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Saturday
Mar232019

Movie Review Alita: Battle Angel (2019) 

Based on the futuristic Japanese Manga “GUNNM”(Battle Angel Alita)created by Yukito Kishiro Alita Battle Angel takes place in the 26th century.  Three hundred years after “The Fall”(a war like event) a doctor Dyson Ido finds an amnesiac cyborg in the trash.  He rebuilds and names her “Alita”(Gally in the comics)only to find out that there’s more to her that meets the eye as they get to know each other(ex.  her cyborg core is the most powerful around and she knows a forgotten fighting style called “Panzer Kunst”).

 

 

The film itself is decent.  It’s acted well(even though there is some cringeworthy line deliveries but I think most of that is because of the writing(yeeesh and people complained about “Suicide Squad”, “Justice League” and “Aquaman”(but they overlook “Venom” for some reason)). The actress that portrays Alita Rosa Salazar did a good.  She was naive, optimistic and and dived right into everything with fun an gusto.  To quote her character in the film “It’s (always)all or nothing with me.”  That’s the best way to explain her character.  The story was paced well especially the last hour.  It just seemed to fly by.  I liked the world and the action was okay.  

 

My issues with the film however are: 

 

1.  The action didn’t feel as thrilling as I thought it would be.  A big reason for this is that most of the film is in CG.  Considering the source material it makes since that this would have to be in cg but a lot of it wasn’t convincing.  A good example would be with the cyborgs.  If someone only had a cybernetic hand(like the nurse) or leg then it looked fine.  But when the only human part is the face(the the rest is metal)then it comes off like a floating head.   This got distracting since most of the antagonists are mostly metal.

 

2. It’s very uncreative when it comes the PG-13 rating violence.  Knowing the source material it probably would be too much to ask for an R rating film.  If the filmmakers are stuck with a PG13 rating hover it would be nice if they would push it more.  There are several scenes here where some violence is about to happen and then they cut away.  There have been films in the past that have made cut aways from an act of violence intense but that didn’t here.   Every time we cut away from the action I felt numb.  Add into that the severe lack of blood(black blood even(PG13 films are known for not having a lot of red blood for…reasons!)) I really didn’t feel a lot of emotion in various scenes. 

 

3.  It doesn’t hurt except when it does.  The best part of the film are the human to human interactions.  Alita and Ido’s relationship was touching and I’m glad what happened to him in the comic didn’t happen to him in the film(yet anyway).  I enjoyed the other interactions in the film as well…except when they involved with people that were mostly cyborgs.  It just felt to me that the actors were having a hard time talking to someone who wasn’t there.  This is worst in fights since I didn’t believe in the cgi effects.  I ever felt the pain of the cyborg characters.  This is bad since the last half of the film is mostly fights and chase scenes.  

 

Recommend:  Overall yes just not strongly.

 

Despite my issues it is a decent film.  If you saw the trailers and liked it you’ll enjoy the film.  The trailers are an accurate representation of the film.  It was directed well by Robert Rodriguez and I really appreciate the face that it had a good number of daylight scenes.  It’s common to have post apocalyptic films look dark and depressing all the time.  A minor issue I have is the fact that the filmmakers tried to adapt the first four volumes into this 2 hour film.  The thing about a a comic series like “GUNNM” is that a volume usually is the equivalent of a storyline.  So you basically have multiple storylines running around in this film.  This is a minor issue because I think it mostly work.

 

While I doubt I will ever watch this film again I am interested in seeing a sequel if it happens.  Also while watching the film it brought back memories of the comic series so I’ve decided to re-read it again along with it’s sequel series(which is still ongoing today(“Alita: Last Order”). 

Wednesday
Mar202019

The Best Captain Marvel Comics & Media

One of my all time favorite characters is the Billy Batson-Captain Marvel.  With his movie being release soon(it might be out by the time this comes out)I wanted to honor the characters legacy in some way.

In 2016 I did a Superman retrospective and gave a personal list of his best stories in the last 25 years.  So now for the Billy Batson/Captain Marvel I wanted to do the same thing.  The only difference here is I won’t just focus on comic books but from other media as well.  The reason is simple.  People don’t read comic books anymore (sob) but consume other media about them.

 

One last thing before I begin.  Keep in mind this is only my personal list.  If you have a difference of opinion then please comment below but keep it classy and civil.

So now lets begin!

 

1.  Whiz Comics #2 - Might as well start with his very first appearance. (Hmm maybe I should do a review of it.  It’s only 15 pages long(if you include the cover) it couldn’t take that long right?).  The story get’s straight to the point.  It’s the basis of every redo of his origin from the 1940’s on.  That said while the original origin is interesting it’s not what I consider very engaging.  If I had a choice I would re-read the 1995 Power of Shazam or the 2012 origin for fun than WHIZ #2. The original origin is a bit too dry and basic for me to want to go back to it over and over again.

 

2.  Shazam!: The Monster Society of Evil (2007) - Let’s say you have kids and after seeing the movie in early April they want more of the good captain.  Well, this is the perfect series for them.  Written and drawn by “BONE” creator Jeff Smith.

 

This is another origin story about Billy Batson but once again it’s tweaked.  One difference here is when Billy turns into Captain Marvel it’s not a boys mind in the body of an adult.  The Captain is his own person with his own personality.  Shortly into the story Billy, the captain and Shazam not only find out that Billy has a little sister that he needs to find. They also find out about the titular Monster Society of Evil which is led by the devious “Mr Mind” who is usually a super intelligent caterpillar he’s a snake in this story though!  But it’s okay because Billy get’s help from a magical talking tiger named “TAWKY TAWNY”!

 

God I love comics! 

 

I can’t really explain well how I feel about this mini-series.  It’s heartwarming, exciting, creative, great writing.  It’s just so much fun!

 

My only problem with the story is that there never was a sequel to this.  Yes there was a 21 issue series that came out a year later(“Billy Batson and the Magic of SHAZAM!”(2008) but it wasn’t by Jeff Smith and didn’t have the energy or fun that this did(also it may not be in continuity with the series).  Considering the current state of the character I wish that this version of the character would come back.

 

3.  *Young Justice S1 EP 19 “Misplaced” (2012)  This appears to be a very loose adaptation of the comic JLA: WORLD WITHOUT GROWN-UPS mini-series(1998)(this lead to the YOUNG JUSTICE SERIES).  Klarion the Witch Boy (along with villains The Wizard, Felix Faust, Wotan & Blackbriar Thorn)does a spell that creates an alternate earth.  One has only kids(under 18 years of age)and the other only adults.  While Billy and the Captain are supporting players in this episode I still think he plays a huge role in that he can blink into both worlds and was also able to get one of the crystals.

 

What I really liked about this episode(Captain Marvel wise) was it should how resourceful Billy was.  The good Captain was a supporting player previously in the series so it was good to see him take a more active role in the series.  Even if it was only for one episode.  I could be wrong but the the voice of Billy here seems to be the same for the “Superman/Shazam! Return of Black Adam” short movie.  

 

4.  *The Shazam and Isis Hour - One year after the triumphant return of the good captain in comic books in SHAZAM! (1973) a live action series was created for him and ran on CBS from 1974 - 1976.  It followed a teenage(? yeah right!)Billy traveling with a man named “Mentor” across country helping people along the way.  My first experience of the show was in the early 80’s in syndication(from the 1980’s - 1990’s if a show had even just one season it would be shown for years in syndication) 

 

5.  Shazam 1981 cartoon - I remember as a kid thinking this is pretty random.  Also where’s that old guy (mentor)from before?  My vague memories of the show are people in uncomfortable positions and Captain Marvel standing around.  I decided to take a look at the first episode and…wow…WOW!   We get an uncle Dudley who sounds like a cross between W. C. Fields and Snagglepuss.  Black Adam turing Captain Marvel Jr.(Freddie Freeman) into a dog and a Captain Marvel that sounds like the the 1960’s Spider-Man.  Meaning he sounded like a 45 year old accounting exec!

 

I really need to re-watch this series(hopefully it’s available on the DC streaming service).  Maybe I’ll review it one day.  The show wasn’t successful running on NBC from Sep 12, 1981 - Sep 11, 1982 and had only 12 episodes.  It was part of “The Kid Super Power Hour with Shazam!”

 

6.  *Kingdom Come - This is an else worlds story(a story taking place on an alternate earth timeline)that takes place years into the future after superheroes from Superman, Batman & Wonder Woman retired.  The reason was because of the rise of darker superheroes led by a new one called “Magog”.  After a catastrophic event in the midwest Superman gets the band back together to put an end to this dark age of heroes.  Not only that but they also have to combat a new group of villains.  Some of which are old timers(Catwoman, Riddler, Vandal savage and the new Ra’s Al Ghul who’s Talia and Bruce’s son) and some new kids on the block.  They call themselves the MLF.  No not the “Mutant Liberation Front” that’s MARVEL but “Mankind Liberation Front”.  How did Marvel not sue DC over this?

 

Kingdom Come is a great story from beginning to end.  I didn’t realize it at the time(but I do now)but it was a response to the 1990’s “Dark Age” of comic books.  So this is a Superman story right?  Where does Captain Marvel fit in then?  

 

He’s being controlled by someone.  Who?  That would be spoilers but let’s just say he’s used as insurance against Superman because: 

 

1. He’s as powerful as him(Superman).  

2. The whole Superman being weak to magic thing. 

 

Billy’s part in this story is bittersweet.  It’s good to see him here but it’s not as a hero and then there’s how his story finishes here which is bittersweet.

 

I will have to place this on the honorable list because while he plays a significant part in the story(the 2nd half of it really) it’s not about him.  This is primarily a Superman story.

 

7.  Shazam 1970’s live action series (1974 - 1977) - One year after his return to comic books the good captain received a live action tv series that ran from 1974 - 1977.  It followed a teenage Billy Batson(teenage? Really, REALLY?!) and his adult guardian named “Mentor” as they travel cross country and help people along the way.

 

8.  *Shazam! Power of Hope (2000) - From 1998 - 2003 DC Comics put out six tabloid size comic books co-written by Paul Dini and painted by Alex Ross(there was Superman: Peace on Earth, Batman: War on Crime, Wonder Woman: Spirit of Truth,, Shazam: Power of Hope, Justice League: Secret Origins & Justice)

 

9.  *Shazam! 1973  - It’s the triumphant return of the character after being gone for 20 years.  This time being published by DC Comics.  What’s interesting about the series is that the look and tone was the same as it was in the 1940’s - 1950’s.  Goofy, campy aiming more for really young kids.  At least at the start of it’s run.  It kept it’s light tone until issue 34 & 35(#34 has Captain Nazi in it, I mean how light can you get!).  The last issues of the series.  Looking at the comics the 70’s the Shazam one was an anomaly.  In the 70’s comics were getting more mature and serious.  It aiming for a younger demo sounds good but by this point that comic reader was aging up not down.  

 

I can’t find any numbers but it seems this series didn’t do well.  It ran from 1973 - 1978 and was bi-monthly.  Even with the popularity of the live action show it doesn’t seem this helped the comics(that’s true even today ex. Captain America: Civil War made over 1 billion dollars but the Captain America comics struggle to sell 300,000 copies a year(in the 70’s it sold that in a month!)). 

 

10. Just Imagine Stan Lee with Gary Frank Creating Shazam! (2002) - Hey you want to see weird?  Well then just take a gander in the early 2000’s when DC Comics gave Stan Lee a chance to reimagine certain DC characters in his own universe.  So what did his take on the good captain entail?  Merlin, Morgana, a trip to Nepal, a cult with a woman apparently trying to do her best David Bowie impersonation! Assassins, and a big red beastie thing tagging along with a big boob woman.  I have no words for this.  The concept and execution of the story is bonkers.  Then again the entire Just Imagine line was crazy.

 

I think Stan missed the point on what makes Billy Batson/Captain Marvel a great character in this issue.  Also Billy Batson isn’t even Captain Marvel in the main story(I don’t even think he’s in the story at all).

 

11. *Shazam in the New 52 (2012 - ?) (1st appearing in the Justice League comic as a back up feature)(2013) - At the time I liked the story mostly because of the Gary Frank art.  Inclusion of the other orphans and having them take major roles is good but I didn’t like the fact that they became the extended Marvel Family.  I didn’t mind Billy’s attitude too much in the series because this did seem realistic for a 15 year old boy in the mid 2010’s.  My main issue with the series was that now Captain Marvel was no longer Captain Marvel but was now named Shazam.  As in after the wizard.  As in the word that Billy has to say to transform and back.  Good god, that is so stupid.  From that point on in all media he’s being called Shazam.

 

12. *The Power of SHAZAM! Graphic Novel (1994) and ongoing series (1995) - It was these to pieces of art that made me the fan of Captain Marvel I am today.  While he did appear before here(he was in the BWAHAHA Justice League of the late 80’s early 90’s)this was I believe his first ongoing series since the 1970’s.  This completely revamped his origin and was his definitive origin…until Geoff Johns retconned it in the NEW 52…sigh.  Anyway the art in the graphic novel had a very paintery pulpy feel.  Initially when I read the GN I thought that this took place in it’s own reality because the designs of the book has a 1930’s -40’s feel to it.  The GN plays out his commonly known origin but adds some tweaks to it.  We see the introduction of some future villains and a mysteriously shadowed individual is tasked by Shazam to guide Billy on his journey.  

 

The graphic novel is a great introduction for anyone interested in learning more about the the good captain.  The only negative possibly is that while I liked the art the current generation of comic reader may find it too dated(Jerry Ordway wrote and illustrated the entire graphic novel!).  Also looking back on it now it’s pretty obvious who the mysterious individual is.

 

The ongoing series that followed a year later is a continuation from the GN.  It’s still written by Jerry Ordway but this time he’s not doing the art for the series(Peter Krause, Mike Manley & Glen Whoitmore does the pencils, inks and colors).  Visually the pulp style is still present but minus the paint strokes.  Because of this the art looks simplified and more conventional.  The first issue does end with a bang with a fire, Billy using his powers irresponsibly, still needing to find his sister and Shazam punishing Billy.

 

This is a great series to read to get to know the character.  The original graphic novel is available in print and digital(at comixology.com).  Unfortunately none of the issues from the series are available in paperback but you can read them digitally at comixology.com as well.

 

A side note.  I find it interesting that on issue# 1 it has Captain Marvel on the cover.  Per the copyright with Marvel Comics they could’ve sued DC for that(or whoever owned the character at the time.  There’s some that say that DC didn’t own the Marvel Family of characters until 1997 -1998).  Oh well, it doesn’t matter anymore.  He’s only called Shazam these days.  Not by me though(that’s still a stupid name to call him).

 

13. *Justice League Unlimited “Clash” (2005) - this was probably a lot of peoples first experience of Captain Marvel and this episode nailed the character just right.  We first see him being heroic then see him inducted into the Justice League.  Everything goes down hill from there for billy and clark.  This episode reminds me of the phrase never meet your heroes.  Because they won’t be what you built them up to be.

 

14. *Batman/Superman Public Enemies (2009) - The good captain appears here but it’s mostly an extended cameo.  We do get to see his power and cleverness.  I also like the fact that he states that Superman is weak against magic here.  Why do so many readers and writers of the character seem to forget that?

 

15. *Superman/Shazam!: The Return of Black Adam (2010) - Hey a DC animated film that’s not solely focused on either Superman or Batman!  Oh wait, Superman’s in it too, my bad.  Also this isn’t a full film.  It’s more like a short film at about 25 mins.  I wish I had known that when I first bought this years ago.  Still this is a good representation of the character.  Within the first 2 mins you get a handle on Billy’s character.  He’s upbeat and positive despite his current situation and will stand up for anyone in need.  

 

Still I have 2 nitpicks.  

 

1.  Superman/Clark Kent is in this episode(calling it a a movie would be silly)while he plays a part I think the story could stand on it’s own without him(for some reason nearly all DC animated films have either Superman or Batman in them.  It’s become a crutch by this point).  Instead of having there just have Talky Tawny have a larger role.  Or heck throw in Uncle Dudley for crying out loud.

 

2.  It’s not a actual movie.  As I noted earlier this is more of a short film.  It’s barely 20mins long.  It’s disappointing that the Good Captain didn’t receive a longer treatment.  He’s been around since the 1940’s!  He’s had by that point a movie serial series, live action tv series, a cartoon series and several comic book series as well.

 

Despite all of that for anyone that’s interested in the character this is a great primer for them.

 

16.  The Captain Marvel Movie Serials (1941) - The good captain was the first superhero to appear in the movies(if you don’t count Zorro or comic strip adaptations).  He had a 12 part series named the “Adventures of Captain Marvel” that ran thru 1941(March 28,1941) little over a year after he was first introduced in the comics(Whiz Comics #2 cover date Feb 1940 release Date Dec 1939).  Looking back it’s not that bad.  I can why people would enjoy it.  Seeing the captain fighting against oversized scorpions and the such.  It seems it was so well received that this helped the sales of the comic book.  As I noted earlier(I may have noted it in another part of the retrospective)Captain Marvel was so popular that he would outsell Superman.  

 

Side note I do find it funny that for the flying scenes instead of wiring up the actor they used a 7 foot long paper mache’ version of him instead.

Saturday
Mar162019

The Magnificent Ms. Marvel#1 : Directors Cut Review

This is the 1st issue of the newest Ms. Marvel Kamala Khan series.  Her previous one ended last month with the writer that is best known for writing her G. Willow Wilson finishing her run with the character(Ms. Wilson is now working on Wonder Woman for DC Comics).  Before I begin I should give a brief rundown on just who is Kamala Khan.  

 

Kamala is a teenage girl from Jersey City New Jersey who is a HUGE superhero fan.  One day while stumbling home from a party she wasn’t supposed to go to.  She gets hit by the Inhumans “Terrigen Mist”.  Since she has Inhuman biology she gained stretching and size changing superpowers(she can shape shift to look like other people but she RARELY uses that ability).  Because of her love of superheroes and admiration of Carol Danvers/Captain Marvel she decides to use her new powers to help the world at large and Jersey City in particular!

 

THE STORY-

The issue begins on some alien planet in the future where a dad tells the story of the “Earth’s greatest hero” Ms. Marvel.  Uh, yeah it looks like the writer Saladin Ahmed is going to use “THAT” type of storytelling framing device.  *sigh*  Anyway over the course of the issue we see her fight a villain, recap how she got her powers(in only 3 panels, pretty impressive!)argue with her parents, fight another villain and see some gloop!  You’ll know what I mean when you read the issue.

 

REVIEW

 

The issue is basically a day in the life of Kamala.  Hanging out with friends, fighting villains and dealing with trouble at home. Art wise it looks good and no one suffers from the same face different character syndrome. Everyone resembles their original character designs and artists Minkyu Jung & Juan Vlasco are able to put their own spin on the designs.  That said I have a couple of issues with the art. One, the coloring at times is a bit off.  Since Kamala and her family are dark skin you’d expect their skin color to be various shades of brown.  Except unless my eyes or deceiving there are times when they appear to be red.  I’m starting to get flashbacks from “New Mutants: The Demon Bear Saga” again!

 

The other problem I have with the art is that it appears to be too conventional.  It reminds me of the old DC comics “house style”.  That isn’t inherently wrong it’s just that since her debut issue in 2014 she has had more compelling art style in her series.  An great example of this would the final issue of her last series.  Several artists worked on it(I believe they were all of her previous artists).  Each style was unique and striking.  I’ll give the series a few issues to see if the art work grows on me.  Maybe Minkyu Jung & Juan Vlasco art well also evolve during that time as well.

 

Writing wise the plot is just okay.  While the cliffhanger is really interesting but I’ve already notice a problem.  Kamala Khan.  Right out of the gate the previous writer G. Willow Wilson made Kamala a fun and engaging character.  She was funny, energetic, a bit of dork, could be moody but also had a lot of heart.  She resembled Peter Parker but in a different way(if that makes any sense).  Here as in also the “CHAMPIONS” series she seems WAY too serious.  When G. Willow Wilson isn’t writing her it seems writers try to make her character resemble Carol Danvers.  Yes, Kamala is probably Carol’s biggest fan(Kamala took over her previous moniker) but that doesn’t mean she should be written like her.  After all Peter Parker and Frank Castle both admire Captain America but they don’t have the same personality as him.

 

EXTRAS - 

 

The Directors Cut is 119 pages long and includes a few variant covers, thumbnails, character designs and cover sketches.  What is interesting is that the original script is put in here as an extra.  To also pad out the issue the art process is in here.  By that I mean the original pencils then the inks and then finally the color.  I’m not sure how many people are going to like that but as an artist I find it interesting to see how much an inker can change another artist(the penciler)work.

 

Is the book and extra’s worth the 3.99 price? I’d say yes.  Comics already now days cost 3.99(4 bucks)so to get anything else along with that is a plus.  That said I wish there were more.  Example how about a an interview with G. Willow Wilson before she leaves and an interview with the oncoming writer.  This is a bit of a nitpick since in the final issue 38(February 2019) the oncoming writer and G. Willow Wilson both wrote some parting words.  Another thing I wanted to see was maybe some artwork done of the character by other artists and maybe perhaps showing people cosplay as her.  How about as well showing letters from fans of Kamala telling what she means to them and their favorite stories of her.

 

The extras of the book seemed like a missed opportunity.

 

RECOMMEND/GRADE:  I’d give this issue a C.

 

This issue has an interesting plot point introduced(which has been spoiled by Marvel Comics in promotion for this issue)the problem I see coming from this issues cliff hanger however is that there is going to be an ultra serious tone for this series.  That’s not what made the previous iteration of the series so good.  Yes there were serious moments but there were also heartwarming ones, bittersweet ones, humorous ones and just fun and heart.  The previous writer and artists had an obvious affection for the character that I’m not sure that the current creative team has.

 

It just seems that after the previous run this one will just go a very conventional or rote route.  The previous run would tweak conventions.  Heck one of Kamala’s first villains (“The Inventor”) is a human size bird that is the clone of Thomas Edison for crying out loud!

 

You know I keep referring back to the previous run of the character and issue # 38 in particular.  While that might not seem fair I think it is.  Every issue of the last year hasn’t been stellar but was still good and the final issue really shows off the best parts of the series and the title character.  Kamala Khan is a likable relatable character.  She’s not a miniature version of Carol Danvers.  She’s her own being.

 

For those interested in the character I say before you read “The Magnificent Ms. Marvel #1” read her final issue (38) from her previous series(it’s still available at comic shops and on digital from comixology.com).  That will give you a great idea about the character.  After that if you like the issue and want more then check out the first trade of her first series “MS. MARVEL Vol. 1: NO NORMAL”.  Which I did a review of back in 2015( shameless plug…) but seriously it’s a good story to start off with.

 

I will give this new series a chance though.  I’ll stick on for the first off and hopefully it will get better.

 *music used Indie & Thinking Back

Friday
Mar152019

James Dunn is rehired by Disney and Marvel Studios

I'm not surprised that he's back(even though figured they would've hired him back later in the year)Once that "controversy" blew over they were going to hire him back. Still I'm more interested in his version of "Suicide Squad" than a sequel to GOTG Volume 2(even though I liked both films).

Sunday
Mar102019

Who Is Captain Marvel Info Dump

INFO DUMP

 

Billy Batson/Captain Marvel created by C.C. Beck & Billy Parker

Published in Fawcett Comics 1939 - 1953 150 comics in total

DC Comics 1972 - Current

First appearance Whiz Comics #2

Nicknames:  The Worlds Mightiest Mortal, The Big Red Cheese, Marvel, Captain Thunder, Captain Shazam

Marvel Family: Mr. Tawky Tawny, Uncle Dudley, Mary Marvel, Captain Marvel Jr.

 

Powers

All are magic based.

Wisdom of Solomon: Enhanced intellect.  Knowledge and focus of the gods.

Strength of Hercules: Superhuman strength(rivals superman and wonder woman).

Stamina of Atlas: Superhuman stamina and invulnerability.

Power of Zeus: Control over unlimited magical lightning, immortality and spell casting.

Courage of Achilles: Indomitable will.

Speed of Mercury: Superhuman speed.

* teleportation by the Rock of Eternity

 

Villains

Black Adam

Doctor Sivana

Mister Mind

The Monster Society of Evil

Mister Banjo

Mister Atom

Ibac

Sabbac

King Kull

Captain Nazi

Blaze and Satanus

 

 

Origin:  Orphaned by a young age Billy Batson(who originally had a job as a host at Whiz radio)stumbles into an abandoned subway where he finds a cave(tomb) with statues that show  the seven enemies of man(the seven deadly sins) and meets the the wizard SHAZAM.  He bequeaths his power to billy (since he’s a good kid)all he has to do is utter his name SHAZAM and a magical bold of energy will strike him.

 

Notable Captain Marvel Stories

The Power of Shazam!  the graphic novel(1994) and comic series(March 1995 - March 1999)the first 47 issues in 2010 for Blackest Night a 48th issue was released.

Kingdom Come (May - August 1996)

SHAZAM! (1973) the triumphant return of the good captain after 20 years.  Now published by DC(but not necessarily owned by them) it ran for 35 issues 1973 -1978

SHAZAM!: The Monster Society of Evil (2007) by Jeff Smith a possible retcon to his origin

Just Imagine Stan Lee with Gary Frank Creating Shazam! (2002)

SHAZAM! (2013) 1st appearance post New 52 starting.  From this point on he’s only called Shazam(that’s still stupid)

SHAZAM! Power of Hope (2000) graphic novel by Paul Dini & Alex Ross

 

Other Marvels

Marvelman later called Miracleman

Marvel Comics: Captain Mar Vel of which there have been about five

 

Marvel-Man:  Created by Mick Anglo in 1954(published by L. Miller & son).  This was a variation of the Captain Marvel/Billy Batson version.  Basically imagine if Billy received his powers as an adult instead as a kid.  Interestingly this series began about a year after DC Comics was about to successfully get the original Captain Marvel series to end.  FYI if they tried to do this in modern day there’s no way they(DC Comics) would’ve gotten away with it.  Anyway the series ran from 1954 to 1963.  There was a revival of the series in 1982 with Alan Moore. 

 

In order for the main character Michael Moran to transform he had to utter the word cimota(Atomic spelled backwards.  It makes sense seeing how this character was created during the “Atomic Age”).

POWERS

Flight

Super Strength

Invulnerability

Greatly increased intelligence

Heightened senses

Telekinesis

Telepathy

Concussive energy blasts

and a partridge in a pear tree!  (Geez what power doesn’t he have?!)

 

Ownership of the character

Ownership of the character has hop scotch from L. Miller(until they went bankrupt) to Eclipse Comics to Todd McFarlane in 1996 who bought the Miracle Man/Marvel Man right for 25 grand.  Then there was a battle between him and Neil Gaiman who also said he had ownership for part of the character(since he did right stories of the character after Alan Moore).  That legal fight went on for about a decade.  It only ended when Marvel Comics ironically bought the rights in 2009.  They preceded to release the entire series issue by issue and collected them in trades.  Since the final trade though he hasn’t had any new material or even incorporated into the Marvel Universe.

 

However at the 2018 San Diego Comic Marvel did say a new Miracle Man series will be published in 2018 with the creative team of Neil Gaiman and Mark Buckingham(NATCH!)(they worked on the series after Alan Moore and Garry Leach(later Alan Davis).

 

In 1985 Eclipse Comics had to change the name from Marvel Man to Miracle Man because of Marvel.

 

Will Miracle Man ever pop up outside of the comics?  Possibly but with the vague similarities there is to the OG Captain Marvel it would be difficult and DC Entertainment & Warner Media might block that(even though their character is now called SHAZAM! ugh that’s still so lame!  He has to utter that name to change back and forth so guess what?  Because of the name change he can NEVER TELL ANYONE HIS NAME!)

 

The Many Versions of Marvel Comics Captain Marvel

 

1. Mar Vel created by Gene Colan & Stan Lee 

1st appearing in Marvel Super-Heroes #12 Dec. 1967

Powers Superhuman Strength, Speed, Endurance, Flight, Cosmic Awareness, Solar Energy Absorption and projection, wields nega-bands.

Enemies: Controller, Living Laser(also an Iron Man villain), Ronan the Accuser, Super Skrull, Space Phantom, Supreme Intelligence(Kree) and Thanos.

 

2. Monica Rambeau  created by John Romita Jr & Roger Stern

1st appearance (as Captain Marvel) The Amazing Spider-Man Annual #16 Oct. 1982

Aliases: Photon, Pulsar & Spectrum

Powers: Energy Absorption, generation, and manipulation

Travel up to light speed why in energy form

Able to transform her body into any energy in the electromagnetic spectrum

Able to travel in the vacuum of space

 

3. Genis-Vell created by Ron Lim and Ron Marz

1st appearance (as Legacy) Silver Surfer Annual #6 Oct 1993. (As Captain Marvel) Captain Marvel Vol. 3 #1 Dec 1995.  (As Photon) New Thunderbolts #6 May 2005 

Aliases: Legacy, Captain Marvel, Photon

Powers: Flight, Super Strength, Speed, Stamina, Durability, Energy Blasts(absorption & manipulation),Dimension Transportation, Cosmic Awareness granting omniversal level telepathy and wields nega-bands. 

 

4. Phyla-Vell  created by Paul Azaceta & Peter David 

1st Appearance Captain Marvel vol. 5 #16 2003

Aliases: Quasar, Captain Marvel, Martyr

Powers: Superhuman Strength, Flight, Energy Projection & Absorption and Cosmic Awareness

 

5. Khn’nr created by Tom Raney & Paul Jenkins

1st appearance Civil War: The Return Mar. 2007

Aliases: Mar-Vell

Powers: Master hand to hand fighter, Superhuman Strength, Shapeshifting, Knowledge of Kree Technology, has Nega-Bands.

Sleeper agent.  He’s a Skrull.

 

6. Noh-Varr created by J.G. Jones and Grant Morrison

1st Appearance Marvel Boy #1 Aug. 2000 (as Captain Marvel) Dark Avengers #1 Mar. 2009 (as Protector) Ms. Marvel #50 Apr. 2010

Powers: Enhanced Physiology(finally something different!)

 

7. Carol (Susan Jane) Danvers created by Gene Colan & Roy Thomas

1st appearance Marvel Super Heroes# 13 Mar 1968, (Ms Marvel) Ms. Marvel#1 Jan. 1977, (Binary) The Uncanny X-Men #164 Dec. 1982, (Warbird) The Avengers #4 May 1998, (Captain Marvel) Avenging Spider- Man #9 July 2012

Aliases: Ms. Marvel, Binary, Warbird, Captain Marvel

Powers: Captain Marvel - Superhuman Strength, Speed, Endurance, Stamina, Energy Projection(and Absorption), Flight

BINARY - Able to tap into the power of a white hole, able to control Gravity and the electromagnetic spectrum, light speed travel, able to survive in a vacuum.

Enemies: Controller, Thanos, Supreme Intelligence, Living Laser, Ronan The Accuser, Super-Skrull, Nitro, AIM, Elementals, Moonstone, The Brood, MODOK

 

Carol is the last and current Captain Marvel in the Marvel Universe……for NOW!