What's At 177 Bleecker In IRL New York City (It's Not The Sanctum Sanctorum)
The Doctor Strange stories took the unusual step of giving the Sanctum Sanctorum—Stephen Strange's headquarters—an actual address. It's 177A Bleecker Street, which sounds needlessly specific.
It's an address that sounds strikingly like 221B Baker Street, the famous London address of Sherlock Holmes. Today, that seems especially appropriate because Benedict Cumberbatch, who plays Doctor Strange, also played Sherlock Holmes on TV, even if the Sanctum Sanctorum (a wizarding hall) is otherwise not much like Holmes' personal domicile. But in the comic books, the connection would have made even more sense.
In the original comics, the Sanctum Sanctorum was not one branch of an international organization but Stephen Strange's personal home, which he built himself. Wong lived there too, but that was because Wong was Strange's personal manservant. The building looks like a normal townhouse, blending into the rest of Greenwich Village ... at least until you enter it, and you discover it's bigger on the inside.
Despite all of that, the address is not a reference to Sherlock Holmes. Sorry for giving you the runaround there. Two Doctor Strange writers, Gary Friedrich and Roy Thomas, instead shared an apartment at that address at one point, and so they incorporated it into their story.
When the Sherlock Holmes stories were first written, there was no actual 221B Baker Street—the numbers on that real-life street reset before they hit 221, and the street became known as Upper Baker Street from that point on. But there is a real life 177A Bleecker Street. The upper floors are apartments, just like they were when Friedrich and Thomas lived there, while on the ground floor, you'll find a corner store advertising smokes, beer, and lotto tickets. So, you could say it does contain magic, of a kind.
It's Doctor Strange week at Cracked! Want more like this, straight from your email inbox, without any ads or popups? Join the One Cracked Fact newsletter:
For more places from fiction, check out:
Top image: Sony Pictures