Captain Marvel is a name flying around the internet due to buzz over reports of Brie Larson being cast for the upcoming 2019 film of the same name. Unlike many Marvel characters, Captain Marvel is relatively unknown compared to the likes of Captain America, Iron Man, Thor and Spider-Man. This is mainly due to her being rarely used outside of the comics until recently.
This has held an extremely complex and interesting character from being exposed to the masses. Well, this article will be aiming to fill you in on some massive pieces to Carol Danvers and what makes her Captain Marvel.
1. She was Created with Feminism in Mind
Carol would not be the first character in comics designed to be a political statement, the X-Men were created to combat racial hate. Gerry Conway who brought the character to life stated her journey was to be a parallel to female equality. He said Carol's story was to represent “raised consciousness, for self-liberation, for identity.” This, however, did lead to backlash later in her story, which we will visit later in this article.
2. Born Human, Turned Alien Hybrid
Carol started off as an unpowered human ally to the Kree alien Mar-Vell, but when she received her powers through an explosion caused by ancient Kree technology, her physiology itself changed. The explosion turned her into a Human/Kree hybrid, which granted her access to her new superpowers. Carol initially possessed superhuman strength, endurance, stamina, flight, physical durability, a limited precognitive "sixth sense" and due to her new physiology was resistant to most toxins and poisons.
3. The Superheroine with a Dozen Names
While the odd identity change is to be expected in comics, Carol probably has one of the highest number of identities used. Starting in the comics as Major Carol Danvers of the U.S Air Force, she then became the first Ms Marvel. As time went on she later became the intergalactic entity known as Binary. As Binary, the character could tap the energy of a "white hole," allowing full control and manipulation of stellar energies, and therefore control over heat, the electromagnetic spectrum and gravity. She could also travel at light speed and survive in the vacuum of space. Loosing her connection to the "white hole" she returned to earth and became War Bird. She did eventually return to the title of Ms Marvel, but Captain America is the one who convinced her to finally take her mentor's name, Captain Marvel.
4. Feminists Hated her Outfits
The backlash mentioned earlier, was simply down to her character's superhero costumes. While she was meant to hold strong to feminist values, her outfits did not leave much to the imagination. With more skin on display than many other superheroines, feminists found her design contradicted all the movement stands for. Thankfully a lot of that has ended now with her more conservative and covering Captain Marvel uniform.
5. Mystique First Appearance was in Ms Marvel
Yes, as crazy as it sounds, the famous X-Men character was originally a nemesis for Carol Danvers. Her first ever appearance in Marvel comics was in Ms Marvel No.16, May 1978. During this appearance she was in disguise and made her true blue arrival in the following issue Ms Marvel No. 17, June 1978. Since then Mystique has reappeared a number of times, ever ready to reignite an old rivalry. She was even the force behind making the mutant Rogue absorb Ms Marvel's powers.
6. Carol has been Leader of the Avengers
After the events of Civil War, Carol was reward by Tony for her dedication to the cause, this resulted in her becoming the leader of the Mighty Avengers. She led Ares, Sentry, Wonder Man, Wasp, Black Widow and Iron Man as a strong leader. Her time of leadership ended when Norman Osborn plunged the Marvel Universe into a Dark Reign, but it has been said that she will lead the Avengers again. Perhaps this will not just be in the comics, but one day in the Cinematic Universe as well.
7. Carol is a Victim of Rape
Avengers No. 200, first printed in 1980, saw controversy like never before at Marvel. The story involved the alleged son of Marvel's supervillain, Immortus, hypnotizing and kidnapping Carol. Taking her to an alternate dimension, he used his powers to influence her into having sex with him and baring his child. The lack of reaction from the other character over the incident is what ignited much of the controversy. Even comic book historian Carol Strickland has slated the story and in an essay dubbing it “The Rape of Ms. Marvel.”
8. Carol is a Recovering Alcoholic.
The 1990s saw Carol's darkest times as she struggled with alcoholism. Becoming Warbird, Carol struggled with lose of her cosmic Binary powers and turned to the bottle. It even got so bad that she was suspended from the Avengers due to being drunk while on duty. She was eventually helped through her issues, primarily by Tony Stark who had also struggled with alcoholism, and became a heroine once again.
With Carol's arrival to the movies getting closer and closer, it will be interesting to see what aspects of her long comic book history they will pull use for inspiration in her live-action counterpart.