Captain Marvel’s latest Brood encounter has just unearthed her most personal struggle, and the hero proved that she’s still stronger than her demons.
The following contains major spoilers for Captain Marvel #45, available now from Marvel Comics.
Carol Danvers has dealt with her fair share of challenges over the years, though few have been as threatening as the insectile Brood. In her latest encounter with this alien menace, Carol has been captured alongside the X-Men all over again. Thankfully, Captain Marvel and her mutant allies are more than capable of overcoming anything that gets in their way, and the Brood has given Carol a potent reminder of that in the most surprising way possible.
Captain Marvel #45 (by Kelly Thompson, Sergio Dávila, Sean Parsons, Arif Prianto, Yen Nitro, and VC’s Clayton Cowles) finds the titular hero inexplicably far from any action. Instead, she and her allies are attending a Shi’ar gala in only the finest of luxury. At least, that is what the Brood would have them believe. While the heroes manage to free themselves from an alien-induced hallucination, that isn’t the greatest victory for all of them. When it comes to Carol, the fact that it wasn’t really her in that dream state is infinitely more valuable, as it means it wasn’t really her who picked back up her most destructive power.
Captain Marvel Just Confronted Her Most Personal Demon
Carol’s original encounter with the Brood famously led to her transformation into the supercharged Binary, yet it also kicked off what has come to be the most painful chapter of her life. Despite her immense power, Carol’s then-newfound abilities were far from infinite. Eventually, Carol used her powers to prevent the sun itself from dying out, which left her all but completely inert. Though she found solace in her new home at Avengers Mansion, Carol still struggled with her situation, and a temporary solution was only ever a bottle away.
It took Carol months to come to terms with the loss of her powers, and even longer for her to overcome the alcoholism she developed along the way. In the process, Carol began attending Alcoholics Anonymous meetings which helped renew her sense of self-worth and reshape her general outlook. It isn’t a subject that is brought up often, but that dedication to sobriety is still something that Carol carries on every single day. The knowledge she didn’t falter might be an even greater victory for her than beating the Brood.
Carol’s Sobriety Is a Cornerstone of Her Identity
The similar struggles of other heroes such as Tony Stark are certainly more well known, yet Carol’s has had just as profound an impact on her life. This isn’t just evidenced by her relief at having not actually consumed alcohol, but by the way, she appreciates that fact. She is able to take joy in the fact that the Brood’s illusion was only trying to trick her. It is also perfectly evident in how she approaches nearly every problem in her life.
Carol has come a long way from blasting everything in sight, and the patience and restraint that she shows today are largely due to the very same measured composure she had to adapt to achieve sobriety. No matter what the likes of Amora or Agatha Harkness think of her, Carol is absolutely in charge of herself at every turn. If she weren’t, then there isn’t any chance she would be soaring through the cosmos as Captain Marvel, let alone defending them as one of the most endearing heroes in the entire Marvel Universe.