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Member Since: Sat May 17, 2008
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Iron Man Unit 007

Member Since: Thu Oct 20, 2011
Posts: 4,797
Subj: My attempt to make sense of the mess (with addenda)
Posted: Sat Mar 30, 2019 at 09:20:50 am EDT (Viewed 125 times)
Reply Subj: Re: CBR attempts to explain why Carol Danvers was NOT present in Death of Captain Marvel
Posted: Sat Mar 30, 2019 at 08:05:16 am EDT (Viewed 97 times)

    The screw up is that CBR cant seem to draw the conclusion that Carol was incapacitated OR that perhaps she was restored but her mind was still in a delicate state, OR else that Starlin thought Carol was incapacitated or that Starlin just screwed up.

There was no reason to assume/conclude that Carol was incapacitated or in a "delicate state" - the conclusion of Avengers Annual #10 shows that is clearly not the case. Speculating that Starlin may have thought Carol was incapacitated or may have "just screwed up" would not have helped to correct his mistake, all it would have done was provide an out-of-story rationalization/excuse.

Personally, I think the most simple "explanation" would be to assume that the death of Captain Marvel happened before Carol's return, as it's not completely unlikely that Jim Starlin at least had plotted out TDOCM before Avengers Annual #10 came out. How well that could work continuity-wise I don't know - I would guess that when you get down to it the assembly of so many Marvel heroes at Mar-Vell's deathbed is likely to be a continuity nightmare if you're trying to accommodate all the series involved. (But it could also explain why Angel is standing next to Kitty and Ororo, and fairly close to Charles, Scott and Logan, in the one panel he appears in, as if he was still an X-Man (he left the X-Men because Xavier would not throw Wolverine out at the end of Byrne's run, i.e. some time before Avengers Annual #10). It's a bit ambiguous though, as Warren is also standing fairly close to several Defenders. And how to explain Cyclops's presence? So it is a bit of a conundrum where to fit in the graphic novel continuity-wise.

    The fact that the X-men didn't tell her before hand though is a bit astonishing. Granted they were busy fighting for their lives against the Brood, but on their way back to Earth they COULD have had their ship stop at the asteroid where Marv was buried and tell Carol the news.

Is it really that astonishing? The X-Men really had no history to speak of with Captain Mar-Vell. I may be unaware of a previous encounter or two, but to the best of my knowledge for most X-Men their appearance in TDOCM was their first meeting with him ever. (AFAIK only the Beast had a bit of a history with Captain Marvel, and at that point he was an active Avenger, had left the X-Men a long time ago and only made occasional guest-star appearances and cameos in UXM). Not having an emotional connection to Mar-Vell to speak of, they may have soon forgotten about it (out of sight, out of mind) - it was the equivalent of you or me attending the funeral of a not very close relative of a friend. For me as a reader what is really strange is that Jim Starlin chose to involve the (active) X-Men at all, especially as all he had them do was fill out three crowd shots (one on the cover plus two panels in the interior (1)) and not let any of them say a single word.

Assuming that Mar-Vell died before Carol's return does resolve or at least side-step most (potential) continuity problems, leaving basically the question why Logan didn't tell Carol about Mar-Vell's death before the poker game shown in Marvel Fanfare. Now as far as I am aware Mar-Vell had never teamed up with the X-Men as a unit or with Wolverine specifically; a quick search of
revealed NO mentions of "X-" or "Wolverine", and the two mentions of "Logan" referred to the series "Logan's Run". Meanwhile at
"X-" only occurs in the context of X-Men/Avengers war, during which Mar-Vell was briefly brought back from the dead (Secret Avengers #26-28, 2012), and "Logan" and "Wolverine" do not occur at all. So by all evidence available to me, even Wolverine had never met Mar-Vell before he was called to his deathbed in TDOCM. So I think it is not wildly implausible that Logan forgot about it, especially as when the X-Men plus Binary returned from outer space (UXM #166/167) they still had to emotionally process their traumatic experiences with the Brood etc., and when they didn't do that Wolverine probably was reflecting on Jean's apparent death (a tendency that would have been reinforced by returning from an adventure in space, i.e. the Phoenix' natural habitat). And if that's not enough, one could always fall back on the implanted false memories distracting him, I guess. ;\-\) They also couldn't make a stop at Mar-Vell's grave on the return trip even if they had wanted to: they had to hurry back to Earth ASAP so they would not be too late to deal with the Brood Queen hatching inside Charles Xavier's body in the mansion (vide UXM #167).

The graphic novel could also lead one to conclude that Jim Starlin did not care for Carol Danvers at all - as the CBR article mentions, she seems to have been erased from Mar-Vell's biography in TDOCM.

Now why did Claremont write "Elegy" (the story in Marvel Fanfare #24, recently reprinted in True Believers: Captain Mar-Vell #1)? I think the purpose was to finally address Carol's feelings about Mar-Vell's death, which probably made him feel he should show the moment when she learns/realizes he is dead, to flesh out her - at that point still sketchy - history with Logan some more and give the two the farewell scene he didn't write in 1983(2), and to show her changed feelings towards her old friends and associates. On the one hand she has regained her equanimity somewhat and no longer is angry at the Avengers etc., but on the other, because Rogue stole her emotional memories, she has become completely alienated from them and, by extension, Earth and its inhabitants, so she feels she is ready to leave Earth for good with the Starjammers.

(1) There are two more panels where Cyclops stands silently in the background while Spider-Man speaks with the Beast, but as far as I can see it seems more likely that Scott was still on his leave of absence from the X-Men (UXM #138-ca. UXM #150) at the time of Mar-Vell's death.

(2) It's probably set just before UXM #174, where Cyclops - who at that point is considering joining the Starjammers as well - has a conversation with Binary on board the Starjammer. Carol here is introduced as the Starjammers' newest recruit, while in MF #24 she makes her mind up to accept Corsair's offer to join them. Also, Carol talks of Rogue with a rather low level of resentment, which seems to indicate that she accepted that Rogue now is an X-Man. One may wonder if on the way to the poker game Logan told Carol about his adventures in Japan (Wolverine vol. 1 #1-4 and UXM #172-173) and that Rogue had proved herself as an X-Man in the fight against Viper and the Silver Samurai.

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