Thursday, September 25, 2008

The "Return"

Over at Marvel Comics, Their first Captain Marvel has been brought back...sort of, but not really.

Marvel Comics' 2006-2007 company-wide crossover event, Civil War, began with 3rd rate superheroes with their own reality show invading a supervillain hideout. In the struggle, Nitro, the villain that had given Captain Mar-Vell his cancer, detonated himself, killing 600 people, including an entire elementary school. This led to a public outcry, which led to the US government passing the “Superhuman Registration Act,” forcing registration of all super-powered beings with the government. This caused a schism in the superhero community reminiscent of the cold-war era communist witch hunts. On the one side, Iron Man led those heroes who followed the registration edict (including one former Captain Marvel, Ms. Marvel), and Captain America led those on the side of the right to privacy of identity. A prison was constructed in the Negative Zone to hold those who refused to register.

In the midst of this storyline, Captain Mar-Vell appeared. It turns out that he is really an alien Skrull named Khn'nr who had been planted as a secret agent as part of a plot to conquer Earth, but was conditioned so well to believe that he is Captain Marvel that he has rejected his mission. He believed that at a point in the past after his battle with Nitro and before he became aware of his cancer, he accidentally slipped into 2007. After the expected awkwardnesses that comes with figuring out that everybody is trying not to tell you that you are supposed to be dead, he was recruited to serve as warden for the superprison in the Negative Zone.

The Civil War ended when Captain America realized that the rebellion he was leading was tearing the country apart, surrendered to the authorities, and was assassinated. Captain Marvel then appeared on earth, inspiring the founding of a cult that would do good deeds in his name. The leader of the cult was killed by a military assault in the Sudan, and now this Captain Mar-Vell is going through deep psychological torment over feeling a need to live up to the good deeds of the cult that he inspired and rejecting his mission as a Skrull agent.

No comments: