THE LESSER BOOK
OF THE
VISHANTI


A Companion to
the Dr. Strange Comic Books


compiled by catherine yronwode
with nagasiva yronwode

CONTENTS | PROLEPSIS | INTROIT | VOLUME ONE | INTERMEZZO | VOLUME TWO | APPENDICES


VOLUME TWO: THE SCIENCE

Dimensional Theory: An Omniversal "Heresy"

A Prologue and a Possible Explanation,
            Published in Discrete Little Items for APA-I, 1983

The Wondrous Worlds of Dr. Strange,
            An unpublished article for Omniverse, 1978

A Proposed Revision of the Theory of Fractional Dimensions

      Vibrational Barrier Lands

      Objective Dimensions

      Subjective Dimensions

      Nether-Zones, Nether Dimensions, Nether Worlds, and Two Kinds of Limbo

      An Outline of Dimensional Types

      Footnotes

Interdimensional Travel: Walking Between the Worlds

A Catalogue of the Dimensions,
            including instructions on travel to these realms,
            with a short depiction of their landscapes,
            inhabitants, and modes of conduct found therein

The Alteration of Time by Means of the Art,
            including Time-Travel


DIMENSIONAL THEORY:
AN OMNIVERSAL "HERESY"

A Prologue and a Possible Explanation
Published in Discrete Little Items for APA-I, 1983

In 1977 i read a book by Mark Gruenwald entitled "A Treatise on Reality in Comic Literature." This book, known as TORICL to Mark and his friends, proposed an orderly theory of comic book universes, interlocking and otherwise. The theory was called the "Omniversal Theory," "alternate realities" as handled by comic book scripters.

Soon after the book was published (in a very small edition), Mark was hired as an assistant editor at Marvel. Roy Thomas had been impressed with Mark's theory, and he wanted to work with Mark in an effort to tie upo some longstanding loose ends in Marvel continuity, using the TORICL approach to comic book reality. Within months Mark's Omniversal concepts became accepted at Marvel, and a new title, What If...? was used as a primer in Omniversal theory, relying heavily on Mark's ideas about alternate realities. Eventually the Omniversal theory became official Marvel dogma, and that situation still holds true.

However, during the early days of the Omniversal theory, before it had hardened into "fact" for many Marvel professionals, Mark Guenwald invited comments, suggestions and even criticism of his ideas from fellow fans. To my knowledge he never accepted any of these suggesteions, but he did make the offer to print them in his fanzine, Omniverse. That zine was published by Mark and his then room-mate, Dean Mullaney. Two issues appeared before their partnership was dissolved, and a third one (containing material written up to five years ago) is said to be in the works at present {{1983}}.

As an early Ommie (that's what we called adherents to the Omniversal theory), i was invited to submit an article for Omniverse on the subject of Dr. Strange. I had previously prepared a catalogue to all the dimensions the Doctor had visited in his main-line continuity, so i wrote an introduction to this catalogue as the "article" proper, intending to see it accompanied by the catalogue when the whole was printed in Mark and Dean's zine.

The trouble was that i did not agree with Mark's theory, and i took several paragraphs out to explain why i thought he was wrong in assigning the typical "Ditko" dimension visited by Dr. Strange to a subsidiary category he called "fractional," instead of granting it status as a "whole number" with my "heresy," and the article, originally scheduled for issue no. 2 of Omniverse, was bumped to issue no. 3, pending what i was told would be "massive rewrites" by party-line Ommies. Many years passed and issue no.3, once considered a pipe-dream, now seems to be on the road to reality, but it turns out that my article was bumped again, because it does not upbold the "official explanation of "magical" dimensions as currently propounded by Gruenwald and his cohorts.

I feel a little bit like Leon Trotsky at this point.

Anyway, since it is apparent that the article will never see print in Mark's zine without a total rewrite, i have decided to put it through APA-I as the preface to my original catalogue of dimensions visited by Dr. Strange. I realize that some of the terminology ("VBL," "fractional dimension," etc.) will be hard to understnad if one hasn't ever read TORICL, but the gist of the work is still clear, i hope, being merely an attempt to categorize the dimensions Strange has visited in strictly philosophical (or metaphysical) terminology, i.e. "subjective," "objective," etc.

Next time i'll get to the actual catalogue of dimensions, and that will be easy enough for even non-Ommies to follow because the only referents to this present article which occur in the catalogue are those which "type" the dimension ("Subjective -- Unstable -- Real") according to the terms set forth herein.

What follows is my original typescript, as written in 1978.


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THE WONDROUS WORLDS OF DR. STRANGE

By Cat {{sign}} Yronwode

An unpublished article for Omniverse, 1978

Beginning with his initial appearance in ST 110 (July 1963), Doctor Strange, Master of the Mystic Arts, has been a regular traveler to other dimensions.1 His journeys are usually accomplished via occult incantations, talismans, rhymed spells and ancient artifacts, in the time-worn Vishantist tradition. For reasons unknown, the good Doctor has never visited a parallel Earth and thus, to the casual reader, his travels may seem incomprehensible and his destinations a mere grab-bag of random "netherworlds" -- or worse yet, the fantastic delusions of a paranoid schizophrenic who went insane when a car accident deprived him of his skill at surgery. However, on closer examination, all but two of Dr. Strange's over 50 dimensional voyages are logically consistent within the premises of the Omniversal theory, and furthermore, they serve as admirable case studies for construction of a comprehensive overview of all realities, not just the earth-like one's most people are familiar with. As for the inconsistent travels -- a "massive reinterpretation" in the honourable OMmie tradition is all that's needed to set matters right -- and may also serve as an example of the kinds of logical pitfalls the unwary author should avoid.

But first, as they say, let us define our terms. And while we're at it, it will be necessary to re-define some of them too.

A PROPOSED REVISION OF THE THEORY OF FRACTIONAL DIMENSIONS

In his book TORICL, Mark Gruenwald lumped what he called "magical", "alien", and "mythological" dimensions into one category which he referred to as "fractional" -- that is, existing between whole-number "Earths". He stated frankly at the time that one reason for doing so was that no systematic catalogue had yet been made of the various non-Earth multiverses. This first attempt at such a catalogue, limited as it is, points up some fallacies in Gruenwald's Earth-chauvinistic theory. In order to account for the bulk of Strange's travels with the least amount of


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"reintegration", or to phrase it another way, to give any credence to any of the data presented in ST, MP and DS comics, requires a revision of this area of the Omniversal theory. I certainly mean no disrespect to Gruenwald, but there's 15 years' worth of data in these comics that contradicts the idea that "magical", "alien", or "mythological" are useful adjectives in defining a dimension! What follows here is my attempt at clarifying the situation -- and i welcome any responses from readers.

THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS A "MAGICAL" DIMENSION

For all practical purposes the term "magical" is useless in defining a multiverse. In some realities "magic" may excel over "science", or vice versa, but in every major comic book reality of which I have heard, "magic" and "science" co-exist. If this were not so, Dr. Strange could not function alongside Mr. Fantastic, nor could Princess Projectra join the Legion of Super-Heroes. Earth-real has magic too (just ask your local pagans) but of course, in the same way that our scientific knowledge lags behind that of a Braniac or Henry Pym, so does our magical knowledge seem primitive when compared to that of even such a minor four-colour adept as Chondu the Mystic. In my opinion "magic" and science are basically the same thing -- selective manipulation of matter and energy. An electro-magnetic definition of magic wherein the Vishanti and other deities can be seen as analogues to the Guardians of Oa is another topic for another time. Suffice it to say that the use of rhymes is not merely a "coincidence" in the pages of GL.

Axiom: One Doctor's science is another one's sorcery.

THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS A "MYTHOLOGICAL" DIMENSION

This lies beyond the scope of the present article, but i would like to note that although "mythological" may be a more useful term than "magical" in defining the nature of a given multiverse, particularly in relation to any


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of the several Earths, the inhabitants of these so-called "mythic realms" are simply living out their own day-to-day existences. If some blundering human being witnesses their rather awesome soap-opera and upon returning home makes a "religion" out of what she saw, that no more defines the beings in question as "gods" than does the fact that because some misguided South Pacific islanders worship cargo planes, airline pilots are "gods."

Axiom: One man's shopping list is another one's cargo cult.

VIBRATIONAL BARRIER LANDS

So-called "magical," "alien" and "mythological" dimensions are not fractional. They are whole-number multiverses just like the Earth-series dimensions are. Dr. Strange and his mentor are very cognizant of this fact as are all of the dozen authors who have worked on the series. 2 One travels through "barriers", "interdimensional corridors", "nether-zones" and so forth until one arrives in "another dimension". Only these Vibrational Barrier Lands (VBLs) can be said to lie "between dimensions".

VIBRATIONAL BARRIER LANDS ARE THE ONLY TRUE FRACTIONAL DIMENSIONS

Although the worlds Dr. Strange travels to, even those with human inhabitants, are obviously not close parallels of the Earth-series dimensions, they cannot for that reason be said to lie "between Earths" -- in fact, the logical supposition, corroborated by numerous textual references, is that they are rather far away from the Earths -- "an unimaginable distance," "far beyond," "at the edge of infinity" and so forth.

Axiom: All realities are created equal.

The question remains -- how can one get into transition with such distant multiverses? My attempt at an answer is just a theory, but, since that's what this game is all about, here it is: In TORICL Gruenwald used low CPU numbers such as 2, 4, 6, and 8 to demonstrate the theory of divergences. Such low numbers have few common denominators, leading one to the erroneous belief that transitional worlds are hard to find. In actual fact, the CPU's of most current reality lines are much much higher -- along the lines of 37, 648, 118; 73, 197, 490; and 37, 537, 398 -- and common denominators are a dime a dozen. Even such dissimilar places as


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Earths Real, M, Prime, 1, 2, S, and so forth cannot have diverged before the origin of the human species and since we know that the omniverse is at least 4.5 billion years old (because Earth Real is that old) it is obvious that there has been enough time for some really radially divergent universes to develop within one prime system. I'm not trying to propose that all the diverse dimensions Dr. Strange has visited were once united, but given the idea of divergences and a time-span like that, it's not illogical nor impossible.

OBJECTIVE DIMENSIONS

Philosophically, that which exists in and of itself, independent of the mind is said to be Objective. What anyone thinks about Objective data is irrelevant -- it simply is. While some people may dispute this, most human beings believe the world we live in has an existence which can and will continue without their consciousness. Objective things are commonly said to be "real" but this i is not an exact definition, because if one defines Objective as "real," one is very likely to fall into the semantic trap of defining its opposite, Subjective, as "unreal" -- and this is definitely not the case. Most of the dimensions Dr. Strange has visited are Objective -- they do not depend on his thoughts, or the thoughts of any others, for their existence. Furthermore they can be classified into three groups, which i have labelled

  • Planetary
  • Unstable
  • and
  • "Artificial".
  • The Planetary realms are those which possess a stable surface (no matter how bizarre in appearance) and enough mass for gravity to be an important factor of life. The inhabitants (if any) may be either alien or human. All the Earth-series reality-lines are Objective and Planetary of course, and although not strictly "planetary", the intergalactic spaces between planets can be considered under this heading.

    The second type of Objective dimension, the one which is most closely associated with the name of Dr. Strange in the minds of comic book readers, has an Unstable surface geography. Gravity may be similar to Earth's, much


    5

    lighter or virtually nonexistent. Grotesque land-forms and strangely-shaped objects about, many of them reminiscent of things on Earth, but seen out of their normal contexts. Some of these multiverses contain so-called "worlds within worlds"" and may in fact be made up of not just one continuum but several interlocked realities which drift down the time-line together, remaining in permanent conjunction. The landscapes of Unstable worlds are sometimes called "surreal" but i prefer not to use this term, as it casts doubt upon their "reality." Therefore i have named the more bizarre and colourful regions of the unstable realms "Ditko Areas," after Steve Ditko, the first person from Earth-real to discover them. If anyone is in doubt as to what exactly constitutes a Ditko Area, the all-time definitive version can be found in Spiderman Annual #2, reprinted as Dr. Strange #179. (Thank you Steve, you have increased our knowledge of Reality immensely.) Incidentally, although many if not all Unstable universes contain Ditko Areas, this does not constitute a definition of these dimensions per se. One type of VBL (Interdimensional Corridors AKA Nether-zones) i also Ditkoid in appearance.

    The third group of Objective-Unstable worlds are those which can best be termed "Artificial." These are relatively uncommon dimensions, said to be "created" by certain powerful sorcerers. There is considerable doubt in my mind as to whether anyone, no matter how well-versed in the arcana of Oshtur, can actually create an Objective reality, one which exists independently of their consciousness, but the fact is that none of these Artificial realms has ever been stated to be Subjective and all are reached through the usual magical channels of invocation and ritual. If i had the slightest excuse, i would classify them as Subjective, but the subjectivity of all Subjective domains is always lovingly and verbosely dwelt on by both narrators and participants. Everyone involved seems to delight in relating all the subtle


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    nuances of subjectivity3, so the fact that these Artificial worlds are never explicitly stated to be Subjective leaves but one other logical explanation: the "creators of Artificial dimensions are liars. They find some uninhabited Objective-Unstable multiverse that suits them, dress it up with a few personal trinkets, such as Lord Nekron did with his Clock Dimension (no. 22 in the catalogue), and then they brag that they are "Creators." Dr. Strange may be slightly gullible to believe these grandiose claims to demigodhood on the parts of his foes, but actually, that is a more tenable hypothesis than one which would leave the Master of the Mystic Arts, trained by a Thibetan Sorcerer Supreme, unable to distinguish an Objective from a Subjective reality.

    SUBJECTIVE DIMENSIONS

    The major problem with Dr. Strange's extra-dimensional travels is not to distinguish VBLs from true whole-number dimensions -- it is to make sense out of the handful of so-called "Subjective" spaces in which he has sojourned. A subjective state is one which does not exist independently of some mind or minds. A good case could be madce to prove that the entire Omniverse is actually a collectively subjective experience, but I shall resist the temptation. Usually, among present-day Americans and Europeans, subjectivity is equated with "unreality;" it is then but a short step to the erroneous conclusion that "since unreal things by definition don't exist, subjective spaces do not exist." However, this materialistic philosophy is not accepted throughout even all of Earth-real as the truth. Just to give one example, the Thibetans have long asserted that there is no such thing as an "unreal" idea, because by the very act of imagining it -- it is real. They say "The mind cannot conceive an image of that-which-is-not, therefore all images seen by the mind are of real things." This accords with the basic Omniversal premise that "all fiction is true __ somewhere." The realon i mention the Thibetans in this connection is that Dr. Strange studied magic in Thibet, under the


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    Ancient One, a native of the nearby lost civilization of Kamar-Taj.4 Undoubtedly his mentor taught him to accept the fact that what we in the West call "subjective states" (such as imagination, dreams, and drug-induced hallucinations) are actually real -- somewhere. A journey to these Subjective realms is not to be confused with sitting around and tripping, although an uneducated non-participant observer may fail to grasp the distinction. Subjective worlds are not just "fantasy" -- events experienced there are true. Merely imagining that someone walks up and stabs you will not cause your death on Earth-real, but if you were to travel via Transhypnotic Jewel to the Dimension of Imagination (DIM30 in the catalogue), and were stabbed to death while there, you would be dead on both your own Objective world and that Subjective one you were visiting. The reality of subjective states and their subtle causal link to the objective state we call "normal waking life" explains the mechanisms behind voodoo and hexes, as well as forming the bais for virtually all of the religious and superstitious dogma of Earth-real. One can enjoy Dr. Strange Comics without an appreciation of these matters, but i would like to recommend Alexandra David-Neel's Magic and Mystery in Thibet. Julian Huxley's The Invisibles: Voodoo Gods of Haiti and Carlos Castaneda's Don Juan series to those who want to explore the Subjective realms more thoroughly.

    Having granted Subjective realms reality, there remains one puzzling anomaly. This is the realm inside the Orb of Agamotto (DIM48 in the catalogue) which alone of all the multiverses Dr. Strange has journeyed to is said to be "unreal." The "unreality" of the Orb Realm is a rather disturbing conundrum in a magazine where everything else is, including dreams and fantasies. It is logical to assume that the author, Steve Englehart, was being semantically careless and meant Subjective when he said Unreal. This is the only explanation which can also reconcile other statements made about the Orb in the pages of DEFENDERS, wherein the interior of the Orb can be used to teleport actual


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    living beings. However, in the hopes that Mr. Englehart can explain in semanticaly precise terms what he means by "Unreal," i have given the Orb a tentative position in the category Subjective-Unreal -- that is, a state which is dependent upon consciousness but does not exist. Philosophy is a slippery matter, and as Sir Francis Bacon once said, "He who knows least is fittest to ask questions."5

    Finally, there are a few dimensions which cannot be categorized, simply because we lack sufficient data about them. These have been grouped together as "Unknown" until such time as more information is forthcoming.

    NETHER-ZONES, NETHER DIMENSIONS, NETHER WORLDS, AND TWO KINDS OF LIMBO

    The word "nether" means "lower" (as in beneath) but it has been used to connote "scary" and "bizarre" since the days of H. P. Lovecraft (whose nether-spawned horrors incidentally really did come from the depths). Perhaps Stephen Strange and the Ancient One have rotted their minds reading pulp fiction -- for some reason they are overly fond of describing every unusual dimension as "nether." This of course is confusing to the reader. Basically though, there are three kinds of Nethers:

    Nether-Zones --- these are Ditko Area Vibrational Barrier Lands, and except for the name, are indistinguishable from Ditko Area Interdimensional Spaces and Corridors -- therefore i shall group them together in the catalogue.

    Nether Dimensions --- these are poorly-named, being actually Lattice-Work VBLs and not true whole-number dimensions at all.

    Nether Worlds --- these are true "dimensions" but are no more "nether" than any of the above. They are simply Objective-Unstable-Inhabited universes, someofwhich contain some Ditko Areas and/or Lattice-Work, as well as more familiar flora and fauna. The inhabitants may be either human or alien.

    "Limbo" is a word almost as often misused as "nether." Technically, as defined


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    in TORICL, a Limbo is a timeless state, consisting of but one Atomic Instant, although one may subjectively experience the passage of time there. In the pages of DS Comics, the word is used to indicate any Vibrational Barrier Land wherein one might be "trapped," either by accident or the malintent of a foe. Lattice-Work ("nether dimension") VBLs are called "Limbo," as are Ditko Area Interdimensional Ciorridor ("nether-zone") VBLs. Aside from the fact that the nomenclature is confusing, Dr. Strange seems to be fully aware that one doesn't age in Limbo and that it consists of but one Atomic Instant.6

    For the sake of clarity, the words Limbo and Nether are always accompanied by a more precise synonym in the catalogue. It is unfortunate that the authors of DS Comics seem to possess such a limited stock of such adjectives, for by constant repetition they have renedered the names of many of hte dimenmsions useless. In addition to all the varied Limbos and Nethers, there are three entirely different multiverses named respecitvely, the Dimension of Dreams, Nightmare's Dream Dimension, and Nightmare's World! It is for this reaosn that i have resorted to giving every dimension a number and an alternate name when the title given in the comic book has already been used before or is so vague as to be meaningless.7

    The catalogue which follows chronicles all dimensional travels in the main-line DS stories -- those in ST 110-168, DS 169-183, MP 3-14, DS 1-30, and such multi-part cross-overs as SUB 22, H 126 and TOD 44. None of Dr. Strange's adventures from DEF are included, nor are any "team-ups" considered, other than SP ANN 2 (= DS 179). I have avoided giving plot synapses, preferring to recount only such action as is integral to an understanding of the wondrous worlds of Dr. Strange.


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    AN OUTLINE OF DIMENSIONAL TYPES
    "No. #" refers to the following Dimensional Catalogue (DIM##).

    Vibrational Barrier Lands (VBLs)

    Lattice-Work: 3, 11, 20, 35
    Having the Appearance of Galactic Outer Space: 23, 40, 50, 52
    Ditko Area VBLs (Nether-Zones, Interdimensional Spaces,
         and Dimensional Corridors): 11, 17, 22, 24, 25, 29, 38, 39, 44, 47

    Objective Dimensions

    Planetary (Possessing a Stable Surface):

    Human Inhabitants: 48
    Alien Inhabitants: 4, 5, 6, 28, 41
    Uninhabited: 15, 26

    Unstable (Semi-Liquid Surface, Little Gravity and/or Ditko Areas)

    Inhabited: 9, 10, 12, 13, 14, 18, 19, 27, 31, 37, 49, 53
    Uninhabited: 22, 33, 34
    "Artificial" (Originally Uninhabited): 32, 46, 51

    Subjective Dimensions (All Subjective Dimensions seen to date are Unstable)
    Real: 1, 14, 30, 45
    "Unreal": 48

    Unknown, Due to Insufficient Data: 2, 7, 8, 16, 21, 36, 42


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    FOOTNOTES

    1) Actually, Dr. Strange's exploration of alternaate realities predates his comic book debut, becausein that very first story, Nightmare, ruler of the Dream Dimension, refers to him as an "ancient foe".

    2) possible exceptions being Steve Englehart, whose semantic lapses are responsbile for much confusion surrounding Eternity's World and the Orb of Agamotto, and Marv Wolfman, who made several misleading statements about a dimension known as the Quadraverse. These problems are dealt with in the catalogue accompanying this article.

    3) For example, not only does author Denny O'Neil tell us that the Dimension of Imagination (which he calls "dreams"; ST 168) is a place where things have "no substance" yet are "deadly", but editor Stan Lee sticks in his two cents' worth to explain why some berzerk Vikings want to kill Victoria Bentley and sacrifice her to "the spirit of Death" in order to please him in the hopes that "he will remove us from this devil's land and send us back to our own sacred shores." In the words of Mr. Lee: "Although the Vikings are only illusions, they believe they are real -- and so in this wold of time gone mad -- they are!"

    The Smiling One was only trying to make sense out of O'Neil's jumbled logic, but by bringing time into it, he made matters much more confused. In the realm of subjectivity, explanations can be "deadly" too.

    4) destroyed in 1466 A.D. See ST 148 for details.

    5) New Atlantis (1626). Please consider this an invitation, Steve. If you do not explain your terms by the vernal equinox of the seventh year after this sees print, i shall be forced to discountenance your claims in respect of the Orb and reclassify it under the heading of Subjective-Real.

    6) See catalogue entry DIM25, the Dreaded Interdimensional Road of Repetition for details.

    7) Examples of meaningless names are: "A Nameless Place" and "Some Timeless Unknown Other" [Dimension] -- better known as the worlds of Shazana and the Undying Ones, respectively.


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    INTERDIMENSIONAL TRAVEL: WALKING BETWEEN THE WORLDS

    The word "Dimension" is used very loosely in the pages of ST, MP, and DS Comics, as well as in other titles where the Mystic Master appears. For the purposes of this catalogue Fractional Dimensions also known as Vibrational Barrier Lands, Interdimensional Spaces, etc.) will accord with Mark Gruenwald's theoretical "Fractional Dimensions" as defined in TORICL. All other Dimensions, whether Objective or Subjective will be classified as actual whole-number Dimensions -- a practice which goes against Gruenwald's Theory.

    [Note: the phrase "Ditko Area" is used to described those unique places (first discovered by Steve Ditko) whose geographical landmarks consist of such diverse matter as planets, disembodied fanged mouths, lakes, billiard balls, bridges of dripping stones, ropes strung with geometric solids, giant mah-jonng tablets, volcanoes, and other cosmic flotsam.]


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    A CATALOGUE OF DIMENSIONS

    DIM01
    Name: The Dimension of Dreams

    a.k.a. The World of Nightmare, Nightmare's Dimension,
    Nightmare's Dream World, The Realm Unreal

    [Note: not to be confused with "The Nightmare World" of Yandroth (DIM28)) or "The Dimension of Dreams" [Dimension of Imagination] (DIM30).]

    Ref: ST110, ST122, DS170, DS180-181-182, MP3, DS10-13, DS32, DS34

    Type: Subjective -- Unstable -- Real

    Inhabitants: N., at least one humanoid servant, a spiney-beast, N.'s Mare, "Minions of Nightmare" (monsters), the dream images of sleeping

    Comments: One can only enter this dimension when asleep ("having a nightmare") or in a mystical trance. in ST110, Dr.S. puts his body into a trance and then enters through another man's dream. In ST116, N. has a "mystical potion" in an "occult device" (made by a servant) which enables him to bring humans from Earth and trap them in the Dream Dimension. Dr.S. uses the Mists of Hoggoth to reveal the Dream Dimension's location, goes into a trance and enters on "the Path of Hoggoth." In ST122, Dr.S. enters in his sleep. In DS170, N. is incorrectly stated to ride a "stallion". In DS180, a dream is again the mode of entry, but in DS181, N. manages to pull Dr.S.'s physical body in, leaving his "psychic shell" behind in DS182. In MP3, Dr.S. is hit by a truck and, while unconscious, enters N.'s world in his physical body. While there, he contacts the A.O. in Thibet and breaks the Orb of Agamotto, which is later repaired by Clea on Earth-M! N.'s dimension thus is real, though subjective. Incidentally, during this encounter, N. was acting under orders from Shuma-Gorath, an Eldritch mind-parasite of the A.O.'s

    (Continued on page 45)


    45 [inserted here for ease of reading]

    The Dimension of Dreams
    (continued from page 13)

    N. has twice attempted to capture E. The first time occurred when E. clashed with D. (ST146) but was not revealed until several years later (DS180-182), when he showed his captive to Dr.S., who made a heroic effort to free "the image of a man." Ironically, E. was just allowing N. to keep him and could have freed himself at any time. Since "Eternity is the Universe", N.'s infliction of bad dreams on him produces an aberrant reality on Earth. This is again demonstrated in DS10-15, where N. catches E. napping and causes him to dream of the destruction of the Earth, a reality which then comes to pass because E.'s thoughts (including his dreams) are what Earth-M is comprised of, in some poorly-understood way. In both of these instances it is to be presumed that since E. had entered the Domain of Nightmare, all of Earth-M was at these times suffering from a collective bad dream. The dates in question for E's two captive periods are July 1966 - July 1969 (the Vietnam Era) and October 1975 - February 1976 -- this latter time of disturbed reality, however, having been negated when E. recreated the Earth in DS134 and left no memory of events in any minds but Dr.S.'s, for which we can all be thankful. In DS32, the DiD. travels from the Halls of Fear (DIM56) to the Dimension of Dreams by means of an invocation. He hopes to enlist N.'s aid in defeating Dr.S., but is refused. N. does allow his "cousin" (a relationship he denies) to leave with one of his dream-images of a sleeping mortal. When the DiD. crushes the image, the sleeper awakes as his pawn. In DS34, N. captures the sleeping Dr.S. and brings him here to fight Cyrus Black.


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    DIM02
    Name: "Another Plane, a Mystic Dimension"

    Ref: ST112

    Type: Unknown due to insufficient data -- lightning and clouds are seen

    Comments: M. and Dr.S. enter this dimension in their astral forms for one panel while fighting. It may be a VBL similar to DIM47.


    DIM03
    Name: "An Unknown Dimension"

    a.k.a. "Strange," "Dark"

    Ref: ST117

    Type: VBL -- lattice-work [probably a "nether-dimension" parallel to DIM20 and DIM35

    Comments: M., using an echanted model, causes Dr.S. and his house to be transported to this place. It is weightless and mauve in colour. Dr.S.'s astral form leaves easily. No inhabitants encountered.


    DIM04
    Name: "An [Alien] Dimension Not Far

       From Our Own"
    [The Greenie's Dimension]

    Ref: ST118

    Type: Objective -- Planetary -- Alien

    Comments: Separated from us by a "dimensional barrier". Inhabited by green, mouthless humanoids with antennae who all wear red pants and purple turtle-neck sweaters. They enter Earth by means of a teleportation device much like tha tused onboard the federation starship "Enterprise", materializing in Bavaria and taking possession of human bodies. Dr.S. uses a spell to enter this dimension and subsequently casts a spell which will seal the Bavarian "dimensional entrance", "forever". Of course the aliens, having created one entrance can presumeably open another, but to date they have not done so.


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    DIM05
    Name: The (Dread) Purple Dimension

    Ref: ST119, ST123

    Type: Objective -- Planetary -- Alien

    Comments: The Purple Dimension lies "beyond the Purple Veil" (a VBL) and is reached via the Purple Crystal; ruled by Aggamon the All-Powerful, a green humanoid, and peopled with greenie natives and human slaves who toil in the mines. The landscape is desert -- fantastic and devoid of flora. In ST123 the god Loki breaks the Purple Crystal as Dr.S. is trying to send him to The Purple Dimension


    DIM06
    Name: "Another Space-Time Continuum"

    a.k.a. The Shadow World [of Haunted Houses]

    Ref: ST120

    Type: Objective -- Planetary (?) -- Alien

    Comments: This dimension is the home of an alien protean being capable of disguising itself as a "haunted house" for the purpose of observing Earth. (!) Dr.S. banishes it with a spell.


    DIM07
    Name: "A Shadowy Dimension"

    [NOTE: Hoggoth's Dimension; not to be confused with DIM06, "The Shadow World" or with DIM33, "The Shadow-Land")

    Ref: ST123

    Type: Unknown, due to insufficient data

    Comments: Dr.S. conjures an ethereal hand from this plane which soon solidifies and, at Dr.S.'s bidding, grabs Thor's Uru Hammer from him while he is flying, thus causing the Thunder God to fall to Earth. The text of the spell implies that the hand belongs to one of Hoggoth's Hosts, who may live in this dimension.


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    DIM08
    Name: The Mystic Realm

    Ref: ST120

    Type: Unknown, due to insufficient data

    Comments: Mentioned in an invocation, never seen


    DIM09
    Name: Dormammu's Dimension

    a.k.a. The Realm of Darkness, The Dark Domain,
    The Dismal Domain, The Dark Dimension,
    The Domain of Dormammu, "The Dimension of Death", etc.

    Ref: ST126-127-128, ST130, ST133-4, ST139, ST145-6, DS6-7-8, ST151-155

    Type: Objective -- Unstable -- Inhabited (contains several "Ditko Areas"

    Inhabitants: There are several distinct life-forms here -- D. and U. are children of the (Flaming) Faltine, althought the half-human U. looks like a woman. Orini (a human) and U.'s daughter is the almost-human C., whose only Faltine traits are unruly hair and a quick temper (C. moved to Earth-M in 1968 and is the lover and disciple of Dr.S.). The Dark Domain is guarded by a being whose name is the Guranthic Guardian, a stone hulking monster. Asti, one of D.'s servants, is a disembodied mask. Behind a "barrier" at "the border" of the Dark Dimension live the M.O., grey shambling cyclopean beings who "only live to kill". Within the Realm of Dormammu one can also find a lower level wherein dwell the metallic Dwellers Below. D. also commands a legion of etheric wraiths whom he sends to Earth-M, where they are usually referred to (incorrectly) as M.'s minions. There are numerous references made to Dormammu's Demons, which may or may not be the same as the Dykkors he acquired while exiled in "The Realm Unknown" (DIM31), and who also accompanied him to the core of Earth-M (DS6). Veritas, a non-embodied "embodiment of truth" roams freely through the Dismal Domain and "Umar's Hordes" also lurk


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    somewhere, flapping their demonic wings -- unless Dr.S. killed them all in ST154.

    Comments: In ST126 The Dark Domain is reached by a spell, but from that time on Dr.S. merely materializes there at will, having memorized the co-ordinates, presumably. D. views happenings on Earth-M and sends ectoplasmic wraiths to aid the evil M. through a "dimensional screen" in ST130 and subsequently. In ST146 the Dark Domain is hyperbolically and incorrectly stated to be "a place which is not a place -- a state of existence where neither time nor matter are real." In fact it is quite "real" but very unstable, never maintaining the same geographcal landmarks for more than a few months at most. In ST139 it is called "distant" and said to be "countless dimensions away" from Earth-M. The political status of the Realm of Darkness is almost as unstable as its geography, with a constant power-struggle being waged between D. and U. Since D.'s exile to "The Realm Unknown (DIM??), following his rash encounter with E. (ST146), there has been no real peace. If U. and D. aren't battling each other, they are trying to capture the Earth. No wonder C. left home! The architecture here is as diverse as are the inhabitants. D. prefers Ditkoid floating chairs and geometrical abstracts, U. has a castle on a mountain peak, C. was raised by Orini in a cave, and most of the others make do with barren ground or bizarre landforms. No visible agriculture is practiced and it may be the lack of fertile soil which impells both D. and U. to conquer the greener pastures of Earth. U. also makes a cameo appearance in DS35, where she refuses to ally herself with the DiD.


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    DIM10
    Name: The Sixth Dimension

    a.k.a. The Realm of Tiboro

    Ref: ST129, DS178, DS35

    Type: Objective -- Unstable -- Inhabited (contains "Ditko Areas")

    Comments: When the "Screaming Idol", an effigy of T. ("Lord of the Seething Volcano", "Spirit of Decay") is unearthed in Peru, where it has lain since the civilization which worshipped him collapsed, it begins to pull innocent bystanders into Tiboro's Realm,the Sixth Dimension. T. keeps these people in bondage until Dr.S., who has allowed himself to be captured by the idol, shows up and rescues them. Several years later Dr.S., accompanied by the Black Knight, travels to the Sixth Dimension in a "vortex of blinding light" to rescue the witless SoS., who have been duped into exile by their leader, Asmodeus (Dr. Benton). The geography is highly unstable and surrealistic. T. is seen in cameo appearance snarling at the DiD. in DS35.


    DIM11
    Name: An Unnamed Series of Fractional Dimensions,

    Liquid, Lattice-Like and Surreal

    Ref: ST133

    Type: VBL -- Interdimensional spaces and lattice-work

    Comments: Dr.S. becomes "a shapeless form" flying "through the infinite at a speed beyond human comprehension -- passing from dimension to dimension -- losing itself in the mystic maze of infinity -- propelled by a spell so powerful, so irresistable, that it shatters every obstacle, every barrier which stands in its way!" and in fact we can see this "form" traversing a number of liquid areas, lattices, and other "Ditko" spaces.


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    DIM12
    Name: "A Nameless Land, A Timeless Time"

    [Shazana's Realm]

    Ref: ST133

    Type: Objective -- Unstable -- Inhabited

    Comments: The Nameless Land lies "an unimaginable distance from the world known as 'Earth' and is reached by travelling through a long series of fractional dimensions and veils (detailed in DIM11). It is inhabited by humans and pseudo-reptilian domestic animals. More Earth-like than most Objective-Unstable dimensions, it possesses both vegetation and dwellings, albeit both of a rather unusual typek, to say the least. Dr.S. arrives here inadvertantly (he was escaping from a losing battle with M. and D.) and immediately becomes involved in the political machinations between the unnamed blonde queen-in-exile and her evil sister Shazana, who has usurped the throne by magical means. The blonde queen is restored to the throne and Shazana driven mad when Dr.S. breaks the "mystical symbol globe", source of Shazana's powers. Dr.S. uses the energy contained in the globe to propel him home through the countless VBLs which lie between this dimension and Earth-M.

    [NOTE: The Nameless Land is obviously a very close parallel to the dimension known as Phase World (DIM49) -- both had evil dark-haired queens in green clothes who had wrested power from weak-but-good blonde sisters wearing pinks and purples -- and in both cases Dr.S.'s interference changed the course of events radically.]


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    DIM13
    Name: The Hidden Land

    [The Mask-Demon's Dimension]

    Ref: ST135

    Type: Objective -- Unstable -- Inhabited

    Comments: Dr.S. enters this dimension when he mistakenly uses a spell given to him by a senile Thibetan sorcerer named The Aged Genghis, who has told him that it will take him to E.'s realm (DIM14). The spell produces an entrance-way in the air and when Dr.S. steps through this nexus, he finds himself in the Hidden Land, which consists of many tall columns of masks. An evil and nameless mask-demon with "enchanted" hypnotic green eyes is the only functional inhabitant, for all the other occupants are beings, alien and human, "from all ages" (and presumeably from as many dimensions) whom the mask-demon has entrapped by making masks of their faces, through how making a plaster-cast of someone's face enslaves them is hard to understand. Perhaps, using his hypnotic skill, the mask-demon convinces his slaves that the making of a mask puts them under his control. In any case, Dr.S. defeats the mask-demon, frees the slaves, breaks the masks and causes the entire dimension (or at least all human knowledge of it) to "vanish forevermore", on one reality-line at least.


    DIM14
    Name: Eternity's Realm

    a.k.a. The World of Eternity, Eternity's Plane of Existence

    Ref: ST137-8, ST146, DS10-13

    Type: Objective -- Unstable -- Inhabited in appearance but may be actually Subjective -- Real, according to some data (contains "Ditko Areas")

    Comments: There is probably no character in the Marvel Universe about whom more speculations and contradictions have been voiced than the awesome enigma known as E. It has been explicitly stated on numerous occasions that he is not "God" (JHVH,


    21

    the Judeo-Christian deity), although he was capable of recreating the Earth after N. caused him to destroy the original model as a result of a bad dream. It was stated at that time (DS13) that E.'s dreams are as reality to the inhabitants of Earth -- (Earth-M anyway...) and since that time E. has become known as "Adam Qadmon, the All-Being, the Universe." Be that as it may, he was at one time the friend of Dr.S.'s mentor, the A.O., and in fact gave the Thibetan master an amulet called "the Eye of Agamotto" which was later passed down to Dr.S. After the A.O. became "one with the universe" (MP10) he was still able to manifest himself as apart from E., something that would be difficult to do if E. is the universe. E.'s other skills consist of telepathy and the ability to cause world-wide memory-changes, as he did when he created the short-lived "Stephen Sanders" identity for Dr.S. in DS182.

    If E. himself is an enigma, the nature of the level of reality he occupies is no less ill-defined. In ST137-138 the situation is rather straightforward: by chanting "one of the most potent spells of all time -- in words so secret, phrases so soul-shattering, that we dare not reveal them here to your mortal gaze!!", and thus causing the Amulet of Agamotto to enlarge and form a dimensional doorway, Dr.S. enters into an archetypically-unstable "Ditko Area" where "time and distance, as we know them, are meaningless." Within this surrealistic dimenison is a microcosmic universe capable of expanding until it assumes "the image of a man", it is this "image of a man", composed of galactic detritus, whom Dr.S. addresses as "Eternity." E.'s world must be very hard to reach because he states (in ST138) that only the A.O. and Dr.S. have ever stood before him.

    E's visits to Earth do not concern us here, nor does the presence of "the hole where he used to be", in the subjective (?) void of outer space where Dr.S. encounters death (DS4) seem to bear any relation to E's home-dimension.

    Lastly, there is the very confused and confusing series of events chronicled in DS10-13, the now-famous "end-of-the-world" saga. Dr.S. entes what is purported to be E's world by "focusing his mind to crystal clarity", a power he gained by having filled


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    E.'s form as he died (in DS4). He materializes in an area of dense fog which bears no relation to the landscape previously encountered in E.'s dimension. E. prophesies the end of the world and Dr.S. is catapulted through a series of encounters with fragments of his own personality in a world which changes from "a swirl of shifting shadows" to an exact analogue of the White House in Washington D.C. But, to make a long story short, none of these "nebulous nether worlds" take place in E.'s Realm, even the first foggy one -- for E. has all along been captive in N.'s Dimension of Dreams (DIM01)! Obviously the key to understanding the numerous inconsistencies lies in this fact and its corollary -- E's dreams are experienced as "reality" on Earth-M. This leads us no closer to an understanding of the true nature of E.'s world, but for the sake of this catalogue, I will venture to theorize that to visitors from Earth-M (like Dr.S.) it is objective, unstable and inhabited, whereas to E., everything in his universe is subjective, unstable (or rather, in this case, malleable) and real, E. being both the "dimension" and the "image of a man" who inhabits it.*
    [NOTE: Or else we are faced with the hitherto unheard-of idea that "the universe" (which is E.) is embedded within another dimension! More next time -- cat [sign]]
    For more on E.'s role in "the end of the world" epic, see N.'s world (DIM01). It is my sincere hope that someone will someday answer the question "who is that image of a man, anyway?" but if you thought i would, you were sadly mistaken. And while the world awaits the answer, let us all ponder another conundrum: whatever happened to the "Stephen Sanders" identity (and everyone's memory of it) between H126, when Dr.S. took a vacation, and MF1 (Def.) when he returned, once more "Stephen Strange"?

    For more information on N.'s initial capture of E., see ST146, DS182, and DIM01, The Dream-World.


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    DIM15
    Name: "A Neutral Dimension"

    Ref: ST140

    Type: Objective -- Planetary (?) -- Uninhabited

    Comments: D., ruler of The Dark Domain (DIM09) sends M., Dr.S., the A.O., and himself to this "lonely, lifeless dimension, at the edge of infinity." by "a wave of the hand". He also summons the rulers of his apparently Objective-Unstable "neighboring dimensions" (the "Lords of the Netherworlds") and they enter the Neutral Dimension by "spectral doorways" (portable nexi?) to witness a duel between D. and Dr.S. The victor will be "Master" of Earth-M and D. states that "the most coveted treasture of all" is to have "total mastery of Earth" and the supreme voice in "the highest council of the known dimensions.

    [NOTE: Can you imagine the highest council of the unknown dimensions? -- cat [no sign]]
    Presumably this council consists only of unstable dimensions because, although Dr.S. defeats D. and attains the prize, he has never sat on the council, to my knowledge. It is possible that this council gave rise to the later "congress of realities" (in Adventure Into Fear #19 and Manthing #1) in much the same way the League of Nations led to the United Nations on Earth.


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    DIM16
    Name: The Dimension of Demons

    Ref: ST141

    Type: Unknown -- Inhabited

    Comments: Presumeably inhabited by demons, this dimension is otherwise unidentified, beyond the fact that D. transports his agent M. there as a punishment, "through a spectral doorway from the Neutral Dimension (DIM15). On the occasions of D.'s defeat (if that's the right word) by E. in ST146 all of the Dread One's spells are undone, thus freeing M. to return to Earth, none for the worse for wear.


    DIM17
    Name: "A Dimensional Corridor"

    Ref: ST144

    Type: VBL -- Interdimensional Spaces

    Comments: The A.O. is seen "drifting" through this "Ditko Area" on his way to "an unfamiliar universe" (DIM18).


    DIM18
    Name: "An Unfamiliar Universe"

    [The Stop-Over]

    Ref: ST144

    Type: Objective -- Unstable -- Inhabited (contains "Ditko Areas")

    Comments: The A.O., attempting to find the vanishing C., arrives here and engages the aid of the friendly unnamed human ruler of "this far-flung world." When he senses a magic spell in a further dimension, he summons his disciple, Dr.S. Dr.S. arrives through a spectral doorway and after getting directions (and a warning) from the A.O. and his ally, sets off to the Kingdom of Tazza (DIM19), lured by D.'s spell.


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    DIM19
    Name: The Twilight Dimension

    a.k.a. The Kingdom of Tazza

    Ref: ST144

    Type: Objective -- Unstable -- Inhabited (contains "Ditko Areas")

    Comments: It is always night here, a night lit by fires blazing across the unstable terrain. The only native encountered by Dr.S. is Tazza, a green cat-like humanoid with the ability to change his shape at will. He also possesses magical powers and freezes unwary intruders to stone, setting them up as statues in his home, which he claims is "the only dwelling in my dusky realm". The Twilight Kingdom of Tazza is said by the ruler of the "Unfamiliar Universe" (DIM18) to lie on "the outer edge of infinity", which shoudl place it in the vicinity of the Neutral Dimension (DIM15) which is also "At the Edge of Infinity". Dr.S. is lured here by a spell cast by D., in the belief that he will find C. D. has meanwhile told Tazza (via dimensional screen) that Dr.S. comes to attack him. Dr.S. defeats Tazza and restores the spirits to their statues, who then come to life and thank him profusely. Tazza is left unharmed when Dr.S. realizes that he knows nothing of C.'s whereabouts and Dr.S. "drifts homeward" through a dimensional corridor (DIM17).


    DIM20
    Name: "The Nether Dimension"

    a.k.a. "Limbo"

    Ref: ST145, ST146

    Type: VBL -- Lattice-work

    Comments: In ST145, the evil Mister Rasputin (R.) sends Dr.S.'s astral form into "Limbo" (a black and red lattice) during a battle. Eventually Dr.S. uses his cloak to suffocate R. into unconsciousness, thus allowing the Mystic Master to escape. Except for colour, this "Nether Dimension" is virtually identical with "An Unknown Dimension" (DIM03). In ST146, C. is released from her captivity in a yellow and black lattice-work dimension, also called a "Nether Dimension."


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    DIM21
    Name: The Dimension of Raggadorr

    Ref: ST148

    Type: Unknown, due to insufficient data -- probably a VBL

    Comments: This dimenmsion is never seen, so its type cannot be determined. The name implies that it is ruled by Raggadorr, known also as the creator of several magic spells often used by Dr.S. The spells produce either "seven roving rings" which can be used to bind an opponent in mystic combat or an occult "rain" which is basically cleansing. However, the mysterious Raggadorr has never been explicitly stated to be a being and thus it is remotely possible that Raggadorr is in fact a ringed planet with a tropical climate. Fruitless speculation aside, it is known that when the evil magician Kaluu of Kamar-Taj (on Earth-M), long-time foe of the A.O., bungled his plans for domination of the Hilayas in 1466, he went into voluntary exile in the dimension of Raggadorr "where there is magic far beyond that known to other mortals." This dimension lies "beyond the Edge of the Universe" but it must not be too far beyond because the barrier which separates it from Earth-M is "shattered" by E.'s cataclysmic clash with D. (in ST146). If one remembers that "Eternity is the universe", this makes sense. It also explains M.'s escape from the Dimension of Demons (DIM16) -- in that one catastrophic moment all the dimensions under D.'s mental control were flung open and "the universe", that is, the dimension in which Earth-M exists, was likewise temporarily riddled with nexi. Dr.S. then called all "exiles" forth from their "netherworlds" (in ST146) and somehow the evil Kaluu must have slipped in unnoticed amongst the rejoicing throng. Dr.S. didn't see him because he was transfixed at the sight of C., freed at last from her months in "Limbo" (a lattice-work VBL, DIM20).


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    DIM22
    Name: "Limbo"

    [NOTE: not to be confused with the lattice-work "Limbo" (DIM20)]

    Ref: ST150, ST146

    Type: VBL -- Nether Zone -- "Ditko Area"

    Comments: The name "Limbo" is obviously a misnomer for both these "Ditko Area" nether-zones and the lattice-work "nether dimensions". In any case, there is probably more than one "Ditko-like "Limbo, since Dr.S. refers to them collectively as "hidden dimensions" (plural) when freeing the exiles in ST146. Kaluu is banished to a "Ditko nether zone in ST150.


    DIM23
    Name: "The Fearsome Void Which Exists

       Between Dimensions"
    a.k.a. Everlasting Nothingness

    Ref: ST151, ST155, ST162

    Type: VBL -- Outer Space-like

    Comments: U. sends C. into what appears to be an orbit around a cratered green planet in outer space, but is specifically said to be the "void" -- "between dimensions". When Dr.S. arrives to rescue her, he travels through a VBL "Ditko interdimensional area and arrives where C. floats waiting near some asteroids. M. is banished here too, in ST162, by "the Spell of Cosmic Banishment."


    DIM24
    Name: The Forbidden Dimensions

    Ref: ST155

    Type: VBL -- Interdimensional Spaces

    Comments: These "Ditko Areas" exist between Earth-M and the Dimension of Dormammu and Umar (DIM09). Normally Dr.S. can bypass them magically, but when accompanied by the powerless C., he must undertake to cross them in order to bring her safely to Earth. See also DIM25.


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    DIM25
    Name: "A Dreaded Interdimensional

       Road of Repetition"
    and "The Realm of Nothingness"

    Ref: ST155

    Type: VBL -- Interdimensional Spaces

    Comments: While rushing through the Forbidden Dimensions (DIM24) at a speed "faster than any living being has travelled before"

    [NOTE: Dr.S. may be mistaken in this -- i venture to say that it is faster than any living being has travelled through the Forbidden Dimensions before, but as to ultimate speed, I fear the Mystic Master is hopelessly outclassed by quicksilver of Earth-M and the Flashes of Earths 1 and 2.]
    C. and Dr.S. inadvertantly "create a Dreaded Interdimensional Road of Repetition" which looks like a yellow Moebius strip. For reasons unexplained they each simultaneously develop two bodies, as if this were not bad enough, "it is impossible to stop -- or to turn back" and Dr.S. cannot use his cloak to levitate for, "once off the road -- we may drift in Limbo forever!"
    [NOTE: to dimension-collectors: the "Limbo" referred to here is not one of the lattice-work nether-dimension "Limbos" (DIM19) nor is it one of the "Ditko Area" nether-zone "Limbos" (DIM22). To all appearances it is simply a vast expanse of pale blue half-tone dots -- helpful cat [sign]]
    In any case, Dr.S. determines to "shatter" the Road of Repetition or else, as he tells C, "we'll continually repeat our action -- throughout Eternity"
    [NOTE: meaning "time", not "the image of a man" who goes by that name -- confused cat [sign]]
    It is interesting to note that Dr.S. says "action" in the singular, thus indicating his belief (shared by Mark Gruenwald in TORICL) that a true "timeless" Limbo consists of but one atomic instant. The "Awesome Gleam" from Dr.S.'s amulet severs the "deadly band" but this only casts the sorcerer and C. into an utterly black "realm of nothingness" where they "must wait for the other semblances of [their] own true selves" -- the aforementioned bodily doubles, who for reasons no more obvious than their existence in the first place, have remained in living colour. When the two Dr.S.s meet they both say the same things until they are rejoined. From this point on, Dr.S. and C. resume their journey through the Forbidden Dimensions (DIM24), finally being brought safely to Earth on a "mental bridge" by the A.O.


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    DIM26
    Name: "A World Beyond Worlds"
    [Zom's Prison]

    Ref: ST156

    Type: Objective -- Planetary -- Uninhabited (except for genies in amphorae)

    Comments: This world contains nothing but a low step-pyramid upon which rest various assorted vases and lamps containing unseen "demon-guards". At the top of the steps is a larger amphora of Z. who was imprisoned there long ago by E. Since the "guards" do nothing to hinder Dr.S. from freeing Z., it is probable that they are not there to guard Z. but were rather members of Z's hypothetical "palace guards" and were also imprisoned by E. No native flora or fauna is seen. Incidentally, Z. states (in ST157) that D. is responsible for the iron hand-restraints he wears. Were E. and D. allies insome long-forgotten past? Is this why the A.O., a close friend of E.'s (and now "one with" him) used to swear oaths in D.'s name?


    DIM27
    Name: The World of the Million Perils

    a.k.a. The Planets Perilous [World of Nebulos]

    Ref: ST161-163

    Type: Objective -- Unstable -- Inhabited (contains "Ditko Areas")

    Comments: This world is incorrectly stated to be a "world between worlds" and a "limbo" but if it is in fact a "Ditkoid" nether-zone or interdimensional corridor, it is the only one with an ocean, 6 moons and a native resident alien that Dr.S. has ever encountered. I believe the World of the Million Perils is not a VBL but instead an Objective, Unstable, Inhabited dimension in its own right. It contains a dark "Ditko Area" featuring a giant floating number 9, the aforementioned ocean and moons, some bestial monsters, and the floating green non-humanoid-being known as Nebulos, said to be the only creature of intelligence in this realm. The Planet[[??s??]] Perilous is destroyed during a battle between Nebulos and the L.T., with the help of Dr.S. Nebulos' fate remains unknown. (Dr.S. and V.B., his friend, are incidentally sent here to die by the wicked M.)


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    DIM28
    Name: "The Nightmare World"

    [Yandroth's World]
    [NOTE: not to be confused with "Nightmare's World" (DIM01)
    .]

    Ref: ST164-6

    Type: Objective -- Planetary -- Alien (with one human inhabitant)

    Comments: This planet is obviously grossly misnamed -- it is not only not a subjective realm like N.'s Dimension (DIM01), but "Nightmare" as a descriptive phrase is highlyy inappropriate -- it is simply a rather bizarre alien jungle-world which the human "Scientist Supreme" Y. uses as a hangout. The surface sports exotic flora, gargantuan, cyclopean slugs and bat-winged predators. Y. lives underneath the ground in a system of natural and artificial caves, surrounded by his scientific apparatus. He has a machine with which he can traverse space and dimensions. V.B., a friend of Dr.S.'s, is transported to this realm by Nebulos (of the Planets Perilous (DIM27)) and Dr.S. is transported after her by the L.T. (a cosmic guardian of magic) as a favour, after Dr.S. helps him defeat Nebulos. Y. decides to make V.B. his unwilling bride, but when Dr.S. defeats both he and his large robot Voltorg, Y. takes her and attempts to flee by "teleportation tube". Dr.S. tries to set the controls for Earth, but Y. and V.B. disappear as he is in the act of turning the dial. When he enters the tube he is transported to Stonehenge (on Earth-M) but the Scientist Supreme and his captive are nowhere in sight."


    DIM29
    Name: "Space-Warp", "Nether Zone"

    Ref: ST167

    Type: VBL -- Nether Zone [unseen, no further data]

    Comments: When Y. and V.B. don't arrive on Earth after teleporting from Y.'s world (DIM28), the A.O. theorizes that they may have been "trapped" in a nether zone -- if true, this would be a "Ditko Area", but the A.O.'s guess is wrong, so it's a moot point.


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    DIM30
    Name: "The Dimension of Dreams"

    [Dimension of Imagination]
    [NOTE: not to be confused with N.'s Dream Dimension (DIM01)

    Ref: ST167

    Type: Subjective -- Real

    Comments: This is another wretched misnomer -- although Subjective and Real in the same way that the Dream Dimension (a.k.a. N.'s Realm) is, this is not the same place! For one thing, the A.O. asserts that "no mortal has returned from that dread world"

    [NOTE: how does he know? -- skeptical cat [no sign]]
    which is obviously not the case with N.'s World, for Dr.S. and numerous humans have repeatedly escaped N.'s clutches. Secondly, the A.O. calls it "a state where all of mankind's fantasies, memories and wishes are living reality" and this is not true of N.'s Realm, which only consists of humanity's troubled dreams made real. Finally, one does not travel to this dimension by sleeping or going into a tance, as will be seen. All i can conjecture is that the author of this tale, Denny O'Neil, meant day-dreams, but in order to avoid confusion as much as possible I will refer to this realm as the Dimension of Imagination
    [NOTE: and if you're smart, you will too -- smug cat [sign]]
    If i was smart
    [NOTE: but I'm not]
    , i wouldn't bother to note that this dimension is also misnamed "The Dimension of Yandroth" (incorrectly called "The Nightmare World") is DIM28 and Y. only got space-warped into imagination-land by Dr.S.'s tampering with his teleporter.
    [NOTE: !]

    So much for nomenclature. Dr.S. magically locates Y. and V.B., but reaching the Realm of Imagination requires two people and a "transhypnotic jewel". The A.O. hypnotizes Dr.S. into releasing his "hold on earthly existence" and the jewel somehow converts this idea into reality. The A.O. remains behind, telepathically linked to Dr.S. If he should lose consciousness, Dr.S. would be unable to return to "the normal universe."

    Geographically, the Dimension of Imagination is a "Ditko Area" composed of the usual assortment of colourful globs, lattices, ameboid


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    detritus and surrealistic sculpture. All the inhabitants (one dinosaur and a small horde of viking warriors) are said to be "illusions" but the vikings, at least, believe themselves to be real (which they are, subjectively speaking). Y. falls into an abyss and Dr.S. rescues V.B. They are both then retrieved by the mental command of the A.O. I would like to note that if this dimension does in fact contain "all of mankind's [and womankind's] fantasies, memories and wishes", only a minute fragment of it was viewed in this story!


    DIM31
    Name: "The Realm Unknown"

    [The Realm of Vanishment]

    Ref: DS170

    Type: Objective -- Unstable -- Inhabited [contains "Ditko Area"]

    Comments: This is the dimension where people placed under "The Spell of Vanishment" go. The A.O. sent C. there for safekeeping (in ST155) and when D. clashed with E. (in ST146) he was sent here too. Other non-native inhabitants are the multi-coloured dykkors ("demons" also banished here by the A.O. long ago). As far as voluntary visits go, it must be entered by two people at once, one man and one woman, each of whom can only make the trip once in their lives. It is a region of "Ditko Areas" and may in fact include more than one permanently conjoined multiverse, for in this realm "each droplet may contain a cosmos." For reasons i fail to comprehend, it is also called "a time which has spatial existence" but, there being no evidence to support that rather hyperbolic claim, it can, i believe, be regarded as erroneous data.


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    DIM32
    Name: "Yet Another Bleak Dimension"

    [The Clock Dimension]

    Ref: ST174

    Type: Objective -- Unstable -- "Artificial"

    Comments: This dimension, composed entirely of timepieces, is said to have been "created" by the evil Lord Nekron. It lies at the end of a short "eerie [interdimensional lattice-work] corridor} and is in actuality a rather oddly decorated trap for sacrificial victims offered to the Supreme Satannish While not in truth the "creation" of Nekron, this "clock dimension" does possess one peculiarity -- the time flow is not consistent in velocity, nor does it correspond to time on Earth. It was probably this characteristic which prompted Nekron to decorate it as he did. Apparently the time-flow is either subjective or can be objectively controlled through magic, because Dr.S. casts a spell to "make time go faster", although he admits -- "nor could I have done such a thing -- but in a world of time gone mad!"


    DIM33
    Name: A Hostile Dimension

    a.k.a. The Land of Shadows
    [NOTE: not to be confused with DIM06, The Shadow World or DIM07, A Shadowy Dimension)
    [The Cult and the Curse Dimension]

    Ref: DS177, DS36

    Type: Objective -- Unstable -- Uninhabited

    Comments: Dr.S. and C. are banished here by the SoS., who use a spell from the Book of the Vishanti to transport them through a "wondrous whirlpool" to this place of exile. It is uninhabited save for green "floating protoplasmic shapes" and grey "living foliage", both of which are apparently carnivorous. In DS36, this dimension is referred to as "some fathomless netherworld."


    34

    DIM34
    Name: "A Place Which Could Serve as a

       Stage Setting For Alice In Wonderland"
    [The Wondrous World]

    Ref: DS179 [a reprint of Sp.ANN2]

    Type: Objective -- Unstable -- Uninhabited

    Comments: This is the archetypal Ditko-dimension. The descriptive name it bears doesn't come near to doing it justice. The evil sorcerer X. banishes Sp. to this dimension by means of the oft-used "Satannish-vanish" spell. However, the webslinger manages to grab the accursed Wand of Watoomb as he disappears into thin air. X. sends his two hypnotized thugs after Sp. to capture the wand & they all return to Earth-M just as Dr.S. arrives on the scene and matters are set right in short order. The Wondrous World is probably the most beautiful dimension of it stype, containing floating islands, sinking ringed planets, ameboid tendrils on ropes, cratered globes, pink clouds, lattice-work spheres, an ocean of stalagmites, strings of manila envelopes, suns, stars, underwater caves, and pools of airborne liquid.


    DIM35
    Name: The Crimson Cosmos

    [Of Cyttorak]

    Ref: DS1-2

    Type: VBL -- Lattice-work

    Comments: Cain (The Juggernaut) Marko, who had been banished to this realm was kept from returning to Earth by "The Spell of Cyttorak." While here he apparently learned some powerful magicks (much as the evil Kaluu did while he was exiled in the dimension of Raggadorr, DIM21). Dr.S., engaged in a losing battle with N. (because the ruler of the dream world has captured E.) temporarily escapes into the nearby Crimson Cosmos and convinces Marko to fight on his behalf. The Juggernaut gains Dr.S. some time, but eventually betrays him and joins N.'s side. In the end N. and The Juggernaught inadvertantly free E., who consigns them to "oblivion," an unseen VBL.

    [NOTE: to be continued [sign]]


    35

    DIM36
    Name: "Some Timeless Unknown Other [Dimension]"

    [The Realm of the Undying Ones]

    Ref: SUB22, H126

    Type: Unknown, insufficient data -- Objective and inhabited but unclear as to surface type

    Comments: This is the original home of the U.O., bipedal multi-formed demons led by N.O. who has a double-torso and two heads. They invaded Earth in prehistoric times but in 969 A.D. they returned to their own world to rest for 1,000 years. In 1969 A.D. they sought to re-enter Earth through a statue of the N.O., and later through Nightcrawler's Dimension (DIM37), but were defeated by Dr.S., H., Sub., and Barbara Denton Norris (whose martyrdom in this cause led indirectly to her new persona as the Valkyrie). The landscape of this dimension is said to be "barren" but only one white cliff is glimpsed, so no conclusions as to surface type can be drawn.


    DIM37
    Name: "An Adjacent Dimension [to DIM36"]

    [Nightcrawler's Dimension]

    Ref: H126

    Type: Objective -- Unstable -- Inhabited

    Comments: This is a very primitive world of mere twisted globs of matter and empty space. Nightcrawler, a blue reptiloid with a masked human face, lives here alone. H. unwittingly "destroys" this dimension with a loud handclap and it is absorbed by the Dimension of the Undying Ones (DIM36). The mechanism by which this occurs is not revealed, but in any case it can only have occurred on one reality-line.


    36

    DIM38
    Name: An "Other World"

    [Dagoth's Exile]

    Ref: MP7

    Type: VBL -- Interdimensional Space

    Comments: Upon his defeat by Dr.S., Dagoth the sea-born, a red demon, is placed in "spatial exile" in this "realm beyond man's imaginings", ruled by "interdimensional forces". It is a crystalline VBL in appearance.


    DIM39
    Name: "Intradimensional Spaces"

    Ref: MP8

    Type: VBL -- Interdimensional Space [contains "Ditko Areas" and lattice-work]

    Comments: Entered through the power of Kathulos (a living planet); it is said that Dr.S.'s magicks "will not work" here -- for reasons not given, but most likely a hypnotic effect produced by Kathulos.


    DIM40
    Name: "Cold Voids of the Outer Universe"

    Ref: MP8

    Type: VBL -- Having the Appearance of Outer Space

    Comments: Dr.S. is said to travel "through space -- through time itself" while in this VBL, but as usual, I think the use of the word "time" is meant hyperbolically, as there are no other indications of time-travel in the story, particularly upon his return journey to Earth.


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    DIM41
    Name: Kathulos

    Ref: MP8

    Type: Objective -- Planetary -- Alien

    Comments: In appearance this planet closely resembles DIM28, Y.'s World, being essentially a florid jungle. However, unlike Y.'s Realm, there is only sentient vegetable being whose spirit actually is the entire life of the planet. In order to escape, Dr.S. is forced to kill the floral Kathulos and destroy the entire planet, returning home through an outer space-like VBL as he had come.


    DIM42
    Name: "A Dimension Diametrically-Opposed

       To Our Own"
    [Shuma Gorath's World]

    Ref: MP10

    Type: Unknown, due to insufficient data

    Comments: This dimension was the original home of the octopus-like S.G., who came to Earth in prehistoric times "to feed upon the strengths of this realm's Sorcerer Supreme". By the early 1970s he had overcome the A.O.'s will, but when Dr.S. killed his mentor, S.G.'s only comment was a loud, "No-o-oo-o!" and it is to be presumed that he has no taken up residence in the mind of Stephen Strange! In keeping with the "diametrically-opposed" nature of his home-world, S.G. can also take on a "negative" image of his host. It is possible that S.G.'s World is composed of anti-matter, but this has never been explicitly stated.


    38

    DIM43
    Name: The Orb of Agamotto

    Ref: DS1-5, DS14, TOD44

    Type: Subjective -- "Unreal"

    Comments: The confusion surrounding this realm "where bound'ries decay" is very hard to make sense of. In the pages of DEF, the orb has been seen to possess, among its other virtues, the power to teleport living beings on Earth. However, when Dr.S., "minutes away from death by stabbing", at the hands of S.D., recites a spell before the orb, he is inexplicably grabbed by a tentacle and dragged through "solid infinite glass -- into the Eye of Death". Following this, he meets various "unreal" analogues to beings from Earth-M, as well as some from Lewis Carroll's universe. Lastly, he travels to what looks like a medieval village inhabited by characters from Entertaining Comics and exits from the orb to confront the death he had sought to evade. The rest is history, as they say. The only logical extrapolation which can be made is that the inside of the orb is a subjective space which consists of echoes and reflections from other, "real" realities. However, this does not explain how Dr.S. could later use the orb to keep his man-servant W. in suspended non-animation after Dracula kills him, nor why W. returns to life after his ordeal -- unless unbeknownst to us, W. is now also "virtually immortal" -- or, more likely, wasn't really dead in the first place. In the latter case, his cold-storage in the orb would be similar to its use in DEF as a teleportation vehicle. All in all, i am more inclined to attribute all the events in DS1-5 to the delirium of a mortally-wounded man's misconceptions. Dr.S. is so used to travelling to other dimensions that he automatically assumes his hallucinations are actually occurring, even while calling them "unreal". This leaves the orb-world with the powers of clairvoyance, teleportation, and functioning as a dimensional doorway (nexus) to some kind of timeless "limbo" which can be used to approximate suspended animation -- but it begs the question of whether there is a "subjective-unreal" dimension inside the orb.


    39

    DIM44
    Name: "Nether-Planes"

    Ref: DS15

    Type: VBL -- Nether-Zone [may contain "Ditko Areas", but not shown]

    Comments: Some ugly demons come from this VBL when Dr.S.'s spell to invoke the A.O. goes awry. He banishes them easily.


    DIM45
    Name: Hell

    Ref: DS15-16

    Type: Subjective -- Real

    Comments: This is the home of Lucifer, a.k.a. Beelzebub, Satan, Old Nick, Mephistopheles, etc., a horned, flaming, humanoid. The landscape is composed for the most part of fire and ordure, with occasional miasmas, and is entirely under Lucifer's mental control. He summons people here to serve him and to suffer torture at his hands, but although real, "the Evil One exists only if you allow him to" and "if we look beyond the barriers and help each other when the darkness falls -- none of us need ever enter Hell again!" -- or so says Stephen Strange, who promptly leaves, taking C. and the Satan-worshipping James Mandarin with him.


    40

    DIM46
    Name: The Quadriverse

    Ref: DS19, DS23

    Type: Objective -- Unstable -- "Artificial"

    Comments: Somewhere beyond [N.Y.C.] in a dimension never before [sic] visited by man, lies the entrance to The Quadriverse, a four-sectioned area of space where life and death haave no relationship [sic] to any other part of the known universe." This statement by author Marv Wolfman, contradicts his earlier declaration that The Quadriverse is inhabited "by a group of [human] sorcerers from all times" called The Creators. Perhaps he was asleep when he wrote DS23. In any case, his information is in error because wherever there are humasn life and death do have some relationship to another part of the known [omni]verse and of course, wherever there are humans, the place in question has been visited by man (not to mention woman)! There are four levels of "reality" in The Quadriverse, and in some unstated way they are controlled by or exist within the mind of a rather somnambulant "Guardian." The four sections are called "Menace," "Calmness,"Hell," [not the same as Earth-M's Hell (DIM45)] and "Home." The highly-unstable landscape consists of "Ditko Areas", a medieval castle, an island, parasitic mind-reptiles, talking plants, black and white voids, living worm-worlds, etc. The Creators dwell in a "solar sphere" when they visit The Quadriverse, which they falsely claim is an "artificial" continuum. Obviously they found it, and either subdued and hypnotised the original human inhabitants, or, more likely, imported people from some Earth-like dimension to act as guards of their second home-away-from home, Creation II (DIM51). The inconsistencies in the description of this dimension are a blot on the escutcheon of fictional reality and should be disregarded utterly.


    41

    DIM47
    Name: "Another Dimensional Plane"

    "A World Between Existence, Teetering on Realities --
    "A World Sandwiched Between All Other Worlds" [Cloud-Land]

    Ref: DS20

    Type: VBL -- Interdimensional Space

    Comments: Dr.S. sends XtM., herald of The Creators, here by "a simple spell of transference" and then follows to battle him amidst colourful cloud formations shot through with light.


    DIM48
    Name: The Temple of Man

    Ref: DSANN1

    Type: Objective -- Planetary -- Human

    Comments: The Temple of Man, an exact analogue to the famous Temple of Shiva in India, lies "Beyond the Veil", presumably an unseen VBL. This is the only nearly Earth-like dimension Dr.S. has ever visited and it is inhabited by humans, among them Sargor the Librarian, and scores of priests. It may be an alternate Earth, but aside from the temple (the interior of which is evocative of the Slumberland Dimension visited by Little Nemo), there is insufficient data to draw any further conclusions as to the nature of this world, which Dr.S. leaves through his enlarged amulet.


    42

    DIM49
    Name: Phaseworld

    Ref: DSANN1

    Type: Objective -- Unstable -- Inhabited [contains "Ditko Areas"]

    Comments: This beautiful dimension is incorrectly stated to "float freely between realities" but it is not actually a true VBL. A close parallel of Shazana's Realm (see DIM12 for details), it lies both in another dimension and "across endless space". Phaseworld is ruled by 'Lectra, who commands a legion of animated corpses, a sea-serpent named Brotan (slain by Dr.S.), a swan-man named Tempus, and her weak-but-good mute sister Phaydra. The capital city, Allandra, lies beneath the ocean until 'Lectra summons it forth. Phaseworld is destroyed "or perhaps just thrust into another existence" when the magic mirror which linked 'Lectra's and Phaydra's souls is broken.


    DIM50
    Name: "Cold Space"

    Ref: DS22

    Type: VBL -- Outer Space-like

    Comments: After the collapse of Phaseworld, Dr.S. is left floating in "Cold Space", searching for "the proper co-ordinates" (nexus) to re-enter Earth's dimension. While here, he encounters a Space-Dragon which closely resembles an Earthly pteradactyl. Eventually he re-enters the Earth-continuum through his amulet.


    43

    DIM51
    Name: Creation II

    Ref: DS24-5

    Type: Objective -- Unstable -- "Artificial"

    Comments: Hyperbolically and incorrectly stated to be "a place without location or time", manufactured by The Creators (who are attempting to turn themselves into stars), this so-called "artificial" dimension is reached through The Quadriverse and guarded by Visimajoris, the Divider of Souls. Like all the other "artificial" realms, this one was probably discovered rather than "created" and The Creators themselves are nothing more than cosmic con-men. This realm either contained or was later furnished with a "Cosmic Wheel of Change", a tool The Creators are using to further their evil designs. Creation II "collapses" when The Creators depart to take up their new life as stars in Earth-M's sky, while Dr.S., C. and W. emerge within the vicinity of Alpha Centauri. They then all "fly" back to a rather disheveled Earth. The "collapse" of Creation II, like the "destruction" of Phaseworld, occurs on only one reality-line, of course.


    DIM52
    Name: An "Outer Dimension"

    Ref: DS26-7

    Type: VBL -- Outer Space-like with some "Ditko Area" overtones

    Comments: Reached by a mystic "portal" (nexus) conjured by the A.O., the only sentient being encountered here is TIB. who soon casts Dr.S. into his own dimension (DIM53).


    44

    DIM53
    Name: The Inbetweener's Dimension

    Ref: DS27-8

    Type: Objective -- Unstable -- Inhabited

    Comments: The Inbetweener's Dimension is a close harmonic of Creation II, in that it contains a duplicate Wheel of Change, equally capable of affecting the stars (and thus all life) in the universe of Earth-M. (The mechanism of this is not explained.) In addition, The Inbetweener's Realm consists of several "levels of reality", some of which are "fantasy."


    DIM54
    Name: "Darkness"

    [NOTE: not to be confused with D.'s Dark Domain, DIM09]

    Ref: DS30, DS32, DS35-6

    Type: Unknown, due to insufficient data, probably a VBL

    Comments: This is the sleeping-place of the DiD., who floats in an electrically-charged void on a stone slab and intends to control the Earth through a fear-feeding agent known as the Slithe who lives in the sewers beneath N.Y.C. In DS32, it becomes apparent that the stone slab can be used as a dimensional doorway because the DiD. steps through it to emerge "an incalculable distance away" at the Halls of Fear (DIM56). The DiD. possesses some sort of interdimensional viewing screen similar to D.'s by means of which he can observe and control agents on Earth such as Dreamweaver and an anonymous hirsute New Yorker.


    45 (displaced to follow page 13, for ease of reading)


    46

    DIM55
    Name: Unnamed Dimensions -- A Series

    ["Beneath the Sanctum's Floor"]

    Ref: DS31

    Type: Objective -- Unstable -- Uninhabited

    Comments: During the course of the battle between Alaric the Mystic (who wields the Atlantean Sword of Kamuu) and Dr.S., C. and the Sub., the combatants gradually traverse a long series of dimensions which at first resemble the Sanctum but become progressively more given over to "Ditko Areas" and lattice-work. By the time Alaric meets defeat, the whole crew has been transported to a blue pool surrounded by living green-grey spaghetti under a pink sky. The group returns "across the dimensional planes" (of which eight are shown) "to the reality from which they'd fallen", leaving Alaric's head imprisoned in an art-nouveau pocket-dimension called "Dyzakk's Cage."


    DIM56
    Name: The Halls of Fear

    Ref: DS32, DS35

    Type: Objective -- Unstable -- Inhabited [contains "Ditko Area" and a castle.]

    Comments: This "impossibly ancient citadel" is the "estate" of the DiD., who arrives there via his Portable Nexus-Slab (see DIM54 -- Darkness). It is inhabited by his thralls, who are in turn being leeched of power by d'Spayre, who is just passing through after his defeat at the hands of Sp. and Man-Thing on Earth-M. The DiD. leaves the Halls by means of an invocation and travels to the Dimension of Dreams (DIM01). Using a dimensional portal in DS35, he "pierces the veils of a thousand dimensions" to speak to Tiboro, U., Ludi and several unnamed sorcerers and demons.


    47

    DIM57
    Name: The Endless Dimensions of the Vishanti

    Ref: DS33

    Type: Subjective -- Real

    Comments: This series of dimensions exists within the Book of the Vishanti. Dr.S. sends Dreamweaver here to confront "the shambling denizens that stalk the hidden landscapes of [her] own mind" and watches while they "shred the gossamer-thin veil which separates [her] Ego from [her] Id." The landscape is unstable, the "denizens" are bodiless, toothy, monstrous, warty heads, and there is a vortex (like "some big drain") with an eyeball at its center.


    DIM58
    Name: The Endless Void

    Ref: DS34

    Type: Unknown, due to insufficient data. may be a "pocket dimension" VBL

    Comments: Dr.S. shrinks and banishes some Valtorrian vipers to this dimension. The dimension itself is not seen.


    DIM59
    Name: [Ludi's Dimension]

    Ref: DS35-6

    Type: Unstable -- Objective -- Inhabited

    Comments: This is the home of the demon Ludi, once worshipped as a dark god, and his brother Ningal who, until he is freed by the DiD., is trapped in stasis (in a "block of lambent energy") with the human Murdoch Adams.


    48 - 59 (blank)


    60

    TIME DISTORTION AND TIME TRAVEL

    Aside from the hyperbolic (and incorrect) use of the word "time" in such phrases as "a nameless place, a timeless time" and "a time which has spatial existence", Dr.S. has had a few actual dealings with both time distortion and time travel (to the past only). These are given here chronologically, with some possible explanations of events in an Omniversal framework. [ST133, DS170]

    By means of a rhymed spell, Dr.S. causes time to "spin back, back, back ... until before Thor's fall is finished." This is not the case, however -- the spell (see Volume I, p. 18) only conjures Thor's hammer to "fall faster" than The Thunder God -- and it is only the hammer which travels back in time, not time itself, which spins back. [ST123 -- SL]

    The A.O. chants a spell (see Volume I, p. 18) over a candle, enabling Dr.S.'s E.F. to go back in tiem along the mystic vapour trail surrounding a woman (Cleopatra) who "does not belong in our time." This auric trail leads him back to her era, where he materializes in the "impulse transmitter" of the evil Zota, who had sent her into the 20th century. When the candle goes out, the light of the temporal path back to Dr.S.'s home-time is extinguished, despite his spell (Volume I, p. 18), and he floats weightlessly "somewhere between limbo and the shadowy endless past". The light of his amulet saves him & he then returns Cleopatra to her own era with a spell (Volume I, p. 18). [ST124 -- SL]

    A "spell of forgetfulness" cast by Dr.S. causes time to "go back" to a moment prior to an event he wishes bystanders to not see. This implies that in actuality he causes a divergence and chooses to allow his subjective sense-of-self to live on the reality-line where the event did not occur. The amount of energy needed to accomplish this feat must be enormous and Dr.S. has never repeated it, preferring the much more expedient courses of simply hypnotising bystanders into forgetfulness or keeping them in a VBL "limbo" until the excitement subsides. [ST129 -- SL]


    61

    D. gives M. an (unrecorded) spell for placing the A.O. in a "mystic time trap". This trap either places one in a timeless "limbo" VBL or causes one to remain stationary on the time track. It renders the victim invisible. [ST138 -- SL]

    Kaluu uses an unrecorded spell to cast the Book of the Vishanti back "to the hour and place from whence it came". [ST148 -- DO]

    Again, candles are used for time-travel -- this time by both Dr.S. and the A.O., who journey to the time-space continuum of ancient Babylonia to retrieve the Book of the Vishanti. There is a subjective experiencing of time & space on this trip. [ST150 -- RT]

    When the Book of Cagliostro is cast into the near past, Dr.S. can detect its auric tail. Using a spell from the book he then travels to the more distant past and eventually, following in the temporal wake of Siseneg, a sorcerer from the future, he & M. reach the moment of Creation itself, a sight which drives M. insane and nearly unhinges Dr.S. When Siseneg decides that his "uncreation" of the world was an inappropriate use of magical power, Dr.S. & M. are cast forward precipitously into their own time again. [MP12-4 -- SE]

    Dr.S. & C. travel to 1618 A.D. (and also, simultaneously, from New York City to London) by "magically slowing [themselves] so that the wave [of time] moves on without [them]." The visual effect is that of an enormous whirlpool, containing a rainbow of the type that Superman & Supergirl sometimes encounter on their time-travels, although, unlike theirs, this one contains no dates. [DS17 -- SE]

    More swirling vortex time-travel -- from London, 1618 A.D. to London, March 1775, followed also by Stygyro, prince of sorcerers, who came from 1618 A.D. and who threatens to kill Ben Franklin. C. denies the possibility of this, saying to Dr.S., "After all -- Ben did live to see the [Revolutionary] War fought!" Dr.S. responds, "Our being here changes history, Clea." This is only true by the remotest standard, for in fact, if Stygyro kills Franklin on


    62

    one time-line there will still be the divergent reality (Dr.S.'s home-reality) wherein Franklin lived. C., admonishing her teacher to "watch the bright side" of things, may be wiser than her master, fo she implies that one can choose by magic to let one's subjective sense-of-self follow the reality-line most satisfactory to one's wishes. [DS18 -- SE]

    Dr.S. is still confused because, when Stygyro causes an earthquake to devastate Philadelphia in 1775, he says, "There has never been any mention of this earthquake in history books -- which means this is -- an image-play for my eyes only!" Stygyro, who also sesms to be subjectively caught in a single reality-line, while trying vainly to create divergences, replies, "Thou art incorrect! What thou dost bear witness to does indeed occur! Your world is destroyed!" All time-villains share this non-Omniversal outlook -- or else they'd realize the meaninglessness of their acts. Dr.S., just as non-Omniversally aware, then manages, at the cost of "great personal pain" to halt time's flow & even reverse it! When it flows on again, the earthquake does not occur again. Obviously either the whole affair was an "image-play" (hypnotically-induced illusion) or (if Stygyro was telling the truth) Dr.S. managed to leave the reality-line he was then on (and on which the earthquake destroyed Philadelphia), travel back in time and jump over to the regular, Earth-M-line wherein the history books make no mention of the earthquake. The "pain" he experienced may have been due to wrenching his subjective sense-of-self across the dimensional barrier -- or it may have been a byproduct of Stygyro's hypnosis. In any case, Dr.S. and C. return through "the endless gateways and bridges which span two centuries" and arrive in New York City, none the worse for wear. [DS19 -- MW]

    Dr.S. claims to "reverse time's flow" while reassembling a broken statue of The Black Knight, but, of course, all he is doing is causing the statue to regain the wholeness it once had. Neither the statue nor Dr.S. travel in time to accomplish this. [DS35 -- RMC]

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