Captain Marvel #4
Written by Kelly Sue Deconnick
Art by Dexter Soy
Art (pg. 16-20) by Al Barrionuevo
Colors (pg. 16-20) by Wil Quintana
Review by Joey Braccino
This week’s issue of Captain Marvelopens with Carol Danvers and the Banshee Squadron wrapping up their brawl with the alien Prowler spacecraft. Danvers’ opening narration reminds the reader that these Banshees are unknown quantities in the larger Marvel U, ostensibly raising the stakes for the subsequent battle. Could one of these incredible new characters go down in the battle against the Prowlers? Perhaps, and writer Kelly Sue DeConnick is careful to keep that in the reader’s mind because—let’s face it—Carol Danvers (and most series-leading superheroes) aren’t likely to kick the bucket. The battle plays out over the first 5 pages or so, so it does wrap up rather quickly, but Danvers and the Banshee’s interactions across the sequence help establish their relationships and Danvers’ ongoing live up to the title of Captain Marvel.
The remainder of the book gives us a brief back-story for the Banshees and raises questions about time-travel, space-time, and glowing green rocks. The book ends with Danvers getting thrust back into the time stream. While the farewell sequence between the Banshees and Carol is moving, I sincerely hope that this isn’t the last we’ve seen of these kick@$$ lady soldiers!
While I do believe that this issue continues DeConnick’s strong run on Captain Marvel, there are a couple of hiccups in issue #4. First, for the first time, the pacing of the book is a bit off-kilter. The Prowler battle is resolved relatively quickly considering the amount of play the storyline has received over the last 3 issues. Furthermore, last issue’s suggestion that the alien tech is somehow connected to the Kree isn’t addressed again this issue. This wouldn’t be an issue if the “origin” that is shown is a vague, glowing, green rock in the Japanese camp. The discovery isn’t addressed before Carol jumps back into the time stream (in an epic sequence illustrated by Dexter Soy), so I was left confused rather than eager for the next issue.
Speaking of Dexter Soy, his artwork yet again completely blows my mind. It’s kinetic, it’s gorgeous, it’s innovative. Soy’s Carol Danvers is absolutely stunning and absolutely powerful. This issue, Soy plays with inverted digital colors during some of the time travel sequences, and it definitely pays off. I anticipate that Dexter Soy, as a new artist in mainstream comics, will demonstrate some more of this creativity and experimentation as CaptainMarvelrolls along! Al Barrionuevo and Wil Quintana’s epilogue sequence featuring Helen Cobb is also visually stunning, and the change of art style between the two time periods helps clarify the shift in setting.
Kelly Sue DeConnick’s Captain Marvel is still one of the most exciting new series on the stands. This week’s issue does suffer from some pacing issues and some confusing new developments, but overall the book’s dialogue, action, and artwork more than make up for it. Next issue seems to kick off a new direction in this ongoing time travel arc, so it might be a great place to jump on. Of course, we’re only up to #4, so pick up those back-issues and hop on the Danvers train!