Patrick Stewart reprise his role as Professor Charles Xavier from the Fox X-Men films, that excitement would be short-lived as they would be forced to watch as one of the worst things to ever happen to Charles Xavier unfolded. After traveling within Wanda Maximoff’s mind in an attempt to save her from the variant version of herself that was possessing her, Charles learned that Wanda was merely setting a trap for him just moments before she psychically snapped his neck.
Xavier’s death is eerily reminiscent of a certain other horror movie killer that resides in the realm of the mind. Freddy Krueger’s manner of murder in Nightmare on Elm Street similarly involves using dreamscapes to bring about the death of the underprepared dreamer. Viewers who enjoyed the horror of Xavier’s realization regarding the Scarlet Witch’s ploy may also find themselves in favor of Krueger’s classic franchise.
After America Chavez is captured, Doctor Strange finds himself stranded in a universe torn apart by an incursion. There, he discovers the sole survivor of that reality: a version of himself corrupted by the Darkhold. The two Doctor Strange variants battle, ending with Dark Strange impaled on a fence just outside the Sanctum Sanctorum.
There is something obscenely horrific about facing down an evil version of yourself–a concept that Jordan Peele’s Us explores to perfection. This 2019 horror-thriller features villainous doppelgangers who wreak destruction on the world when they finally elect to rise up against humanity.
Multiverse of Madness finally revealed John Krasinski’s Mister Fantastic, who served as a member of the Illuminati. When Wanda confronts the clandestine council, however, she declares his life forfeit, ripping him into ribbons. This is the end of Earth-838’s leader of the Fantastic Four, though fans still hope to see a different variant of Reed Richards in the near future of the MCU.
For viewers that derived sadistic fulfillment from watching one superhero torn to shreds, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre is a perfect follow-up film. The original horror classic includes plenty of gory dismemberment, dialed to the maximum as the iconic Leatherface tears his unsuspecting victims to shreds.
Sara is a sorcerer at Kamer-Taj who survives Wanda Maximoff’s initial onslaught. After locating the Darkhold, which allows Wanda to dream walk into other realities, Sara destroys the book, which retaliates by burning the brave sorcerer to ash.
Fans who appreciated Sara’s fiery death in Multiverse of Madness might actually be able to find their perfect horror film in the screening next door. The rebooted adaptation of Stephen King’s Firestarter depicts another superpowered being wreaking havoc on her enemies, on this occasion using fire as her manner of murderous mayhem.
The Illuminati of Earth-838 features a brand new version of the superhero Captain Marvel, this time with the alter-ego of Maria Rambeau. During the Scarlet Witch’s attack on the Illuminati, Captain Marvel engages her in a cosmically-powered brawl, only to learn that her enemy is far too strong. Rambeau ends up crushed under a falling statue shortly thereafter.
For fans of the superhero horror genre, James Gunn’s Brightburn is the perfect film to revisit. Brightburn tells the story of a child with superpowers that allow him to act on his childish impulses. Just as Maria Rambeau would learn in her battle with the Scarlet Witch, the Breyer family learns that their superpowered son is near-unbeatable.
Defender Strange is one of the least courageous versions of Doctor Strange seen in Multiverse of Madness, who is killed in the opening scene of the film. It is in this variant’s life after death that he truly stands out, however, as Earth-616 Strange later possesses his zombified body to battle the Scarlet Witch in the film’s climax.
Those who enjoy the zombified nature of Defender Strange’s return might enjoy the classic horror film that truly kicked off pop culture’s love of zombies: Night of the Living Dead. George A. Romero’s 1968 classic introduced zombies to audiences in large form, creating an entirely new subset of the horror genre that is alive and well to this very day, despite its undead subject matter.
Hayley Atwell reprises her role as Peggy Carter in this film, this time as the super-soldier known as Captain Carter. After holding her own against the powerful Scarlet Witch for some time, Captain Carter finds herself bisected by her own shield.
Captain Carter’s death scene may be gruesome, but the superheroine was one of the few members of the Illuminati to prove her worth in battle against the Scarlet Witch, harkening back to another horror protagonist in Milla Jovovich’s Alice from the Resident Evil film series. For viewers who enjoyed Carter’s strategic combat skills in the face of a horrific fate, Resident Evil might be the franchise for them.
The Scarlet Witch’s villainous turn in Multiverse of Madness is quite compelling, as Wanda breaks the audience’s heart in her search for her children. After wreaking havoc throughout the multiverse, Wanda realizes her wrongdoing, sacrificing herself to save America Chavez, Doctor Strange, and Wong from her own actions.
While Wanda’s death is yet unconfirmed, her arc throughout the film is reminiscent of another horror movie mother driven to murder over the grief of her child. The original Friday the 13th saw Pamela Voorhees embark on a murderous rampage after the unjust death of her son Jason, much like Wanda does over the deaths of her own boys. Wanda, however, redeems herself in the end, unlike the villainous Voorhees.
Black Bolt is a member of the Illuminati on Earth-838 and the king of the Inhumans, who has the power to destroy mountains with the merest whisper from his mouth. Upon learning this information, Wanda removes his mouth entirely, causing his terrified scream to blow up the Inhuman’s own brain, killing him.
For fans of a good exploding head scene in a horror film, it doesn’t get much better than Daybreakers. This 2009 cinematic endeavor is an often forgotten but vastly underrated vampire film that features a particularly disturbing scene wherein a man’s head explodes in a fashion that’s not unlike Black Bolt’s grotesque death at the hands of Wanda Maximoff. This scene benefits from the film’s R-rating, which ups the ante when compared to Multiverse of Madness, showing the explosion in all its gruesome detail.
NEXT: 10 Universes That The MCU Might Have An Incursion With After Multiverse Of Madness