10 Things Only Doctor Strange Fans Know About Clea

Spoiler warning: This article contains spoilers for Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness.

Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness delivers a cavalcade of cameos, including the introduction of iconic Marvel Comics superheroes from the X-Men and Fantastic Four, The best cameo in the movie arguably comes in its mid-credits scene. Charlize Theron appears as Clea, and comic book fans know Clea plays an essential role in the story of Doctor Strange and the mystical arts.

Stan Lee and Steve Ditko created Clea in 1964, introducing a minor character who would eventually become titanic in her importance. Clea actors heavily not only in the ranks of mystical beings in Marvel Comics but in the heart of Doctor Strange. The two married in a magical rite and have remained close through lots of ups and downs over the years, With Christine seemingly out of the picture in the MCU, Clea finally takes her place from her at the side of Doctor Strange.


Nameless For Two Years

Clea encounters Doctor Strange in Marvel Comics.

Clea occupies a central role in the lore of Doctor Strange in Marvel Comics, but she remained nameless for two years. She made her first appearance in Strange Tales #126 in 1964, where Doctor Strange fought Dormammu for the first time.

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Clea continued to appear regularly in Doctor Strange’s stories in the anthology but only gained her name in Strange Tales #146 in 1966. Her backstory and significance in the comics only continued to grow from there.

Niece Of Dormammu

Dormammu and Clea

Clea ranks as one of the most powerful magical beings in the Marvel Universe. Part of her power de ella in the mystical arts stems from the fact she is the niece of Dormammu. Dormammu rules the Dark Dimension and succeeded her father, Prince Orini.

Umar, her mother, and sister of Dormammu, hails from the Faltine race. The Faltines exist as pure magic and come from a different universe than the Dark Dimension. Ella’s magical legacy grants her enormous power and potential she eventually realizes in the comics.

Prisoner Of Dormammu

Dormammu Ditko Doctor Strange Clea Marvel

Dormammu ranks among Doctor Strange’s most powerful villains and he proved his might when he imprisoned Clea. She served him as all beings of the Dark Dimension did, but she also questioned his actions and motives for him.

When she tried to dissuade Doctor Strange from confronting Dormammu over his planned invasion of Earth, he imprisoned Clea for acting against him. He eventually released her after Dormammu and Strange worked together to defeat an even greater threat.

Dimension Hopper

Clea tumbles through dimensions in Marvel Comics.

Clea arrives in the MCU with the clear ability to move between dimensions. That ability to hop dimensions comes right out of the comics. In Strange Tales #151, Clea tumbled through the multiverse very much like the Sorcerer Supreme does in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness.

RELATED: 10 Best Doctor Strange Comics To Read Before Doctor Strange In The Multiverse Of Madness

After Dormammu loses his rule in the Dark Dimension to Eternity, Clea’s mother Umar makes a play for the throne. That leads to Clea being cast out and she travels from one dimension to another, seemingly getting away from Doctor Strange for good.

Student Of Strange

Clea trains with Doctor Strange in Marvel Comics.

Clea eventually settles on Earth, though she loses her powers after being cut off from the Dark Dimension. She then trains in the mystic arts as a student of Doctor Strange. Their relationship also finally tips over into full romance.

Clea begins her training in Marvel Premiere #12 and continued for some time. She and Strange worked together as a close-knit team fighting major threats from the mystical realm including Baron Karl Mordo.

The Corruption Of Clea

Evil Clea fights Doctor Strange in Marvel Comics.

A hint of Clea’s possible MCU future comes in Marvel Team-Up #76. A villain named Silver Dagger manipulates Clea into unlocking her full power from her as a Faltine. She transforms into a being of pure energy and attacks Doctor Strange.

Doctor Strange struggles to stop Clea in this powerful new form, and it’s only with the help of Spider-Man that he subdues Silver Dagger and returns Clea to her normal form. Silver Dagger seems to reach for the MCU, but Clea’s struggles with her extraordinary power likely factor at some point.

Ruler Of The Dark Dimension

Clea fights Umar in Marvel Comics.

Another likely fate for Clea in the MCU emerges from the comics. The war for control of the Dark Dimension played out for several years in the comics, with Clea ultimately taking her place from her as ruler in Doctor Strange #73.

She confronted her mother Umar in an epic battle to decide the Dark Dimension’s fate once and for all. Umar remains one of the best Doctor Strange comic characters not in the MCU and is likely to appear now that Clea has made her debut.

Married In Magic

Clea and Doctor Strange embrace in Marvel Comics.

MCU fans know Doctor Strange loves Christine, but comic book fans know the true love of his life is Clea. The challenges of each being the Sorcerer Supreme of their respective realms kept them apart but the two wed nonetheless.

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Clea’s status as a being from the Dark Dimension prevented a legal marriage on Earth, but they wed via a mystical document that bound them together forever. Their powerful bond likely leads to them becoming one of the best MCU couples.

Dealing With Morbius

Morbius encounters Doctor Strange and Clea in Marvel Comics.

Clea warns Doctor Strange in the MCU about an incursion he created. Incursions figure heavily into bringing nonsense universes together in the 2015 Secret Warsone of the most important Marvel events, and in the movies, could send the MCU crashing into the Sony Marvel Universe.

If so, Clea may confront Morbius as she did in the comics. Clea plays a role in Doctor Strange #14, where Strange discovers via Morbius that vampires exist in the Marvel Universe. This scenario plays out in the MCU if the cinematic universes collide.

Sorcerer Supreme

clea doctor strange

Clea’s journey from student to master came full circle in 2022 when she became the Sorcerer Supreme of Earth-616. With the death of Stephen Strange, she assumes the mantle she trained for with power and experience few can match. Her earliest battles for her as the new Sorcerer Supreme include defeating Doctor Doom with little effort.

She also took the last name of Strange in honor of her fallen lover. Clea attempted to bring back Strange via a complex pell but failed. Instead, she brought back Thunderstrike, a version of Thor from the comics who may play a role in the MCU as well.

NEXT: 10 Times Doctor Strange Was A Villain In Marvel Comics

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