Captain Marvel #10
Written by Ruth Fletcher Gage and Christos Gage
Art by Thony Silas and Matthew Wilson
Lettered by Joe Caramagna
Published by Marvel Comics
‘Rama Rating: 9 out of 10
Since joining Alpha Flight to protect the Earth from extra-terrestrial threats, Captain Marvel has found herself embroiled in Civil War II, using Ulysses as a means of extrasensory detection for future threats, one of them potentially being fellow Alpha Flight-er Aurora. This final issue of Captain Marvel starts out as a continuation of the hero versus hero theme that’s been running through Marvel’s various titles for the better half of this year, but quickly flips the script on the cast which makes for a pleasant surprise and satisfying send-off for the series.
The reason this issue works so well is primarily down to how quickly it moves through the Carol Danvers versus Alpha Flight fight. With how close they’ve become over the course of this series, it would have been disappointing to see the bonds fracture right at the end. Instead, Ruth Fletcher Gage and Christos Gage use this as the core of the issue, a factor which benefits the following scene as that zigs when you expect it zag, highlighting what Captain Marvel has succeeded in doing this past year; providing solid superhero storytelling that doesn’t necessarily break new ground, but has an energy which it uses to avoid the stereotypical. With regards to Civil War II in particular, these tie-ins have added nuance to Carol’s side of the argument, a factor which has impeded the core book. Much like Invincible Iron Man, Captain Marvel should be considered required reading for the event. The conflict is still imperfect, but at the very least this series should make the reader more sympathetic to Carol’s position.
And while it was a shame that Kris Anka has moved onto Star-Lord, unable to finish out this series as a result, Thony Silas has been a suitable replacement. Unlike other creative team shifts midway through a series, or even an arc, Silas has been able to capture the tone established prior, no doubt helped by Matthew Wilson, a colorist who always delivers passionate and expressive work, but excels on series like this where the art is bold. When all hell breaks loose high above the stars here, the power sets of the characters are given the appropriate gravitas and weight, Carol’s in particular and despite the explosions and energy being fired off left, right and center, the yellows and oranges that Wilson uses never overwhelm the scene or pull focus from the characters. This is most apparent in a later two-page spread when a fire rages on, but the characters are still what the page draws attention to, a factor that applies to the other spreads in the issue. These scenes utilize a lot of panels that are off-kilter meaning that the Gages and Silas prevent the issue from feeling static as the perspective continually shifts.
And so this review must, like the series, come to a close. That in mind, this doesn’t mean the end for Captain Marvel, as evidenced by the final scene of the issue which concludes this arc, but also functions are a post-credits stinger of sorts. Carol’s partnership with Alpha Flight has provided Carol with a supporting cast to bounce off of, a factor that previous runs have been unable to fully capitalize upon. Luckily, Marvel has realized this, as Carol will continue to serve as Alpha Flight commander when she returns in The Mighty Captain Marvel. Carol’s been in the spotlight for a couple of years now and this scene establishes a new emotional arc for her moving forward, with her embracing this new found fame within the Marvel Universe. While this series dipped in quality as a result of Civil War II (like many series did), the main strength of the run was the dynamic Carol had with Alpha Flight, putting it at the forefront makes for a strong closing issue and the fact that it’ll continue to be present moving forward makes me all the more eager for The Mighty Captain Marvel next month.