I’ve now seen Doctor Strange twice, once in 3D IMAX and another time in 2D, both times with THCv blazing through my system. I cried twice during the first time, and three times during the second showing, as I made connections to my own past and current willful participation in a racist system.
Always the smartest guy in the room, Doctor Strange is an arrogant, naturally talented white man so bored with his current accomplishments that he engages in thrill-seeking behavior while diagnosing potential new cases. His recklessness for his own life, which mirrors his disregard for how he makes others feel, makes him a perfect example of a white person stuck in their own bubble. After his bubble and hands are shattered thanks to his own carelessness, he channels his frustration toward other doctors who treat him the same way he did with dangerous patient cases with too high failure risk, prompting him to search outside his bubble for help.
This search leads him to The Ancient One, which just so happens to be a bald white lady. She, understanding the universe and reality in a way that Doctor Strange has yet to be able to, toys with the stubborn Strange and then throws him out. Strange, willing to suffer the indignity of waiting a little while longer on a porch stoop, is eventually brought inside and given access to knowledge the group uses to protect the Earth from multi-dimensional attacks.
There he befriends Mordo, a black dude who’s seen some shit but continues to abide by a strong ethical code limiting access to power. Strange is often overpowered by the more “natural” fighting Mordo, always looking for another way instead of meeting his sparring partner’s strength with more strength.
Naturally, the dangerously curious Strange eventually gains access to knowledge beyond his ability to understand the full ramifications of, revealing that The Ancient One has been drawing power from a timeless realm seeking to devour everything in its path. He confronts The Ancient One about this, leading her to admit she was stealing power from “the way things were” (timelessness) to preserve “the way things are” because she’s scared if she dies there will be no one left to fight Earth’s battles.
Her “real” power, stolen from a place Mordo was warned never to take from, feels exactly like the nice type of racist that doesn’t openly discriminate, but sure as shit doesn’t share willingly.
Mordo, realizing that drawing upon energy from the timeless realm causes real problems for people on Earth, sets out to strip from the people using it selfishly any power from the dark realm. Sorta like being able to pull the privilege right out of somebody, no?