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Doctor Strange Destroyed All Vampires (But Accidentally Brought Them Back)


Although Doctor Strange destroyed every vampire on Earth, he accidentally brought them back just a few years later in a bid to revive his brother.

Although Doctor Strange once wiped out Earth’s vampires, he accidentally brought them back just a few years later. In 1983’s “The Montesi Formula” story arc, the Sorcerer Supreme used the titular spell to destroy Dracula and every vampire on Earth. The victory proved to be an empty one, however, as Doctor Strange, while trying to revive his dead brother, inadvertently became responsible for unleashing vampires on the Marvel Universe once again in the “Vampiric Verses” storyline running through 1989’s Doctor Strange #14-18.

Vampires entered the Marvel Universe in 1972, which also introduced Dracula into the Marvel canon as well. Although the series was originally intended to stand apart from other Marvel titles, crossovers happened nonetheless. In 1976’s Tomb of Dracula #44, the Lord of Vampires first encountered Doctor Strange, taking the Sorcerer Supreme down to the wire and almost turning him into a vampire. Since then, outside of Blade, Dracula and his vampire legions have had no greater foe than Doctor Strange. In the classic “Montesi Formula” story, Strange used the Formula to purge Earth of vampires. While this should have been a crowning moment in the life of the Sorcerer Supreme, the victory was short-lived, as Doctor Strange would accidentally bring them back a few short years later in “The Vampiric Verses,” written by Roy and Dani Thomas and illustrated by Jackson Guice.

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Years before, Doctor Strange’s brother Victor, passed away, put into a cryogenic sleep chamber in hopes of one day reviving him. Doctor Strange revealed that he would sit by his brother’s sleep chamber, reciting random spells from the Book of Vishanti, hoping one would bring Victor back to life. The spells were written in languages Strange did not understand, meaning he had no idea what they actually did. One of the spells was the Vampiric Verses, a counterpart to the Montesi Formula; whereas the Formula destroyed vampires, the Verses created them–and Victor was its first victim. Spurred on by Marie Laveau, who used vampire blood to sustain her youthfulness, Victor attacked others, siring new vampires, and ensuring they would remain a dominant force in the Marvel Universe moving forward.



 

Vampires menaced Earth for thousands of years and were responsible for untold misery and suffering, and Doctor Strange eliminating them was one of his finest hours. However, the victory was a Pyrrhic one, as Strange would be the agent of their return not long after. Strange resurrected vampires while trying to revive his dead brother, who he not only loved but felt deep guilt over his death. Strange had the best of intentions when he recited the various spells from the Book of Vishanti, but his despair led him to cut corners, reading spells he did not comprehend, and humanity would pay the price, as did his brother.


In the years since “The Vampiric Verses,” vampires have reasserted themselves in the Marvel Universe, more powerful than ever; recently, vampires have established their own country: the Vampire Nation, deep in the heart of Russia. Led by Dracula, the Vampire Nation seeks to be a safe haven for vampires, much like Krakoa is for the X-Men. While the Vampire Nation has yet to make any moves on the world stage, it is only a matter of time before they strike, and attempt to add to their numbers.

This resurgence of the vampire threat is on Doctor Strange’s shoulders, as he accidentally brought them back just a few years after destroying them.


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