Writer: Alyssa Wong
Art: Jan Bazaldua
Colors: Bryan Valenza
Letters: VC’s Ariana Maher
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Release Date: October 25th, 2023
Captain Marvel’s back in New York, rocking a new costume and a new attitude in Captain Marvel #1. And just in time too, because a new villain named The Omen comes calling, with power draining abilities that would put Rogue to shame, and Carol is her #1 target! Also, there’s a wild trip to The Negative Zone! Tragedy strikes Genis-Vell! And who’s the mysterious cat burglar Yuna Yang?
The thing I love most about writer Alyssa Wong and artist Jen Bazaldua’s version of Captain Marvel is that she’s all business. You’re never going to see any Spider-Man style zingers from her in the midst of combat, or any Deadpool-style hijinks. Carol is efficient and wields her power with devastating effect. Early in Captain Marvel #1, The Omen appears, commenting on Carol’s uniform. Carol’s response? She immediately blasts her with a full-power beam of energy. That’ll teach you to mouth off, Omen.
This issue is filled with action set pieces, moving from one battle to the next, stopping only to introduce new character Yuna Yang, a teenage cat burglar who’s so excellent at breaking into anything, she makes DC’s Catwoman look like an amateur. She’s an interesting character, stealing because she needs the money for college, not because she’s trying to accumulate wealth. The only person in the world she seems afraid of is her mother, and granted, when you’re a teenager, your mama can be pretty terrifying. I look forward to learning more about her and how she became so adept at burglary at such a young age.
Main baddie The Omen, the other new character introduced this issue, looks like a cross between Deathbird and Wolverine. She has giant wings and razor-sharp claws, which she’s not afraid to slice and dice anyone with who gets in her way. She can also drain energy from another person, and that evens the playing field between Carol and her. They have a brutal battle early in the issue that’s thrilling, as Carol tries to take down The Omen even as her own power is being drained. We find out later in the issue how truly dangerous The Omen can be, and she drops hints throughout the issue that she may be the first of an army that’s coming to Earth. I enjoyed this first issue. The Omen is a great new villain with just the right amount of mystery surrounding her, Carol has never been more of a warrior than she is here, and Yuna Yang promises to be a great supporting character for the book. It’s a solid beginning to this new Captain Marvel series.
Jen Bazaldua’s art on Captain Marvel #1 captures the terrifying malevolence of The Omen perfectly.
The action scenes have kinetic energy and the fight choreography flows beautifully from page to page. Yuna Yang’s design is interesting, with symbols painted on her face, a mop of dark hair with purple highlights, and a cat burglar outfit that looks like something from Psylocke’s closet. Her grit and street smarts shine through in her expressions and body language.
Captain Marvel #1 is a great kick-off to the new series. It introduces a fantastic new nemesis for Carol in The Omen, hints at even more villains to come, gives us some exhilarating fight scenes and ends with a chilling cliffhanger. Recommended.