An Origin Worthy of Carol Danvers In The Life Of Captain Marvel #5

by Josh Davison

[*Mild Spoilers Ahead!]

Captain Marvel reflects on her time spent flying for NASA as well as her wingman, Walter Lawson. In the present, Carol and her mother, Mari-Ell of the Kree, are under attack by the Kree Kleaner, sent by the Kree Empress Pam’a. The Kleaner has a hold of Carol’s sister, Joe Jr., and Carol and Mari-Ell will do whatever it takes to stop the Kleaner and save their family.

The Life of Captain Marvel #5 cover by Julian Totino Tedesco
The Life of Captain Marvel #5 cover by Julian Totino Tedesco

The Life of Captain Marvel #5 concludes this revisiting and retelling of Carol Danvers’ origin and childhood. The big revelation has already been given; Carol’s mother was a Kree agent sent to Earth. All that is left now is Kleaning up.

Here, we get to see Carol and her mother team up to fight the Kleaner and her drones. I still find the drones to be underwhelming in terms of design, but they serve as more threats to both our heroes and the town.

It’s still a little strange that the Kleaner is nude for most of the fight. I was hoping that would be explained at some point, but it’s not.

We revisit the previous origin for Carol’s powers in this issue, with Captain Mar-Vell, the Psyche-Magnitron, and Yon-rogg. It’s recontextualized as a psychological awakening as opposed to a biological. Ms. Marvel originally being a personality separate from Carol Danvers isn’t explained.

That said, I do like this as a new origin for Captain Marvel. It gives her a mentor and legacy beyond that of Mar-Vell’s, and it makes her starting point more personal. It also moves it away from being damsel-in-distress-turned-hero.

The fight against the Kleaner is quite cool, and the wrap-up to the issue is emotionally strong.

The Life of Captain Marvel #5 art by Carlos Pacheco, Rafael Fonteriz, Marcio Menyz, Federico Blee, and letterer VC's Clayton Cowles
The Life of Captain Marvel #5 art by Carlos Pacheco, Rafael Fonteriz, Marcio Menyz, Federico Blee, and letterer VC’s Clayton Cowles

Carlos Pacheco and Marguerite Sauvage finish out the comic’s artwork, with Pachecho, along with inker Rafael Fonteriz and color artists Marcio Menyz and Federico Blee, covering the present and Sauvage covering the past. The comic looks great throughout, with only one part of the fight against the Kleaner getting a little visually confusing. The objects always floating to cover the Kleaner is a little contrived, but that goes back to my confusion as to why the character is nude.

The Life of Captain Marvel #5 finishes strong and solidifies this new origin story for Carol Danvers. Captain Marvel is one of Marvel’s greatest heroes, and she finally has an origin story worthy of her. This comic easily earns a recommendation. Give it a read.

The Life of Captain Marvel #5 comes to us from writer Margaret Stohl, artists Carlos Pacheco and Marguerite Sauvage, inkers Rafael Fonteriz and Sauvage, and color artists Marcio Menyz, Federico Blee, and Sauvage, letterer VC’s Clayton Cowles, cover artist Julian Totino Tedesco, and variant cover artists Kaare Andrews and Joe Quinones.

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