Captain Marvel #9 is published by Marvel Comics, written by Kelly Thompson, art by Carmen Carnero, colors by Tamra Bonvillain, and letters by Clayton Cowles. In this issue, Captain Marvel’s powers continue to fade for reasons that remain mysterious. In order to confront this threat, Carol Danvers must invoke a skill that is uncomfortably outside her usual bag of tricks. She’s gonna have to ask for help.
One of the oft-cited problems with the alpha-level superheroes, Superman, Captain Marvel, and the like, is the struggle to make them relatable. Their power sets that border on godlike and to make them seem vulnerable often requires crises of apocalyptic portions. One of the hallmarks of the current run of Captain Marvel is how well the creative team has challenged Carol without turning to such galactic level threats.
This theme continues with Captain Marvel #9 as Carol finds her powers continue to fade. This situation brings Carol closer to Earth as she struggles with her denial in the face of these mounting problems. Her attitude toward these challenges works to further emphasize how human Carol’s character has always been.
I don’t know anyone who hasn’t struggled with accepting the reality of medical issues in their life. Whether major or minor, such problems always leave us feeling shattered. As the illusion of control over our lives is broken by things so small they aren’t even visible to the naked eye. This situation is given even more weight when applied to one who can make almost anything happen with the simple threat of her action.
These challenges help bring to the forefront another ongoing theme I haven’t fully appreciated thus far in Captain Marvel and can’t believe I had missed it. The theme of friendship. Despite Captain Marvel’s godlike powers she is constantly reliant on her many friendships for support.
The many personalities that surround Carol are perhaps her greatest strength of all. Whether it’s Jessica Drew running down information Carol could never ask her to get, to Tony Stark facing down her verbal jabs with a wit sharp enough to cut through her many defenses, Carol never faces her challenges alone. And that is perhaps her greatest gift of all.
While I loved the wonderful character moments the story itself left me feeling a bit winded. Captain Marvel #9 takes the reader hoping from locale to locale at an often dizzying pace. This always leaves me feeling a bit disoriented with a story. Every change is clearly cited however so there is never confusion, just a feeling of business that I found detracted from the story as a whole.
Carnero’s art continues to live up to the high expectations I have for it. The human approach to Carol is augmented by a plethora of panel that places her vulnerability front and center. The art of Captain Marvel #9 almost challenges you to be able to not feel for Carol as she struggles with the unraveling of her life.
Despite a minor hiccup Captain Marvel #9 continues to deliver a story that completely succeeds in keeping me invested in Carol’s story. I always appreciate the great strides the creative team takes to capture a true human experience with this story. Even if filtered through a lens of plasmablasts and spandex costume.
Captain Marvel #9
Despite a minor hiccup Captain Marvel #9 continues to deliver a story that completely succeeds in keeping me invested in Carol’s story.