REVIEW: ‘The New Champion of Shazam’ Issue #1

Reading Time: 2 minutes

The New Champion of Shazam #1 - But Why Tho

The New Champion of Shazam #1 is a new series published by DC Comics. Written by Josie Campbell, art and colours by Evan “Doc” Shaner, and letters by Becca Carey, Mary Marvel sets out on a new journey all on her own: college. But she is also bestowed with a new responsibility, being the new Shazam.

The opening issue of this new era is full of excitement and taps into the brilliant human story of Shazam comics. The first half of the comic is solely focused on Mary’s new adventures as a college student. The pace is slow but superb at creating a new world. There’s an amazing realism to this aspect which is beautifully and instantly altered by magic. This kickstarts a really exciting return to superheroes for Mary. This first villain encounter appears generic in its setting but is great for displaying the new surprise. The energy of the heightened pace in the second half of the comic is infectious, and the final page is a gut punch.

The Marvel family can feel full in their comics due to just how many children there are. But The New Champion of Shazam #1 is very different as it sends Mary out on her own. That family remains present in spirit and how she tries to adjust to being alone. This is beyond a coming-of-age story, it is where a young person tries to step out on her own. The dialogue and the narration are excellent as Mary struggles to fit in at her new college. Those characters around her aren’t amazing for depth but they serve as brilliant “normal” people for our heroine to try and match. There’s also the potential for great fun as new companions are added that are hilarious. The first villain Mary faces on her own seems purposely ridiculous and loud.

The art is amazing. Shaner perfectly captured the youth that embodies much of the cast. Mary is beautifully drawn as youthful exuberance channels through every panel. There’s extraordinary detail in the facial expressions whilst the cleanliness of the lines remains intact. The minuscule additions to hair or skin do huge amounts to increase textures. The buildings and the locations are also stunning.

The colours are fantastic. For the majority of the comic, there are naturalized tones depicting the beautiful locales. When the normal world turns weird, that is when the unnatural colours make an appearance. This largely is depicted as very bright lights, not departing completely from the standard palette. The lettering is dynamic and always easy to read.

The New Champion of Shazam #1 brilliantly puts a new member of the family in the spotlight. Mary gets the chance to make that name her own, and from the first issue she appear worthy already. Both sides of her life are wonderful to explore, from the new chapter of her education to suddenly being the sole bearer of power. Those that have come before haven’t been abandoned or forgotten, instead using them to enrich Mary’s story. Family follows you wherever you want to go.

The New Champion of Shazam #1 is available where comics are sold.


The New Champion of Shazam #1
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TL;DR

The New Champion of Shazam #1 brilliantly puts a new member of the family in the spotlight. Mary gets the chance to make that name her own, and from the first issue she appear worthy already. Both sides of her life are wonderful to explore, from the new chapter of her education to suddenly being the sole bearer of power. Those that have come before haven’t been abandoned or forgotten, instead using them to enrich Mary’s story. Family follows you wherever you want to go.

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