|As Sorcerer Supreme, Doctor Voodoo is obligated to tussle with the Dread Dormammu!|
|The cover to issue #1 |
by Marko Djurdjevic.
Though he first appeared in 1973, Brother Voodoo (Jericho Drumm) didn't come fully to my attention until he was promoted to "Doctor" Voodoo, Avenger of the Supernatural, during the five issue series of the same name in 2009. Replacing Doctor Stephen Strange as the Sorcerer Supreme in the pages of The Avengers, Dr. Voodoo's self titled series was written by then up-and-comer Rick Remender with art by Jefte Palo. Each issue featured a beautiful painted cover by Marko Djurdjevic.
Much of issue 1 deals with Dr. Voodoo asserting his newly-appointed authority with some of the Marvel Universe's magic-based heavyweights, including Dr. Strange (who appointed him in the first place), Dormammu and Dr. Doom (both of who feel it is they who should have been given the job instead)--apparently having a doctorate helps in the practice of the mystic arts. In fact a recurring theme throughout the five issue run is Voodoo dealing with various preconceptions of his worthiness. Dr. Doom in particular seems especially interested as the title come with lots of magical goodies. Beyond his existing powers derived from voodoo spirits, including the ability to call on the spirit of his deceased brother, Daniel Drumm, Voodoo also gifted with some special accouterments with the Sorcerer Supreme role. In addition to the iconic Eye of Agamotto, Strange also bestowed the Cloak of Levitation and the Books of Knowledge, upon him.
|Doctor Voodoo and his brother, a spirit,|
converse at the series
conlcusion. Art by Jefte Palo.
Marvel's editorial decision to supplement Remender's story with additional background information serves to reveal a character of much greater depth and potential than I had previously understood. Consistently atmospheric artwork by Jefte Palo grounds the proceedings in an earthy, yet suitably fantastical, setting that is (intentionally?) very different from the bright colored realms that longtime Strange are familiar with seeing their hero in. As evidenced by his action orientated approach and the visual palette through which his adventures are portrayed, this Doctor is his own man.
Though it only ran five issues before being abruptly canceled (other than the semi-terminal "End?" note in the book's final panel, the issue seems to be transitioning to a second story arc, this one with Voodoo battling Ogoun the Slayer), the series hints at some of the great potential the character holds. Perhaps this will be explored more fully, and with greater sales, as Brother Voodoo has recently resurfaced in the Marvel Universe in a big way, playing a pivotal role in last fall's AXIS event and his position as a member of a new Avengers team.
Single issuers of the five issue Doctor Voodoo: Avenger of the Supernatural are very likely still available at your local comic shop, as is the collected trade of the same name.
The cover to issue #3 by Marko Djurdjevic.