Comic Review: The Life of Captain Marvel

Olivia Mistretta, Staff Editor

With the new movie coming out soon, it is impossible not to be excited by the new Captain Marvel comics. While the character Captain Marvel (aka. Carol Danvers or Ms. Marvel) has seen many adaptations and reboots over the years, but the newest reboot is The Life of Captain Marvel (#1-5) written by Margaret Stohl and illustrated by Carlos Pacheco. It is easiest to purchase these issues in the trade paperback format (1 book) instead of trying to track down each individual issue, which only has so many copies floating around. It was published in late 2018 and features the origin story of Captain Marvel. While it does “tie-in” to the newer Captain Marvel comic series, it is not necessary to read those to understand The Life of Captain Marvel– which is the beauty of Stohl’s work. So often in the Marvel Comics Universe, it is hard to find a place to start. However, these five issues are great for readers looking to get to know the hero better.

Without giving away too much, the story does not start off with Carol as a baby or even a young child. The plot follows Carol struggling with some PTSD about her family life during her childhood. Looking to find answers, she returns to her family’s summer home in Maine where her mother and older brother are staying. There is some tension as Carol has frequent flashbacks to her past while going through old rooms in the house and walking around town, meeting up with the people she grew up around. It doesn’t help that her brother constantly asks her why she bothered to come back, especially after she became scarce with her new job as a superhero working with the Avengers. Carol dismisses this and everything seems to be piecing together well for her when she discovers a box of mysterious letters her deceased father wrote decades ago.

The letters, coupled with mysterious occurrences around town and the discovery of an interesting alien device she recognizes from the alien planet Hala (where she got her powers from) all combine in a perfect storm where Carol is able to discover way more about her family than she expected. Suspenseful battles ensue, accidents happen, mysteries are solved, and eventually Carol finds some closure and is able to return to work with the Avengers.

Overall, I really enjoyed this trade as I am still trying to become familiar with Captain Marvel as a character before the movie comes out. For anyone looking to get to know the character better, I definitely recommend this mild, easy to follow read. It has fantastic art, and I personally think the characterization for Carol is done quite well! I give it an 8/10 and I certainly hope to see more from these creators in the future!