The latest trailer for Marvel's Runaways promises more conspiracies, superpowers, and kids vs. parents action that fans have come to expect from the Hulu series. But while the first season was largely isolated from the Marvel Cinematic Universe, the new episodes are teasing a major tie to one popular superhero.
Eagle-eyed fans might have noticed a visual cue from Runaways new trailer, possibly connecting it to Doctor Strange. Check it out in the video above.
In case you didn't notice, at the 1:37 mark, Nico Minoru is shown using the Staff of One with some apparent consequences that fans from Doctor Strange might notice. If you look at her eyes, the skin is starting to crack.
This is the same effect that Doctor Strange villain Kaecilius suffers in the events of the film, a byproduct of his dealings with the Dark Dimension after he turns against the Ancient One. In the film, Kaecilius attempts to harness the power of the Dark Dimension and spread it across Earth in exchange for power from Dormammu.
The first season of Runaways explained that the Staff of One did not actually make use of magic, per se, but was a complex piece of technology developed by Wizard, the company ran by Nico's mother Tina Minoru. The staff can only be used by Nico and her mom because it reads their DNA.
Now here's where things get tricky, because Tina Minoru was a character in Doctor Strange and one of the Ancient One's followers, though she's not prominently featured in the film. In fact, she's never named outright except in the credits. Runaways showrunners Stephanie Savage and Josh Schwartz previously mentioned they're ignoring that minor piece of canon in order to tell their own story.
But with this new shot in the trailer, as Nico's eyes seem to indicate that she too is harnessing the Dark Dimension, it seems like Runaways might be making a more concerted effort to reference previous events in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
If it does turn out that the Staff of One is actually a magical artifact and not a high-tech piece of gadgetry, it wouldn't be the most egregious retcon. Tina could have been lying to her daughter when she explained the staff's origin, attempting to keep it a secret and protect her daughter from Dormammu's machinations.
Hopefully the new season of Runaways explores this connection even further, possibly revealing more details about Nico's mysterious connection to the Staff of One.1comments
Runaways Season 2 premieres on Hulu on December 21st.