Captain Marvel: Earth’s Mightiest Hero Volume 4

Captain Marvel: Earth’s Mightiest Hero Volume 4
Alternative editions:
Captain Marvel Earth's Mightiest Hero Volume 4 review sample image
Alternative editions:
  • North American Publisher / ISBN: Marvel Comics - 978-1-302-90269-8
  • Volume No.: 4
  • Release date: 2017
  • UPC: 9781302902698
  • Contains adult content?: no
  • Does this pass the Bechdel test?: yes
  • Positive minority portrayal?: yes
  • CATEGORIES: Superhero

This volume, containing comics originally published in 2015, brings to a slightly disappointing end Kelly Sue DeConnick’s run on Captain Marvel. It’s still well-written throughout (with assists for DeConnick from Warren Ellis and Kelly Thompson), with a fine feeling for Carol Danvers’ character and dialogue, but this is not as good as the preceding volume.

The collection is falls into two parts. The first, previously found in Alis Volat Propriis, comes from the regular Captain Marvel title. There’s a thin and poorly paced encounter with the incompetent Haffenseye pirates, and then an episode from the Black Vortex event (which provides the cover for this volume) that makes no sense out of context, and apparently not that much in context. All this is compensated for by a chapter that rounds off DeConnick’s writing stint on the regular title. It’s a lovely story about loss and life, and makes the reader wish there were more stories like that. It’s an elegaic send off, not just for DeConnick’s Captain Marvel run, but in a way (as the Secret Wars logo in the corner of the last page hints), for the entire Marvel Universe, which Marvel were about to end.

The second half of this volume contains the Captain Marvel series from the Secret Wars/Warzones! titles, Captain Marvel and the Carol Corps. Some Warzones! comics turned out to be surprisingly innovative takes on familiar characters, but others were considerably less interesting. This, you may be assured, falls into the latter category. Not that it’s particularly bad, it just doesn’t do that much worth bothering with, and seems to exist largely in order to officially use the term ‘Carol Corps’ (what Carol Danvers fans call themselves) in a Marvel comic. Perhaps a trademarking exercise?

Still, art almost all the way through is by David Lopez, except at the very end, where Laura Braga and Paolo Pantalena finish off the Warzones! story. Lopez is a superb artist for Captain Marvel, depicting exactly the sort of space adventures that the reader wants to see, and drawing the characters with stylish aplomb (see sample image). Colours are by Lee Loughridge, who is, as ever, excellent.

That last story in the regular run alone makes this volume value for money if you don’t already own it.