Captain Marvel’s Comic Book Origins

This week Marvel fans were treated with the trailer to the upcoming Captain Marvel movie. With it’s release coming in March 2019, it will be a welcome addition to the MCU, after a lengthy break since the release of Ant-Man and the Wasp, and Infinity War before that. If you haven’t seen the trailer, check it out below. With that being said, and the hype for Captain Marvel soaring, lets take a look at her origins and what we can expect the movie might include when it is finally released.


Captain Marvel (not to be confused with Captain Marvel’s Shazam!) was created in 1967 by Roy Thomas and Gene Colan. Originally Captain Marvel was an alien military officer named Mar-vell (Jude Law). He was sent to Earth by the Imperial Military of the Kree people. Mar-vell’s mission was to observe Earth’s growing space exploration technology for purpose of invading Earth later. Mar-vell grew tired of the Kree’s offensive nature towards Earth and fell in love with the people of Earth. He vowed to protect the planet if the Kree, or any other alien force, were to attack. This is where he took the name of Captain Marvel. In working with the people of Earth he allied himself with a Air Force operative turned NASA Colonel, Carol Danvers. In 1982 Marvel released it’s first large-format graphic novel called The Death of Captain Marvel. The story is centered around Mar-Vell developing a deadly cancer after an encounter with the villain Nitro and ultimately dies on Saturn orbiting moon of Titan (home of Thanos), leaving the mantle to Carol Danvers.


Ms. Marvel

From a young age Carol Danvers (Brie Larsen) dreamed of becoming an astronaut to see the stars and distant planets of her dreams. At the age of 18 she joined the Air Force where she quickly climbed the ranks of the organization. After many missions she was recruited into Air Force Intelligence where she ran operations with the likes of Ben Grimm, (The Thing), Logan, (Wolverine), and Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson). NASA eventually requested her for a position in their security where she met Mar-Vell and became entangled with the Kree Empire. She joined a team of heroes known as Star Force, and after months of fighting with them she was captured by Cyberex (an advanced alien robot), she was saved by Iron Man, but almost immediately was abducted by Yon-Rogg, another Kree military official. In the ensuing battle between Captain Marvel and Yon-Rogg, Carol was knocked into a Kree Psyche-Magnitron device which altered her genetic make-up turning her into a half-Kree superhuman (with the ability to shoot energy from her hands, super-durability, flight, and super-strength). Her mind was fractured after this and she was forced to retire from NASA. With the help of Mar-Vell she was able to regain mental stability and became Ms. Marvel. She would go on to become a big player in the universe; lending a hand to other  heroes such as Spider-Man, The Defenders and The Avengers.


The Kree-Skrull War

After Ronan the Accuser (Lee Pace) was exiled from the Kree Empire, he broke free from his imprisonment and seized control of the Kree Empire. War was then instigated with the shape-shifting Deviant Skrulls of the planet Skrullos (of which we see a little bit in the trailer). Ronan planned to devolve Earth into a wasteland to use as a base against the Skrulls in the war. This was a massive cosmic event that not only Captain Marvel and Ms. Marvel were a part of, but the Avengers and Inhumans as well. The scary part about Earth’s involvement with the war was the Skrull invasion. Because the Skrulls could shape-shift and become anybody it caused a ripple in the superhero community and the planet of Earth. Questions arose as to who was a Skrull and who was not a Skrull (in the trailer we see Carol punching a kindly old lady who is probably a Skrull). The Skrull’s get into the the government and wreak all sorts of havoc. With the help of Captain Marvel, Ms. Marvel, and the rest of the gang, the war was quelled and the forces of good visited the Kree and Skrull Empires telling them that they were to keep Earth out of all future offensives.


A New Captain Marvel

Carol Danvers goes by many other names in the comics (WarBird, Binary, etc). She eventually settled on the moniker of the original Captain Marvel for herself. With a new costume, a new haircut and in honor of the universally beloved Mar-Vell she has become the new Captain Marvel (with Kamala Kahn replacing her as Ms. Marvel). During Secret Wars she was recruited by Alpha Flight to lead in a planetary defensive against threats outside of the Earth. She plays a very big role in the Marvel Universe with events like The Enemy WithinAvengers vs. X-men, and Civil War II. It will be interesting and exciting to see what will come of the MCU with the addition of this groundbreaking character.


A New Ms. Marvel

Kamala Khan was a Pakistani-American girl who was often seen as strange child by her peers because of her families devout observance of the Muslim faith and her overall enjoyment of all things nerdy. Kamala found solace in video-games, social media, pop culture, and superheroes. She particularly followed the career of Captain Marvel. One day while walking home from a party, Terrigenises mists fell upon her town (the same that give Inhumans their powers), and wrapped Kamala up in a Terrigen Cocoon. In her stasis she was granted a vision of her three favorite heroes: Captain America, Iron Man, and Captain Marvel; they asked her what she wanted most in her life. She replied that she wished she was more like Captain Marvel because she was “beautiful and awesome and butt-kicking and less complicated.” When she emerged from her cocoon Kamala found that she was dressed as a younger Ms. Marvel and had the ability to polymorph, (like Mr. Fantastic) and self heal when she regained her normal form. Quickly she began to realize the responsibility of being granted such powers and started to use them for the benefit of all humankind. Thus the new Ms. Marvel was born, a welcome addition to the pantheon of Marvel heroes and one so rooted in reality and humility.


Suggested Reading

For Captain Marvel, (Carol Danvers):

  • Generations #1: Captain Marvel & Captain Mar-Vell
  • Captain Marvel (2014) #1
  • The Life of Captain Marvel
  • Avengers: The Enemy Within

For Ms. Marvel, (Kamala Khan):

  • Ms. Marvel (2014) #1
  • Ms. Marvel (2015) #1
  • All New, All Different Avengers #1
  • S.H.I.E.L.D. (2015) #2

What are your favorite Captain Marvel Stories? Let us know in the comments below.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s