The Illuminati of Earth-838 was presented by Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness — here’s who they are and how their beginnings differ from the comics. With 28 films under its belt, the Marvel Cinematic Universe shows no signs of slowing down. While the shared universe has succeeded to bring a number of comic-book characters to life, the Fantastic Four and the X-Men have remained on the sidelines and in their own realm due to Marvel’s lack of rights to adapt them for the big screen.
Everything changed in 2019 when Disney bought 20th Century Fox (now 20th Century Studios). The Marvel Cinematic Universe had yet to incorporate Deadpool, Fantastic Four, and the X-Men characters into its films and television shows. Reed Richards and Professor Xavier make their MCU debut in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness. Despite the fact that they are not a part of the shared universe’s principal Earth (now officially named Earth-616), their appearances cause a shift in the status quo and open the possibility of seeing them again in the future.
The Illuminati is a group of six people who act as a superhuman council. After Doctor Strange went after the Darkhold on his own and began dream-walking, they decided he was dangerous. That’s why they were leery of Doctor Strange from Earth-616, lest the same thing happen again. Each member of the Illuminati in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness is listed here, along with who plays them, their abilities, and how their live-action versions differ from the original material.
Mister Fantastic is the superhero moniker used by Reed Richards, the leader of the Fantastic Four. Reed is a brilliant scientist who can stretch his body in any direction he wants, making him extraordinarily elastic and malleable. Reed can shape-shift to some extent and is electricity resistant. In the comics, Mister Fantastic is also a member of the Illuminati. Ioan Gruffud previously played Mister Fantastic in the Fantastic Four films from 2005 and Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer from 2007. John Krasinski plays Reed Richards, who was a popular fancast for the character. The Office, Amazon’s Jack Ryan, 13 Hours, The Hollars, and A Quiet Place are among Krasinski’s most well-known works.
On Earth-838, Maria Rambeau became Captain Marvel and joined the Illuminati. Maria effectively clones Carol Danvers’ abilities as Captain Marvel: she can fly, shoot energy blasts, and possesses superhuman strength and durability. Maria has a daughter on Earth-616 named Monica, but she is not mentioned in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness. Maria was Carol’s best friend and the founder of the Sentient Weapon Observation and Response Division (S.W.O.R.D.) before dying of cancer a few years after Thanos’ snap in Captain Marvel. Lashana Lynch, noted for her appearances in No Time to Die, Still Star-Crossed, and Bulletproof, plays Maria Rambeau.
Peggy Carter of Earth-838 is a reimagining of the character from What If…? After Steve Rogers was attacked and no longer able, she offered to take the Super Soldier Serum. She became Captain Carter and assisted in the defeat of HYDRA in the MCU before entering a wormhole that transported her 70 years into the future. Captain Carter possesses the same superhuman strength, stamina, quick healing, increased agility, and reflexes as Captain America. Captain Carter also possesses a Vibranium-steel shield that can withstand practically any type of damage. Peggy has been a part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe for quite some time, beginning with Captain America: The First Avenger in 2011 and continuing through Avengers: Endgame and other films, as well as the short-lived series Agent Carter. Hayley Atwell, noted for her appearances in Conviction, The Duchess, and The Pillars of the Earth, plays Peggy Carter.
Blackagar Boltagon (also known as Black Bolt) is an Inhuman, a race of genetically modified humans. He is also a member of the royal family of the Inhumans. Black Bolt’s main ability is his hypersonic voice, which has the ability to kill individuals and cause a lot of damage in general. He also has superhuman strength, the ability to fly, and the ability to manipulate particles. Black Bolt was last seen in the critically panned Inhumans series, and Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness is the character’s first official MCU film. Anson Mount, who played Black Bolt in the ABC series, reprises his role. Star Trek: Discovery, Hell on Wheels, and Star Trek: Strange New Worlds have all included him.
On Earth-838, Karl Mordo is the Sorcerer Supreme and the protector of the New York Sanctum. He was buddies with Doctor Strange before becoming Sorcerer Supreme. Mordo has tremendous magical abilities and can cast spells, and he’s also a skilled martial artist. Mordo was first seen in Doctor Strange. Chiwetel Ejiofor, who has been in films such as 12 Years a Slave, The Old Guard, Maleficent: Mistress of Evil, The Martian, Salt, 2012, The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind, Locked Down, and Love Actually, portrays him.
Professor Charles Xavier is a mutant, a person who carries the X-gene, which grants them superhuman abilities. Professor Xavier possesses exceptional telepathy and telekinetic abilities. He has the ability to read people’s minds and manipulate them mentally. Professor X makes his MCU debut in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness. Previously, the telepath and X-founder Men’s appeared in nearly every X-Men film, including X2: X-Men United, X-Men: Days of Future Past, and Logan. Patrick Stewart, who has also been in American Dad!, Green Room, Hamlet, Robin Hood: Men in Tights, and Star Trek: The Next Generation and Star Trek: Picard, as Professor X.
The Illuminati was founded in the comics after the Kree-Skrull War, an interstellar conflict between two extraterrestrial species that had an impact on Earth. Iron Man, one of the Illuminati’s founding members, understood that other powerful superheroes on Earth knew of items they could have shared with him and others to keep the conflict from wreaking havoc. As a result, the Illuminati was founded as a secret society of superheroes who gathered to keep each other informed and make judgments on how to handle various challenges and conflicts as they developed. Iron Man, Professor Charles Xavier, Mister Fantastic, Black Bolt, Namor, King of Atlantis, and Doctor Strange are among the founding members of the Illuminati in comic books, but others have subsequently joined their ranks, including Black Panther, Beast, and Captain Britain.
The founding members of the Illuminati on Earth-838 in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness are not the same as in the comics. Iron Man is noticeably absent, and the organisation appears to have formed before to Thanos’ arrival to wreak devastation, rather than as a result of any interplanetary conflict. Doctor Strange 2 also doesn’t explain when and why the Illuminati arose, which contradicts the comics’ logic because these are events that have yet to occur in the MCU. It’s also unclear in the film whether the MCU’s version of the Illuminati is the original or if members have already been rotated. Captain Marvel and Mordo, on the other hand, were never members in the comics. Mordo takes the position of Doctor Strange in the gang after Strange turned rogue and decided to wield the Darkhold’s powers on his own, causing chaos in the cosmos.
Earth-838 appears to be under the control of the Illuminati. They make a lot of decisions that influence everyone, manipulating information as they see fit in any given situation, such as Doctor Strange’s death and modifying the narrative to depict him as a hero. Given how fast Scarlet Witch defeated the Illuminati in Doctor Strange’s Multiverse of Madness, the superhero group’s might appears to be limited when confronted with an enemy who can do anything and will go to great measures to achieve her goal.