The Marvel Universe is filled with powerful villains who’ve done their share of destruction and treachery. It can be argued that one of the most vile and terrifying bad guys, is one that most fans have never really gotten to known. He’s prominently been the archenemy to Doctor Strange, but has also given the Avengers their fair share of problems. His name is Dormammu (it’s a fun name to say aloud) and after seeing Doctor Strange in theaters, a lot of fans want to know more about him. Help is here!
From the film we know Dormammu is the ruler of the Dark Dimension, one of many realms in the Multiverse. From his inception in Strange Tales #126 way back in 1964, his origin has been particularly complicated and dense. He was born possibly millions of years ago in the Faltine dimension, a place inhabited by extremely powerful energy creatures. Dormammu and his sister Umar craved matter in order to increase their own power. This thirst for matter instead of energy (which the Faltine consume to grow strength) is what gets them both banished from their dimension and gives them a human form instead of their energy based appearances. They would find the Dark Dimension in their search for realms to conquer. It’s here where they encounter the Mindless Ones (indestructible creatures from yet another dimension) who destroy and kill most of the Dark Dimension including their King, Olnar. Dormammu and his sister are able to stop the Mindless Ones and take control of the dimension.
Dormammu’s overriding motivation is fueled by his need to conquer all things in existence. His first real roadblock he faces is The Ancient One, mystical protector of the Earth realm. Dormammu is at his strongest when he’s within the Dark Dimension as he feeds off the energy from that dimension. When he leaves his dimension and travels to Earth to conquer it, he is weaker because he’s cut off from that energy that makes him so strong. It’s because of the mystical barriers set in place by The Ancient One (which we saw in the film in the form of the three Sanctums), Dormammu is prevented from maintaining his link to the Dark Dimension’s energy that he needs.
He’s a powerful being with a flaming head… But that’s not all! Dormammu has superhuman strength and can do a lot of things that his opposite, Doctor Strange, can do. Astral projection, flight, and interdimensional transportation are just the tip of the iceberg. He can also transmute matter, control elements, project and absorb energy, travel through time and has the power of resurrection. He’s faced off with Odin (Thor’s papa from Asgard) on more than a few occasions, and has stood tall against the Asgardian King.
Dormammu is a hidden gem in the vault of Marvel villains. He’s insanely powerful and he were ever able to destroy the mystical safeguards protecting Earth, he would easily add it to his array of conquered realms.