The Life of Captain Marvel #5
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Credit: Marvel Comics

Captain Marvel gets a Superman-esque retcon to her origin story in latest issue from Margaret Stohl

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Oct 17, 2018, 4:38 PM EDT

Ahead of her cinematic debut in March, Carol Danvers has received an all-new origin story that no longer ties the cause of her powers to a man, the previous Captain Marvel, writes The Hollywood Reporter.

In the fourth issue of Margaret Stohl's The Life of Captain Marvel (on sale today), it is revealed that Carol's mother is actually a member of the Kree race, making Carol half-human and half-alien, much like Peter Quill (aka Star-Lord). Her mother's name, "Marie" up until this point, has been retconned into “Mari-Ell." This familial name extends to Carol, whose actual name is "Car-Ell," an uncanny parallel to Superman's real name of "Kal-El."

It's always been canon that Danvers has Kree DNA in her cells, but it originally came from her exposure to a Psyche-Magnetron, a Kree-created device that can endow any lower lifeform with enhanced abilities. When Carol gained her powers in 1977, her encounter with the Psyche-Magnetron was an accident related to the male Captain Marvel. 

The Life of Captain Marvel #4

Credit: Marvel Comics

The Life of Captain Marvel #4

Credit: Marvel Comics

It's unclear whether this bit of retroactive continuity is meant to emphasize the fact that Captain Marvel will be the first Marvel Studios movie to feature a woman (Brie Larson) as its central protagonist, be directed by a woman (Anna Boden), and be scored by a woman (Pinar Toprak). 

Whether it's got to do with smashing the patriarchy or not, the change to Danvers's backstory makes her less dependent on the male heroes of the Marvel Universe and more of her own unique character. Her revised backstory could also end up playing a part in the movie, which will focus on a Carol that already has her powers. However, this probably isn't likely since it would constitute a major spoiler five months before the thing is even released. 

The Life of Captain Marvel is a miniseries, whose fifth and final issue becomes available Nov. 21. Since its first issue dropped back in July, the series has been billed as "THE DEFINITIVE ORIGIN OF CAPTAIN MARVEL!" A new run from Kelly Thompson arrives in January. 

Captain Marvel, the film version we mean, drops into theaters March 8, 2019.