In every installment of I Love Ya But You’re Strange I spotlight strange but ultimately endearing comic stories. Feel free to e-mail me at email@example.com if you have a suggestion for a future installment!
Reader Shawn H. suggested this one a few years back and now with all of these other Doctor Strange articles, I figured it was a good time to handle this one, as well!
Superheroes have been having long-lost relatives that they never mentioned before pop up for pretty much as long as there have been comic books, so it certainly was not a shock when "Doctor Strange: Sorcerer Supreme" #10 (by Roy and Dann Thomas and Jackson Guice) introduced a brother that we had never heard about before.
However, it WAS a surprise to learn that said brother was a VAMPIRE!!
In addition, the reasons that the Thomases came up with for why Strange never mentioned his brother before was pretty darn, well, strange (pardon the pun)...
That's pretty darn weird, right? Doctor Strange's brother got hit by a car while visiting Doctor Strange to bitch to him about skipping their father's funeral and Strange's answer was to place him into cryogenic storage and then just never told anyone about that? Yikes, Doc!
It gets worse a few issues later when we learned that Victor became a vampire because an inexperienced Doctor Strange would visit Victor's cryogenics unit and recite various spells to bring him back to life until he gave up on it and stopped visiting ("Eh, I just have my brother in a cryogenics unit somewhere. I'll think about it some other time").
Well, wouldn't you know it, one of those spells turned Victor into a vampire!
Victor was seduced to working for an evil woman who wanted to bring all the vampires of the world back to life (something I'll get to in a future column) and he was given the name and costume of the former vampire supervillain (the one Captain America actually decapitated back in Roger Stern, John Byrne and Joe Rubinstein's "Captain America" run), Baron Blood!
Victor eventually broke free of the villainess' control and became a hero. Well, he TRIED to become a hero. He even started dating one of his brother's ex-girlfriends, Morgana Blessing. He would feast on humans, but only EVIL humans. However, in "Doctor Strange: Sorcerer Supreme" #29 (by Roy Thomas, Dann Thomas, Chris Marrinan and Mark McKenna), he learned that everyone he killed was coming back as vampires themselves!!
Finally, in "Doctor Strange: Sorcerer Supreme" #56 (by Roy Thomas and Geof Isherwood), Victor had had enough and took his own life...
I liked Victor as a character and I, in particular, found his relationship with Morgana Blessing to be quite interesting (she let him feed on her), but it certainly was a strange period in Doctor Strange's life - Doc's vampire brother! Weird even for a Doctor Strange story!
Thanks to Shawn for the suggestion! If anyone else has a suggestion, drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org!