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When The Similarities Between Dr Strange and Dr Druid Were Made Canon

This is "Provide Some Answers," which is a feature where long unresolved plot points are eventually resolved. Today, we look at how Doctor Druid's similar origin to Doctor Strange was eventually explained in the pages of Marvel Comics!

In 1976, in Weird Wonder Tales #19 Marvel (presumably Editor-in-Chief Archie Goodwin and Roger Stern, editor of Weird Wonder Tales) cleverly decided to revamp the Doctor Droom character that Stan Lee, Jack Kirby and Steve Ditko had introduced back in 1961 as Doctor Druid, to remove the "Doctor Doom" sounding name and also removing the whole sketchy racial aspect of the character where the character gained magical powers by being transformed into an Asian man...

and after he's proven himself...

However, a few years after Doctor Droom's feature career came and went, Steve Ditko invented a new magician character named Doctor Strange. Stan Lee didn't think much of the character at first (only getting involved to change the name of the character and add dialogue to Ditko's completely finished first Doctor Strange story) but when the reader response was pretty good, Lee seemed to get more involved, because suddenly, Doctor Strange got an origin in Strange Tales #115 (five issues after he debuted, including skipping Strange Tales #112-113 before returning with Strange Tales #114, an issue that introduced Strange's nemesis, Baron Mordo, whose origin would also be introduced in Strange Tales #115). And the origin was quite similar to Doctor Droom (and, of course, to Doctor Druid, since Doctor Druid was just Doctor Droom's origin with the names change and the Asian aspect eliminated)...

I wrote about how Lee seems to have used the Doctor Droom origin story as the springboard for Doctor Strange's origin here, only with new changes to Strange's origin to both work in Mordo, who had appeared in the previous issue and also to give Strange more of a compelling back story, akin to Spider-Man, which Lee and Ditko had created a year or so earlier.

However, for many years, the connection between the two was chalked up to just mere coincidence. That is, until Roy Thomas got a chance to do a major revamp on Doctor Druid in the final issues of the Avengers Spotlight series.

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