When Dr Strange uses the eye to turn back time, Mordo rebukes him, saying that his messing with time will have "consequences":

You think there will be no consequences, Strange? No price to pay? We broke our rules, just like her. The bill comes due. Always!

Do these "consequences" ever happen, in any universe?

Note: I really don't see the issue but let's clarify. I know the quote is from the movie but the movie is supposed to be (however loosely) based on the comics. So, does it ever happen - in the comics or MCU - that Dr Strange's manipulation of time has "consequences" as intended by Mordo in the the movie?

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    Comics or MCU or all? (Right now the scope is set to any canonical marvel work ever produced in any format).
    – Edlothiad
    May 11, 2018 at 12:22
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    There was only one movie and nothing happened... I don't mind actually but I'd expect only replies about the comics
    – algiogia
    May 11, 2018 at 12:24
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    The event you're describing happened in the MCU, so logically, you should be asking about consequences within the MCU, since the comics are a separate continuity (I say this partly because I've already half-written an answer under the assumption you were asking about the MCU).
    – F1Krazy
    May 11, 2018 at 12:27
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    From a quick google, it’s not the time stone in the comics and therefore can’t manipulate time.
    – Edlothiad
    May 11, 2018 at 14:15
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    @algiogia: this event probably didn’t happen in the comics. Something similar probably happened at some point, because Doctor Strange has been around since the 1960s and comics come out every damn month, but that’s not likely to be particularly relevant to Mordo’s comment in the MCU. May 11, 2018 at 14:33

2 Answers 2


From the comics: Dr. Strange has been shown paying the bill for use of magic on multiple occasions.

First: in the comics, the Eye of Agamotto is not the Time Gem, and I'm not sure the Eye has been shown manipulating time (though it may well have been used to view past events). So, no, the comics do not show him "paying the bill" for manipulating time, because that's something specific to the films.

That said, the idea that the good Doctor might have to pay for his use of magic is not a new one.

When Stan Lee first created the character, he simply made up cool-sounding names for different magical spells Strange would cast: the Rings of Raggador, the Crimson Bands of Cyttorak, etc. After a year or so, he took one of those entities Strange had named, Dormammu, and turned it into a character - and one of Strange's deadliest opponents. (Side note: Cyttorak quickly got an additional mention as well, as the source of the gem that gave Cain Marko the power of the Juggernaut). Note that after fighting Dormammu, Strange never tries to use him in an incantation again.

In the 1980s, there was a storyline (when Strange didn't have his own book - he starred in one-half of Strange Tales, with Cloak and Dagger in the other half) where Strange was forced, for various reasons, to use some darker magic. He lost use of the Eye of Agamotto, and found himself driven more and more to use dark magic. He finally turned things around, and was able to set aside the dark magic and go back to his old self.

In the 1990's, the various entities Strange had called on (the Vishanti, Valtorr, Raggador, etc.) called for him to pay them back for their help over the years by participating in a big magic war. Initially, he tried to find other magical paths (he changed his magickal style at least once a year for a while). Finally, he agreed to serve in the war. Due to magic, although we fought in the war for decades, he came back able to use his magic as he had in the past, and looking the same as always.

Finally, in Jason Aaron's recent run on Doctor Strange, we see that that Strange eats is mostly bizarre, disgusting stuff that they wouldn't have used in the Fear Factor TV show, as at least partial payment for using magic. Plus with most magic removed from his reality, he's searching for relics and artifacts to regain access to magic, rather than tossing off "bolts of bedevilment" and such. That's why he's running around with an axe now; he doesn't have enough magic to do what he used to.

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    Not sure how much I like this as an answer to the question, but the year-in Dormommu arc mentioned is highly recommended reading for anyone with even a passing interest in the character. It is the ultimate hero's journey that all others are measured against IMHO. (This recommendation goes double for anyone from Marvel films looking for a new Dr. Strange storyline to produce)
    – T.E.D.
    May 11, 2018 at 18:40
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    @T.E.D. - Considering the looseness of the OP and the requirements, I think this fits rather well as an answer. It makes it clear that the Eye is not the time stone in the comics, and then delineates the price of magic,. Quite well done IMHO.
    – JohnP
    May 11, 2018 at 20:15

Limited to the MCU, it's still on his tab

Last we saw of Mordo from the after-credits scene, he was out stealing the powers of other sorcerers, seeing them as corrupters and an affront to the natural order. His view is a product of Doctor Strange and the Ancient One's choices to manipulate reality via the time stone, and so in a sense Mordo himself is the consequence; the bill that will be coming due. This will likely be a core part of the next Doctor Strange movie.

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    So it's self fulfilling--if Mordo hadn't thought there would be a consequence, there wouldn't have been one?
    – Bill K
    May 11, 2018 at 16:27
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    @BillK It's hard to say for certain, since it's dependent on whether or not Mordo's philosophy is true to the universe. If it is, then inevitably something else would have come along to collect (some might say Thanos, but his involvement was inevitable, and not a consequence of them using the time stone). If not, then no. Either way, yes, he is carrying out a self-fulfilling prophecy.
    – Mwr247
    May 11, 2018 at 16:31
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    @BillK However, it's worth noting that if Mordo's philosophy is true, then it should hold true for all the infinity stones. Does the use of the stones end up with greater consequences for those who have wielded them than what was gained by it? I suppose we won't know for certain until the end, but considering we can probably expect the heroes to come out on top, I'd venture to say probably not.
    – Mwr247
    May 11, 2018 at 16:35

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