In the original comics and in the newly released photos of Benedict Cumberbatch from the movie version, Dr. Strange wears an outfit with an excessively high collar. Does this high collar have a purpose and, if so, what is it?

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  • 8
    That collar, along with the red cape, is actually an artifact called The Cloak of Levitation. Besides, big collars always come back into style eventually.
    – Omegacron
    Dec 30, 2015 at 21:10
  • 8
    Because high collars are cool
    – Valorum
    Dec 30, 2015 at 21:37
  • 3
    Good to see we’re really getting to the key points of this movie, and even well before it’s released. Dec 30, 2015 at 23:36
  • 1
    Hey, it gets windy on the Astral Plane. Oct 28, 2016 at 14:11
  • The purpose of high collars back in the day was to protect your neck from cold and wind, the purpose now is fashion. Oct 28, 2016 at 14:39

1 Answer 1


The collar, along with the cape attached to it, is actually an arcane artifact - one that responds to the mind of its wearer - called The Cloak of Levitation. The high collar itself does not serve a purpose, but that is indeed how the cloak was originally designed when it first appeared in Strange Tales #127 (December 1963). Even before the cape's debut, Strange wore a tunic which also had a high collar:

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Speculation: At the time, high or "popped" collars were seen as a symbol of rebellion and "coolness" in American society. Doctor Strange has always been somewhat of an outsider in the Marvel universe, so perhaps that is what the cloak's collar was meant to convey.

Update: As an added bonus, there is a reference to this in the film itself...

At the moment where Strange decides to give up his old life and embrace his new role as a sorceror, he is staring into a mirror with the collar laying nearly flat. He pops the collar up in a "Let's do this" manner before proceeding to go kick magical butt.

  • 4
    Answered in the classic Marvel Fashion: Nuff Said! Dec 31, 2015 at 3:01
  • 4
    Admit it, it's for the hightened effect of razor cheekbones.
    – burcu
    Feb 16, 2016 at 14:24
  • 3
    As a bonus, collars used to always be popped, so an upturned collar also has a bonus of looking slightly archaic, as per depictions of Dracula. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Upturned_collar#Origins
    – FuzzyBoots
    Oct 28, 2016 at 12:51
  • There is a German saying: ,,Ist der Kragen oben, wird man Dich loben." - Is the collar up you get praise or something like that.
    – Horsty
    Mar 9, 2017 at 7:52
  • Notably, when Benedict Cumberbatch plays Sherlock Holmes on the BBC, he wears his coat collar this way. I thought it was a call-out to that as well.
    – docwebhead
    Aug 2, 2017 at 15:27

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