Ask Me Anything About Captain Marvel!

Who would you say are the top ten Golden Age characters related to Captain Marvel (not himself thats to easy, and not Black Adam either)?


Black Adam only had one appearance in the Golden Age, so he probably does not actually make the list.


Thats true.


I’m not sure what the criteria is, but I’ll go by their relative popularity/importance in the 40’s.

  • Dr. Sivana
  • Captain Marvel Jr.
  • Mary Marvel
  • Tawky Tawny
  • Uncle Dudley
  • Hoppy The Marvel Bunny
  • Mr. Mind
  • Mr. Atom
  • King Kull
  • Ibac

Cool, thanks


This might have already been asked, but what is your favorite Fawcett Captain Marvel story?


I think the character billy batson is meant to stay a child for Shazam, would that be correct? or is there even a chance we see Billy get become an older guy late 20s-mid 30s?

Could, Billy or has he ever gone the way of Black Adam in that, he stays in his Shazam form for more than a short period of time, like years.


He is an adult in kingdom come if that answers your question.


Honestly, I don’t think I can pare it down to just a single story. There’s too many fantastic stories from the Golden Age for me to do that and I’m sure my answer would probably change each time I’m asked that.

However, I think I can do a single issue, where it probably has the most amount of my favorite stories in one issue, Captain Marvel Adventures #98.

It’s the issue where Captain Marvel pushes a titanic dead star, a feat that we rarely ever see matched or exceeded in terms of metrically inferred strength. It’s likely that Captain Marvel pushed somewhere between 2.7133782 tredecillion (that’s 42 zeroes) metric tons (which is 2240 lbs.) to 6.3312158 tredecillion metric tons.

It is also the issue that establishes that Captain Marvel has unlimited speed.

It showcases Captain Marvel’s Wisdom of Solomon, where he solves what no other scientist in the world could, a superpower of his that which has been largely forgotten in the modern age.

It has one of my favorite character moments that really defines the character for me, where he refuses the galactic honor of the United Worlds inviting Earth to join them simply because he wants Earth to earn it as a whole rather than because of his heroic feats.

And last, but not least, it has my favorite Golden Age Tawky Tawny story:


If Billy grew facial hair would it disappear when he transforms or would it still be their?


In terms of the concept of the character, Billy Batson is meant to be a child. That’s the whole point of the character. He should never be an adult on a permanent basis or you will get away from the very point and the core of the character.

That, and without that, you lose what makes him appealing, his two-in-one wish fulfillment fantasy. We all know that half of it is that when Billy becomes Captain Marvel, it is a power fantasy, where by saying one magic word, he becomes the most powerful person on the planet.

The other half of that is that with one magic word, a kid can become an adult. Just about every kid has fantasized about being an adult. If you make Billy an adult, you lose half of the appeal, and therefore, the thing that makes him unique in a genre filled with power fantasies.

That said, there are stories where Billy has been an adult:

  • Shazam! #3
  • The Marvel Family #69
  • Distant Fires
  • Futures End #18
  • Kingdom Come

As far as staying in superpowered form for years, the post-Crisis version has (Power Of Shazam! Annual #1):


Depends on the version. The pre-Crisis Earth-S version, it’s unlikely as he always stays the same.

For the post-Crisis version, it’s likely up to whether or not he chooses to have facial hair. In Power of Shazam! #6, he went from fresh-faced Billy to Captain Marvel with facial hair (as well as a set of civilian clothes).

For the Earth-0 version, it’s not entirely clear if he can, but I would say that it’s likely. After all, Pedro also has a full beard (Curse of Shazam!), so we can probably make the inference that Billy could choose to do the same whether or not he has a beard.


Do you think that Whiz Comics #2 follows the story pattern laid out in The Hero with a Thousand Faces?


Sorry, though I’ve heard of it, I’m not familiar with The Hero With A Thousand Faces


Thats fine, I wrote an essay on it for college and was curious on your thoughts.


I want to take a moment to let folks know that if you wish, you can message me with questions about Captain Marvel.

This was something I used to do on Twitter, and it was a great way of answering questions.


The way I’ve seen the Courage of Achilles applied in Captain Marvel/Shazam stories, it seems to share a lot of overlap with the Stamina of Atlas. What’s their practical distinction?


I can’t really recall a power of Captain Marvel’s that was attributed to both the Courage of Achilles and the Stamina of Atlas outside of invulnerability, which I suspect is what you’re thinking of.

If so, attributing invulnerability to either Atlas or Achilles would be wrong.

Captain Marvel’s invulnerability comes from Zeus – at least, if we’re going by the original version of Captain Marvel (Captain Marvel Adventures #144).

Invulnerability of Zeus

However, for other versions, namely the post-Crisis version of Captain Marvel, due to being handled by different writers, Zeus is not the source of Captain Marvel’s invulnerability. For example, in War of the Gods #4, Captain Marvel’s invulnerability was attributed to Achilles and in Legends #1, it is credited to Atlas.

Like so:

Contrast that to the original Captain Marvel, for whom the Stamina of Atlas provides him unlimited stamina, as well as the strength of Atlas, while the Courage of Achilles gives him super-courage and achilles’ fighting abilities, so there’s not much overlap.

For the latter version of Captain Marvel, even if both Atlas and Achiles – or the other gods – in Captain Marvel’s pantheon shared attributes or powers, it wouldn’t be so much an overlap as it would be that two gods share the same power and Captain Marvel gets them from both gods combined.

Take the Strength of Hercules. The original Captain Marvel doesn’t just get the strength of Hercules, he also gets the strength of Atlas (and Zeus, for that matter). He has both Hercules’ and Atlas’ strength.


Does the magic clean the costumes or something?

I was reading Black Reign and kept wondering how Black Adam’s costume is not stained with blood.


Depends on the version of the character.

Post-Crisis Captain, the one you’re citing, yes, he can give himself a completely repaired/renewed costume.

In Superman/Shazam! #3, when Captain Marvel’s cape was destroyed, Superman offers to help him replace it with, “just say the word,” and Captain Marvel replies, “…That’s all I have to do, is say the word…” and then he’s got a new cape.

It doesn’t end with that, either.

The post-Crisis version of Captain Marvel can re-design his costume (Power of Shazam! #15):

He can even create civilian clothing for himself as Captain Marvel (Power of Shazam! #6).

Because Captain Marvel has this ability, so too, does Black Adam.

For the Earth-0 version, Shazam has that same ability, able to create Superman costume for himself as well as a completely repaired/renewed costume (Superman: Future’s End #1).

However, for the original Captain Marvel, the Earth-S version, he does not have that ability. When his costume was stolen, he needed to change back into Billy Batson to find it(WHIZ Comics #50).

He can’t simply change back into Captain Marvel and have a new suit.

And when the suit is damaged, he still needs to go to a tailor to repair it (Marvel Family #58).