In Avengers: Infinity War, Ebony Maw trapped Doctor Strange and took him to space along with the unexpected guests Tony Stark and Peter Parker in a 'donut' like spaceship.

To save Doctor Strange from Maw, Iron Man blasted a hole in the spaceship which is travelling at light speed. By doing this Stark eventually saved Doctor Strange by pulling Ebony Maw out of the ship who died instantly in space. But, why didn't Doctor Strange die while he was exposed to space (he doesn't have any pressure suite like Iron Man or Spider-Man) before Iron Man closed the hole using blasters?

  • 3
    Because of magic
    – Valorum
    Nov 9, 2018 at 9:45
  • 5
    You assume that all Strange's spells require somatic components. That need nor be the case. It is also possible that Strange put some protective enchantments on himself before going into battle. Nov 9, 2018 at 9:54
  • 2
    The real question is why did Ebony die so quickly... human potentially can "survive" 30seconds in the void of space
    – Naib
    Nov 9, 2018 at 20:34
  • 3
    “Ebony Maw... died instantly in space”. Did he though? Mar 6, 2019 at 11:25
  • 2
    @Naib : Ebony Maw is not human though is he Naib ~ so how long a human can survive the vacuum of space is completely irrelevant to the question of how long Ebony Maw could survive in space isn't it.
    – Pelinore
    Mar 13, 2019 at 19:28

1 Answer 1


He may have been protected by the ship's atmosphere during the rescue

In the clip below, you can see the ship's atmosphere venting into space around Dr Strange until Spider-man pulls him in. Perhaps the air, which must be oxygenated, allowed him to breathe. It's also likely the air inside the ship was warmer than the vacuum of space, so possibly the minor temperature increase prevented him from freezing so quickly, as we saw happen with Ebony Maw.

Various sources also suggest that a human can survive 15 seconds in space before losing consciousness. Dr Strange was in space for just under that time.

  • 2
    the real question is why EM couldn't pull a Leia and rescue himself.
    – ths
    Nov 9, 2018 at 11:10
  • Perhaps the air, which must be oxygenated, allowed him to breathe - it wouldn't really work that way. You inhale air because the expansion of your chest creates a lower pressure than the surrounding atmosphere. But competing in pressure reduction with the vacuum of space seems pretty tough.
    – Misha R
    Nov 9, 2018 at 19:17
  • You can easily hold your breath for the length of time Strange was outside the ship. Breathing is irrelevant here. It's most likely simply because he wasn't out for very long, and was mostly surrounded and insulated (not that you need much insulation in a vacuum) by the venting atmosphere.
    – OrangeDog
    Sep 5, 2020 at 21:16
  • @OrangeDog You can't hold your breath in space. Your throat doesn't have even a tiny fraction of the strength needed for that, and even trying runs the risk of rupturing something important in your windpipe. Sep 5, 2020 at 22:35
  • @HiddenWindshield I didn't say you can hold your breath in space. I was demonstrating that there was no need to be breathing for that time.
    – OrangeDog
    Sep 5, 2020 at 22:51

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