Originally Posted by xeno000
Doctor Strange is associated with Eastern mysticism, specifically with a sort of pseudo-Indian/Tibetan kind. That's his "Old World" connection, which hopefully the film universe will manage to keep. Strange went to the Himalayas to seek a mystic who could cure him after nerve damage ended his surgical career and instead found a thousand year old sorcerer who was in need of an apprentice. It's a more profound story of redemption and personal change if the protagonist is a skeptical American who believes in science, abhors mysticism and eschews the metaphysical in favor of purely carnal delights. For a man like that to become Sorcerer Supreme is such a complete 180 that the audience is bound to be drawn along with him on the journey.
Agreed that Strange needs to be a nuts-n-bolts skeptic, but that's not a uniquely American trait. A European immigrant to America would fit just fine --- in many ways, modern Europeans are more agnostic than Americans by far. But I *do* prefer that The Village remain his haunt. There's something uniquely charming about seeing the Sanctum Sanctorum in the middle of Greenwich Village.