REVIEW: ‘Captain Marvel,’ Issue #18

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Captain Marvel #18

Captain Marvel #18 is published by Marvel Comics, written by Kelly Thompson, art by Cory Smith, inks by Adriano Di Benedetto, colors by Tamra Bonvillain, and letters by Clayton Cowles. With last issues innocent game night feeling like a distant memory, war has come to Carol’s world. Having accepted the role of Supreme Accuser of the Kree/Skrull Empire she now executes her office as only Captain Marvel can. But her next mission may require a greater sacrifice than she is willing to make.

The concept of Carol being entrusted with a mantle like Supreme Accuser is both simultaneously the best, and worst idea a political leader could make. As long as you have her on your side, you know she will not only be a gifted warrior that will single handily win battles for you, but her very name will bring you credibility. After all, love her or hate, Carol is a woman of her word.

However, the drawback to entrusting her with such power is that she is cut from the same cloth as Captain America. As in, she will wield any power you give her for what she considers right. Not what you state is right. Which, given the fact that pan-galactic wars can get messy, and right can rapidly come to depend on one’s own point of view, and you quickly see why, in Hulkling’s shoes, you might not want to hand Carol such awesome power as the Accuser’s hammer. But, for better or worse she’s got the thing now. If there is one thing Carol has never been shy about, it using the power at her disposal, and she is pretty good at it too.

Captain Marvel #18 opens with the waning moments of a space battle that sees a Kree/Skrull ship about to be blasted to space dust. Despite numerous signals of surrender the hostile Cotati ship continues, it’s assault. Luckily, the Cotati are about to stand accused. And the judgment will be swift.

Carol’s dispatching of the Cotati battle cruiser instantly took me back to her smashing Thanos’ ship in the climactic fight of Avengers: End Game. Seeing Earth’s Mightiest Hero dispatch battleships with melee attacks will never get old.

Carol returns to the Kree/Skrull flagship to report back to Hulkling, as well as catch her breath. Her connections to the Kree have always been complicated, and Carol clearly needs some time to figure out where she stands with all that has been changing in her universe. Alas, duty calls. And before she knows it her Emperor has dispatched her to another hot spot that needs quelling. But this time it’s not to fight a battle. But to perform her role as the arbiter of justice within the Empire. For this mission, a Kree stands accused.

Thompson captures this moment for Carol extremely well. As someone from a democratic background, the concept of summary justice doesn’t sit easy with Carol. And while she did agree to be the Accuser, she was clearly framing the duty more in line with helping fend off the Cotati threat in her mind. From here, it would be spoilers to talk about the plot with any detail but suffice it to say, things don’t go as planned. Carol makes a choice that will surprise no one familiar with the character, doubly so if they’ve been following Thompson’s run.

Making their debut as the new artist for this storyline Smith does an excellent job of capturing the might, and the humanity of our protagonist. As has been the case for most of Thompson’s run, Carol is put through a wide range of emotions in Captain Marvel #18 and Smith seems more than up to the challenge of giving them all their proper due.

Smith’s art is aided further from the continued excellence of Bonvillain’s colors. The color choices within these panels are top-notch, as has been par for the course with Bonvillain since issue one.

Lastly, Cowles continues to provide steady and clear lettering work that is the hallmark of his craft. The story is presented in an easy to follow manner. Add to that some light aesthetic touches to highlight things like when dialogue is being delivered by radio for that extra clarity and we are given a polished letter presentation.

Captain Marvel #18 delivers what could potentially be a huge moment in Carol’s life. Where exactly the story will go from here remains to be seen, but I’m definitely along for the ride.

Captain Marvel #18 is available now wherever comics are sold.

 

Captain Marvel #18
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TL;DR

Captain Marvel #18 delivers what could potentially be a huge moment in Carol’s life. Where exactly the story will go from here remains to be seen, but I’m definitely along for the ride.