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Villain Overview
Now come, my murderous minions -- follow in the paths of the Dread One!
~ Dormammu
Enough! I shall return at the appointed time -- when all is in readiness. And see that it is -- if you value your miserable life -- or your precious immortal SOUL!
~ Dormammu

Dormammu is a powerful extra-dimensional villain from Marvel Comics. He is mostly associated as Doctor Strange's arch-nemesis, being one of the main villains of Doctor Strange. Dormammu was created by the late Stan Lee and the late Steve Ditko.

Nature

Established from early on as a warlord from an evil dimension labeled the Dark Dimension, he is a creature that seeks universal conquest and has identified Dr Strange as one of the most prominent threats to that goal, for this reason Dormammu has tried many times to destroy the mystic hero, but despite his vast power has always failed to do so.

Dormammu often has himself to blame for these defeats however as he often allows his arrogance to get the better of him and he can be somewhat easily tricked by people that know what they are dealing with - of course these flaws may also be the only real things preventing Dormammu from taking over all of reality, given the amount of power he has at hand.

Villains associated with the Dread Dormammu include Baron Mordo, an evil wizard and another enemy of Dr Strange, Umar (his sister) and Satannish, a powerful demon-lord created by Dormammu as an extension of himself - all of these beings have faced Dr Strange on regular occasions and are considerably powerful yet dwarfed by Dormammu himself (even Umar, who is of the same species as Dormammu, is unable to match her brother in raw mystical-power).

Appearences in other media

Film

Main article: Dormammu (Marvel Cinematic Universe)
  • Dormammu is the Bigger Bad in the 2016 film Doctor Strange, portrayed by Benedict Cumberbatch via motion capture and voiced by Cumberbatch and an unknown British actor. He is the power behind the sorcerers Kaecilius and the mystical cult of Dormammu's own worshippers known as the Zealots, who seeks to release him into the world in exchange for eternal life. As in all depictions, Dormammu is a gigantic, godlike force of pure evil who exists in the Dark Dimension and seeks to spread his malign influence to all other worlds. Using pages from a book of spells belonging to the Ancient One, Kaecilius opens a portal to the Dark Dimension to allow access to Earth. Strange flies through the Portal, bringing time with him into the Dark Dimension where he confronts Dormammu and traps him in an endless time loop. Strange bargains with the Dark Lord to release him if he leaves the world never to return and takes his worshippers with him. Dormammu reluctantly agrees. Here, rather than being wreathed in flame, Dormammu appears to be a being of pure shadow and darkness but with bright purple eyes. He also bears a strong resemblance to Doctor Strange, having assumed the form to mock the doctor.

Television

  • Dormammu appears in Spider-Man: The Animated Series, voiced by Ed Gilbert. Here, he was depicted as a Galactus-like figure who traveled from Dimension to Dimension, devouring their mystical energy to sustain his life-force. He needed the help of Mordo to break into our universe and drain it of life. Mordo pursues the Wand of Watoomb to allow Dormammu into this dimension but is opposed by Doctor Strange and Spider-Man. Dormammu was shown to be bad-tempered and an extremely impatient and abusive master, using his power to throw Mordo against walls for failing him, ranting that he is doomed when Mordo first fails to capture the Wand and calling his disciple a weak fool when he is bested by Strange. He grabs the Wand of Watoomb whilst Spider-Man and Strange are distracted and drags it through the portal that Mordo has opened into his dimension. Spider-Man and Strange pursue the Wand and manage to get it off Dormammu, before crossing back through the Portal. Dormammu then dragged the brainwashed Mary-Jane Watson through the Portal into his Dimension in an attempt to possess her and use her as a vessel to cross through into this universe but Mary-Jane was strong enough to resist him and walk back through the portal on her own before Strange closed it with the Wand of Watoomb. Not to be outdone, Dormammu sent Mordo to give the Symbiote to serial killer Cletus Cassidy, turning him into the terrifying Carnage and recruiting him as a disciple. In this episode, Dormammu was noticeably calmer, more patient and more respectful towards Mordo.
  • Dormammu is the over-arching antagonist of the animated TV movie, Doctor Strange: The Sorcerer Supreme, voiced by Jonathan Adams. Here, he was depicted as the embodiment of all dark magic and was imprisoned in the Dark Dimension by the Ancient One after attempting to conquer Earth. At the time of the film, he is draining energy from Earth children in order to increase his own power so that he could break free and rule reality. Also, Doctor Strange later discovered that Dormammu also uses connection between children's mind on Earth and Dark Dimension as means to escape from his prison, which explained why comatose children in city trapped in nightmare where they saw a flaming head which none other than Dormammu's. When Mordo is turned away by the Ancient One, he communicates with Dormammu, offering to help him gain freedom in exchange for Dormammu making him Sorcerer Supreme. Dormammu agrees and sends Mordo to kill the Ancient One. Having done so, Mordo attacks the Ancient One's assistant Wong as Dormammu begins to make his emergence. Strange arrives to fight Mordo and swiftly gains the advantage. Dormammu emerges and puts his minion out of his misery by devouring him. He begins to unleash monsters from around the world but Strange who is able to absorb magic remembers that Dormammu is a being of pure magic and absorbs the magical blasts Dormammu is attacking him with. Dormammu soon vanishes after putting all of his energy into attacking Strange and becoming completely absorbed by him.

Powers and Abilities

Dormammu is nearly godlike in scale, capable of taking on some of the most powerful beings in Marvel continuity and surviving, his power was even great enough to spawn a sentient being such as Satannish and his entire form is made out of raw magical-energy, only serving to boost his considerable power further - he is an object of worship by thousands (otherwise millions) and the worship he receives also fuels his power and as such he could be considered the most powerful opponent Doctor Strange has faced.

Dormammu is composed of pure mystic energy, eclipsing even the greatest of sorcerers in terms of raw power and the ability to manipulate the forces of magic, including Doctor Strange and the Ancient One, which is increased and replenished, at least partially, by worship throughout various dimensions. Among many examples, he is capable of interdimensional limitless astral projection, matter transmutations, interdimensional teleportation, size transformations, elemental control, time travel, projecting energy manifestations ranging from force bolts and cursed conflagrations to magically-constructed beings, changing his appearance, or empowering others to such a point that the empowered one wields power dwarfing even that of a dimension's Sorcerer Supreme. He can draw upon the power of the entire Dark Dimension, but is somewhat more limited when present in another universe.

Dormammu is virtually indestructible and immortal due to his energy form composed of pure magic, and has strength, speed, and stamina, which he can directly empower to levels shown capable of challenging a slightly angered Hulk, or by growing to gigantic size. Dormammu is a capable hand-to-hand combatant, trained in an extra-dimensional fighting style, but was once bested by the well-trained human Doctor Strange when neither was using mystic powers. His chief resources are his tremendous magical powers and considerable intellect.

In Spider-Man: The Animated Series, Dormammu is a gigantic but immensely slow demon who is capable of altering his size and shape, even transforming into a dragon at one point. He can send magic to help his minions in other universes via the use of portals and can also control people's minds and possess them.

In Doctor Strange: The Sorcerer Supreme, he is a being of pure dark magic and can control people, especially children, through dreams whilst draining them of their life-force and is also able to summon and command magical beasts.

Quotes

Spider-Man

I'm DOOMED! DOOMED! I need the Wand of Watoomb! Bring it to me, no matter what the cost!
~ Dormammu tortures Mordo whilst dismissing rumours that he is a drama queen.
I hunger for new energy to devour! Release me into your universe!
~ Dormammu on the cusp of victory.
Give me the wand! No!
~ Spider-Man defies Dormammu.
NOOOOO!!
~ Dormammu as his gateway is destroyed.
Do not reject me! That is the one thing you cannot do! No!
~ Dormammu attempts to control Mary-Jane.

Doctor Strange

You have failed me!
~ Dormammu
You are but frightened children, fighting a god!
~ Dormammu

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