The first installment of THE LIFE OF CAPTAIN MARVEL featured an unlikely scenario. Rather than embarking on a brand new adventure alongside the Avengers, Carol Danvers found herself on a road back home. Unfortunately for her, home is not necessarily the most comforting of places. In fact, home catalyzes memories of the past Carol has strived to move forward from. Now, in THE LIFE OF CAPTAIN MARVEL #2, Carol Danvers must face that past head-on.

Carol’s brother, Joe Jr. has recently suffered brain trauma as a result of a terrible car accident. Additionally, Carol has discovered a plethora of letters implying that her father engaged in an affair during her youth. As consequences of the past continue to unfold, Carol finds herself hanging up her super suit for an undetermined amount of time.

Thus, the question remains, what happens when a hero no longer has a place to call home?

the life of captain marvel #2
THE LIFE OF CAPTAIN MARVEL #2 page 1. Image courtesy of Marvel Entertainment.

The Hunted

THE LIFE OF CAPTAIN MARVEL #2 opens with Carol bemoaning her decision to return home. No, she doesn’t regret the time she is spending with her brother, Joe Jr. Rather, she detests the fact that the act of returning home has opened up innumerable old wounds. Memories of the funerals of her brother Steve and father Joe catalyze aggressive panic attacks. Also, the responsibility of caring for Joe Jr. alongside her mother, with whom she maintains a tense relationship, instills an insurmountable amount of pressure on Carol.

Sure, she’s saved the world numerous times, but she is unsure of herself in this situation. She doesn’t exactly feel as though she fits into her family. She doesn’t know how she can help when there has been so much negativity within her family dynamic. Ultimately, Carol feels lost in a place that should serve as a foundation for an individual’s identity.

To make things even more complicated, Carol discovers that her father was unfaithful to her mother throughout their marriage.

THE LIFE OF CAPTAIN MARVEL #1 Will Bring You to Tears

Thus, THE LIFE OF CAPTAIN MARVEL #2 is such a success because it features a notable hero in a static state. Carol doesn’t know how to combat these secrets that continue unfolding. She doesn’t know what to do when her superpowers can’t do anything for her. Despite her powers, Carol is incredibly lost within her own home.

As a result, Margaret Stohl’s deconstruction of a character we may have thought we knew contributes to a raw and honest tale that can be tough to read due to its sincerity and tragic aspects. However, it ultimately makes for a story that can very well become a definitive Captain Marvel arc.

the life of captain marvel #2
THE LIFE OF CAPTAIN MARVEL #2 page 2. Image courtesy of Marvel Entertainment.

The Many Hues of THE LIFE OF CAPTAIN MARVEL #2

Artist Marguerite Sauvage’s work on the flashback sequences is absolutely exceptional. The minimalist style truly isolates Carol and her emotions during those sequences. Also, the additional pops of color in the funeral scene intensify those flashback moments as they contribute to present-Carol’s attempts to come to terms with the tragedies of the past.

In the present, her world is abundant with color thanks to colorist Marcio Menyz’ work. However, the story itself does not fit those warm tones. The pops of color within the funeral sequence greatly juxtapose the content of that particular sequence.

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Surprisingly, that juxtaposition that is present throughout THE LIFE OF CAPTAIN MARVEL #2 works. One would associate home with refuge and warmth. However, Carol does not necessarily feel that way. She’s experiencing confusion and doubt.

As a result, the contrast the artists implement in this issue perfectly captures Carol’s inner conflicts. She is trying to reconcile her past with the present in a way that fits, but she is struggling to do so. Thus, the imagery of THE LIFE OF CAPTAIN MARVEL #2 perfectly exemplifies the conflicts of the narrative, conflicts that dig deep and may be difficult for our titular hero to articulate.

What Lies Beyond

THE LIFE OF CAPTAIN MARVEL #2 is an exceptional work in both its writing and art. Carol Danvers’ Captain Marvel has never been seen in this light before. Margaret Stohl presents an unapologetically raw portrayal of a hero who has saved the world numerous times.

Interestingly though, this hero has found one problem she cannot solve.

Therefore, Captain Marvel’s journey from this point is unclear. We don’t know if she will ever be released from the past or if she will restart her Avengers career.

All we do know is that Captain Marvel is on a road to self-discovery. Whether or not that will change our titular hero forever remains to be seen.

THE LIFE OF CAPTAIN MARVEL #2 by Margaret Stohl, Carlos Pacheco, Rafael Fonteriz, Marcio Menyz, & Marguerite Sauvage
Art
Characterization
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Summary
THE LIFE OF CAPTAIN MARVEL #2 continues the quality of its predecessor as it digs deeper into Carol Danvers' toughest battles.
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simply gorgeous
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